Profiles of some of UofL's diverse population of sustainability researchers.
UofL Sustainability Scholars Roundtable
All UofL faculty, staff, and graduate students engaged in research related to sustainability are encouraged to join us for an on-going series of Sustainability Scholars Roundtables. We gather several times a year to share research interests, goals, and projects; hear from external renowned scholars; have roundtable discussions about sustainability research; and discuss specific sustainability topics of common interest. In spring 2013 our focus is on the concept of "resilience" -- what is it? how do we understand, measure, analyze, and consider it? how is it similar to or different from sustainability? how can concepts of resilience aid sustainability? etc. Other topics will be developed for the future.
In Spring 2013, Roundtable participants selected the following topics for working groups that we will form to facilitate cross-disciplinary collaboration and identification of possible research funding opportunities:
- Agro-food Systems
- Climate Change Adaptation
- Communities Under Stress and Resilient Communities
- Renewable Energy
- Resilient Human Development
- Social Justice
- Water Resources
Scholars are, of course, also encouraged to form informal working groups or collaborations with others who might be working on a particular topic not listed above.
The long-term goals of this initiative are to:
- Develop awareness of sustainability research at UofL;
- Develop networks of scholars to enhance collaboration and sharing of ideas;
- Enhance research grant capacity & opportunities through interdisciplinary proposals;
- Improve & increase sustainability-related research at UofL.
Sustainability Scholar Profiles
- Suraj M. Alexander,
Professor, Department of Industrial Engineering, Speed School of Engineering
Suraj Alexander’s interest lies in developing mathematical and simulation models for policy analysis, and the design of sustainable systems. Simulation modeling, in particular, facilitates the representations of complex dynamic interrelationships, and interactions that involve long time delays and nonlinear responses, which are common in the study of policy impacts on ecosystems. He is a member of the Green Threads Group at the UofL that promotes sustainability across the curriculum. He currently teaches a course for graduate engineers titled, “Modeling for Sustainable Systems Design”. He was part of the Bingham Fellows Class of 2010 that initiated activities to inspire a “greener” Louisville. He is Fellow of the Institute of Industrial Engineers and the American Society for Quality.
Boehl Chair in Property and Land Use
Brandeis School of Law; Department of Urban & Public Affairs
Chair, Center for Land Use & Environmental Responsibility
Tony Arnold’s work is at the intersection of land use, water, property, and the environment. Much of his broadly interdisciplinary work draws on panarchy and resilience scholarship to study the evolution of legal institutions in their complex, adaptive, multiscalar, and dynamic interrelationships with ecosystems and social systems. Recently his attention to the sustainability of our uses of land and water has focused on concepts of “adaptive law” and poly-resilience: the resilience of multiple ecosystems and biotic communities, the resilience of social systems and institutions, and the resilience of communities (including environmental justice, deliberative democracy, and community adaptive capacity). He is currently completing the first Environmental Sustainability Law and Policy textbook (co-authored) and writing a book on the emergence, evolution, and impact of watershed institutions in the U.S. He has recently been elected to the Board of Trustees of The Nature Conservancy of Kentucky, which provides opportunities for coordination between academic research and on-the-ground conservation.
- Russell Barnett, M.U.P.
Director, Kentucky Institute for the Environment and Sustainable Development
Office of the Executive Vice President for Research and Innovation
Russell Barnett is the Director of KIESD, an interdisciplinary institute that conducts research and applied scholarship, teaching and educational outreach, and public service on issues of the environment, its protection, and sustainable development. His work covers a wide range of sustainability issues including water and air quality, environmental justice, green infrastructure, renewable energy, local foods, and waste management. His air toxics laboratory has collected air toxic data in Louisville since 1998. Recently his attention has focused on behavior change necessary to address sustainability issues. He has taught courses in environmental policy, public health, renewable energy, global environmental issues, and mindfulness and sustainability. He is the co-editor of the Institute’s journal, Sustain, a semiannual journal on sustainability issues. He is also a founding steering committee member of the Partnership for a Green City, a collaborative initiative of the University, Louisville Metro, Jefferson County Public Schools, and Jefferson Community and Technical College focused on making each of these public entities operate in a sustainable manner.
