Ph. D., Biology‎ > ‎

Curriculum Vitae

Dr. Yadéeh E. Sawyer

13405 Mountain View Ave NE, Albuquerque, New Mexico, 87123

Cell: (505) 340-5119

Web: http://sites.google.com/site/yadeehsawyer

E-mail: yadeehsawyer@gmail.com

 

Research and Career Interests

My dissertation research focused on evolutionary genetics and conservation of high-latitude island ecosystems. Using multiple genetic analysis and Geographic Information System techniques, I assessed the effects of historical climate on the current genetic structure of three small mammals in Southeast Alaska. I also generated predictions on potential effects of future climate on these endemic populations.

 

My career interests center on connecting scientific research and policy in ecosystem management. I believe the key to successful management strategies is public education and outreach, strong science, effective communication, knowledge, and realistic views of economic and biological assessments.

 

Education


PhD in Biology (GPA 4.00)

8/2007 – 7/2014


University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM

Dissertation: Living on the edge: a comparative phylogeographic study of refugial and insular fragmentation

Advisor: Dr. Joseph A. Cook.

Committee members: Enrique P. Lessa, Steve Poe, and Christopher C. Witt

 


Bachelor of Science in Biology/Minor in Chemistry. Cum Laude (GPA 3.72)

2001 - 2004


University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM


Undergraduate course work

2000 - 2001


University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL

 

Current Positions


Independent Contractor (up to 20 hrs/wk)

5/2014 – present


New Mexico Wilderness Alliance, Albuquerque, New Mexico

(1)   Train volunteers and coordinate data management for Wilderness Stewardship Challenge and National Forest Inventory projects.  The position includes field work surveying for invasive plant species in the Sandia Mountain Wilderness, organizing and working with volunteers outdoors, programming and using ESRI ArcPad, Geojot, and GPSKit for field data collection, and quality checking and finalizing field data and maps.

(2)   Consistent with Forest Service Handbook Chapter 70, conduct inventory of assigned areas within the Santa Fe and Carson National Forests with the use of a tablet through photo and written documentation of wildness characteristics and other pertinent information. Coordinate assignments of paid contractors and volunteers to ensure that identified priority areas are inventoried. Ensure that workers are trained and aware of their assignments, responsibilities, protocols, and the use of provided tablets. Ensure that data is provided to the GIS specialist on a regular and timely basis.

Supervisor: Tisha Broska, may be contacted.


 

Awards and Honors


Student Research Allocation Committee Grant

2011 & 2009


Graduate and Professional Student Association, University of New Mexico; $800.


Graduate Research Allocation Committee Travel Grant

2011 & 2009


Biology Graduate Student Association, University of New Mexico; $300.


 

Second Place for Best Graduate Student Oral Presentation

2011


Research Day, Biology Department, University of New Mexico


Lynn A. Hertel Graduate Research Award

2011 & 2008


Biology Department, University of New Mexico; $4,500.


Joseph Gaudin Scholarship

2011 & 2008


Biology Department, University of New Mexico; $2,000.


Graduate Research Allocation Committee Research Grant

2012, 2011 & 2009


Biology Graduate Student Association, University of New Mexico; $800.


Grant for Conservation Biology

2010


T&E Inc.; $2,500.


Graduate Research Project & Travel Grant

2011 & 2009


Office of Graduate Studies, University of New Mexico; $1000.


Grants-In-Aid

2009 & 2008


American Society of Mammalogists; $2,500.


Rookie Teacher of the Year Nominee

2006


G. Holmes Braddock Senior High School, Miami-Dade Public Schools, Florida


Phi Kappa Phi Honors Society

Inducted 2003


Golden Key International Honors Society

 Inducted 2003


Dean’s List

2001 – 2004


University of New Mexico

 

Publications

Sawyer, YE and JA Cook. Phylogeographic effects of refugia and post-glacial pathways in Microtus longicaudus. In Prep.

Sawyer, YE, MJ Flamme, TS Jung, SO MacDonald and JA Cook. Deer mice at high-latitudes: genetic consequences of refugia and insularity in response to historical climate change. In Prep.

