News & Events  arrow

Water Researchers

David J. Bayless, Ph.D., P.E. (Mechanical Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)


Bayless is the Gerald Loehr Professor of mechanical engineering and holds graduate faculty status in chemical engineering. He is director of the Ohio Coal Research Center, director of the Robe Leadership Institute, director of the State of Ohio’s Third Frontier Wright Project on Algal Engineering Research and Commercialization, and faculty fellow at the Voinovich School. Bayless’ research interests include: the recycling of carbon dioxide emissions by biological sources; the use of coal to produce gas for conversion in solid oxide fuel cells; electrostatic precipitation using novel wet membrane collectors; combustion of solid fuels and slurries; and particulate emissions from coal and waste combustion. Bayless is also a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Areas of Research: Energy, Water

Jennifer Bowman, M.S. (Geology, Ohio University)


Bowman is director of environmental programs at the Voinovich School and works regularly with the School’s environmental, water and GIS teams. She developed and manages an online water quality database for Ohio (www.watersheddata.com).  The online database is also an interactive evaluation system for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Mineral Resources Management to track successes of acid mine drainage remediation in Appalachian coal watersheds. She also teaches the course “Credible Data Training for Chemical Water Quality Assessment” and coordinates the training of area watersheds volunteers in family-level macroinvertebrate sampling. Other research interest include: evaluating headwater streams’ biological health, groundwater testing, and long-term monitoring of surface water to show trends in chemical and biological changes.

Areas of Research: Water, Data, Land, Shale

Geoffrey L. Buckley, Ph.D. (Geography, University of Maryland)



Buckley is professor in the Department of Geography. He is Director of Studies (DOS) for the Honors Tutorial College's Environmental Studies Program and Director of the Edinburgh: City and Environment Education Abroad program. He has also served as Interim Director of the MSES program and chair of the Faculty Senate Ecology and Energy Conservation Committee. His research interests include conservation history, management of public lands, urban environments, environmental justice, and the evolution of mining landscapes. Much of his research today is conducted in support of the NSF-funded Long-term Ecological Research - Baltimore Ecosystem Study (LTER-BES).

Areas of Research: Land, Water

Annie Laurie Cadmus, M.S. (College Student Personnel Administration, Illinois State University)




Cadmus currently serves as the director of sustainability at Ohio University. Most recently, she served as the sustainability specialist at Waubonsee Community College in Sugar Grove, IL where she worked closely with the Illinois Green Economy Network. Her interest in the role sustainability plays in the student leadership development process was refined during her previous work experiences at both Alliance for Climate Education in Chicago, IL and Green Mountain College in Poultney, VT.

Areas of Research: Land, Water, Energy, Data

Geoffrey Dabelko, Ph.D., Director, Environmental Studies


Geoffrey D. Dabelko is a professor and director of the Environmental Studies Program at Ohio University’s Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs. His current research and teaching focus on climate change, natural resources, and security as well as environmental pathways to confidence-building and peacebuilding, with a special emphasis on water resources. He joined the Voinovich School in August 2012 and was previously director of the Washington-based Woodrow Wilson Center's Environmental Change and Security Program, a nonpartisan research-policy forum on environment, population, health, development, and security issues. He continues to work with the Wilson Center as a senior advisor. Geoff is also an adjunct professor at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (formerly the Monterey Institute of International Studies). Geoff has held prior positions with the Council on Foreign Relations, Foreign Policy, and Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service. Geoff is co-editor with Ken Conca of Environmental Peacemaking and Green Planet Blues: Critical Perspectives on Global Environmental Politics (5th edition). He was a lead author for the 5th assessment of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC Working Group II, Chapter 12), and member of the UN Environment Programme's Expert Advisory Group on Environment, Conflict, and Peacebuilding. He currently chairs the Ohio University Kennedy/Frontiers in Science Lecture Committee and serves on the editorial advisory board of the Ohio University Press.  He holds an AB in political science from Duke University and a PhD in government and politics from the University of Maryland.

Areas of Research: Energy, Land, Policy, Water

James Dyer, Ph.D. (Geography, University of Georgia)



Dyer is a professor in the Department of Geography. His research focuses on North American forests, especially in the eastern United States.  As a biogeographer, he is interested in the patterns that emerge from the interactions of the physical environment, biotic processes, and disturbance.  Incorporating field work, spatial modeling, and geographic information science techniques,  he is especially concerned with the role of humans in altering “natural” templates, and the implications for such change on biotic communities.

Areas of Research: Land, Water

R. Patrick Hassett, Ph.D. (Oceanography, University of Washington)


Hassett is an associate professor in the Department of Biological Sciences. His research interests include: plankton physiological ecology, focusing in particular on the nutritional ecology of marine and freshwater copepods and cladocerans. His past research has included effects of toxic algae on copepod physiology, and more recently the role of dietary sterol limitation in copepods and cladocerans.

