US Forest Service Research & Development
Contact Information
  • US Forest Service Research & Development
  • 1400 Independence Ave., SW
  • Washington, D.C. 20250-0003
  • 800-832-1355
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Deborah J. Chavez

Deborah J. Chavez

Program Manager
Pacific Southwest Research Station
4955 Canyon Crest Dr
United States

Phone: 951-680-1558
Fax: 951-680-1501
Contact Deborah J. Chavez

Current Research

I am Program Manager of the Urban Ecosystems and Social Dynamics Program. This Program has three problem areas : (1) Determine the relationships among human uses, human values, ecosystems services, and management; (2) Ascertain the roles of changing demogaphics, urbanization, socioeconomics, and technology on use and sustainability of natural resources; and (3) Examine the impacts of public policies on ecological and social patterns and processes along rural-to-urban gradients.


Research Interests

We are developing study plans for the current and future years to meet our charter goals.

We are also working on the Urban Natural Resources Stewardship strategy for PSW.

Why This Research is Important

Natural resources are managed by and for people; their social dimesions are inescapable. The Program exists in order to maintain forests, sustain functioning ecosystems in urban and wildland areas, enhance and protect quality of life, and ensure benefits to people. Our Program will address complex issues including:

  • The coupling of human and natural systems from multiple scales and for a range of diverse individuals and communities - from small and highly isolated rural landscapes to the largest metropolitan landscapes.
  • The net effects of urban forests on air quality and carbon dioxide budgets, storm water management, energy use; factors that drive variation acros urban areas; and societal costs and benefits.
  • The impacts of changing and increasing population pressures in California on natural areas, natural assets in urban areas, and their management.
  • The interconnections of natural resource management and culturally diverse populations.



  • University of California, Sociology , 1986
  • University of California, Sociology , 1982
  • University of California, Sociology , 1980

Professional Experience

  • Program Manager, PSW
    2010 - Current
    Urban Ecosystems and Social Dynamics Program
  • Research Social Scientist, PSW
    1989 - 2010
    Research Social Scientist focusing on social stratification, environmental justice, law enforcement, and outdoor recreation.

Professional Organizations

  • International Association for Society and Natural Resources, Member
  • National Association of Recreation Resource Planners, Member

Awards & Recognition

  • Superior Performance, 2011
    Certificate of Merit for Superior Performance
  • Award for Coaching, 2011
    Senior Leader Progam Coach
  • Outstanding performance, 2010
    Certificate of Merit for outstanding performace
  • Outstanding Performance, 2009
    Certificate of Merit
  • Award for Coaching, 2009
    Senior Leader Progam Coach
  • SLP Graduate, 2006
    Senior Leader Progam graduate
  • Legends Award Winner, 2006
    Great Outdoors Week 2006


Research Highlights


A High-Tech Adventure Game of Hide and Seek

Geocaching invites a technologically savvy public into nature


Last updated on : 05/08/2015