Ticora V. Jones

Ticora Jones
Media inquiries: (202) 495-4102 or [email protected]

TICORA V. JONES joined the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) as chief science officer in February 2023. Dr. Jones is leading the efforts to expand the vision for science and the Science Office at NRDC to support the scientific and evidence-based nucleus for organizational strategy and advocacy. She served nearly 15 years at USAID (United States Agency for International Development) in a number of roles, including most recently as agency chief scientist, executive director for innovation, technology & research, and managing director for research. As agency chief scientist, Dr. Jones chaired the Research and Development Council, which was responsible for revising and instituting science policy; advocated for process changes to better support scientific integrity and research generation and use; and led efforts to expand USAID’s interagency role in international science and technology cooperation for deeper strategic partnerships with the US government. This included renewing USAID’s agreement with NASA to strengthen collaborations for addressing the climate crisis, food insecurity, and other humanitarian challenges. She also regularly hosted outreach and engagement sessions to bring together technical communities to highlight emerging technology and policy priorities for mutual benefit. Through her time as the managing director for research, Dr. Jones created research and development programs for the agency that built bridges between development professionals and researchers, advancing a multidisciplinary lens on science, technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship. This included establishing the Higher Education Solutions Network, a collaboration of development labs that included seven universities and more than 600 partners building scientific, technical, innovation, entrepreneurial, and other connections to increase the impact on international development and transform donor-academia relationships. Prior to joining USAID, Dr. Jones served as a Materials Research Society Congressional Fellow for former Wisconsin senator Russell D. Feingold, where she worked on energy and environment issues. Dr. Jones brings together her science and management expertise to support NRDC’s Science Office as it expands, and will leverage her technical and management expertise and diverse skills in strategy development, legislative affairs, budget formulation, and operations, specific to the integration of science, technology, innovation, and partnership for enhanced social value. A graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Dr. Jones will be based in the Washington, DC office.