- John Bucher
MUP Candidate, Department of Urban & Public Affairs
Graduate Research Assistant, Center for Hazards Research and Policy Development
John’s work and research is related to community recovery and resiliency planning, both pre- and post-disaster. With a special interest in sustainability and community development, John is focused on community planning for sustainability and resilience whether in a disaster context or in a community economic development context. John has an interest in researching best practices and developing methods for assessing success in planning for community sustainability and resilience.
- Nathan Bush
MUP Candidate, Department of Urban & Public Affairs
Graduate Research Assistant, Center for Hazards Research and Policy Development
Nathan Bush’s research focuses on the intersection of human development patterns with sustainable economic development practices, especially in the presence of natural and man-made disasters. Disasters often exert extreme impacts on social and economic systems. Even with the enormous impact, there is little research on the connection between long-term economic development as it intersects with natural hazards and urban planning. There is a need for additional research to fill in the gaps in the literature on this topic, especially where planners are involved in contentions of individual and collective property rights. His research interest are in economic development in planning; risk perception, choice architecture, and social vulnerability; coastal land use policy, climate change and long-term development, natural hazards and disasters, and human migration. Nathan is pursuing continued academic work and is in the process of applying to PhD program in urban and public affairs.
- Margaret M. Carreiro, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Biology Dept.
Director, Environmental Science Center, KIESD
Margaret Carreiro's broad research interests are in the fields of Urban and Suburban Ecology, Ecosystem Ecology, Soil Ecology, and Restoration Ecology. Most of her research is focused on understanding how urban environments (the built environment, people) interact with the natural and semi-natural components of cities and suburbs. This provides an opportunity to explore the impacts of many of the same factors that are affecting biodiversity and ecosystem processes at the global scale. Examples include studying the effects of atmospheric nitrogen deposition, invasive species, habitat fragmentation, restoration management and socio-cultural legacies in affecting plant and soil communities and ecosystem processes. While she and her students perform manipulative, comparative and urban-rural gradient studies in park woodlands, riparian areas, highway verges, and residential areas, they also take a broader landscape ecology and ecosystem services approach to better address improving quality of life and human exchanges with nature in urban environments. Her most recent research project, funded by the EPA and in partnership with Louisville Olmsted Parks Conservancy, has been to understand the impacts of invasive shrub honeysuckle and its removal by management on plant communities, soil processes and erosion in the woodlands of Cherokee Park. She also views education and outreach activities as a vital civic role for scientists, and is particularly interested in communicating scientific research findings to environmental managers, educators, and the public in order to improve our collective understanding of the value of natural “capital” and the contribution of nature’s ecological services to societal sustainability and resiliency to environmental perturbations.
- Joseph G. D’Ambrosio, Ph.D., J.D.
Program Manager/Adjunct Assistant Professor, Kent School of Social Work
Dr. D’Ambrosio’s work and community based research is focused on sustainable health initiatives that promote livable intergenerational aging communities where people are able to age in place. His interest is in creating optimal health by intersecting workforce, infrastructure, funding, self-governance, management and community leadership.
Currently, he serves as program manager on a 2.5 million CDC grant that was used to develop the KIPDA Rural Diabetes Coalition with community partners in Henry, Shelby and Bullitt Counties. The coalition works toward preventing complications from Type 2 diabetes by improving community resources available to adults with diabetes. He is also working on a project focused on low income Latino families with diabetes and the development of healthy eating habits and supportive environments through community building and community action. Dr. D’Ambrosio is also a licensed marriage and family therapist. He has presented numerous peer reviewed presentations at national conferences and has co-authored a number of articles on community engagement related to health initiatives. His interest is in uncovering individual strength and resilience that fosters social sustainability through the lens of compassion and other-regarding love.
