Introducing Maya Buchanan, ASAP’s New Board President

To start the year, we are excited to share recent changes to ASAP’s Board of Directors!  Effective this January 2024, Maya Buchanan became the newly elected President of ASAP’s Board of Directors. Join us in celebrating the hope and opportunity that a wave of new leadership brings. 2023 represented a significant transition year for ASAP, with changes in executive leadership, welcoming new staff, launching new projects, and focusing on the core purpose of ASAP’s existence – engaging, supporting, and empowering adaptation leaders across North America. 

“I couldn’t be more thrilled to pass the reins to a leader as insightful, compassionate, and collaborative as Maya. She has a seemingly endless well of passion, energy, and expertise for all things adaptation, and I’m humbled to serve on the ASAP Board alongside an adaptation professional as experienced as she is. I know that ASAP will reach new heights under Maya’s leadership,” shared Julia Kim, ASAP’s 2023 Board President.

Maya with former ASAP President and lead authors for the National Climate Assessment Adaptation chapter at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting in December 2023.
Maya with former ASAP President and lead authors for the National Climate Assessment Adaptation chapter at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting in December 2023.

Maya joined the board in 2023. A key priority as board president for Maya is to foster cohesion among the growing and under-resourced field of adaptation professionals and gain additional financial support from donors. Maya is an energized and dedicated senior climate adaptation professional and brings over 17 years of experience partnering with members of ASAP and overlapping communities. She hopes to leverage her long-standing expertise and relationships in the field during her time as Board President.

Maya shared, “I view ASAP as a much-needed sense of home for both seasoned and emerging climate adaptation practitioners. Collaboration and partnership among practitioners and organizations is the only way we, as a society, can leverage our talents and resources to truly meet the call of action. There are too many communities, roads, bridges, schools, and so on, in need of transformative change to simply go it alone. I look forward to leveraging my research and practitioner networks to help connect the many actors doing too much in isolation without the support and partnership they are looking for, the fruits of which we can all value.”

As the Assistant Vice President of Climate Risk and Adaptation at WSP USA, Maya advises on complex climate change adaptation projects with both governments and public-private organizations across the globe, working to connect climate information with diverse users to help foster a shared understanding and ownership over difficult decision-making contexts. Maya serves as a technical advisor, leads business development efforts, and has worked closely with donors and won generous grants from private and public foundations to operationalize climate risk information and ultimately benefit underserved communities. 

Maya’s leadership skills are one of many assets she brings to her tenure as ASAP’s Board President. Katharine Jacobs, Director of the Center for Climate Adaptation Science and Solutions and former Director of the National Climate Assessment, shared, “ASAP is very fortunate to have Maya as President for the coming year. Increasing the capacity for climate adaptation is critical for the US and for the globe, if we are to keep pace (and hopefully get ahead of) accelerating climate impacts. Maya brings great leadership skills along with highly technical climate modeling skills to the table. She has a range of experience, including public and private sectors and academia, along with work at multiple scales ranging from the New York City Panel on Climate Change to the US Global Change Research Program to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. She will enable us all to work together to address the needs of communities and adaptation professionals.”

We encourage you to join ASAP’s Peer Learning Groups, attend an upcoming event, explore our resource library, and, if you aren’t already, consider joining ASAP as a member to access additional resources.