Kevin Decker

Coastal Economist


  • Ocean Policy
  • Community Economic Development
  • Economic Contribution Analysis
  • Ecosystem Service Valuation

Before joining Washington Sea Grant as a Coastal Economist, Kevin served on the Board of Directors for the Idaho Wildlife Federation. In this position Kevin, sat on the Conservation Economics Committee, which passed a national resolution aimed at promoting the use of economic well-being indicators that include the gain and loss of ecosystem services in GDP. He sat as a member of the advisory council for the Treasure Valley Comprehensive Aquifer Management Plan with goals of providing a reliable source of water for the next 50 years, developing strategies to avoid conflicts over water resources, prioritizing future state investments in water, and bridging the gap between current and future water needs. Kevin also spent four years in the banking and financial services industry as a Financial Representative, providing expert guidance to people and businesses in the areas of retirement planning, insurance and investment services, estate planning, business planning, education funding, and employee benefits.

Kevin earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Economics from Boise State University, a master’s degree in Environmental Management from the University of Maryland, and a master’s degree in Applied Economics and Ph.D. in Environmental Science from the University of Idaho. His dissertation explores the economic and environmental value of preserving and restoring the native Palouse Prairie, 99 percent of which has been lost to agriculture and development. Kevin’s research has also included determining the economic value of the rare giant Palouse earthworm and evaluating how people’s sense of place and attachment to an area affects the economic value they place on conserving its native landscape.