The fifth annual Dupont Pioneer Iowa Women of Innovation awards ceremony was held last night, Nov. 15. Ten Iowa women were honored in specific categories. ILF program manager Jacqueline Comito was recognized for her work in the Government Agency/Non-profit Innovation and Leadership category. ILF team member Ann Staudt was named a Rising Star.
The Technology Association of Iowa is responsible for the awards and the event. Their chosen honorees work in the areas of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).
Comito was honored for her accomplishments and leadership in raising environmental literacy including: creation of Water Rocks! a statewide campaign that raises water quality awareness for students; writing and publishing the book Water Quality Matters To Us All; managing the Iowa Learning Farms program, and producing the Culture of Conservation video series which includes Troubled Waters and Out to the Lakes. Both of these films have earned Iowa Motion Picture Association honors for documentary and educational production.
Staudt earned accolades with her work in STEM including: the creation of Water Rocks! campaign; development of Conservation Station and Water Rocks! curriculum for school classroom visits for grades K-12. Ann is also a composer and has written music for the Culture of Conservation video series and several music videos created for the Water Rocks! website.
Comito and Staudt’s integration of STEM with art and music is vital to increasing environmental literacy within Iowa and beyond.
The two were nominated by Erin Rollenhagen, who has worked with them developing the Water Rocks! website. Erin’s nomination forms included these quotes:
“Dr. Comito’s passion for her work is evident within a few minutes of meeting her. She is wholly dedicated to producing the best possible result from complex projects bringing together art, science, music, engineering and education and is willing to do whatever needs to be done to achieve that goal. She is a true leader in the STEM field.”
“In her young career, Ann has tackled myriad challenges with enthusiasm and diligence to share her passion for soil and water conservation with kids across the state. Her can-do attitude and strong scientific background make her a great asset to any project. She is a true rising star in the STEM field.”
Read the Des Moines Register article about all the honorees: Association honors women in technology, science
Congratulations to both of you!