A. DeCaro, Ph.D.
Affiliate, Center for Land Use & Environmental Responsibility
Lecturer, Department of Psychological & Brain Sciences
Post-doctoral Researcher, Vincent & Elinor Ostrom Workshop in Political Theory & Policy Analysis, Indiana University
Daniel DeCaro is an interdisciplinary social scientist, with a background in social cognition (cognitive and social psychology) and an applied interest in the conditions that promote the social sustainability of environmental institutions. Daniel has expertise in both laboratory and field-based research in the domain of human motivation and decision-making. He is especially interested in the basic psychological processes of democracy, and has worked with scholars from many fields (e.g., biology, political science, anthropology, and psychological science) to develop an interdisciplinary framework to examine how public participation in environmental decision making influences critical outcomes in environmental management. His recent work with Nobelist Elinor Ostrom examines how members of a community come together to successfully manage common-pool natural resources (e.g., forest systems, watersheds). This work also extends Ostrom’s research on linked social-ecological systems, seeking to identify which specific forms of public participation are best suited to particular social/environmental contexts and how those solutions might evolve over time. Daniel teaches Environmental Psychology at the University of Louisville.
- Lee Alan Dugatkin, Ph.D.
Professor and Distinguished University Scholar, Department of Biology.
Dr. Lee Dugatkin’s main research interests are the evolution of social behavior and the history of science. He is currently studying the evolution of cooperation, the evolution of aggression, the interaction between genetic and cultural evolution, the evolution of antibiotic resistance, the evolution of senescence and the evolution of risk-taking behavior. Dr. Dugatkin’s interests in sustainability focus on the role of sustainability in the study of animal behavior and evolution, and sustainability from a history of science perspective. Dr. Dugatkin is the author of over 150 articles on evolution and behavior in such journals as Nature, The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and The Proceedings of The Royal Society of London. He has published three books on the evolution of cooperation: Cooperation among Animals: An Evolutionary Perspective, Oxford University Press, 1997. Cheating Monkeys and Citizen Bees, The Free Press, 1999. The Altruism Equation: Seven Scientists Search for the Origins of Goodness, Princeton University Press, 2006. Dr. Dugatkin is the author of two textbooks: 1) Principles of Animal Behavior (W.W. Norton, 1st edition, 2004, second edition, 2009, 3rd edition, April 2013). 2) Along with coauthor, Carl Bergstrom, a new textbook, Evolution (WW Norton, 2012). Dr. Dugatkin is also author of Mr. Jefferson and the Giant Moose (The University of Chicago Press,2009) and his latest trade book is The Prince of Evolution (2011).
Associate Professor, Biology Dept.
Sarah Emery is broadly interested in biodiversity and the relationships between plants and soil biota, especially in a changing climate. Her current work focuses on understanding the potential effects that climate change may have on populations of the ecosystem foundational species, American Beach Grass (Ammophila breviligulata) of Great Lakes sand dunes, and the capability of fungal symbionts to mediate these changes. Her lab is also currently researching the effects of prescribed fire on population dynamics of the invasive plant, Japanese Stilt Grass (Microstegium vimineum) in Eastern forests. A third major project focuses on understanding how organic management alters soil mycorrhizal fungi communities in row crop agricultural systems. Her related interests include grassland restoration, ecosystem resistance and resilience to disturbance and climate change, biofuels production, and the management of exotic invasive species. Her research has been funded by NSF, US Forest Service, and the Ceres Trust and includes collaborations with many land management agencies, including the Nature Conservancy in Michigan, the National Park Service, and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.
- Anna C. Faul, Ph.D.
