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Where are They Now?


Simon Bisrat

Simon Bisrat

PhD - Ecology - 2010

Associate Environmental Planner/District Biologist

Simon has worked at Caltrans for the last two years at Division of Environmental Planning.  He just got promoted to a Senior position at the Division of Research, Innovation & Systems Information at Caltrans headquarter.  He will be managing research programs on environmental impact mitigation primarily working with folks at University Transportation centers at UC Davis, UC Berkeley, and UCLA to name a few.

Eric McCulley

Eric McCulley

MS - Watershed Science - 2014

Watershed Scientist for River Restoration

Eric is a Watershed Scientist for River Restoration and is based in Salt Lake City.  He specializes in ecological restoration of streams and wetlands in the Intermountain West.

Brian Hines

Brian Hines

MS - Fisheries Biology - 2011

Fisheries Biologist - Utah Divison of Wildlife Resources

Brian is a Fisheries Biologist working for the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources at the Moab Field Station.  What some people do for a vacation he gets to do for a living!

 

Ellen Wakeley-Tomlinson

Ellen Wakeley-Tomlinson

MS - Ecology - 2016

Environmental Data Analyst

Ellen works as an Environmental Data Analyst at Navarro Research and Engineering in Grand Junction, Colorado.  Before that she worked at the Smithsonian Institution in Edgewater Maryland as a Biological technician and data manager.

Monica Blanchard

Monica Blanchard

MS - Watershed Science - 2015

Fishery Biologist, Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission

Monica graduated with an MS in Watershed Science in May 2015 and is now working for the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission as a Fishery Biologist. She is based in Portland, Oregon for most of the year, but spent summers out surveying Chinook salmon populations and their habitat in the Grand Ronde watershed in Eastern Oregon.
Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission

Kate Olsen

Kate Olsen

MS - Fisheries Biology - 2013

Fisheries Biologist, USDA Forest Service

Kate is a Fisheries Biologist on the Malheur National Forest in Central Oregon. She supervises stream survey crews that complete comprehensive fish habitat studies. She is also planning work on stream restoration projects in the Upper John Day and Malheur River basins.

Justin Stout

Justin Stout

MS - Watershed Science - 2012

PhD Student, University of Melbourne, Australia

Justin is working with Dr. Ian Rutherfurd at the University of Melbourne in Australia in the Melbourne School of Engineering. He has enjoyed hiking and getting to know the area in his time off, exploring rain forests and trying to avoid wild kangaroos who leap out like wild deer, but they are 6 feet tall!

Information about Dr. Ian Rutherfurd's research

David Immeker

David Immeker

MS - Watershed Science 2012

Hydrologist, USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin

David works as a Hydrologist with the USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit. He is currently working on a stream restoration project in the Lake Tahoe basin.

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Tracy Bowerman

Tracy Bowerman

PhD - Aquatic Ecology - 2013

Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of Idaho

Tracy graduated with a PhD in Aquatic Ecology in May 2013 and is now working as a postdoctoral research associate with Chris Caudill at University of Idaho. Tracy is researching bioenergetics of spawning migrations and causes of pre-spawn mortality for Chinook salmon in the Columbia Basin. She continues to collaborate with her advisor at USU, Phaedra Budy, and will teach the laboratory portion of a Fish Ecology course at University of Idaho in the fall.

Tracy Bowerman's research homepage

Susannah Erwin

Susannah Erwin

PhD - Watershed Science - 2012

Research Geologist

Susannah is working with the USGS in Columbia Missouri. She is currently serving in the River Studies: River-Corridor Habitat Dynamics Research Division.

Link to Susannah's research homepage.

Tim Walsworth

Tim Walsworth

MS - Ecology - 2011

PhD Student - University of Washington

Tim is currently working towards a PhD in the School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences at the University of Washington, where his research focuses on the ecology of Pacific salmon and the economics of the commercial fisheries targeting them. He splits his time between the UW campus in Seattle and a field station on Chignik Lake, Alaska.

Tim's research homepage

Nick Weber

Nick Weber

MS - Aquatic Ecology - 2010

Fisheries Scientist, Eco Logical Research Inc.

Nick received his BS at the University of Montana in Wildlife Biology and an MS at Utah State in Aquatic Ecology. He currently lives in Bend, Oregon. He works as a fisheries scientist for Utah-based consulting firm Eco Logical Research Inc.

