Jeff Hicks

Director of Product Strategy

Jeff Hicks, Director of Product Strategy at The Water Institute, has more than 15 years of experience scaling environmental applied research into robust data-driven decision support applications.

Through his work on, the U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit, and the National Climate Assessment, Hicks helped to develop many foundational climate change indicators and decision support tools used nationally for decisions in government and beyond. Hicks has also led development of several high-profile environmental planning and assessment applications for the NOAA, NASA, the U.S. Forest Service, and Los Alamos National Laboratory; and for a global set of companies including ExxonMobil, Dow Chemical, DuPont, Intel, Kodak, and more.

Prior to joining The Water Institute, Hicks co-founded Fernleaf in 2014 as a private company spinoff of the National Environmental Modeling and Analysis Center (NEMAC) at the University of North Carolina Asheville; Fernleaf continues to expand the reach of the NEMAC’s applied research in community climate resilience by advising dozens of local and regional governments nationwide. Hicks was previously a software engineer with Locus Technologies and a geospatial software engineer with NEMAC. He received his bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from the University of North Carolina at Asheville.

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