Alumni Update: Stephen Maurano '07
Salmon recovery with NOAA
Stephen Maurano graduated from Santa Clara in 2007 with degrees in Biology and Environmental Science. He currently works for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries Central Valley office in Sacramento, working to protect and recover Salmon and Sturgeon under the Endangered Species Act. His office develops recovery plans, seeks conservation partnerships, increases safe fish passage past dams, and evaluates the impact of federal actions on these species, such as the recent proposal to construct tunnels under the Sacramento / San Joaquin Delta for export of water to Southern California. Stephen is married and has two children.
Previously, Stephen spent four years with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Pacific Southwest Office in San Francisco, and before that four years with EPA's Southeast Office in Atlanta -- where he implemented a range of Clean Water Act programs (water quality standards, monitoring, assessment, and restoration plans). While working in Atlanta, Stephen completed an M.S. in Ecology at the University of Georgia, where for his thesis he used machine learning modeling to predict stream fish assemblages, examine their distributions, and screen for water quality impairments. Prior to the EPA, Stephen served for two years as a Peace Corps agricultural extension volunteer in Paraguay where he promoted soil conservation techniques and learned the indigenous language of Guaraní.
Time and again, Stephen's career path has touched on his SCU experiences. Mapping work at the City of Santa Clara's Ulistac Natural Area helped him later land a GIS gig, which developed a skill that he regularly uses in his current job. An agroecology class project measuring arsenic in San Jose's Guadalupe River presaged his career in water quality. Most influentially, the principles instilled, of ecology from Virginia Matzek, conservation biology from Michelle Marvier, environmental justice from Keith Warner, and many other SCU influences, are an essential part of his work today.