Austin J. Shelton III, PhD

Vice Chairperson

Regional Member, September 2019 – present

Dr. Austin Shelton joined the faculty of the University of Guam (UOG) in 2016 as an assistant professor of extension and outreach. Shelton later received appointments to concurrently serve as the executive director of the UOG Center for Island Sustainability and director of UOG Sea Grant. He leads initiatives that support the transition of island communities toward a sustainable future. Current activities include aligning with U.N Sustainable Development Goals and stimulating island circular economy industries.

A native of Guam, Shelton grew up observing environmental challenges of island communities and was inspired to become a marine and environmental scientist. Shelton conducts research to revive island ecosystems and builds STEM capacity in Pacific Islander communities through student research experiences and science fairs. Shelton manages a portfolio of grants exceeding $9.5 million as principal investigator or co-principal investigator from Sea Grant (NOAA), National Science Foundation (NSF) EPSCoR, NSF INCLUDES, Department of the Interior, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Hawaii-Pacific Islands Cooperative Ecosystems Studies Units (U.S. Navy), and the Northern and Southern Guam Soil and Water Conservation Districts.

Shelton coordinates multiple regional and international collaborations as the representative of the Guam focal point for the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), delegate to the National Sea Grant Association, and UOG member representative to the Global Consortium for Sustainability Outcomes.

Shelton earned a B.S. degree in marine biology from Hawai`i Pacific University and both an M.S. and Ph.D. in zoology with a specialization in marine biology from the University of Hawai`i at Mānoa.