Hannah Whitley was raised on her family's 500-acre beef ranch in southwestern Oregon. Throughout childhood, she showed poultry, market lambs, and her sassy dairy cow, Brindle, at the Douglas County Fair. In FFA, Hannah competed in the extemporaneous speaking, ag sales, parliamentary procedure, job interview, co-op quiz, livestock evaluation, and meats judging career development events. She received her State FFA degree during her junior year of high school and served two terms as the Elkton FFA Chapter President and one term as Secretary of the Umpqua District.

Today, Hannah is an ABD dual-title PhD Candidate of Rural Sociology and Human Dimensions of Natural Resources and the Environment at Pennsylvania State University. She is the founder of the Female Farmer Photovoice Project and a research assistant for the Water for Agriculture project. Hannah has returned to Oregon for dissertation fieldwork on the policy and governance complexities of water management in the Klamath River Basin. She will be a Visiting Scholar in the School of Public Policy at Oregon State University, an Affiliate with the Oregon Policy Analysis Laboratory, and a Visiting Associate with the OSU Writing Intensive Curriculum (WIC) program during the 2021-2022 academic year.

Follow along with her dissertation fieldwork @myrsocdissertation

Research & Teaching Interests
  • Community and Stakeholder Engagement

  • Environmental/Natural Resource Sociology

  • Participatory Research

  • Sociology of Food and Agriculture

  • Water and Society

Research Projects

Hannah T. Whitley

PhD Candidate | Rural Sociology & Human Dimensions of Natural Resources and the Environment