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About this Event
Originally from Greenwood, South Carolina, Dr. Tiara Moore completed her B.S. in Biology in 2011 at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, South Carolina, where she developed an interest in marine science during a research trip in Costa Rica. She received her M.S. in Biology with a concentration in Environmental Science in 2013 from Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia, where she conducted research on the water quality of the Chesapeake Bay linking sediment oxygen demand and nutrient cycling to the eutrophication of the Bay.
After completing her M.S., she spent 2 months in Bali, Indonesia identifying the diversity and abundance of meiofauna in marine sediments across the coral triangle. Dr. Moore earned her PhD in Biology from UCLA, where she conducted research in Mo’orea, French Polynesia, Carpinteria Salt Marsh, and Upper Newport Bay. In Mo’orea, she observed the effects sedimentation and nutrient pollution have on the proliferation of coral reef macroalgae. In Carpinteria and Newport, she explored the effects of macroalgal decomposition on sediment biogeochemistry and the microbial community using environmental DNA (eDNA) to assess the biodiversity of entire ecosystems with only a soil sample. Dr. Moore completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Washington and The Nature Conservancy where she used soil eDNA to develop a biodiversity census of Ellsworth Forest comparing species diversity across management treatments over the past 10 years.
Currently, Dr. Moore is the Black In Marine Science Program Lead at The Nature Conservancy. Inside and outside of the lab, Dr. Moore hopes her research in biodiversity will translate to increasing the overall diversity in science. She dedicates her time to mentoring minority women in the lab and in after school programs. Founder of A WOC SPACE, Dr. Moore aspires to make a safe and inclusive workplace for women of color (WOC) through WOCShops, individual personal trainings, and community outreach. To round things off Dr. Moore combines her experiences as a WOC Scientist with her upbeat personality in her Academic Standup Shows, both communicating science and the struggles of being a minority in STEM.
"eDNA and Biodiversity Assessments, Small Tools with Big Impacts"
Human activities such as the destruction of natural habitat, production of carbon dioxide emissions, and increased nutrient pollution have led to major environmental concerns. In this new Climate Change era, cutting edge scientific techniques paired with strategic management planning is the only solution for the conservation of our planet. At The Nature Conservancy’s Ellsworth Forest Preserve, we are linking these concepts by using soil environmental DNA data to inform our restoration efforts and mitigate the impacts of Climate Change. Environmental DNA or eDNA is the genetic material found in a water, soil, or air sample from species as they pass through an environment. Capturing this DNA allows us to provide a census of the diversity of plants, bacteria, and animals in a particular area and use the data to develop strategies in how we make decisions that affect the restoration of the preserve. This type of innovative paired science and management can help to establish best practices for restoration efforts globally to ensure the conservation of the planet for our lifetime and beyond.
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