Lead Adaptation Specialist
First Street Foundation
Sharai Lewis-Gruss is a GIS and Adaptation Specialist at First Street Foundation. In this role Sharai applies her background in environmental policy and geography to analyze data on flooding and vulnerability that is utilized in online services offered by First Street like FloodiQ.com, a browser-based advisory on hurricane and tidal-based flooding as it relates to individual properties and cities. Her interest in communicating complex environmental problems in digestible and approachable formats to people from all walks of life drives her work at First Street and beyond. Before First Street, Sharai was a GIS Specialist and Project Coordinator at COWI North America, where she mapped 580 miles of shoreline in an effort to help reduce vulnerability to sea level rise, major storms and other events. She coordinated teams in multiple countries to deliver an interactive mapping platform for the City of New York which featured 360-degree imagery of over 10,000 waterfront structures. Prior to that she was GIS Manager for the Regional Plan Association of Greater New York. In that post she created the "Access to Jobs" interactive map, using it to present the findings of an associated study on transportation and employment patterns to private organizations and federal agencies such as the Department of Transportation, and U.S. Census Bureau. In addition, Sharai has applied her GIS and environmental skills to the benefit of FEMA’s Sandy Recovery, New York City’s Department of Environmental Protection and its Department of Parks and Recreation.