Dr. Raha Hakimdavar is the Director of Space Sciences at Ball Aerospace, where she develops business strategy and leads engagements with the government and broader space sciences community. She also serves as an adjunct professor in water and climate science at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. Her areas of expertise include hydrology, hydro-ecology, and space sciences and applications.
Previously, Dr. Hakimdavar served as a hydrologist and acting national program lead in remote sensing and geospatial analysis research at the USDA Forest Service, where she developed innovative approaches to manage forest and aquatic resources in the United States and internationally. She led research on the integration of space data into the UN Sustainable Development Goals and developed a whole of government framework for a global hydrology model to assess water risk during her Presidential Management Fellowship appointment at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Dr. Hakimdavar has consulted for UN Environment and the World Bank in the Caribbean and Latin America, notably helping to establish the first remote hydro-meteorological network for disaster risk reduction, agroforestry, and hydropower development in the South Department of Haiti.
Dr. Hakimdavar earned a B.S. in civil engineering from California State Polytechnic University and a M.S. and Ph.D. in civil engineering with an emphasis on hydrology from Columbia University. She was a Fulbright Scholar in the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands and was awarded the KLM Airlines Sustainability and Innovation award for her work and research on hydro-ecology.