Nick's staff homepage

Ericka Hegeman

Ericka Hegeman

MS - Ecology - 2012

Scientist, Conservation Science Partners

From 2012: Ericka Hegeman, worked with the Conservation Science Partners as a scientist.  She worked on a Mojave Desert tortoise project and says "It's awesome!" 

 

Amanda Sweetman

Amanda Sweetman

MS - Ecology - 2013

Research Fellow, Interstate Agency

Amanda is now the Project Manager at The Farm at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital

In 2012 Amanda was awarded the Great Lakes Commission Fellowship. As the 2012 Fellow she researched habitat restoration and wind energy in the Great Lakes, and communicated with the representatives for the eight Great Lake States and other stakeholders to build consensus.

Previous to working for the Commission, Amanda worked as a research assistant for the US Geological Survey Great Lakes Science Center.

Great Lakes Commission

Sonya Welsh

Sonya Welsh

MS - Watershed Science - 2012

Laboratory Manager, Botany Department, Weber State University

Sonya works for Weber State University. She is the lab manager in the Botany Department in the College of Science.

 

Diane Menuz

Diane Menuz

MS - Ecology - 2011

Research Scientist, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

Diane is working for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources as a Senior Natural Resources Research Scientist. She is involved in a number of projects aimed at protecting aquatic systems in the state, from understanding how invasive aquatic plant species make their way from the horticultural trade into natural waterways to prioritizing barriers for removal or upgrading in order to improve conditions for northern pike. Diane’s role is primarily in assisting with spatial and statistical analysis, though she occasionally makes forays into the field.

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Ben Abbott

Ben Abbott

BS - Watershed Science - 2009

Assistant Professor, Brigham Young University

2017 Update: Ben is now an Assistant Professor at Brighamam Young University, in Provo, Utah.  He completed a PhD program in 2014 at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks with Dr. Jay Jones. Ben examined the impact of climate warming on soil and water interactions in northern Alaska. He spent one summer examining the impacts of the melting of ice in the soil on soil stability and the transport of sediment and nutrients into lakes and streams. Recent increases in soil temperatures promote increased landslide activity. Ben measured the impact of these land slides on aquatic ecosystems.  He completed a post-doctoral fellow at the Centre National de la recherche scientifique in Rennes France.

Research Homepage

Jared Bottcher

Jared Bottcher

MS - Watershed Science - 2009

Restoration Director, Klamath Basin Rangeland Trust

 Jared worked for more than two years as a fishery biologist with the U.S. Geological Survey. Jared has helped identify limitations to juvenile sucker recruitment in Upper Klamath Lake and has extensive experience with native fishes in the Upper Colorado River Basin. Jared received an MS in Watershed Sciences from Utah State University and a BS in Environmental Sciences from Drake University.

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Jeremiah Wood

Jeremiah Wood

MS - Fisheries - 2008

Fisheries Biologist, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks

Jeremiah works for Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks. See a news article from the Montana Billings Gazette about some of Jeremiah's recent work: Montana Billings Gazette article

Greta Burkart

Greta Burkart

PhD - Fisheries Biology - 2007

Aquatic Ecologist, Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

Greta completed her PhD working with Dr. Chris Luecke.

From Greta:

I have a great new dream job as the Aquatic Ecologist for the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (http://arctic.fws.gov). 

Nicholas Nelson

Nicholas Nelson

MS - Watershed Science - 2007

Fluvial Geomorphologist, Inter Fluve

Nick completed an M.S. in Watershed Sciences from USU under advisor Jack Schmidt in 2007. Shortly after, he began working for Inter-Fluve, a river and wetland restoration firm, as a fluvial geomorphologist. In 2009, Nick moved with his wife to Massachusetts and opened up Inter-Fluve's east coast office in Cambridge. He is currently managing more than 10 dam removal and river and habitat restoration projects in the northeast.

Interfluve.com - Nick's homepage

Amy Marcarelli

Amy Marcarelli

PhD - Ecology - 2006

Associate Professor, Michigan Technical University

Amy accepted a position as an assistant professor at Michigan Technological University. Congratulations Amy! (Sep 2009) Dr. Marcarelli's research areas are: aquatic ecology, ecosystem and community ecology of streams and rivers, biogeochemistry.