Areas of Research: Water, Data

Kelly S. Johnson, Ph.D. (Entomology, Michigan State University)


Johnson is an associate professor of biological sciences. Her research interests include: environmental toxicology, insect physiological ecology, and plant-herbivore interactions. Johnson's current research revolves around understanding the responses of aquatic macroinvertebrates to acid mine drainage, improving bioassessment tools for headwater and wadeable streams, and explaining patterns of ecological recovery of impaired streams and rivers. Much of the work is in collaboration with the Appalachian Watershed Research Group and has been funded by the U.S. EPA (STAR) program, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Department of Energy and the American Electric Power foundation. She also has interests in improving science, technology and math education in the region, and has participated in several K-12 projects supported by the Ohio Board of Regents and the National Science Foundation. Johnson provides training for the MAIS biological assessment protocol, organizes twice-annual Ohio River sampling excursions for high school classrooms as part of the Boat of Knowledge project, and teaches courses in field entomology, animal physiology, and aquatic biology.

Areas of Research: Water

Natalie Kruse, Ph.D. (Civil Engineering and Geosciences, Newcastle University)


Kruse is an assistant professor of environmental studies at the Voinovich School. She has worked on projects studying post-mining and post-industrial pollution for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Mineral Resources Management, the U.S. Department of Energy, the UK Coal Authority, Coal India, and many local watershed groups. Her research interests include prediction, characterization and mitigation of mining and industrial pollution.

Areas of Research: Water, Land, Data

Sarah Landers, M.C.R.P. (City and Regional Planning, The Ohio State University)


Landers is an environmental specialist at the Voinovich School. She writes watershed plans and conducts chemical and biological water quality monitoring. Her background is in environmental planning and management and she gained experience in acid mine drainage (AMD) treatment and monitoring while serving as the Raccoon Creek Water Quality Specialist. Landers continues to maintain AMD treatment projects, collect water quality data, and analyze data in the Raccoon Creek Watershed. She also trains student researchers and assists them with designing study plans, field data collection, and data interpretation. Her research interests include AMD project performance optimization, storm water management, and exploring strategies for managing other non-point sources of water pollution throughout the coal-bearing region of Ohio.

Areas of Research: Water

Eung Seok Lee, Ph.D. (Hydrogeology, Indiana University)


Lee is an assistant professor in the Department of Geological Sciences. His research interests include: KMnO4 treatment of DNAPLs in groundwater, especially large, dilute, or deep plumes; smart green technologies for best management of nonpoint source pollution; acid-mine drainage; flow and geochemical evolution of water in karst terrain; isotope hydrology; environmental controlled-release system; and hydrologic modeling.

Areas of Research: Water

Sunggyu "KB" Lee, Ph.D. (Case Western Reserve University)


Lee is the director of the Sustainable Energy and Advanced Materials Laboratory, and since September 2010, he has held the positions of Russ Ohio Research Scholar in Syngas Utilization and professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering. He worked previously at the University of Akron, the University of Missouri-Columbia and the Missouri University of Science and Technology. Lee is the recipient of numerous awards, has authored, edited and published countless publications, and received research grants for more than 100 projects.  He has received 31 U.S. patents and over 80 international patents. His research specialties are in the areas of transportation and alternative fuels, advanced coal technology, remediation of contaminated soil, treatment of wastewater and drinking water, chemical process engineering and design, advanced supercritical fluid technology, and polymer synthesis and processing.

Areas of Research: Energy, Water, Land

Dina L. Lopez, Ph.D. (Geology, Louisiana State University)



Lopez is a professor and chair of the Department of Geological Sciences. Her research interests include the geochemistry and hydrogeology of geothermal systems, including diffuse soil degassing and heat flow studies. Her areas of research are in Central America, Mexico, Colombia, Brasil, and in Spain (Canary Islands and Galicia). She is also interested in environmental problems associated with mining and resource exploitation. In Ohio, she investigates the chemistry, fluid flow and mass transfer associated with acid mine drainage from coal mines, as well as in arsenic pollution.

Areas of Research: Energy, Water, Geochemistry, Hydrogeology

Amy Mackey, (Wildlife and Fish Conservation and Management, University of Rio Grande)


Mackey is the Raccoon Creek Watershed Coordinator at the Voinovich School. She has a background in fish and wildlife management and worked several related jobs before coming to the Voinovich School. Among these was a natural resources management internship with Geauga Park Districts, where she learned to conduct primary headwaters assessments, and a position doing fish sampling for Midwest Biodiversity Institute, where she learned to sample fish in streams.

