Ph.D., Civil Engineering, University of Colorado at Boulder, 2001
M.S., Civil Engineering, University of Colorado at Boulder, 1997
B.S., Civil Engineering, University of Colorado at Boulder, 1996
August 2008 – present - Assistant professor, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
August 2005 – July 2008 - Assistant professor, University of Nebraska - Lincoln, 2005-2008
2003 - 2005 - National Research Council Fellowship at the U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, Virginia.
2001 -2003 - Landcare Research Fellowship, New Zealand
Water sustainability is a huge issue - we need more food to feed an ever increasing population, but are compromising our natural resources. Water is one resource that is intimately connected to both food and energy. My primary goal is to improve our nation’s water quality through research and education. Our group focuses on quantifying how natural systems behave in the face of change, and then applying/adapting this knowledge into workable solutions (e.g. improved stream/wetland restoration).
- Deglaciation effects on Hydroecology: Glaciers are thinning across the world, which in turn will cause dramatic changes in material fluxes through the landscape. We are exploring how the magnitude and timing of material fluxes will change in a series of glaciated catchments in southeast Alaska.
- Small Watershed Hydroecology: Small, forested watersheds provide a large ecosystem service: buffering of downstream nutrient loads. Within the landscape, stream ecosystems are one component where nutrient retention may occur. Our current project seeks to understand the temporal variability in carbon and nitrogen transformations within streams channels located within headwater forested catchments.
- Floodplain / Stream Restoration - StREAM: The project brings together scientists/educators in CALS and the greater Virginia Tech community to develop a nationally recognized research facility that can be used to attract major competitive funding, improve undergraduate and graduate teaching, and enhance outreach opportunities.
- Freshwater Diversions: Here we are exploring the use of freshwater diversions in managing excess nutrient fluxes to downstream ecosystems. Our current work is based in the Atchafalaya River Basin in Louisiana.
- Floodplain Ecohydrology: Floodplains represent a biologically diverse hotspot on the landscape. These regions may serve to buffer downstream nutrient loads. We are exploring the use of floodplains as bioreactors, from understanding the basic hydrology and biogeochemistry to how ecological services within these zones will change in response to a varying climate. Together, we seek to use this understanding to inform stream and riparian restoration.