Amy's Faculty homepage

Marcarelli Lab homepage

Amy completed a position as a Post-doctoral researcher in the Department of Biological Sciences at Idaho State University. She worked on an NSF EPSCoR project examining coupled carbon and nitrogen cycling in the Portneuf River in southern Idaho. A major focus of the project was to examine how human development, including changes in land use, disturbance, and agricultural and industrial activities, modify the flux of carbon and nitrogen, and in turn alter ecosystem processes within the river.

Ken Hill

Ken Hill

BS - Watershed and Earth Systems - 2005

Research Scientist, National Park Service

Ken is now working with the National Park Service in Alaska. He works with the Inventory and Monitoring program in 8 parks (Denali, Wrangell-St. Elias, Yukon-Charley Rivers, Gates of the Arctic, Noatak, Kobuk Valley, Bering Land Bridge, and Cape Krusenstern). The program aims to understand the "vital signs" of Park ecosystems in collaboration with other agencies and researchers. His work focuses on installing and maintaining a network of climate stations throughout the parks. These will be the first stations in most of the arctic National Parks (especially at higher elevations), an area where climate warming is expected to occur most abruptly.

Ken graduated from USU with a BS in Watershed Sciences.  He spent a field season in Antarctica studying aquatic-terrestrial interactions at hydrologic margins.

During the summer he worked as a hydrologic technician for the U.S. Forest Service.

Ken went on to graduate school at the University of Colorado in the Geography Department and Institute of Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research (INSTAAR).

His field research focused on snow hydrology, with an emphasis on analyzing how hydrologic processes and water quality change under the influence of climate and atmospheric deposition of pollutants. His field site was located at Niwot Ridge Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) station outside of Boulder, Colorado.

Ben Kennedy

Benjamin Kennedy

MS - Ecology - 2005

Fisheries Biologist

Ben Kennedy is a fisheries biologist with the US Fish and Wildlife Service, Abernathy Fish Technology Center in Washington. He is involved in studies on the life history and movement patterns of steelhead salmon in the lower Columbia River. He uses PIT tag detection arrays, traps, and electrofishing to sample these anadromous salmonids.

Andree Walker Bravo

Andree Walker Bravo

MS - Watershed Science - 2003

University Extension Urban Director, Utah State University

Andreé graduated with an MS in Watershed Science in 2003 and beginning the first of May 2015 will serve as the Urban Director with Utah State Extension in Salt Lake County, Utah.

Information from the Salt Lake County office:

Andree has an  extensive background on forming collaborative and networking relationships.  For the past eight years she has been the Executive Director of the Utah Society for Environmental Education (USEE).  In this role she has formed an extensive network of educators, nonprofit entities and other public and private organizations in Salt Lake County.  Andree also has a firm understanding of USU Extension and its offerings due to her work as the Water Quality Extension Program Coordinator.  She also served on the Rose Park Community Council, where she has been influential in providing education for under-served populations.

Her new responsibilities represent an extraordinary opportunity for increased regional collaboration and access to Extension-sponsored programming for the citizens of Salt Lake County.  This position will report directly to the Northern Regional Director of Extension and will serve as a liaison between the faculty and programming of USU Extension and Salt Lake County's government, citizens and local needs.

Congratulations Andreé!

Ashley Nielson

Ashley Neilson

BS - Watershed Science - 2005

Hydrologist, NOAA, Colorado River Forecast Center

Ashley Nielson is now working as a hydrologist for the National Weather Service at the Colorado Basin River Forecast Center in Salt Lake.  They produce short term streamflow forecasts, seasonal water supply and peak flow forecasts, recreational forecasts and a variety of other products including flood forecasts and flash flood guidance for the entire Colorado River basin.  Her job currently focuses on producing these products through hydrologic models and verification of forecasts.

Ashley completed her Master's Degree in the Department of Geography at the University of Colorado at Boulder.  She is looked at the relationships between hydrology (flow paths, source waters, RT) biochemistry, nutrient cycling, and climate on a high alpine wetland.