Sawyer, YE, SO MacDonald, EP Lessa and JA Cook. Living on the edge: exploring the role of coastal refugia and island biology in the Alexander Archipelago of Alaska. In Prep.

Demboski, JR, YE Sawyer, and JA Cook. Diversification of S. monticolus. In Prep.

JL Malaney, AG Hope, K Galbreath, Y Sawyer, SO MacDonald, and JA Cook. Comparative phylogeographic, niche, and demographic tests highlight historical-biogeographic processes for North American boreal mammals. In prep.

Murray, KL, TH Fleming, YE Sawyer, and DA Williams. Species on the edge: Molecular differentiation in three lineages of West Indian bats. In Prep.

Barker, BS and YE Sawyer. 2011. Natural History Notes: Aspidoscelis tesselata (Common Checkered Whiptail) and Salvadora hexalepis deserticola (Big Bend Patch-nosed Snake). Diet and Predation. Herpetological Review. 42(2), 304.

Beckman, L and YE Sawyer. 2010. Species diversity and body size variation across a northern latitude Archipelago. Educational Module. ISLES website (http://www.msb.unm.edu/mammals/ISLES_website_final_20091028/isles_home.html) and AIM-up website (http://www.aim-up.org/educational-modules/educational-module-1-island-biogeography)

Gonzalez, P, YE Sawyer, M Avila, A Armien, B Armien, and JA Cook. 2010. Cytochrome-b haplotypes suggest a new species of Zygodontomys (Rodentia: Cricetidae) on Isla Coiba, Veraguas, Panama. Zoologia. 27 (4): 660-665.

MacDonald, SO, E Waltari, RA Nofchissey, YE Sawyer, and JA Cook. 2009. First record of deermice (Peromyscus maniculatus) in the Copper River Basin Southcentral Alaska. Northwestern Naturalist. 90: 243-247.

Sawyer, YE, D Banks-Richardson, SO MacDonald, and JA Cook. 2009. Introduction of exotic species on islands: Peromyscus found on Shemya Island of the far western Aleutian Islands of Alaska. Peromyscus Newsletter. 44: 27-28.

 

Oral Presentations

Sawyer, Yadéeh E. 2014. Living on the edge: a comparative phylogeographic study of refugial and insular fragmentation. Ph. D. Dissertation Defense, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Sawyer, Yadéeh E. 2013. Living on the edge: testing the Coastal Refugia hypothesis. Biology Department Brown Bag Seminar, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Chavez, April and Yadéeh E. Sawyer. 2011. Taming of the dusky shrew: An attempt to identify a cryptic species. Biomedical Research Symposium, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Sawyer, Yadéeh E., Natalie Dawson, and Joseph A. Cook. 2011. Historic climate change and island connectivity: implications for island ecosystem management. Annual meeting of the Alaska chapter of the Wildlife Society, Juneau, Alaska.

Sawyer, Yadéeh E., Natalie Dawson, and Joseph A. Cook. 2011. Improving island ecosystem management by understanding historic climate change and island connectivity. University of New Mexico Department of Biology 2011 Annual Research Day, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Sawyer, Yadéeh E. 2010. Implications of living on the edge for island biogeography. Biology Department Brown Bag Seminar, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Cook, JA, SO MacDonald, N Dawson, and YE Sawyer. 2009. Insularity along the North Pacific: Endemics and colonizers of the Alexander Archipelago. Biennial Conference of the International Biogeography Society, Merida, Mexico.

 

Poster Presentations

Malaney, Jason L., Andrew G. Hope, Yadéeh E. Sawyer, Steven O. MacDonald, Joseph A. Cook. 2013. Exploring signals of historical demography in North American boreal mammals through statistical comparative Phylogeography. International Biogeography Conferences, Miami, Florida.

Dawson, Natalie G., Yadeeh Sawyer, Carl Koch, Stephen MacDonald, Joseph A. Cook. 2012. Seeing the Forests for its Islands: Research highlights endemism on the Alexander Archipelago. Coastal Temperate Rainforests: Integrating Communities, Climate Science, and Resource Management, Juneau, Alaska.

