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Updated: September 3, 2019

Science director steps up as Schoodic Institute’s interim leader

Schoodic Institute, a nonprofit partner of Acadia National Park, has appointed Nicholas Fisichelli as interim president and CEO. 

Fisichelli steps up to the role from his previous position as Schoodic’s director of science and education, according to a news release.

Nicholas Fisichelli was appointed as interim president and CEO at Schoodic Institute, a nonprofit based in Winter Harbor that partners with Acadia National Park in science, education and conservation.

In his new role, he will provide leadership in all phases of the institute’s work while continuing forest ecology research examining natural resource dynamics in a continuously changing world. 

Fisichelli takes over from Don Kent, who arrived at Schoodic as president and CEO in January 2018 and recently resigned from that role. According to Kent's LinkedIn profile, he is now a principal at Healthy Landscapes, which promotes sustainability, scientific literacy and environmental stewardship. 

"Nick Fisichelli has consistently demonstrated leadership and vision, while making significant advancements in science and education at Acadia and other national parks around the nation,” Acadia National Park Superintendent Kevin Schneider said in the release.

David Ellwood, chair of Schoodic Institute’s board of directors, noted that Fisichelli is a committed educator with a passion for hands-on, citizen science learning strategies.

Schoodic Institute and the Schoodic Education and Research Center are located on Schoodic Point in Acadia National Park, in the town of Winter Harbor.

“He has repeatedly demonstrated exceptional capacity for pursuing collaborative solutions to critical environmental challenges, leading science and education activities across the park and across the world,” Ellswood said in the release. “He has been instrumental in the transformative Second Century Stewardship initiative with the park.”

Second Century Stewardship is a collaboration between Schoodic Institute, the National Park Service, National Park Foundation, and other institutions.

The goal is to advance science and invite visitors and others to view national parks through a “science lens.” 

“I am honored to take on this interim role and continue our work at Schoodic to understand environmental change and engage people in science and solutions,” Fisichelli said in the release.

Fisichelli's work focuses on ecosystem dynamics and land management challenges through scientific understanding, education efforts and stewardship guidance in diverse partnerships. He was a Fulbright Fellow in Germany and earned his doctorate in forest ecology from the University of Minnesota in 2012. He also previously worked at Shenandoah National Park and Lassen Volcanic National Park.

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