Kim Ryals

Kim Ryals

MS - Fisheries Biology - 2002

Executive Director, Klamatch Basin Rangeland Trust

Kim Ryals is the new Executive Director of the Klamath Basin Rangeland Trust (KBRT) in Oregon. From the KBRT website: Kim is responsible for the administrations and management of KBRT. Kim came to KBRT after founding "From Farm to Table", an agritourism outfit where she promoted the connection between healthy farms and vibrant communities. Prior to leading educational farm hops, she was a national staffer for Trout Unlimited, where she worked on America's first Fish Habitat Partnership. Kim has an MS in Fisheries Biology from Utah State University with an emphasis in human dimensions, and holds a certificate in Nonprofit Management from Duke University.

KBRT homepage
Jon Flinders

Jon Flinders

BS - Fisheries and Wildlife -- 2000

Fisheries Biologist, Idaho Fish and Game

Jon finished his PhD from the University of Arkansas with Dan Magoulick at the Co-op unit. His project was examining brown and rainbow trout catch-and-release regulations using a bioenergetics and stable isotope analysis approach. He is now working with the Idaho Fish and Game as a Regional Fishery Biologist in their Salmon office examining Chinook salmon supplementation and assessing steelhead parr distribution and abundance via snorkeling.

History:
In December of 2000 Jon graduated from Utah State University with a bachelors in Fisheries and Wildlife Biology. After graduation he moved to Tucson, Arizona where saguaro cactus dot the land and the only temperature is hot and hotter.

While in Tucson he worked on a master's project dealing with illegally introduced northern pike. In 1997 northern pike were illegally introduced into a reservoir five miles north of the Mexican border. There is substantial concern from anglers, fisheries managers, and researchers that northern pike in Parker Canyon Reservoir could severely reduce existing sport fishes through predation. The small number of sport fishing lakes in Arizona and the threat of northern pike expanding their range throughout the state make it necessary to evaluate their potential impacts on the forage base. The objective of his study was to use the Wisconsin bioenergetics model to predict the foraging demand of northern pike on prey fishes found in Arizona lakes and reservoirs.

Fortunately, his project allowed him to travel throughout the beautiful state of Arizona and catch lots of northern pike!!!

Mark Vinson

Mark Vinson

PhD - Watershed Science - 1999

Station Chief and Research Fisheries Biologist, USGS, Lake Superior Biological Station

I oversee a world renowned research facility on the world’s largest lake. My responsibilities are to coordinate and conduct research on the limnology and the population dynamics of fishes and other aquatic biota in Lake Superior. I spend around 75 days a year on the lake aboard the 107 foot Research Vessel, the R/V KIYI. The remainder of my year is spent in an office with an impressive selection of governmental stamps.

USGS - Professional Page

Robert Hilderbrand

Robert Hilderbrand

PhD - Ecology  - 1998

Associate Professor, University of Maryland

I'm currently an associate professor at the Appalachian Laboratory, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science. When I'm not getting into trouble for something, I'm working on conservation, risk assessment, and restoration related research in both terrestrial and aquatic systems (primarily streams). Research is just my day job - my real passions these days are building furniture and working on the property that Katia and I bought in 2000.

Robert's faculty homepage

Geoffrey Steinhart

Geoffrey Steinhart

MS - Aquatic Ecology - 1997

Associate Professor,

I spent three wonderful years at Utah State University conducting my Master's research under the guidance of Dr. Wayne Wurtsbaugh. After completing my degree, I accepted a fisheries biologist position at the Prince William Sound Science Center, Cordova, Alaska. Using the skills and knowledge I acquired at USU, my job involved studying the recovery of fish stocks following the Exxon Valdez oil spill.

In 1998, I decided to continue my education at Ohio State University (OSU), where I completed my Ph.D. My research focused on the effects of an introduced nest predator on the reproductive behavior and ecology of smallmouth bass. Following my matriculation from OSU in 2004, I accepted a position as Grant Coordinator for the Great Lakes Fishery Commission (GLFC). My position entailed securing peer-reviews for GLFC proposals, summarizing the reviews and proposal, and then helping the GLFC make funding recommendations. I held a post-doctoral position at Cornell University. For my post-doctoral research, I explored the status and recovery of round whitefish in the Adirondacks.

Dr. Steinhart was a professor and co-director of the Aquatic Research Laboratory at Lake Superior State University

Geoff joined the Sandusky Fisheries Research Station in 2015 as a Fisheries Biologist

Cody Johnson

Cody Johnson

PhD - Ecology - 2009

Alaska Regional Planner, Polar Field Services

In 2012 Cody was selected as the Cushing Prize winner for his paper in the Journal of Plankton Research, "Copepod dominance contributes to phytoplankton nitrogen deficiency in lakes during periods of low precipitation". The prize is awarded annually for the best paper by and early career stage scientist published in the journal during the year.

