Abigail (“Abby”) is the Senior Administration & Science Communication Officer for the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) at the Australian National Centre for the Public Awareness of Science (CPAS). She is a mix of Niitsítapi (Blackfeet), Kanienʼkehá꞉ka (Mohawk), and white. Hils' research and work focus on catalyzing and sustaining systemic change and transformation to achieve inclusive and equitable access in the STEM workforce. Her areas of expertise are community/collaborative science (she refers to as c*science), making science accessible and inclusive (language, disability, and gender identity), and ecological monitoring methodologies. She also advises several organizations on justice, equity, diversity, and inclusive practices, culture, and policies.
Previously, she was the Program Associate of the Inclusive STEM Ecosystems for Equity & Diversity at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), in Washington, D.C. She also has worked in a number of non-profits including Sea Grant coordinating the graduate research and professional post-graduate fellowships and professional development programs, Education Manager for Sea Star Base Galveston, Adjunct Faculty for the Council for International Educational Exchange - Bonaire, and Science and SCUBA Instructor for the Seacamp Association, Inc. in the Florida Keys.
Abigail holds an M.S. in Environmental Sciences and B.Phil. in Interdisciplinary Studies from Miami University (OH). In her free time, she volunteers with various community science activities like water quality monitoring, fish and coral counts, and benthic habitat analyses.
- Netherlands Embassy Women Mentor Award, 2022
- Virginia Institute of Marine Science Massey Medallion, 2018
- Conference Chair: Citizen Science Association conference (2022)
- Poster Committee Chair: Citizen Science Association conference (2021)
- Member: JEDI Working Group (University Research): A working group of the National Steering Committee on Developing the justice, equity, diversity and inclusion criteria in the maritime community. Marine Technology Society.
- Secretary: Committee on Opportunities in Science: A working group to advise the American Association for the Advancement of Science on matters related to increasing the representation of women and minorities in science, engineering, and related fields.
Hils, A., Kelty, S., Hjarding, A., Silka, L. and Cawood, A., 2023. Learning from the First Citizen Science Association Virtual Conference. Citizen Science: Theory and Practice, 8(1), p.17. DOI: http://doi.org/10.5334/cstp.559.
Colle, B.A., Hathaway, J.R., Bojsza, E.J., Moses, J.M, Sanders, S.J., Rowan, K.E., Hils, A.L.,..., and Brennan, S.E. 2023. Risk Perception and Preparation for Storm Surge Flooding: A Virtual Workshop with Visualization and Stakeholder Interaction. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-22-0145.1
Kelty, S., Hils, A., Chernikhova, D., Cawood, A. and Silka, L. (2023). Ripple Effect: the CSA Conference’s JEDI Culture. In review with the Citizen Science: Theory and Practice.