PIRE CREATE TEAM

 

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR


 
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Mathias Vuille

Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences (DAES), SUNY-Albany

mvuille@albany.edu

Mathias Vuille is a climate scientist in the Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences at the University at Albany. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Bern in Switzerland in 1995 and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on climate change, paleoclimate and major topics in environmental science. His research focuses on tropical paleoclimate and climate change impacts and glacier retreat in the tropical Andes. He has been involved in adaptation projects on behalf of UNESCO, the Interamerican Development Bank and the World Bank, and served as a senior fellow for the U.S. State Department’s Program on Energy and Climate Partnerships in the Americas (ECPA). He has served as a contributing author to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), as Associate Editor for Geophysical Research Letters and as a member of the U.S. National Committee (USNC) for the International Union for Quaternary Research (INQUA). He is currently a member of the Science Leadership Council of the Mountain Research Initiative (MRI) and has published more than 100 peer-reviewed articles on climate change in South America. Read more>

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Ricardo Villalba

Argentina Institute for Snow, Glacier and Environmental Research (IANIGLA), Mendoza, Argentina

ricardo@mendoza-conicet.gob.ar

Ricardo Villalba is a CONICET Senior Researcher working at the Argentinean Institute for Snow, Ice and Environmental Sciences (IANIGLA), Mendoza, Argentina. Forestry Engineer (Universidad Nacional de La Plata), Master in Forestry Photointerpretation (CIAF, Universidad de Nacional de Colombia), Doctor in Geography (University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado, USA), with postdoctoral studies at Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, in New York, USA.  He has contributed to 250 scientific publications in peer-reviewed journals and book chapters. Scopus index h = 41 (Sep - 2018). Editor of 4 special issues in Quaternary International (2006), Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology (2009) and Climate of the Past (2012 and 2015). Associate Editor (Geomorphology and Landscape Ecology) of Dendrochronologia (2002-2014), and Board Member of Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology  (2011-2017). Member of PAGES Steering Committee, International Geosphere and Biosphere Program (IGBP, 2003-2009). Lead-author  of the Fourth Assessment of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC, 2004-2007).  Director of the Argentinean Institute for Snow, Ice and Environmental Sciences (IANIGLA-CONICET), Mendoza (2005-2015). Among other distinctions he received from the International Tree Ring Society the Harold C. Fritts Award in recognition for a lifetime dedicated to education and the study of the sciences of tree rings. He supervises numerous fellows and researchers from CONICET and other national and international scientific institutions. Fields of interest: tree -rings, paleoclimatology, climate change, impacts of climate changes on water resources and forests.

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Francisco W. Cruz

PIRE-FAPESP Director, University of Sao Paulo (USP), Sao Paulo, Brazil

cbill@usp.br


 
 

COMMUNICATION & PROJECT MANAGER


 
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Natalia Ruiz Menal

 Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences (DAES), SUNY-Albany

nruizmenal@albany.edu

During her professional experience, she has worked as a marketing and communication project manager in communications and advertising agencies, using the latest technologies to give the maximum visibility to their projects.

Before joining UAlbany she was working in ESRI Spain, where among other tasks; she developed the company's digital marketing strategy, including different plans for recruitment, conversion and loyalty in the different digital channels: Web, Emailing, and social networks.

Since July 2018, she is the Communication & Project Manager of the PIRE CREATE project at University of Albany.


 
 

CO-PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATORS (Co-PIs)


 
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Rosanne D’Arrigo

Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO), Columbia University, Palisades, NY

druidrd@ldeo.columbia.edu

Rosanne D’Arrigo is a Lamont Research Professor at the Tree-Ring Laboratory and the Associate Director of the Division of Biology and PaleoEnvironment at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, part of Columbia University, in Palisades, New York. She is a dendroclimatologist who has used the science of tree-ring analysis to study trees in a range of environments, including the boreal forests of North America and the forests of Monsoon Asia and South America, in order to reconstruct the past climate variability in these regions and across the globe.

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Aiguo Dai

Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences (DAES), SUNY-Albany

adai@albany.edu

Professor Dai received his Ph.D. in atmospheric science from Columbia University in 1996. After that, he worked at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), first as a post-doctor and later became a Scientist III (equivalent to Associate Professor), until 2012, when he joined the faculty at the University at Albany. He is a Full Professor in the Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences. He studies climate variability and change using both observations and climate models, with an emphasis on global and large-scale problems related to inter-annual to decadal variations and long-term changes in  precipitation, temperature,  drought, streamflow, and other hydroclimate fields.

As of early January 2019, he published over 140 peer-reviewed research articles in Nature, Nature Climate Change, J. Climate, Climate Dynamics, and other well-respected journals in atmospheric and climate sciences. Professor Dai has been consistently selected since 2014 as one of the world's Highly Cited Researchers by Thomson Reuters (the whole SUNY system only has 4-6 Highly Cited Researchers), and he is the most cited scholar at the University at Albany according to Google Scholar, with a total of citations over 30,000, an annual citation rate exceeding 4200 per year and an H-index of 67 as of early January 2019. For a list of his publications, see his Google Scholar profile. Learn more about Professor Dai on his homepage at the Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences website.

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Catherine Lawson

Albany Visualization and Informatics Lab (AVAIL), SUNY-Albany

lawsonc@albany.edu

 

SENIOR PERSONNEL: 


 
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Jason Smerdon

Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO), Columbia University, Palisades, NY

jsmerdon@ldeo.columbia.edu

Jason Smerdon is a Lamont Research Professor at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University. He also holds appointments at Columbia University as an Earth Institute Faculty Member and as Co-Director of the Undergraduate Program in Sustainable Development.  He teaches courses on climate, environmental change and sustainable development to undergraduate and graduate students.  Smerdon also lectures widely in public and private settings on the subject of climate change and its social dimensions.  
Smerdon’s research focuses on climate variability and change during the past several millennia and how past climates can help us understand future climate change. He publishes widely in the scientific literature on paleoclimate reconstruction techniques, the dynamics of past climate change and variability, and on assessing climate model simulations of the past and future using paleoclimatic information.  In 2013, Smerdon served as a Contributing Author to Assessment Report Five (WG1) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.  He is co-author (with Ed Mathez) of the book Climate Change: The Science of Global Warming and Our Energy Future (Columbia University Press, October 2018)
Smerdon received his B.A. in physics from Gustavus Adolphus College and his Ph.D. in applied physics from the University of Michigan.

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Cecelia M. Skott

Center for International Development (SUNY/CID), Rockefeller College, SUNY-Albany

cskott@albany.edu

Cecelia M. Skott is a Senior Associate at the State University of New York Center for International Development (SUNY/CID).  She has more than 30 years’ international development experience in Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East, and Africa.   She works primarily on donor-funded democracy and governance projects, including efforts to create formal and informal linkages between scientists, citizens, and other stakeholders with policy-makers, planners, and government officials.  In addition to bringing her expertise in human capacity development, training, and environmental sciences to SUNY/CID’s lifetime portfolio of 125 projects worth more than $300 million, Ms. Skott was a founding board member of Instituto Internacional de Educação do Brasil (www.iieb.org.br), a nonprofit institution dedicated to empowering people and strengthening organizations in the areas of natural resource management, land management and other topics related to environmental sustainability.  Prior to joining SUNY/CID, Ms. Skott was a volunteer for the U.S. Peace Corps in Paraguay and a park ranger for the US Army Corps of Engineers.   She earned an M.A. in geography from the University at Albany with a specialization in remote sensing and Geographic Information Systems, and a B.A. in environmental studies from Alfred University.  Ms. Skott speaks Spanish and Portuguese.  

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Laia Andreu-Hayles

Tree-Ring Lab, Biology and Paleo Environment Division, Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO), Columbia University, Palisades, NY

lah@ldeo.columbia.edu

Laia Andreu-Hayles is a Research Associate Professor at the Tree-Ring Lab of Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University and a lecturer at the School of Professional Studies of Columbia University Laia has been at the Observatory since 2009. She holds a B.S. in Biology from the University of Barcelona and defended her Ph.D, which received a European Doctorate award mention, in October 2007 in Spain. Her research is focused on the study of past, current and future environmental changes, and incorporates dendrochronology and isotopic geochemistry. Her career has been focused on the assessment of vegetation responses under global climate change and on reconstructions of past climate. She seeks to understand the interactions between forests and the environment to provide a long-term context for the study of current anthropogenic change, its impacts on the terrestrial ecosystem, and the Earth’s climatic system. Her investigations are ongoing at sites located in the Mediterranean, boreal and tropical regions, which are ‘hot spots’ where some of the most dramatic environmental changes are already occurring. Laia has received fellowships and research awards, published 39 peer-reviewed papers and a book chapter, presented her findings at international conferences, and she has been invited to international and national scientific panels.

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Eugenia Ferrero

IANIGLA, Mendoza, Argentina

mferrero@mendoza-conicet.gob.ar

Eugenia Ferrero is a researcher scientist from the Argentinean Research Council (CONICET). She works at the Argentine Institute of Nivology, Glaciology and Environmental Sciences in Mendoza. Eugenia's research is focused on hydroclimatic reconstructions along tropical and subtropical environments based on tree-ring records from montane forests of South America. Her work includes the study of instrumental data variability and changes, an the impacts of climate on ecosystems responses.



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Park Wiliams

Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO), Columbia University, Palisades, NY

williams@ldeo.columbia.edu

I am a bioclimatologist whose research straddles the fields of climatology and ecology. I am especially interested in the climatological causes and the ecological consequences of drought. My research aims to improve understanding of drought and its effects on terrestrial systems, including forests, the carbon cycle, agriculture, and humanity. My ultimate goal is to advance scientific knowledge in ways that are relevant to policy makers and future scientific endeavors, and also interesting to the public and other scientists. Read more>

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Heather Senecal

SUNY Center for International Development, SUNY/CID

hsenecal@albany.edu

Heather Senecal, MPA, is an Associate with the Center for International Development at Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy, University at Albany, State University of New York where she focuses on designing capacity development programs as well as developing monitoring and evaluation plans for programs. Her work has seen her stationed in Uganda, Kenya and Afghanistan for long term technical assistance with field teams.  Ms. Senecal’s current projects focus on capacity development of local officials through skills-based training to enable them to design policies that will deliver essential services in Haiti and in Kenya.  

Ms. Senecal’s monitoring and evaluation work at the Center concentrates on designing performance management systems, data collection tools and protocols, using data to support adaptive management and improvement, and data for reporting. She also is developing a collaborative monitoring and learning approach for a Sustainable Community in Haiti that will bring together over ten SUNY campuses, four local partner and the local community to share data, build collaborative feedback systems, and effective reporting structures. 
Prior to joining the Center, Ms. Senecal served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Togo, West Africa as a Community Health and HIV/AIDS Prevention Volunteer. Her work with schools, community groups, farming cooperatives and youth leaders taught her that the only type of development that is sustainable is based on a locally developed plan and harnesses the power of the community.    

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Mariano Morales

IANIGLA, Mendoza, Argentina

mmorales@mendoza-conicet.gob.ar

Mariano Morales is a research scientist from the Argentinean Research Council (CONICET). He works at the Argentine Institute of Nivology, Glaciology and Environmental Sciences in Mendoza. Mariano’s research interest is focused on tree-ring climate reconstructions in South American, dendroarchaeology in the South American Altiplano and the long-term dynamics of montane forest under climatic and anthropogenic changes in Central and Patagonian Andes. His current research projects include the development of a South America Drought Atlas for the last 600 years, their impacts on ecosystems and the relationship with socio-cultural changes during pre-Columbian and historical times.

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Joseph Skrivanek

SUNY Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Purchase University

Joe.Skrivanek@purchase.edu

Joseph Skrivanek is Professor of Chemistry and the founding Director of the Baccalaureate and Beyond Community College Mentoring Program at Purchase College, SUNY. The Purchase Program is designed to provide community college students at seven SUNY community colleges with a seamless transition to the four-year institution. The Baccalaureate and Beyond Community College Mentoring Program received the President’s Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring (PAESMEM). Dr. Skrivanek is presently leading the SUNY Replication Project that is replicating the activities of the Purchase Baccalaureate and Beyond Program throughout the SUNY System. Dr. Skrivanek received his Bachelors and Masters degrees in Chemistry from the University of Scranton and his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the Pennsylvania State University. After postdoctoral work at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, he joined the faculty at Purchase College in 1979. In addition to being a Chemistry faculty member, he has held numerous positions at the College including Chair of the Chemistry and Biochemistry Programs, Dean of Natural Sciences, and Chair of the two Middle States Steering Committees. Dr. Skrivanek was named a SUNY Distinguished Service Professor by SUNY Chancellor Kristina Johnson in 2018.

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Eric Krans

Albany Visualization and Informatics Lab (AVAIL)

ekrans@albany.edu

Eric Krans manages business development at AVAIL including: project management; reporting; client interaction; grant writing; graphic design; and marketing. Mr. Krans has experience delivering projects on schedule and meeting milestones with clients ranging from low-income urban constituents to state departments, national foundations, and federal agencies including the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration.  

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W. Kyle McQuay

SUNY Center for International Development, SUNY-Albany

wmcquay@albany.edu                                      

Kyle McQuay is a research support specialist with the Center for International Development (CID) at Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy, University at Albany. Currently, his work is on a WKKF Kellogg Foundation funded project in Arcahaie Haiti.  The project is in collaboration with 10 other SUNY campuses and four local partners to design a sustainable learning community focusing on using educational programs to strengthen economic opportunities. Partnering with local organizations, CID is building a collaborative learning tool, which will aid in better understanding the local networks and community system dynamics, for both the project and the community to benefit from.

Kyle graduated with a master’s degree from the International Affairs program at Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy, University at Albany in 2018. His focus was in international development, and conducted a water access needs assessment in Haiti for his degree capstone project.

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Nicolas Strikis

Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

strikis@gmail.com

I am a geochemistry and peloclimate scientist in the Department of Geochemistry at Fluminense Federal University.
My research is focused on paleoclimate reconstruction of tropical precipitation based on isotope and geochemical record on speleothems. I have been working on understanding how changes in the ocean heat transport and atmospheric radiative forcing, like volcanic aerosol emissions and solar irradiance, impacts global monsoon precipitation.
I'm teaching to graduate and undergraduate courses in paleoclimatology, geochemistry and paleontology.

 

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Eduardo Goes Neves

USP, Sao Paulo, Brazil

edgneves@usp.br

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Ivo Karmann

USP, Sao Paulo, Brazil

ikarmann@usp.br


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Gregório Ceccantini

USP, Sao Paulo, Brazil

gregorio@usp.br

Gregório CECCANTINI – Associate Professor at the University of São Paulo (USP), Institute of Biosciences, Department of Botany (2018). Professor at the same institution since 2003. Professor at Federal University of Paraná (UFPR; 1998-2002) and researcher at The Institute for Technological Research (IPT; 1996-1998) Doctorate and Master’s in Biological Sciences (Botany) by University of São Paulo. Sabbatical at Harvard University (2015-2016) at the Holbrook Lab. on Plant Hydraulic Architecture. Interests on general plant morphology and anatomy but specialized on wood anatomy, tree-rings and parasitic plant biology. Previous experiences on wood technology and botany applied to archeology and paleoenvironment. Ongoing research on environmental changes connecting data from tree-rings and cave records. Also, ongoing researches on comparative anatomy and hydraulics of several clades of parasitic plants, mainly the Santalales.

 

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCH ASSOCIATES:

 
 

 
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Ernesto Tejedor Vargas

 Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, (DAES), SUNY-Albany

etejedor@albany.edu

 Dr. Ernesto Tejedor Vargas is a physical geographer who earned his Ph.D. from the University of Zaragoza (Spain) in May 2017. Tejedor’s Ph.D. research focused on understanding past climate variability, particularly that which precedes the pre-industrial era, through the combination of high-resolution proxies, such as tree-ring records or historical documents. In July 2018, he joined the research group of Dr. Mathias Vuille at UAlbany and is currently working on the PIRE Create project to better understand Last Millennium climate variability and societal impacts over the Americas by combining high-resolution proxies and Climate Model Simulations. In addition, he is very committed to outreach and has produced a long documentary on climate change and paleoclimatology www.chasingtracespast.com), and directed a short documentary on dendroclimatology (www.dendroteam.com).

 

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Giuliano M. Locosselli

USP, Sao Paulo, Brazil 

locosselli@yahoo.com.br

Dr Giuliano Locosselli is a postdoc based in the Institute of Biosciences of the University of São Paulo / Brazil. Most of his studies evaluate the impact of environmental change on the development of trees growing in forests and cities. This research uses tree rings as a means to evaluate the development of trees in a high temporal resolution. His experience includes classical dendrochronological analyses, stable isotopes and dendrochemistry. He has applied these approaches in trees from different Brazilian biomes, and in cities like São Paulo, the fifth largest urban conglomerate in the world, Lyon in France and Singapore.

 
 
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Milagros Rodríguez-Catón

Tree-Ring Lab, Biology and Paleo Environment Division, Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO), Columbia University, Palisades, NY

milagros@ldeo.columbia.edu

Milagros Rodríguez-Catón is a Postdoctoral Research Scientist at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University. She received her PhD in Biology at the Universidad Nacional de Cuyo in Argentina. Her thesis was focus on understanding Patagonian Forest’s dieback and its relationships with droughts. Milagros is currently working in the Biology and Palaeo Environment Division of Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, developing a Polylepis tarapacana isotopic tree-ring network in the Altiplano in South America with ecological and palaeoclimatic purposes.