Professor, Associate Dean Academic Affairs, Kent School of Social Work
Hartford Faculty Scholar
Dr. Faul’s work has been based in community-based participatory projects that are focused on sustainable health initiatives. She is promoting livable intergenerational aging communities where people are able to age in place. Her interest is in creating optimal health by intersecting workforce, infrastructure, funding, self-governance, management and community leadership. In the 1990’s, while still working in South Africa, she developed a community-based alcohol and drug abuse prevention program in a poor neighborhood in South Africa with the active participation from community leaders and grassroots actions executed by community members. She also developed a crisis intervention program for rape victims in South Africa through strong community activation and leadership development. Since 2000, she continued her sustainable health initiatives in Kentucky with the Geriatric Evaluation and Self-Management Services project, a HRSA funded community-based assessment of community dwelling older adults and implementation of different support strategies promoting aging in place. She then received a 2.5 million CDC grant that was used to develop the KIPDA Rural Diabetes Coalition with community partners in Henry, Shelby and Bullitt Counties. The coalition works toward preventing complications from Type 2 diabetes by improving community resources available to adults with diabetes. She is also working on a project focused on low income Latino families with diabetes and the development of healthy eating habits and supportive environments through community building and community action. She has presented numerous peer reviewed presentations at national conferences and has authored many articles on community engagement related to health initiatives. Her interests remain centered on social sustainability that promotes cohesion of society and individuals working toward common goals.
J.D./ M.U.P. candidate
Graduate Research Assistant, Center for Environmental Policy and Management.
Ryan Fenwick is a 2014 candidate for a dual degree in Law and Urban Planning. Ryan is a GRA at the Center for Environmental Policy and Management where he is part of a water infrastructure team providing technical assistance to Sustainable Community Grant recipients. His primary research interests are in active transportation, local food systems, and local sustainable policy.
- Reggie Ferreira, ABD
Adjunct Faculty Kent School of Social Work
Graduate Research Assistant, Center for Hazards Research and Policy Development
Reggie J. Ferreira is a PhD candidate at the Kent School of Social Work, with an expected completion in the Spring of 2013. Reggie teaches part-time courses in evidence based practice, research and disaster resilience practices at the Kent School of Social Work. His dissertation focus is a multilevel longitudinal design, set to determine the role community disaster resilience has on individual vulnerability of Louisiana residents from 2004-2010. Reggie has gained international experience having worked in Africa, Europe and currently the United States. His past experiences include disaster risk reduction practices in underserved communities in Africa. Currently Reggie is working on the development of the Kentucky Community Resiliency Initiative for Kentucky Emergency Management. Research interests are Community Disaster Resilience, Social Vulnerability, Systems, Hazards, Social Capital and Pet Loss and Pet Evacuations. Reggie is to join Tulane University as faculty in the Fall of 2013. He will be working closely with the Disaster Resilience Leadership Academy in fostering resiliency practices across the World.
- Chris Foreman, Ph.D.
Post Doctoral Scholar, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Speed School of Engineering
Chris Foreman performs research in renewable energy and power systems including processes, novel methods of control, energy efficiency, and intelligent power management. He also teaches courses in renewable power, intelligent power grids, and industrial control systems in the Department of Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and has been in this department for four years. He has been an investigator on several grants, as well as government and industrial contracts, and has mentored many student projects related to power and energy. Prior to his academic career, he has over 15 years of industry experience primarily in power generation, transmission, and distribution – but also process control in other industries. He has been the lead engineer on many industrial projects for process optimization, efficiency enhancements, and emissions reduction. Other areas that Chris Foreman has researched include cyber-security systems, critical infrastructure, nano/micro-fabrication, and vehicular systems, particularly electric vehicle drivetrains. One of his key strengths is to add industrial experience and expertise to projects in order to broaden the appeal of new projects to grant agencies and industrial partners.
PhD student, Department of Urban and Public Affairs
Chad Frederick is working under a University Fellowship towards his PhD in Urban and Public Affairs in the Urban Planning and Sustainable Development track. He arrived at the University of Louisville after completing his Masters degree in Urban and Environmental Planning at Arizona State University. There he specialized in planning pedagogy in education for sustainable development. His thesis was titled “Curriculum Improvement in Education for Sustainable Development: Measuring Learning Outcomes in an Introductory Urban Planning Course.” Chad’s primary academic interest is the structure of urban education and its relationship to governmental institutions as a window into the reproduction of marginalization. He is currently working on adapting resilience theory and panarchy into a framework for the study of poverty. Other interests include the evolution of thought, beliefs, attitudes, and values; holistic thinking; network theory; and bioregionalism.