Dawson, Natalie, S.O. MacDonald, Kayce Bell, Yadéeh E. Sawyer, Jon L. Dunnum, and Joseph A. Cook. 2012. Place-based education: synergy between aim-up! & isles. Coastal Temperate Rainforests: Integrating Communities, Climate Science, and Resource Management, Juneau, Alaska.

Chavez, April M. and Yadéeh E.Sawyer. 2012. An Increase in Biodiversity as Seen Through Genetic Differentiation in the Dusky Shrew (Sorex monticolus). 21st Annual Research Day UNM, Albuqueque, NM.

Malaney, JL, AG Hope, Y Sawyer, SO MacDonald, and JA Cook (2011) Phylogeography and historical demography highlight biogeographic processes for boreal mammals in western North America – American Society of Mammalogists

Malaney, Jason, A Hope, YE Sawyer, SO MacDonald and JA Cook. 2011. Phylogeography and historical demography highlight biogeographic processes for boreal mammals in western North America. American Society of Naturalists, Society of the Study of Evolution, and Society of Systematic Biologists Annual Conference, Norman, Oklahoma.

Sawyer, Yadéeh E. 2011 Living on the edge in the Alexander Archipelago of Alaska. American Society of Naturalists, Society of the Study of Evolution, and Society of Systematic Biologists Annual Conference, Norman, Oklahoma.

MacDonald, S.O., YE Sawyer, N Dawson, J Dunnum, B Truett, and JA. Cook. 2011. Island Surveys to Learn about Endemic Species (ISLES). Annual meeting of the Alaska chapter of the Wildlife Society, Juneau, Alaska.

Thompson, Sophia and Yadéeh E. Sawyer. 2011. Microtus longicaudus and the theory of island biogeography. University of New Mexico Department of Biology 2011 Annual Research Day, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Malaney, Jason, A Hope, YE Sawyer, N Dawson, SO MacDonald, and JA Cook. 2010. Comparative phylogeography of boreal mammals in North America. American Society of Naturalists, Society of the Study of Evolution, and Society of Systematic Biologists Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon.

Sawyer, Yadéeh and S Yurchyk. 2010. Enhancing science education across rural New Mexico. NSF Graduate Stem Fellows in K-12 Education GK-12 Annual Conference, Washington, DC.

Cook, Joseph A., J Malaney, A Hope, YE Sawyer, N Dawson, and SO MacDonald. 2009. A synthesis of mammalian phylogeography in western North America. The 10th International Mammalogical Congress, Mendoza, Argentina.

Sawyer, YE. 2009. Testing the coastal refugia hypothesis: Comparative phylogeography along the North Pacific Coast. Annual Meetings of the American Society of Mammalogists, Fairbanks, Alaska.

Banks-Richardson, David, YE Sawyer, SO MacDonald and JA Cook. 2009. An introduced exotic to Shemya Island of the far western Aleutian Islands of Alaska. Department of Biology at UNM’s 18th Annual Research Day. Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Sawyer, YE. 2009. Keen’s Deer Mouse: A complex history and distribution along the North Pacific Coast. Department of Biology at UNM’s 18th Annual Research Day. Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Barker, BS, BP Theiling, JC Lopez Pearce, D Swenton-Olson, J Thomas, S Whiteman, K Herrera, D Jaramillo, D Jones, A McCleary, H Yazzie, K Michelson, YE Sawyer, O Shufeldt, S Yurchyk, LJ Crossey and SL Collins. 2009. Increasing educational experience in rural regions: Bringing STEM into the classroom in New Mexico. National Science foundation Graduate Teaching Fellows in K-12 Education Program Annual Meetings – Celebrating 10 Years. Renaissance Hotel, Washington, DC.

Sawyer, YE, SO MacDonald, and JA Cook. 2009. Historical biogeography of the North Pacific Coast. Darwin’s legacy: A symposium in honor of Charles Darwin’s 200th Birthday. University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

 

Invited Presentations and Outreach


“Science is Cool!”