Research homepage

Mike Canning

Mike Canning

MS - Aquatic Ecology - 1996

Assistant Director, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources

*Update - Mike was appointed as an Assistant director for the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources in 2013. Congratulations Mike!

I graduated from USU in December of 1996 with an M.S. in aquatic ecology. After leaving USU, I became a database manager for the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources (UDWR). In that position, I was responsible for managing and distributing tabular and GIS data pertaining to Utah's native fish, amphibian, reptile, and mollusk species.

After about nine months in that position, I became the information manager for UDWR's Utah Natural Heritage Program. The Utah Natural Heritage Program acts as the central repository for Utah biodiversity information. As such, we develop, manage, and distribute life history and occurrence information for Utah's vertebrate, invertebrate, and plant species, concentrating on species of conservation concern. As information manager, my duties focused primarily on the management and distribution of Utah Natural Heritage Program data.

I was later promoted, and I am currently UDWR's conservation data / GIS coordinator. My job now consists of setting direction for the Utah Natural Heritage Program and UDWR's GIS Program, managing personnel, monitoring budgets, and negotiating contracts. In addition, I work on impact analysis issues, coordinating with UDWR staff, state agencies, federal agencies, and developers to formulate appropriate mitigation measures for a variety of resource development projects that impact fish and wildlife.

 

Daren Carlisle

Daren Carlisle

MS - Aquatic Ecology - 1995

Research Ecologist, USGS

Daren Carlisle is Chief of the Ecological National Synthesis Project at USGS Headquarters, Reston, VA. He is part of a team that is developing ecological indicators for streams and using these indicators to report on the ecological condition of the nation's rivers and streams. They also frequently collaborate with EPA and academic researchers to accomplish our goals.

Daren said, "Since I rarely see the light of day as part of my job, I've taken up a regular schedule of outdoor travel to places near and far."

Dan Yule

Dan Yule

MS - Fisheries Management - 1992

Research Scientist, USGS

After graduating from Utah State University in 1992, I began my fisheries career as a biologist with the Reservoir Research Unit of the Wyoming Game and fish Department based out of Casper, WY. I was hired to help oversee the North Platte Comprehensive Fishery Study, the largest trout stocking evaluation ever conducted by the state of Wyoming. The goal of this project was to refine stocking practices to maximize angler catches. Around 1996, we obtained funding from the United States Bureau of Reclamation - Upper North Platte River Project to purchase a scientific-grade echosounder. I used this system and an acoustic technique called side-looking to count trout in Wyoming reservoirs for a number of years.

I grew a little bored of studying trout in man-made impoundments, so in 2000 I left my Wyoming research job for the private sector where I worked as a Biologist with Northwest Marine Technology (NMT) Inc., based out of Olympia, Washington. There I helped potential customers decide which tag would work best for them based on the species and sizes of fish they hoped to tag and the objectives of their research. I liked my NMT job, but I soon learned that I'm a fisheries researcher by heart.

In 2001, I was hired by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources to help evaluate if acoustic sampling could be used to enumerate lake trout in lakes in the Arrowhead region of northeast MN. Try as we might, we learned that lake trout were highly bottom oriented, spending much of their time too close to the bottom for acoustic detection.

In 2003, I landed a cool job as a Fishery Research Scientist with the United States Geological Survey. I work in the Deepwater Program of the Great Lakes Science Center, stationed at the Lake Superior Biological Station in Ashland, WI. I'm working on a number of interesting and important projects including: 1) the development of a lake-wide forage fish biomass estimate, 2) a project to understand how photoperiod and moon phase affect our ability to acoustically sample Lake Superior forage fishes, and 3) the use of acoustic techniques to map lake and river substrates. Most of my research is conducted aboard the Research Vessel (R/V) Kiyi, named after a deepwater chub found in Lake Superior. The R/V Kiyi is 105 feet long and normally operates with a crew of eight people.

My MS degree in Fisheries Management from Utah State University has served as a foundation to an interesting and rewarding career.

Dan's Professional Homepage