- Per G. Fredriksson, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Economics, College of Business
Gilbert F. White Fellow, Resources for the Future, Washington, DC
Per Fredriksson’s research focuses on the institutional, political and economic determinants of environmental policy outcomes. He has examined the effects of lobbying, corruption, trade liberalization, democracy, collective action, political instability, federalism, electoral and governance systems, party discipline, party affiliation, electoral accountability and gender on environmental policy outcomes, including on pollution taxes, abatement subsidies, UNFCCC and Kyoto Protocol ratification, energy efficiency, refunded emissions payments, and pollution-control technology investments. He has also studied the pollution haven hypothesis and the race-to-the-bottom hypothesis. He has served on the editorial council of the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management. He previously worked at the Environment Department at the World Bank. Current interests include U.S. environmental federalism, and the effects of democracy and various political institutions on environmental policy outcomes. During the 2012-13 academic year he is the Gilbert F. White Fellow at Resources for the Future (RFF) in Washington, DC.
- Brent Fryrear, M.A.
Brent is the director of the Partnership for a Green City, a sustainability collaboration of UofL, Jefferson County Public Schools, Jefferson Community & Technical College and Louisville Metro government. As public partners, we want to be good stewards of the environment, society and taxpayer’s dollars. This provides robust opportunities for research and demonstration projects across a variety of areas, including energy use, green infrastructure, transportation, waste, purchasing, engaging students and behavior change. Brent has his MA in Higher Education Administration and is working toward his PhD in Educational Leadership and Organizational Development in the College of Education and Human Development. His dissertation interest is Sustainability Leadership in Higher Education: is it incremental or is it transformational? A portion of his research examines the level(s) at which leadership originates. He is also working on a project looking at zero waste in higher education as a function of sustainability. What are the best practices in higher education, what are our aspirational benchmarks doing and what would it take for UofL to move toward zero waste?
- Jacob F. Giesecke,
J.D. Candidate, Brandeis School of Law
Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Animal and Environmental Law
Jacob Giesecke is pursuing his J.D. while concentrating on environmental law and business affairs. He joined the Journal of Animal and Environmental Law as a member in 2011 and became the Editor-in-Chief starting in April of 2012. He holds his B.A. in Religion with minors in psychology and history from Georgetown College, KY, and a Masters in Theology from Oxford University. Jacob recently completed his journal note topic, Setting the Pace: Corporations and Businesses Lead the Way Toward Regulating and Enforcing Climate and Energy Standards, which will be published this Winter. Prior to attending law school, Jacob worked in procurement and marketing intelligence for Oxfam GB. He is interested in corporate responsibility, corporate philanthropy, stakeholder theory, and the connection between corporate profits, social advancement, and competition as drivers for policy change.
- John I. “Hans” Gilderbloom, Ph.D.
Professor, Urban and Public Affairs
Director, Center for Sustainable Urban Neighborhoods
Dr. Gilderbloom is a core faculty member of the Planning Program, which recently ranked among the top 25 best programs in the country. In an international poll of thousands of urbanists, planners and architects, Prof. Gilderbloom was ranked one of the “top 100 urban thinkers in the world.” Since earning his Ph.D., Gilderbloom's research on urban issues has appeared in nearly 40 peer-reviewed journals, 27 chapters in edited books, 11 monographs and 31 opinion pieces in newspapers and magazines. He has written or edited five books. His book Rethinking Rental Housing, was called "The most significant piece on housing policy written in the last 40 years" by the Journal of the American Planning Association. Gilderbloom’s opinion pieces appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times and USA Today Magazine. The New York Times ran a Sunday feature of his work rebuilding and making green, poor urban communities and a smaller version of his “painted lady,” a home that he has restored. He is busy writing a new book with Wesley Meares, Urban Revolution: Sustainable Neighborhoods and Smart Economics. He advises "green developers" both in Kentucky and several other states on locating, designing and planning housing. These developments have a value of over $100 million dollars He has won numerous national awards including the Sierra Club for best practices.