2011


César Chavez elementary, Santa Fe, New Mexico

Along with another graduate student, we did a presentation of our research and life as a scientist to several second grade classes (~80 students). We took a total of 13 live animals ranging from insects to mammals, as well as museum specimens from the Museum of Southwestern Biology, representing the diversity of New Mexico’s Arthropods and Mammals. The presentation included a slide show of our research and all the "cool things" that biologists get to do, followed by a show-and-tell of the animals and a Q&A session. A more detailed and hands-on presentation was provided for the bilingual class, which included direct interactions with some of the specimens.


Nature Hike Tour Guide

2011


Truman Middle School and the Sandia National Forest Doc Long Recreation Area, New Mexico

Lead a nature hike for a group of 10 seventh grade students, teaching them about the ecology of the region and how to identify various flora and faunal species.


Biorama Graduate Student Panel

2011


University of New Mexico, Albuquerque

Answered questions from undergraduates regarding graduate school and spoke about my personal experiences.


Research Day Undergraduate Poster Judge

2008 – 2011


Biology Department, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque


Research Day Poster Printer

2008 – 2011


Biology Department, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque

Organized, scheduled, and printed over 20 undergraduate research posters.


 

 

 

 

 

 

Museum of Southwestern Biology, Mammal Division Tour Guide

2010


Learning and Living Communities Program, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Lead three tours to groups of 12 undergraduate students, highlighting the diversity of mammals in New Mexico, the types of research being conducted at the University of New Mexico, and the importance of natural history collections.


What it is like being a “real life scientist”

2009


César Chavez elementary, Santa Fe, New Mexico

I spoke about my dissertation work, opportunities for biologists, and interesting animal facts to a group of ~70 second grade students. Select live animals were exhibited, and a Q&A session followed. More interactions with live specimens, and an additional Q&A session took place with bilingual second graders.


 

Students Mentored

I trained the following students in basic genetic laboratory techniques and Sanger sequencing. Additionally, we discussed a variety of topics including how to give a good presentation, what to look for in a graduate program, project development, and abstract and grant writing.


Galen Rask

2012


Undergrad at Swarthmore College. “Island Educational Module - The Alexander Archipelago: A forest for thought.”


April Chavez

2011 - 2012


Undergraduate, UnO Scholar, University of New Mexico. “Taming of the Dusky Shrew: An attempt to structure a cryptic species.”


William Kanagy

2009 - 2011


High School Student, Volunteer, Highland High School, Albuquerque, New Mexico


Sophia Thompson

2010 - 2011


Undergraduate, UnO Scholar, University of New Mexico. “Assessment of island biogeography theory as seen in Microtus longicaudus.”


David Banks-Richardson

2008 – 2009


Undergraduate, UnO Scholar, University of New Mexico. “An introduced exotic to Shemya Island of the far western Aleutian Islands of Alaska.”

 

Professional Societies

American Society of Mammalogists, Society of Systematic Biologists, Society of Integrative and Comparative Biology, the Society for the Study of Evolution, Biology Graduate Student Association, University of New Mexico, Graduate and Professional Student Association, University of New Mexico, New Mexico Wilderness Alliance

 

Previous Positions and Research Experience


Dissertation Project (up to 40 hrs/wk)

8/2007 – 7/2014


University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico

I performed DNA extraction via salt and kit methods. Sanger sequencing including Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) gene amplification, DNA spectrometer, agarose gel electrophoresis, PCR clean-up, ABI BigDye Cycle Sequencing and clean-up, and chromatogram assessment and verification. I performed phylogenetic analyses through various computer programs under the Coalescent, Bayesian, Maximum Likelihood and Maximum Parsimony frameworks. I utilized species distribution models and other Geographic Information Systems (GIS) methods include programs such as ArcGIS and Maxent.

Advisor: Joseph Cook, may be contacted.


