Retired NOAA chief scientist keynotes MSU’s Giles Distinguished Lecture Monday

Contact: Vanessa Beeson

Craig McLean at a podium
Craig McLean (Photo submitted)

STARKVILLE, Miss.—A newly retired chief scientist of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration will be a guest lecturer at Mississippi State next week.

Craig McLean’s Monday [April 25] talk—part of the university’s W.L. Giles Distinguished Lecture Series—is at 2 p.m. in Colvard Student Union’s Fowlkes Auditorium.

Wes Burger, dean of MSU’s College of Forest Resources and director of the Forest and Wildlife Research Center, chairs the lecture committee. He said McLean, who has a longstanding commitment to waterways, is an important part of the university’s emphasis this month on environmental issues. MSU currently is observing Earth Week.

“Mr. McLean has spent more than 40 years as a champion of ocean exploration, scientific integrity and science diplomacy,” Burger said. “As we continue our celebration of Earth Week, his knowledge and experience will help inspire future leaders in environmental science tasked with protecting our oceans and waterways in the years to come.”

McLean, who retired this month, joined NOAA as a member of its Commissioned Officer Corps in 1981 and served 25 years aboard fisheries, oceanographic and hydrographic ships, retiring at the rank of captain. He went on to serve in NOAA senior leadership for an additional 16 years, as assistant administrator for NOAA Research for nearly seven years and acting chief scientist for about five years. He also has practiced marine resource law and done other legal work for NOAA. McLean received his bachelor’s degree in zoology from Rutgers University and a law degree from Quinnipiac College School of Law in Connecticut.

The Giles Distinguished Lecture Series brings nationally and internationally recognized scientists, artists and public officials to MSU to help students and faculty learn from and interact with some of the most prestigious individuals in their field. It is organized by the Giles Distinguished Professors and sponsored by the Office of the President.

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