Research seminar: December 2, 2022

YouthMappers: Changing the world for good, one map at a time

December 2, 2022

Carrie Stokes, M.A.
Chief geographer and director of the GeoCenter,
U.S. Agency for International Development.

As the Chief Geographer, Carrie leads USAID’s efforts to harness the power of geospatial data and technology to improve development outcomes around the world. With a focus on place-based development, she directs the USAID GeoCenter, a team of geographers and data scientists who apply mapping and analytics to inform the strategic planning, design, monitoring, and evaluation of USAID programs. Since establishing the GeoCenter in 2011, she has fostered a community of 70 GeoSpecialists across the Agency, half of whom are Foreign Service Nationals from the countries where USAID works.

Carrie represents USAID in geospatial communities across the interagency, academia, and private sector. She serves as the Senior Agency Official for Geographic Information with the Steering Committee of the Federal Geographic Data Committee, and she leads USAID participation in the U.S. Group on Earth Observations (USGEO), a subcommittee of the White House National Science and Technology Council’s Committee on the Environment. She also represents USGEO in the intergovernmental Group on Earth Observations based in Geneva, Switzerland.

Prior to the GeoCenter, Carrie led the SERVIR program for USAID, in a joint venture with NASA. The SERVIR program helps developing countries use satellite data and geospatial tools to address critical challenges in food security, water resources, weather and climate, land use, and disasters. She began working at USAID as a climate change specialist in 2000.

Carrie has a science background in global climate change, natural resources management, and Geographic Information Systems. She served for three years as a Peace Corps Volunteer focused on food security in Niger, West Africa. She holds an M.S. in Environmental Science from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University, and a B.A. in International Studies and Human and Natural Ecology from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.