 

 

 

 

 

 

Research Assistant

8/2010 – 12/2012


Undergraduate Opportunities (UnO) Program Coordinator and Co-Instructor (20 hrs/wk)

University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico

I oversaw program undergraduates, manage the program web-site (http://www.msb.unm.edu/UnO/education.html), developed a mentoring guide, organizing team-building activities, helping organize annual Biomedical Research Symposium, conduct science education outreach, and co-instructing weekly seminars. Seminar topics range from time management and conference preparation to graduate school preparation and scientific writing.

Supervisor: Joseph Cook,  may be contacted.


UnO Program Mentor

5/2008 – 12/2012


University of New Mexico, Museum of Southwestern Biology, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Mentoring underrepresented undergraduate students in genetic laboratory techniques and success in college and beyond.

PI: Joseph A. Cook, may be contacted;

Co-PI: William Gannon, may be contacted.


Pre-Graduate Mentoring Program (PGMP) Co-Graduate Chair

8/2010 – 5/2011


University of New Mexico, Albuquerque

Founding and managing a mentoring partnership between junior and senior undergraduates and graduate students.


Biologist (up to 10 hrs/wk)

12/2010 – 3/2011


Ecosystems Management Inc., Albuquerque

Literature review and write-up to generate species accounts for selected New Mexican mammals to be utilized in an ecosystem model created by the United States Forest Service.


Biology Graduate Student Association Co-President

2010 – 2011


University of New Mexico, Albuquerque

Scheduled, organized, and lead monthly meetings. Created a BGSA email account and public calendar. Participated in the new student orientation and facilities tour. Planned and coordinated the new student annual luncheon. Attended faculty meetings and facilitated communication between faculty and graduate students.


UNM New Mexico Wilderness Alliance Chapter Vice President

1/2010 – 5/2011


University of New Mexico, Albuquerque

Revitalized the student chapter of the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance. Lead trail service projects in the Manzano Wilderness. Lead monthly chapter meetings. Organized and attended monthly tabling events. Created a scavenger hunt across New Mexico of 45 “must see” wilderness and cultural areas across the state. Lead advocacy projects via petition signatures and letter writing for both the Mexico Grey Wolf recovery program and the designation of Otero Mesa as a National Monument.

Main office contact: Nathan Newcomer, may be contacted.


Biology Graduate Student Association Treasurer

5/2009 – 5/2010


University of New Mexico, Albuquerque

Kept accounting for the three BGSA accounts. Created an annual budget and an automated Excel file for subsequent years. Attended monthly BGSA meetings. Managed purchase orders and deposits.


National Science Foundation GK-12 Fellow (20 hrs/wk)

5/2009 – 7/2010


Saraccino Middle School, Socorro, New Mexico

Developed and lead scientific projects, lessons and labs in collaboration with a teacher for sixth grade Earth Science, seventh grade Life Sciences, and eighth grade Physical Science.

PIs: Scott Collins (Biology Dept., UNM), may be contacted and Laura Crossey (Earth & Planetary Science Dept., UNM), may be contacted.


 

 

 

 

National Science Foundation GK-12 Fellow

& Belen Outdoor Education Program (20 hrs/wk)

8/2008 – 5/2009


Belen Middle School, Belen, New Mexico

Developed and taught scientific projects, lessons and labs in collaboration with a teacher for seventh grade Life Sciences classes. Organized and lead educational extracurricular outdoor field trips to various locations around New Mexico, including Carlsbad Caverns National Park, White Sands National Monument, Bitter Lakes and Bosque del Apache Wildlife Refuges, Rio Grande Nature Center, and the Valley of Fire Recreation Area.

PIs: Scott Collins (Biology Dept., UNM), may be contacted and Laura Crossey (Earth & Planetary Science Dept., UNM), may be contacted.


Research Assistant (20 hrs/wk)

5/2008 – 8/2008


University of New Mexico, Museum of Southwestern Biology, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Curation of mammals. Oversaw undergraduate work and focused on the integration of an orphaned natural history specimen collection from the University of Illinois

Supervisor: Jon Dunnum, may be contacted.


