New science communicator to enhance outreach of UF/IFAS programs to Spanish-speaking audiences statewide
The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences continues to bolster its commitment to expand outreach in the Spanish-speaking community.
Luz Bahder is the latest communications professional to join the UF/IFAS public relations team as a Spanish media relations specialist. Bahder joined UF/IFAS in August, filling a critical role to increase accessibility and visibility of UF/IFAS science-based information and services to the Spanish-speaking community.
A native of Grecia, Costa Rica and science communicator by trade, Bahder’s responsibilities include translating and communicating vital content on services, programs, events and research developments for consumers, while connecting with the Spanish-speaking media statewide.
“We are thrilled to welcome Bahder to our team of specialists who are dedicated to meeting the needs of Florida’s communities as we advance UF’s land grant mission,” said Chris Vivian, associate vice president of UF/IFAS Communications. “Her skills will bridge the gap and reduce language barriers to improve participation opportunities for Spanish-speaking families and communities.”
Bahder joins Lourdes Mederos, public relations manager for the Southeast District, based out of UF/IFAS Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center in the heart of South Florida. They are part of a statewide media team assisting journalists looking for information and faculty experts, to better share current faculty research and UF/IFAS science-based information.
“From a young age I loved science and throughout my professional training as a scientist, I learned the value of communicating science to the public,” said Bahder. “Now being able to direct my knowledge and passion for science to a public that shares my native tongue, and my cultural experiences is both an honor and the opportunity of a lifetime.”
Bahder’s previous translation and transcreation work spans a wide variety of specialties in multiple scientific fields focusing on both basic and applied aspects of crocodilians, arthropod pests of crops, plant pathogens, viticultural practices and legal documentation for wineries.
Bahder served as a primary contact for National Geographic every time it filmed in Costa Rica, for multiple documentary series on crocodile behavior and biogeography while a student at Universidad Nacional and after her graduation. She also worked for MINAE, the ministry of environment and energy in Costa Rica, where she served as a consultant reviewing projects and giving expert advice on governmental permits and regulations. She also served as a translator for Washington State University, also a public, land grant university.
Bahder earned a bachelor’s degree in biology with a concentration in tropical biology and a master’s in wildlife conservation and management, both from Universidad Nacional de Costa Rica.
By Lourdes Mederos, email@example.com
The mission of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) is to develop knowledge relevant to agricultural, human and natural resources and to make that knowledge available to sustain and enhance the quality of human life. With more than a dozen research facilities, 67 county Extension offices, and award-winning students and faculty in the UF College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, UF/IFAS brings science-based solutions to the state’s agricultural and natural resources industries, and all Florida residents.