Most Influential Seattleites of 2017: Citizen Scientist Sarah Myhre

Seattle Magazine presents the Most Influential Seattleites of 2017.

By Sally James December 22, 2017

myhre-crop

This article originally appeared in the November 2017 issue of Seattle magazine.

Sarah Myhre, Ph.D., studies the way ancient oceans coped with changing climates. But in the past year, the paleoceanographer became a sign-carrying marcher, an unusual move in the typically buttoned-up science world. She has marched for social justice and for science nationally as a leader in the nonprofit 500 Women Scientists group, a key organization participating in the March for Science–Seattle.

This 35-year-old single mother, a research associate in the School of Oceanography at the University of Washington, shifted into overdrive after hearing the well-known recording of President Donald Trump saying he groped women. His denial of climate change, combined with his attitude toward women, galvanized her to speak out. She’s spent hundreds of hours organizing, marching, advocating and testifying on climate change as well as women’s rights. She’s written for The Stranger and The Guardian on why climate advocacy is important. She’s been profiled by the Huffington Post and Climate Central. Trolls and social-media critics have called her names. Older colleagues have warned her that this “public” face may mean career suicide. But she persists.

What she calls being “wholehearted” and speaking the truth seems to her, possibly, the healthiest of careers. Myhre, a fifth-generation Washingtonian who grew up skiing and guiding white-water rafting trips, says that when so many deny that climate change is real, talking about it “is one of the most difficult things we can do as scientists. My work is to close the gap between science and society.”

Read about the rest of 2017’s Most Influential Seattleites here.

 

Follow Us

Editor's Note: Persistence and Progress

Editor’s Note: Persistence and Progress

Women share their perspective on equity and equality

During a recent appearance on entrepreneur Rachel Horgan’s new podcast, The Weekly, she jokingly told me something that caught me completely off-guard...

Zillow: Seattle Remains a ‘Strong Seller’s’ Market

Zillow: Seattle Remains a ‘Strong Seller’s’ Market

Home prices are on the rise. Price cuts are not.

Zillow says Seattle remains a “strong seller’s” market, as do 29 of the 50 largest metro areas across the United States. The report notes that inventory and new listings are up significantly in both Seattle and the United States in the past year.

UW President: ‘A Range of Opinions’ on Encampment Deal

UW President: ‘A Range of Opinions’ on Encampment Deal

Ana Mari Cauce: ‘Some people are upset’

Some praised University of Washington President Ana Mari Cauce for brokering a deal Friday to end the pro-Palestinian encampment on the UW campus. Others thought the university gave up too much. Many students said it wasn’t a “real win,” and vowed to continue advocating for change...

Forbes Advisor Gives Washington Teachers an A+

Forbes Advisor Gives Washington Teachers an A+

Report ranks Washington state No. 1 for teachers

Mrs. Pavey let our class spend an entire period discussing how our first finals week as high school students affected our mental health. The pandemic had just started — there was obviously a lot going on. That’s just one highlight of her selflessness and caring demeanor.