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UPCOMING SPEAKER BIO

September 20-21, 2017


Jennifer Funk
 
Associate Professor
Chapman University
Orange, CA

Jennifer received her B.A. from University of California, Berkeley, and Ph.D. from Stony Brook University. She did her postdoctoral work at Stanford University and joined Chapman in 2007. Jen’s research interests include plant ecophysiology, invasion biology, and restoration ecology.

October 11-12, 2017


Asmeret Berhe
Associate Professor
UC Merced

Dr. Asmeret Asefaw Berhe is Associate Professor of the Soil Biogeochemistry Life and 
Environmental Sciences Unit at the University of California, Merced. She is a terrestrial 
biogeochemist and her research group investigates the effects of physical perturbations in the environment on soil organic matter (SOM) dynamics. 

 

"The overall goal of my work is better integration of biogeochemical and geomorphological approaches to derive improved representation of mechanisms that regulate organic matter (OM) persistence in the soil system. I focus a large portion of the research in my lab towards dynamic landscapes because most of the terrestrial biosphere is dominated by sloping landscapes where biogeochemical cycling of essential elements is controlled by interaction of geomorphic, pedogenic, and ecological processes that shape the landscapes. Furthermore, in our work we try to gain better understanding of the dynamic and two-way relationship of human beings with the soil system". 

 

November 15-16, 2017


Gregory Retallack  
Professor
University of Oregon

Greg Retallack’s research group is dedicated to the proposition that soils have a fossil record, like other living things. Past studies have considered the role of soils in ape and human evolution in Kenya, grassland evolution in North America, dinosaur extinction in Montana, angiosperm evolution in Kansas, Late Permian mass extinction in Antarctica, and evolution of trees and tetrapods in Pennsylvania. Current and future studies concern Cambrian explosion on land, Precambrian life on land and Martian paleopoles, with fieldwork in Newfoundland and Australia.

December 6-7, 2017


Rob Pringle
Assistant Professor
Princeton Universtiy 

Fascinated by the ways in which species interactions “cascade” through food webs and other ecological networks, often with surprising outcomes. Research in Pringle’s lab focuses on three main problems. The first is trying to understand the ways in which large mammalian herbivores, directly and indirectly, shape the ecosystems they inhabit: how do they affect plants and other animals, and what can this tell us about the likely impacts of past and future extinctions? A related focus is on how top predators structure communities by altering the abundance and behavior of their prey. He is also interested in the spatial organization of these ecosystems–specifically, how regular patterns created by “ecosystem engineers” like termites influence the behavior of individuals, populations, and entire ecosystems.

 

January 17-18, 2018


Richard Reading
Fullbright Scholar
University of Botswanna
Conservation Scientist

Richard Reading, Ph.D. is a Fulbright Fellow with the Okavango Research Institute of the University of Botswana in Maun, Botswana. He is also the part-time Direct for Research and Conservation at the Butterfly Pavilion, a consultant in conservation biology, Adjunct Professor within the Department of Biology at the University of Denver (DU), and Scholar in Residence at DU’s Graduate School of Social Work. He received a Ph.D. and three Master’s degrees from Yale University in Wildlife Ecology and Human Dimensions of Wildlife and an Honorary Doctorate from the National Education University of Mongolia. Rich has worked primarily on grassland ecosystems on six continents, with a focus on the Great Plains of N. America, the steppes of Mongolia, the savannahs of Botswana, and the Altiplano of Peru and Bolivia. His work focuses on developing pragmatic, effective, and interdisciplinary approaches to the conservation of wildlife and protected areas through research, capacity development, and working with local people and governments. Dr. Reading serves on the boards of directors or advisors for several non-profit organizations in the U.S. and overseas; has published over 190 scientific papers and book chapters; dozens of popular articles; and written or edited 8 books.

February 14-15, 2018


Elizabeth Leger
Professor
University of Nevada, Reno


Beth Leger is faculty at the University of Nevada, Reno, where she has been a professor in the department of Natural Resources since 2006. She got her PhD in plant ecology from UC Davis, and did a post-doc at SUNY Stony Brook. Her work focuses on native plant restoration in the Great Basin, and she is the co-creator and co-director of the Museum of Natural History at the University of Nevada, Reno.

March 14-15, 2018


Meghan Duffy  
Associate Professor
University of Michigan

Meghan's research focuses on the causes and consequences of parasitism, especially in lake populations of Daphnia. One of her main research interests lies in understanding how food web members influence parasitism in natural communities. Meghan received her B.S. in Biological Sciences from Cornell University in 2000. After a brief stint working as a field technician in Antarctica, she moved to the Kellogg Biological Station and Michigan State University for graduate school. After receiving her Ph.D. in 2006, she moved to the University of Wisconsin for her postdoctoral research, which was supported by an NSF postdoctoral fellowship in biological informatics. From 2008-2012, she was an assistant professor in the School of Biology at Georgia Tech. She joined the EEB faculty at the University of Michigan in August 2012. In addition to her research activities, Meghan writes for a popular ecology blog, Dynamic Ecology.
Meghan has received a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers from President Obama, the Mercer Award from the Ecological Society of America, and the Yentsch-Schindler Early Career Award from the Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography. She is currently a AAAS Leshner Leadership Institute Fellow for Public Engagement.

April 18-19, 2018


Corinna Riginos
Adjunct Associate Professor
University of Wyoming

Corinna works to understand and conserve areas of unique biodiversity through a combination of research, education, and close partnerships with natural resource managers. With interests in topics including road ecology; large herbivore movement, migration, and habitat selection patterns; rangeland monitoring, management, and restoration; and impacts of invasive species, land-use change, and climate change on natural systems. Currently based in Jackson, WY where she is a Research Associate at the Northern Rockies Conservation Cooperative and an Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Wyoming's Department of Zoology and Physiology and Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources.