CSIS scholar honored with Pattullo Award

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Abigail Lynch, fisheries and wildlife doctoral candidate in the Center for Systems Integration and Sustainability, has received the Ambrose Pattullo Fund for Environmental Issues Graduate Fellowship for Literary Work.

A University Distinguished Fellow, Lynch’s research focuses on harvest management of lake whitefish in the Laurentian Great Lakes in a changing climate. She’s designing a decision-support tool that will help coordinate conservation efforts and harvest strategies for the whitefish by managers from both the United States and Canada.

The Pattullo Fund Fellowship recognizes students who have written about current environmental issues for publications aimed at non-scientists, including the general public. Lynch, who has worked in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s communications office, was honored for an article on gulf sturgeon restoration that will be published in Eddies, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Fisheries Program outreach magazine.

“I believe communication with policymakers, stakeholders, students and the general public is important to ensure informed decision-making and environmental awareness,” Lynch said. “Translating science into stories that everyone can understand and appreciate is an imperative, but often underappreciated task. I’m grateful and honored that the Pattullo committee recognized my efforts.”

As part of the fellowship, Lynch’s article, “A Dinosaur Fish Back from the Brink of Extinction: Saving the Gulf Sturgeon with Interjurisdictional Restoration,” also has been submitted to EJ Magazine, published by the Knight Center for Environmental Journalism at MSU.

”Ultimately, I seek to advocate for more effective management strategies to preserve our fisheries resources for human benefit while protecting the ecological function that fish provide to their ecosystems,” Lynch said. “The Pattullo Fund Fellowship is a rare opportunity to unite communications with research and provides a framework to hone these skills.”

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