When FPL researcher, Eloise Gerry, became the first female scientist in the Forest Service, she probably would have never imagined the numerous and often surprising ways STEM careers have developed since 1910. The need for STEM literate individuals, who also have the skills to merge creative thinking with the ability to translate the science in artistic and easily understandable ways, is growing.
FPL celebrates the legacy and precedent Gerry set not only during Women’s History Month but every month of the year. In this edition, we would like to continue to showcase the incredible women in STEM who have followed in her extraordinary, trailblazing footsteps. Take a moment to meet the phenomenal FPL women who work in unconventional STEM careers and have devoted their lives to science delivery and a more informed STEM public:
Every month of the year, and especially during Women’s History Month, FPL celebrates the legacy and precedent set by FPL’s and the Forest Service’s first woman scientist, Eloise Gerry. In this edition, we would like to continue to showcase the incredible women scientists who have followed in her extraordinary, trailblazing footsteps.
Like nearly all remarkable stories, they are often most powerful when told straight from the women themselves. Take a moment to meet the women who are positively changing the world through forest products research and making it a better place to inhabit:
When the doors of the Forest Products Laboratory (FPL) opened in 1910, Eloise Gerry shouldered her way through as the first female scientist employed by the Forest Service. Her tenacity, moxie, and remarkable talent produced a storied 44-year career with over 120 publications.
Every month of the year, and especially during Women’s History month, FPL celebrates the legacy and precedent Gerry set. This month we would like to showcase some of the incredible women scientists that have followed in her extraordinary footsteps.
Like nearly all remarkable stories, they are often most powerful when told straight from the woman herself.
Take a moment to meet the women who are positively changing the world through forest products research and making it a better place to inhabit:
Roderquita Moore, a research chemist at the Forest Products Laboratory, received the Inspiring Woman in STEM award as part of the 2018 USDA Women in Ag award program. The winners represent a range of career paths from various agencies across USDA and they are located all around the world.
Read more about Moore’s career journey and highlights written in her own words below. Congratulations, Roderquita!
Statistics is commonly viewed as the collection, collation, and presentation of numerical data. FPL has long recognized that the field of statistics is critical for testing research hypotheses and making inferences to untested populations. Statistics has provided extensive and powerful tools for designing studies, analyzing data, summarizing or modeling data, and interpreting results for many research studies at FPL.
Statistics has allowed for more accurate and precise estimations in completing meaningful research experiments. This has resulted in more efficient and cost-effective research programs and more reliable results. John W. Koning, Jr.’s comprehensive book, Forest Products Laboratory, 1910–2010: Celebrating a Century of Accomplishments provides history tidbits of how this field evolved over the years.
In 1958, the section was named “Statistics and Computing.” Prior to that, statistical design was handled in the research projects. The staff of the new section consisted of nine women, to which one man transferred in 1959. As equipment became more powerful, more of this important work could be accomplished. And the punch cards went away.Do you find it surprising that so many of these statisticians are women? FPL thanks the teams of workers who have done this precise work for a century: all for the sake of scientific accuracy.