NCX Scientists Series: Dr. Nan Pond
Cassidy Hopson
Cassidy Hopson
17 October, 2022 min read

We are celebrating scientists on the NCX team that are helping connect American landowners with net-zero leaders. Their expertise is evolving the forest carbon space, delivering high-integrity climate impact with speed and scale. 

For this spotlight I talked with Dr. Nan Pond, Director of Certification. Nan is a longtime member of the NCX team, joining back in 2013 when NCX was providing precision forestry services as SilviaTerra. 

Nan is responsible for ensuring that our natural capital products reflect the highest quality science as we hone our existing methods and expand into new credit types and new geographies. She is the recipient of the 2020 SAF Young Forester Leadership Award and has held multiple leadership roles within the Society of American Foresters. Nan earned a PhD in forest biometrics from Michigan Technological University and a Bachelor of Science in forest ecosystem science from SUNY ESF.

Q: Why did you decide to join the NCX team?

A: I first met our founders, Max and Zack, at the Society of American Foresters conference in Charleston, South Carolina in 2013. My postdoc work involved similar remote sensing-based models of forest structure, and I was excited to learn more about the work SilviaTerra was doing and their vision for the future leveraging the technology they were developing. I have loved working with a highly collaborative team to creatively solve hard problems. Many of the challenges we have set for ourselves are ones we needed to build solutions for from the ground up. Working alongside the amazing team we’ve assembled – as SilviaTerra first, and as NCX more recently – to solve these problems is incredibly energizing and rewarding. I love being a part of this team.

Q: What are you working on at NCX?

A: Currently, I’m the Director of Certification. I’ve been working across the organization to develop our methodology – the rules and math that provide structure and ensure quality of our forest carbon offset program. More broadly, I’m involved in communicating both internally and externally what that methodology is, how we can test its impact, and our roadmap for improving it over time.

Q: What inspired you to work in the field of forestry? 

A: For me, being a forester is about practicing wise stewardship of our natural resources. Society depends on wood and paper products, and producing those in a sustainable way is an amazing combination of science, math, ecology, as well as the complex problem of understanding what people need and want from the world around them. 

Being part of an engaged community of foresters has also been an important part of my career. There’s so much to learn about forests and how humans impact and interact with those systems. I joined the Society of American Foresters 19 years ago, and have been continually inspired by the dedication of those forestry and natural resource professionals to our forests. SAF brings together many diverse professionals working to better understand forests and other natural systems, and to explore ways to manage those systems to meet increasingly varied objectives. What we’re doing at NCX is just a small part of the applied, innovative, interdisciplinary work that is happening around the world to increase the sustainability and resilience of our forests.

Q: What do you envision for the future of NCX?

A: I hope we never back down from solving hard problems. Our society values many of the ecosystem services that forests produce, but we take them for granted. It’s easy to say we value things, but we’re only now able to measure, monitor, and put a financial value on more of what forests, and forest landowners, provide to society. As we begin to quantify and generate credits for multiple forms of natural capital, I look forward to building a platform and a program where forest landowners can be equitably compensated for the many values that forests produce. 

Nan is just one of the many talented scientists on the NCX team helping to shape the future of forest carbon. Keep an eye out for our next blog in the series highlighting another NCX scientist!

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about the author

Cassidy Hopson

Cassidy Hopson

Marketing Coordinator
Cassidy is the Marketing Coordinator at NCX. She helps to keep the marketing machine moving to deliver a great brand experience for NCX customers, including event and social management. With a journalism degree from the University of Florida, Cassidy has written for outlets such as Jacksonville Magazine and The Independent Florida Alligator. She has also worked in a marketing capacity for the healthcare, career services and animal welfare industries.