UW School of Energy Resources Welcomes New Researchers

selena gerace and jada garofalo
Selena Gerace (left) and Jada Garofalo (right) join the School of Energy Resources as new Research Scientists for CERPA and CEGR

The University of Wyoming School of Energy Resources (SER) is pleased to welcome two new researchers to its team, Selena Gerace and Jada Garofalo.

Both researchers join SER to lend their expertise and aid in the growing research endeavors in the newly established Center for Energy Policy Regulation & Analysis (CERPA) and the expanding Center for Economic Geology Research (CEGR).

In her new position at SER, Selena Gerace will be working as an Assistant Research Scientist with a joint appointment in CEGR and CERPA. She will be researching energy economics, policy, and doing public outreach as part of the Plains CO2 Reduction (PCOR) Partnership grant.

Gerace grew up in Mt. Shasta, Cali. and earned her undergraduate degree in Politics from Whitman College. She completed her MS at the University of Wyoming in 2016, where she double majored in Agricultural and Applied Economics and Environment and Natural Resources. Her thesis was on gender differences in negotiation behavior and market outcomes in agricultural markets. As a graduate student, she also worked with the Ruckelshaus Institute, assisting facilitators to lead county-level committees of the Wyoming Public Lands Initiative.

Prior to joining SER, Gerace worked for UW Extension as the Outreach Coordinator on a National Science Foundation EPSCoR grant called the WAFERx project. She led the inter-jurisdictional team (including Montana State University, University of South Dakota, and University of Wyoming) in producing outreach products to communicate research findings with regional stakeholders.

She has already hit the ground running in SER and recently co-authored an important research article collaboratively produced between the School of Energy Resources and the Ruckelshaus Institute of Environment and Natural Resources on the social license for Wyoming’s energy future.

“I’m thrilled to be joining the SER team and to have the opportunity to study energy issues in our state,” says Gerace.

With a background firmly entrenched in both science and the law, Jada Garofalo also brings a wealth of knowledge and skills to her position as an Assistant Research Scientist for CERPA. In her new role, she will be extensively researching the new Wyoming House Bill 200 which seeks to regulate public utilities in the state, as well as working on a comprehensive examination of the new Biden Administrations’ energy policies and what they will mean for Wyoming.

A native of Colo., Garofalo is a 2019 graduate of the University of Wyoming College of Law. She earned her BS in Food Science and Human Nutrition from Colorado State University in 2010, followed by her MS in Climate Science and Policy from Bard College in 2014. Prior to attending law school, she worked as a climate and policy fellow for the Center for Disease Control in Fort Collins, Colo. In this role, she served as a co-author, steering committee member, and chapter coordinator for an interagency report discussing the impacts of climate change on human health, coordinated responses to FOIA requests, and created policy communications materials.

During her legal education, Garofalo was a prolific researcher and writer. She served as the student director of the law schools’ Center for Law and Energy Resources in Rockies (CLERR), and argued a case before the United States Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals while working as an intern with the criminal division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office. She also published two articles in high ranking, peer-reviewed legal publications. One article she wrote looked at aligning the science and policy of recovery planning for native fishes in the Upper Colorado River Basin. The other, examined the growing demand of carbon dioxide as a market commodity following the boom of enhanced oil recovery, and explored possibilities for carbon dioxide transportation infrastructure across the U.S.

Most recently, she completed a judicial clerkship for the Honorable Herman Walker in the Superior Court of the Third Judicial District of Alaska in Anchorage.

“It has been my goal to work in a role where I can incorporate my interdisciplinary training,” says Garofalo. “I am so excited to do so in collaboration with esteemed colleagues at the University of Wyoming, particularly the School of Energy Resources.”

SER is grateful to add to the roster of exemplary researchers and staff, and eager to utilize the talents that Gerace and Garofalo bring to the unit.

“The Center for Energy Regulation & Policy Analysis (CERPA) is fortunate to welcome Selena and Jada as its first employees,” says CERPA Director, Kipp Coddington. “CERPA is tasked with helping the State of Wyoming navigate a host of challenging energy policy issues in the years ahead. With roots in Wyoming and with a deep appreciation of the energy challenges facing the State, both Jada and Selena are uniquely qualified to help Wyoming navigate the energy transition goals ahead.”


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