Kenneth S. Casey Candidate Statement 2022

From Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP)

Kenneth S. Casey, Deputy Chief, Data Stewardship Division at NOAA, Candidate for President

Headshot of Ken Casey
Kenneth S. Casey

Dear ESIP Community,

My name is Ken Casey and I am running once again for the position of President of the Federation of Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP).  I am currently serving as the 2021 President, and I’ve long been involved with ESIP as a voting representative. I first held that role for the NOAA National Oceanographic Data Center (NODC) which I brought into ESIP in 2003, and since 2015 for the NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI), which was created as the merger of the three previous NOAA National Data Centers.  

Last year, in my candidate statement I described my first ESIP meeting in January of 2003, and how I was immediately hooked.  I shared the amazement I felt at being surrounded by such passionate, considerate, and brilliant people, with common interests and common challenges.  I mentioned how ESIP had quickly become my “go to” testbed for new ideas and sharing experiences in making data matter.  After serving a year as ESIP President, I am pleased to report that my appreciation for ESIP has only grown stronger and I am more hooked than ever.  And a year later, my amazement with the incredible ESIP community has grown stronger too.  Having now worked closely with the ESIP staff, the Program Committee, and the ESIP Board, I can truly say that the ESIP community is in the best of hands.   Each and every one of the people working behind the scenes of ESIP has inspired me with their passion for our community and their commitment to making this world a better place.

Another thing I emphasized last year was how strongly I felt that the very foundation of ESIP is openness and inclusiveness, where all people and their ideas are not just welcome, but absolutely essential. It is just as true today as it was a year ago that we have complicated problems to solve in the 21st century and the only way to solve complicated problems is through the diversity that ESIP brings to the table.  Last year I pledged to help bring more people under the ESIP tent, and the ESIP team has achieved that goal with 10 new member organizations joining ESIP this calendar year and more than a third of the attendees at the last two conferences identifying themselves as first-time attendees.  We also set the stage to begin measuring our openness and inclusivity through tools like routine surveys to ensure we truly are as safe, open, and accepting as we think we are, and to make sure we remain that way over time.  Importantly, we were also able to continue the momentum established by previous ESIP leadership in maturing the ESIP Community Participation Guidelines (CPG) and processes.  

All that amazing progress leads me to the question of what I hope to bring to the position of ESIP President in 2022.  The answer is simply more progress!  I will continue supporting efforts to enable ESIP to become a data-driven organization with respect to our diversity and inclusivity and in maturing the processes around the CPG.   I will continue supporting efforts to bring more people and organizations into the ESIP tent, and I will continue to highlight our community’s successes at every possible opportunity.  And with a little luck and a lot of vaccinations, I hope to help ESIP return to some form of in-person conferences, understanding of course that hybrid meetings are likely to be a key part of our new, post-COVID identity.  Finally, as I promised last year, I promise again this year to hold up the ESIP example to others, showing how we are stronger together than apart, capable of leveraging our diversity to tackle the world’s toughest environmental challenges.

Bio: See full bio HERE.