My goal is to make a difference and have fun doing it. My depth training and experience is in landscape ecology and natural resource management, particularly as applied to agricultural, forest, and avian ecology, although I also draw strongly upon the social sciences in my work. Iowa has been home since 2003, but I spent the early part of my career studying forests in the Great Lakes region. Along with my family, I am co-owner of our diversified family farm near Eau Claire, Wisconsin.
Research Interests: I study human-landscape interactions. More specifically, my research addresses the ecological and social facets of sustainable land management through the lens of coupled human and natural systems. Several current projects address the strategic integration of perennials into agricultural landscapes to meet multifunctional societal goals. Other projects address the establishment of establishment of restoration baselines and impacts of restoration practices. I use a combination of historical investigation, field studies, modeling, and both quantitative and qualitative inquiry. While my research spans local (1-10 km2) to regional scales (10,000-100,000 km2), my focus is on informing landscape (10-10,000 km2) management. The strength of my research lies in synthesis and integration; I make use of extensive collaborative networks to bolster the disciplinary breadth and rigor of my work.
Honors: Iowa State University Early Career Award in Teaching (2007), Teaching Award of Merit from the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture (2007), Stanford University Leopold Leadership Fellow (2013), Kavli Frontiers of Science Fellow (2014), and University of Minnesota Duluth Academy of Science and Engineering Inductee (2017). I am on the editorial board of the scientific journal BioScience, a member of the “Rapid Response Team” of the Ecological Society of America, on the board of trustees of the Iowa Chapter of The Nature Conservancy, and on the board of directors of the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center and Practical Farmers of Iowa. I previously served on the editorial board for the journal, Landscape Ecology (2010-2015).