Teaching Assistant (20 hrs/wk)

8/2007 – 5/2008


University of New Mexico, Biology Department, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Lead labs and discussions for genetics and cell biology courses. Created summary power points, lead review sessions, and proctored exams. Provided suggestions to the lab coordinator regarding potential improvements to the structure and content of the courses.

Supervisor: Cara Lea Council-Garcia, may be contacted


Field Research Assistant (20 hrs/wk)

6/2007 – 8/2007


Museum of Southwestern Biology, Division of Mammals, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Assisted in surveying, collecting, and processing of small mammals across Western North America. Specimens were caught using pit falls, museum snap traps, and Sherman live traps. Locality information was documented. Specimens were examined for endo- and ecto-parasites, measured, fresh tissues were pulled for preservation, and flat skins on select individuals were prepared

Supervisor: Joseph Cook, may be contacted.


High School Biology and Physical Science Teacher (40+ hrs/wk)

7/2005 – 6/2007


G. Holmes Braddock Senior High school, Miami, Florida

Developed and taught lesson plans and hands-on labs for sophomore level biology and junior level physical science classes. Understood, followed, and met state and national teaching standards.

Teaching mentor: Pablo Torrealba, may be contacted.


Research Intern (up to 20 hrs/wk)

8/2004 – 8/2006


University of Miami, Biology Department, Coral Gables, Florida

Performed DNA extractions, PCRs, gel electrophoresis, Sanger sequencing, microsatellite optimization and genotyping of West Indian phyllostomid bats. Supervised undergraduate students when my supervising graduate student was in the field.

Supervisors: Kevin Murray, may be contacted and Theodor Fleming, may be contacted.

 


Volunteer Work and Extracurricular Activities


Coach, Head Girls Swimming and Assistant Girls Water Polo

2005-2007


            G. Holmes Braddock Senior High school, Miami, Florida

            Supervised daily practices. Attended weekly competitions.

            Supervisor: Anthony Zayas, 


Polar Bear Behavior Observations

2003 – 2004


University of New Mexico and the Rio Grande Zoo, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Observed and recorded polar bear behavior as preliminary data for the enrichment program at the zoo.

Supervisor: Lynn Tupa


 

Additional Skills

Proficient in the following computer programs (in addition to those utilized in my dissertation):

ArcGIS

Microsoft Word, Excel and Power Point

Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and Professional

Familiar with Macromedia Contribute for website development

Basic understanding of the following computer programs:

MATLAB

SAS

Type 73 words per minute

Fluent in non-scientific Spanish

Experienced with laboratory trouble shooting

Attended Natural Resource Economics and Public Land Management courses (see transcript)

 

Hobbies

Alpine skiing, rock climbing, backpacking, hiking, snowshoeing, photography, drawing, crafts, traveling, kayaking, scuba diving, cooking, and baking.

 

References

Joseph A. Cook, Ph. D. – Professor of Biology

Curator of Mammals; Director, Museum of Southwestern Biology

Department of Biology

University of New Mexico

MSC03 2020, Albuquerque, NM 87131

 

Pablo Torrealba, M.S. – Biology Teacher

G. Holmes Braddock Senior High

3601 SW 147th Avenue

Miami, FL 33186

Nathan Newcomer

Grass Roots Organizer

New Mexico Wilderness Alliance

PO BOX 25464

Albuquerque, NM 87125

 

Thomas A. Hanley, Ph.D.

Research Wildlife Biologist and Leader, Boreal Ecology Team (retired)

Pacific Northwest Research Station, Juneau & Fairbanks, AK

U.S. Forest Service

 

Sanders Moore, M.S.

State Director

Environment New Mexico

PO Box 40173

Albuquerque, NM 87196

 

Jolene Rearick

Graduate Student

University of New Mexico

 

April Chavez

Mentee

 

Donald H Heinze

Botanist, Wild Horse and Burro Specialist, and Range Conservationist (retired)

BLM, Montana State Office

 

 

Ċ
Yadeeh Sawyer,
Jul 22, 2014, 3:43 PM
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