DEP Women in STEM: Kimberly Jackson

Name: Kimberly Jackson

Division/Title: OTIS, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Manager

How long have you been with DEP: 24 years

Education/Background: BS Geography/Geology

What inspired you to pursue a career in STEM? Spending large chunks of my childhood unsupervised outside and observing nature.

What profession did you think you would be when you were growing up? Travel agent

What excites you about your work at DEP? Following the progression of information from field samples, to analysis, to policy.

What is the coolest project you have worked on and why? Mapping and planning analysis for dune restoration at panhandle State Parks after a severe hurricane season. One day our ground truthing and mapping was delayed while we watched from a distance as Sea Turtle hatchlings scrambled into the surf.

What is your favorite piece of technology or equipment you get to use in your job? ArcGIS Pro 3D GIS software for visualizing data in new ways to better answer scientist’s questions.

Why is it important to get more students, including females, interested in STEM? Everyone benefits from a diverse team and original ideas, so women with training in STEM fields have original ideas we need.

What is your best advice for girls interested in science? It is okay to be the first or one of a small group.  Remember that your unique perspectives about a topic you love, will bring great value to your future work.

I love science/engineering/technology because… I feel that I have a small part in protecting the Florida natural resources I love by helping others make environmental policy decisions backed in the strongest science possible.

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