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Sean O'Brien

Sean is a Circuit Rider and the Webmaster at the W. Alton Jones Foundation. As a circuit rider, Sean offers technical support to grantees of the foundation, which include a variety of environmental groups around the world. Check out the Technical Assistance section of this Web site for more information on what circuit riding is and what Sean really does.

Sean graduated from the University of Virginia with a Ph.D. in Environmental Science in 1994. While working on his dissertation on tropical forest ecology he spent ten months in Costa Rica and Panama. After leaving UVa he worked with Stephen Hubbell at Princeton University on temperate and tropical forest ecology. Though trained as a scientist, Sean has pursued several unusual opportunities for a scientist, for example, in the spring of 1996 he worked as the Finance Director of the Rush Holt for Congress campaign in central New Jersey (12th CD). Dr. Holt is a physicist with a background in nuclear non-proliferation and alternative energy technology. After the candidate lost in the primary election, Sean accepted an apprenticeship at a boutique investment banking firm in Princeton. He then returned to Princeton to complete a project with Professor Hubbell and then went to the Center for Energy and Environmental Studies at Princeton to work with Professor Rob Socolow on several workshops, including one on carbon sequestration and another on scientists following nontraditional career paths. In the spring of 1998, Sean again worked as the Finance Director on the Rush Holt Campaign. He left the campaign to come to WAJF after Rush Holt won in the primary election in early June (Dr. Holt is now a Congressman). Sean is a co-author on papers in Science, Ecology, Climatic Change. He has also published several articles and reports in other publications.

Sean now lives in Charlottesville and rides the bike his wife won for him in a raffle to work.

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