Ecosystem Service Markets: Potential and Pitfalls

Thursday, March 4, 2010
3:30 pm to 5:00 pm
OSU, College of Forestry, RH 107, Corvallis, OR

Sara Vickerman is senior director of biodiversity partnerships for Defenders of Wildlife and director of the Northwest office. Based in West Linn, Vickerman oversees a wide variety of biodiversity policy development projects, especially those that require finding common ground among diverse interests. Defenders Northwest office is currently focused on the creation of multi-credit markets for ecosystem services, developing a conservation registry for the nation, addressing the need to make ecosystems more resilient to minimize the adverse effects of climate change, and reauthorizing lottery funding for parks and habitat conservation.

Vickerman served two terms on the Oregon Parks and Recreation Commission. She was the vice chair of the Governor’s Willamette River Basin Task Force, currently serves on the board and executive committee for the Willamette Partnership. She was a member of the Northwest Council of the President's Council on Sustainable Development, and served on board of Sustainable Northwest. She is currently a member of the Oregon Sustainability Board, a member of the advisory board for the Institute for Natural Resources at Oregon State University and serves on the advisory committee for the Wildlife Habitat Policy Research Program, administered by the National Council on Science and the Environment and funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. She is also on the advisory committee for the Doris Duke Foundation’s Conservation Opportunities Fund, and serves on the board for the American Forest Foundation.

The 2001 and 2003, and 2007 Oregon Legislature approved sustainability and incentives legislation proposed by Defenders and partners. In 2002, the Washington Legislature approved biodiversity legislation, also promoted by Defenders. In 2009, the Oregon Legislature approved SB 513, the first state legislation that encourages the development of markets and payments for ecosystem services.

Vickerman has received several awards including the Distinguished Achievement Award from the Society for Conservation Biology in 1991. The office received the National Award for Sustainability in 1999 for the Oregon Biodiversity Project and Conservation Service Award from the U.S. Department of the Interior. Vickerman was also the recipient of the 2000 Earl Chiles award for the Oregon Biodiversity Project, and the Associated Oregon Industries Environmental Award in 2002. In 2003, she received an award from the Oregon Chapter of the Wildlife Society, and in 2006 she received the Fernhopper Award from the College of Forestry at Oregon State University.

Her background includes an M.S. in biology, geography and education from Southern Oregon State College, a B.S. in anthropology from California State University at Fullerton, and an A.A. in art from Fullerton Junior College.