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Nathan Steiger

Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO), Columbia University, Palisades, NY

nsteiger@ldeo.columbia.edu

 
 

GRADUATE STUDENTS:


 
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Rebecca Orrison 

Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences (DAES), SUNY-Albany

rorrison@albany.edu

Rebecca Orrison is a Ph.D. student working under the advisement of Dr. Mathias Vuille at the University at Albany in the Department of Atmospheric Science. Her research focuses on the past, present, and future variability and change of South American Climate, particularly the South American Monsoon System. This work is approached from a modeling framework and compares simulations with proxy records and observations.  Rebecca holds a Bachelors of Science in Environmental Science from the University of Minnesota, a background that lends an interdisciplinary perspective to the study of atmospheric science. Rebecca is excited about developing international and cross-disciplinary scientific collaborations as well as conversations about the policy relevance of findings from her research.  Beyond research, her hobbies include dancing, biking, and boxing. 

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Rose Oelkers

Tree-Ring Lab, Biology and Paleo Environment Division, Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO), Columbia University, Palisades, NY

roelkers@ldeo.columbia.edu

Rose is a PhD candidate in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences of Columbia University. Her PhD thesis is focused on developing new tree-ring chronologies in Bolivia and Peru to assess how tropical tree species are responding to environmental changes. She received her B.S. in Environmental Science in 2015 from William Paterson University, and worked as a lab technician in the Lamont-Doherty Tree Ring Lab until her transition to student in the Fall of 2018. 

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Arianna Varoulo-Clarke

Ocean and Climate Physics Division, Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO), Columbia University, Palisades, NY

ariannav@ldeo.columbia.edu

Arianna is a PhD Student at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University, where she is broadly interested in understanding large-scale hydroclimate variability over South America. Arianna completed her MS in the School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences at Stony Brook University where her research investigated the topographic influences on the North American monsoon in climate model simulations.  Arianna received her BS in Atmospheric Sciences from Lyndon State College. During her time at Lyndon State College, Arianna became interested in science communication and visited local high school classrooms to talk about climate change. She hopes to build a career at the intersection of science, policy, and communication by doing research centered on regional climate change and working with policy analysts and decision makers to help build robust science-based policies to create a sustainable world. Her hobbies include hiking, yoga, and talking about climate change with anyone and everyone who will listen. 

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Thomas Favata

Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, (DAES), SUNY-Albany

tfavata@albany.edu

Thomas Favata is a first year Atmospheric Science PhD student the University at Albany studying the impact of multidecadal modes of variability on extreme precipitation in the Americas. He received his undergraduate degree in Atmospheric science from Cornell University. Previously interned at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center and worked on predicting Indian monsoonal rainfall using a sequential neural network. He grew up in Niskayuna, NY with his parents Tom and Laura, and his 2 siblings Julia and Dominick. He is a huge sports fan and loves playing board games.

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Zhaoxiangrui He

Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, (DAES), SUNY-Albany 

zhe7@albany.edu

Zhaoxiangrui He is a graduate student at the University at Albany, SUNY, working under the advisement of Prof. Mathias Vuille and co-advisor Prof. Aiguo Dai. He received his B.S. in Atmospheric Science from the Chengdu University of Information Technology in 2016, and his M.S. in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2018.

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Rafael Magnusson

Institute of Chemistry, University of Campinas, Brazil

rafaelmagnusson98@gmail.com

Rafael is an undergraduate student in Chemistry at the Institute of Chemistry, University of Campinas. He joins the initiation to scientific research program his project involves the study of matrix matched standards and sample preparation in order to develop a method to quantify metals in tree rings and speleothems using LA-ICP-MS. During his studies, he also worked on the development of a method to quantify Gold nanoparticles using HVG-ICP-MS.

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Luciano Fioroto Redondo

Instituto de Biociências, USP. Brazil

fioroto@gmail.com

Luciano Fioroto Redondo has bachelor's degree in Biological Sciences from São Paulo University and experience in automation systems.
He has been receiving a TT3 Fapesp scholarship since 2018 to obtain phenological data about Peruaçu region, in Minas Gerais, Brazil.
His main activities in the PIRE CREATE project are cave monitoring, collection and preparation of wood samples and sediments in order to assist a team composed by biologists and geologists.

 
 
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Milena Godoy-Veiga

milena.veiga@usp.br

Milena is a Ph.D. student working at the University of São Paulo, under the supervision of Dr. Gregório Ceccantini and Giuliano Locosselli. In her Ph.D. she will develop new chronologies in Central-Eastern Brazil. These chronologies will help to assess how those trees are responding to climate. One interesting feature of her study site is the presence of both dry-forests and caves, where her team founded fossil trunks and speleothems with annual and decadal resolution. These samples consist of rare records that will be used for the reconstruction of the climate and past extreme flooding events of the Peruaçu river during the last millennia. Her interests go from botany to karate, and she wants to make collaborations and friends to learn more about climate analysis and climate change.