Gregg Verutes

'00 - '04 || '04 - '06
'06 - '09 || '09 - present

I'm a geographer supporting decisions with better outcomes for people and nature.


Beginnings in New York
('00 - '04)

I was raised in Nassau County, NY and attended Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. As an undergraduate in the College of Human Ecology I pursued a bachelor of science. During the summer I served as a research assistant with Dr. Gary Evans. Evans is an environmental psychologist who first exposed me to the fascinating world of design and environmental analyses. I helped interview local adolescents for a longitudinal study on early childhood poverty, cumulative risk exposure, and BMI trajectories through young adulthood. During my senior year, I worked as a newscaster and producer for 93.5 WVBR, a local rock radio station. I created some radio spots that aired on this central NY radio station for a number of years.Throughout my time in Ithaca I performed with various bands ranging from rock and funk/r&b to blues and bluegrass. As a bassist/vocalist, I recorded two albums which are available online:

  • Fat Chelsea and the Family. Live at Electric Wilburland (2002): [FREE DOWNLOAD @ THE ARCHIVE.COM]
  • Woodman. Milkman. Doctor. Logs, Milk, and Medicine (2004): [LISTEN @ CD BABY]

    Washington, DC
    ('04 - '06)

    After college, I moved to DC to work for PSB, a political polling/market research firm. The highlight was serving as lead data analyst for Tony Blair's successful re-election campaign for prime minister. As a project manager I also had the opportunity to visit Asia and Europe to lead focus groups. Ultimately, I sought a more visual way to represent data and discovered the field of geography in the summer of 2005. In early 2006 I was offered a assistantship to attend San Diego State University as a graduate researcher student in the department of geography. From 2004-2006 I also toured the eastern U.S. with W.M.D., playing bluegrass / Americana / folk music with Aaron Ratiere and Smoked Mullet. Played in FL, DC, NY, and KY. I must say that Paducha, Kentucky is a great town for artists.


    San Diego, CA
    ('06 - '09)

    As a graduate student, I focused on participatory mapping and programming in Python for GIS. My Master's thesis was a usability study of a participatory mapping tool called Discourse Maps. The application allowed users to contribute to a structured discussion board and annotate where the topic took place on a map. I also worked at SDSU on artificial neural networks and public health research with Drs. Skupin and Weeks respectively. I also had the privelege of working for Baja Directions a graphic design firm specializing in sportfishing maps of Southern California and Baja CA, Mexico. The office was located right on the Del Mar Shores, north of San Diego. Here I developed a strong affinity for the ocean and marine science. I also learned to surf and sail catamaran. In September 2009 I was selected to intern with the Maps Division of the National Geographic Society. I returned to DC after driving up through California to Seattle and across the northern portion of the U.S.


    Back to the Capital
    ('09 to present)

    At National Geographic I contributed to the production of their Atlas of the World, Nineth Edition. I later transitioned to assisting their education department build a web mapping application for geography students. I also served as a GIS instructor for National Geographic Magazine. In January 2010, I moved across the city to intern for World Wildlife Fund's Conservation Science Program (CSP). After six months, I began a full-time position with Stanford University and the Natural Capital Project's marine initiative. This has allowed me to once again explore marine issues using GIS for conservation. I currently serve as a GIS Specialist and am seated in Washington DC as a visiting scientist with WWF's CSP.

    Past Highlights

    Featured in FOCUS, WWF's monthly newsletter.
    Published graduate research on Accra, Ghana in the Journal of Maps.
    Led workshops in Nairobi, Kenya and
    Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago for the United Nations Environment Programme.
    Hired as GIS Analyst by Stanford University to assist in building the marine InVEST toolset for the Natural Capital Project.
    Received National Geographic Society's Award in Mapping.
    Earned an M.S. in Geography with a concentration in Geographic Information Science from San Diego State University. [Thesis]
    Published sportfishing and recreational boating atlas for Baja California, Mexico.
    Served as camp counselor for
    Ionian Village Summer Camp in Greece.
    Served as data analyst for British Prime Minister Tony Blair's re-election campaign.
    Earned a B.S. from Cornell University (College of Human Ecology) with a major in Policy Analysis & Management.
    Awarded Eagle Scout with Troop 568 by the Boy Scouts of America.