Chris Reddy is a senior scientist and director of the Coastal Ocean Institute at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution where he oversees coastal research by promoting interdisciplinary studies, funding internal grants, and communicating to the lay public, governmental officials, and media. He studies marine pollution, petroleum geochemistry, and natural products, and is interested in the intersection of academia with industry, policymakers, and the media.
Reddy is currently studying the short and long-term fate of oil from World War II wrecks in the South Pacific, the Exxon Valdez, several other spills as well as the Deepwater Horizon. His overarching interest is understanding what compounds in oil persist the longest in the environment, which sheds light on how nature responds to anthropogenic perturbations and also provides insights on how to tailor synthetic organic compounds.
He has extensive experience with the Deepwater Horizon, including being the academic liaison at the Unified Area Command where he interacted and provided guidance to state, Federal, and BP officials. Chris continues to study the Deepwater Horizon, with more than 20 sampling efforts to the Gulf.
He has testified before Congress several times and frequently briefs members of Congress and the executive branch on oil spills, nanotechnology, science communication, and biofuels. Reddy has written more than 25 op-ed pieces about science and policy and given hundreds of interviews for print, radio, and television journalists. He was honored with the 2014 Patterson Award, which is bestowed annually to an international scientist who leads an innovative breakthrough of fundamental significance in environmental geochemistry, particularly in service to society. He holds four U.S. patents.
Reddy received his B.S. degree in chemistry from Rhode Island College and Ph.D. in chemical oceanography at the University of Rhode Island. He received an executive education certificate in management and leadership from MIT and completed Leadership for the 21st Century at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.
(Photo by Tom Kleindinst, WHOU Graphic Services)