Diana Lopera serves as part of the inaugural Climate Ready Hawaiʻi AmeriCorps VISTA cohort that is helping Hawaiʻi adapt to climate change impacts. As Climate Change Communications Specialist, she works with the Hawaiʻi Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation Commission staff based at the Department of Land and Natural Resources. She manages the Climate Commission’s website operations and social media presence, and will assist in the creation of a communications framework to address climate change equity issues with a special focus on anti-poverty objectives.
Diana’s diverse scientific background includes internships with Hawaiʻi Sea Grant and the Honolulu Board of Water Supply. She has presented her work at multiple research conferences, most notably the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) conference in San Antonio, TX (2018) and in Honolulu, HI (2019). She also received the prestigious NOAA Ernest F. Hollings Scholarship to conduct research on the impact of restoration efforts on Loko iʻa o Heʻeia, a Native Hawaiian fishpond, and presented her research in 2019 at the NOAA headquarters in Washington, D.C. She is particularly interested in science communication and outreach to help bridge the gap between scientific research and the communities it benefits.
Diana graduated magna cum laude from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa with a B.S. in Global Environmental Science and received the SOEST Undergraduate Award for Service and Leadership. She is originally from Saipan and is a first-generation college graduate.