Dr. Maria Damon currently serves as Director of Strategic Initiatives at Environment for Development (EfD), an environmental economics institute focused on research, policy, and academic programs in developing countries. Maria is widely published in the fields of environmental policy, green growth, and development economics. Prior to joining EfD, Maria was on the faculty of New York University’s Graduate School of Public Service and the College of Arts and Sciences, where she was a founding faculty member of NYU’s Environmental Studies department. She created an abroad program focused on climate change and sustainable development, in which she brought groups of students to South Africa each year, teaching them along with students from throughout Africa. Prior to NYU, Maria was an Assistant Professor at the Evans School of Public Affairs at the University of Washington. She also served on the White House Council of Economic Advisers, as the staff economist for environment and regulation. Maria holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of California, San Diego, and concurrently completed an NSF-funded doctoral program on Marine Biodiversity and Conservation with Scripps Institution of Oceanography. She holds an A.B. in Economics from Cornell University, with a concentration in Earth System Science. Maria sits on the board of directors of CityKids Wilderness Project and the Jackson Hole Conservation Alliance, and served on the advisory board of the Institute for Policy Integrity. Maria lives in Wilson, WY with her partner Daniel and son Isak. She is a passionate backcountry skier, alpine climber, and surfer.