Christine O’Connell, Ph.D.
, is an expert in the field of science communication, policy, and engagement, and
building empathetic leaders. She provides strategic direction to grow non-profit and
academic organizations, research initiatives, and environmental and community campaigns.
She is currently the Executive Director of Riley’s Way Foundation, an organization
whose mission is to empower kindness and empathy in teen leaders to build a better
world. Previously, she was the founding Associate Director at the Alan Alda Center
for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University where she helped create and build
the Center and its curriculum to international acclaim. She led the growth of many
of the Alda Center’s flagship programs and under her direction the Alda Center’s workshop
program trained tens of thousands of scientists worldwide to be more effective communicators.
She taught and built research and curriculum initiatives at the Alda Center and was
an Assistant Professor in the School of Journalism, where she remains an affiliate
professor. Her research focuses on best practices in science communication, science
policy, and women in STEM. She received her B.S. from Cornell University, and Ph.D.
in Marine and Atmospheric Sciences at Stony Brook University.