Nicky Phear

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Nicky Phear

Director, Youth and Women’s Leadership Programs

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Personal Summary

Dr. Nicky Phear has worked closely with the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Center over the last eight years to support education and empowerment on global environmental issues. As the Academic Director for the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI), Nicky mentors emerging leaders in developing initiatives to address shared environmental challenges across Southeast Asia. She creates additional opportunities for youth leaders from Montana to exchange perspectives, ideas, and solutions to global environmental challenges. For UM, she leads the Women’s Leadership Initiative, a cohort-based program for mid-career women at UM and Clearwater Credit Union to build their power and influence. 

Nicky has BA in Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania, an MS in Environmental Studies from the University of Montana, and a PhD from Prescott College in Sustainability Education. She was the founding director of the University of Montana’s Climate Change Studies Program, a minor degree program that offers students a multidisciplinary understanding of climate change and involves them in developing solutions. Nicky is a founding member of Climate Smart Missoula and has led numerous campus and community climate discussions. Her work has had an impact not only in Montana but Bhutan and Vietnam as well, where she led field-based climate change education programs. Outside of work, she is an avid backcountry skier and mountain biker.