Areas of Research: Water, Data

Scott Miller, M.S. (Environmental Studies, Ohio University)


Miller is associate dean of industry partnerships at the Russ College of Engineering and Technology. Previously with the Voinovich School, he worked with many stakeholders to shape and implement programs to elevate and enhance Ohio University’s research. Miller was named a 2010 National Energy Executive with the US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado; was board chair for the University Clean Energy Alliance of Ohio; and is the principle program manager for the State of Ohio’s Climate Change Action Plan in partnership with The Ohio State University.

Areas of Research: Energy, Land, Water, Policy, Air, Data, Shale

R. Guy Riefler, Ph.D. (Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Connecticut)


Riefler is an assistant professor in the Department of Civil Engineering. His research interests include: the biodegradation of TNT and other nitroaromatic compounds; acid mine drainage treatment; iron nanoparticles for the cleanup of groundwater pollution; phytoremediation; sediment transport in streams; the use of molecular tools to identify bacterial communities in the environment; and the cultivation of algae for biofuels.

Areas of Research: Water

Gregory S. Springer, Ph.D. (Geology, Colorado State University)


Springer is an associate professor in the Department of Geological Sciences. Springer researches the changing state of human-impacted rivers, particularly the effects of changes in water and sediment regimes, with implications for river management and regulation. He studies headwater streams on the western margin of the Appalachian Mountains, in particular how basin size influences channel type and morphology for different rock types. Springer is currently working on an EPA-funded project focused on stream health in southeastern Ohio.

Areas of Research: Water, Land, Data

Jason P. Trembly, Ph.D.


Trembly joined Ohio University in 2011 after serving as team leader for syngas and CO2 conversion at RTI International’s Energy Technology Unit. A graduate faculty member in the Departments of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and Mechanical Engineering, he currently directs the Russ College’s Institute for Sustainable Energy and the Environment. Trembly’s research focuses on process intensification to increase sustainability in the energy and environmental spaces. His research group utilizes the combination of process modeling with material/process development to effectively address key regional, state, and national needs. Specific areas of interest include syngas conversion, natural gas/NGLs conversion, wastewater treatment, nutrient recovery, high temperature electrochemical systems, and techno-economic studies. He has been PI for more than $12 million in sponsored research, primarily for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and has a citation index more than 600. He completed his graduate studies as an ORISE Fellow at the U.S. DOE’s National Energy Technology.

Areas of Research: Energy, Shale, Water

Morgan L. Vis, Ph.D. (Phycology, Memorial University of Newfoundland)


Vis is a professor of phycology in the Department of Environmental and Plant Biology. Her research interests include: freshwater algal ecology and evolution; systematics and biogeography of freshwater red algae; and the effects of acid mine drainage on stream algal communities. She collaborates with a team of researchers studying streams in southeastern Ohio to better understand efficacy of remediation strategies. She also works with the group of engineers at OU’s Institute for Sustainable Energy and the Environment on photobioreactor design, CO2 mitigation technology, and other devices needed to utilize algae as a next generation fuel.

Areas of Research: Water, Energy, Land

Matthew M. White, Ph.D. (Evolutionary Biology, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University)



White is a Professor and Department Chair in the Department of Biological Sciences. He has research interests in phylogeography, fisheries genetics and conservation genetics of freshwater fishes. White measures variation in mitochondrial and microsatellite DNA sequences and identifies the historical and ecological influences on the distribution of genetic variation. His studies include: stock structure in Ohio River walleye; population genetics, systematics, and molecular evolution of brook lampreys; and conservation genetics.

Areas of Research: Water, Data

Michael Zimmer, J.D. (University of Baltimore School of Law)


In his more than 35 years of legal service, Michael Zimmer has advised domestic and international energy companies, utilities, manufacturing companies and state and local governments regarding a range of energy issues related to fuels, financing, efficiency, corporate sustainability, product analysis, renewable energy project development , microgrids, and more. Mr. Zimmer also has extensive experience working with business groups on understanding changes in energy and environmental policies and regulations, capital formation and project financing, rate design and incentives,  and advanced energy technology issues. He is regularly invited to testify before congressional committees, federal departments and agencies, and state commissions and agencies on electric energy, renewable energy, natural gas and energy tax proposals. He has served on prestigious committees, advisory boards or Boards of Directors for several energy and clean tech companies and national trade groups. His recent work has focused on energy and environmental issues in Ohio, Michigan, California, New Jersey, Virginia, Maryland and Rhode Island for the manufacturing, buildings and commercial sectors. He holds a J.D. from University of Baltimore School of Law. For additional detail, click here.

Areas of Research: Air, Water, Energy, Policy, Advanced Energy Technologies, Microgrids, Industrial Energy