CORVALLIS, Ore. - David Hansen, a former Extension program leader at the University of Delaware, is the new program leader for Oregon Sea Grant Extension at Oregon State University. Hansen's appointment begins Oct. 4.

He succeeds Jay Rasmussen, who retired earlier this year after serving in the position for 14 years.

Sea Grant Director Stephen Brandt called Hansen "a first-rate choice to lead Sea Grant Extension at a time when time when coastal stakeholders need our services most.

"He brings both the scientific and academic background and the practical experience to help us achieve our goals of using sound science to create a more informed and engaged society around issues important to our coast, our region and our nation," Brandt said.

Hansen will oversee a marine Extension program including agents, specialists and educators located on campus and on the Oregon coast from Astoria to Gold Beach, working in fields ranging from watershed restoration and fisheries policy to invasive species, climate change and tsunami preparedness. The Oregon Sea Grant program at OSU is one of the largest and most highly regarded of its kind among the 30 Sea Grant programs nationwide.

Hansen will also serve on the Sea Grant leadership team, which coordinates an integrated program of ocean and coastal outreach, education, research and communications. 

The new program leader was educated at the Iowa State, where he earned a master's degree in forest biology and a Ph.D. in soil science and water resources. He has spent four years as an assistant professor of soil and environmental quality at University of Delaware, and since 2008 has also directed Delaware's Extension  Agriculture and Natural Resources program.

During a recent visit to OSU, Hansen emphasized the need to build strong teams and forge broad coalitions - inside and outside the university - to deepen Sea Grant Extension's "diversity of expertise," particularly in tight fiscal times.

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Stephen Brandt, 541-737-3396