- Venkata D. Gullapalli, M.Sc.
PhD Candidate, Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, J.B. Speed School of Engineering
Venkata is pursuing his PhD in Civil and Environmental Engineering Dept. Re-joined the Course in Fall 2010, and now working as a Graduate Teaching Assistant. He had a Bachelor of Technology in Civil Engineering from Acharya Nagarjuna University, India and Master of Science Degree in Civil Engineering from University of Louisville. Venkata is currently working under the guidance of Dr. Mark N. French on disinfection of water using UV-radiation from Sun. As a Graduate Student, he worked as Student research assistant and worked on, “Reuse of treated filter wash water as source of flow augmentation of Beargrass Creek”, a collaborative project of LWC, MSD and CIR. After graduating with MS degree worked as Security systems Engineer and before coming back to school for PhD, worked as a grading engineer for grading the suggestions that are submitted to clean up the oil spill and closing the well on Gulf of Mexico during the BP oil Spill. Interests include green engineering concepts, non-chemical water disinfection concepts.
- Lauren C. Heberle, Ph.D.
Associate Director of the Center for Environmental Policy and Management
Director of the Environmental Finance Center Serving EPA Region 4
Assistant Professor of Sociology
Lauren Heberle teaches environmental and social policy courses. Her expertise is in community participation in environmental decision making. Her areas of research include urban redevelopment, environmental policy, environmental justice, and sustainable development. She serves as a member of or expert witness to a variety of local and federal task forces and committees and is PI on a variety of federal and local technical assistance grants.
- David W. Hein, Ph.D.
Peter K. Knoefel Endowed Chair of Pharmacology
Professor and Chair, Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology
Associate University Provost for Strategic Planning
Distinguished University Scholar
David Hein’s research focuses on molecular epidemiology of cancer susceptibility, pharmacogenetics, genomics, personalized medicine, and functional genomics. His research in molecular epidemiology identifies individuals genetically susceptible to the development of cancer from environmental and occupational chemicals in order to focus treatment and prevention public health strategies on those at greatest risk. His research in pharmacogenetics/genomics and personalized medicine improves our understanding of the genetic causes for drug failure and/or drug toxicity in order to optimize clinical drug therapy for each individual patient. His research in functional genomics improves understanding of the mechanistic and clinical consequences of genetic variation in the biotransformation of carcinogens and drugs. He serves as director of funded training programs in environmental health sciences and cancer for pre-doctoral, post-doctoral, undergraduate and professional students.
Professor, Department of Geography and Geosciences
Dave Howarth teaches courses in climate science, meteorology and hydrology and statistics. His research interests are in short term climate change and the impact of that climate change on precipitation. He also has an interest in the urban heat island of Louisville and is working with two undergraduate students to identify how that heat island is evolving as the city of Louisville grows. Another undergraduate is helping to analyze changes in Ohio River Basin hydrometeorology and how those changes impact future predictions.
- R. Josh Human, M.U.P.
Director, Center for Hazards Research and Policy Development
Department of Urban and Public Affairs
R. Josh Human is the Director for the Center for Hazards Research and Policy Development, a research unit that advances community resilience by connecting research to practice. Since arriving at the Center in 2003 he has managed several million dollars of Hazard Planning research projects ranging across multiple disciplines. Mr. Human has had the unique opportunity of being the author of State (Enhanced), Local and University Hazard Mitigation Plans. Several of his plans and processes have been recognized by FEMA as best practice examples and models. He is an advocate of the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) within the world of planning. Mr. Human has giving many speeches on the use of GIS and hazard planning and has continued to promote the use of GIS through all the projects he completes. He has been published several times and is recognized as one of the leading experts in the hazard research field. He is a founding member, past chair and current board member of the Kentucky Association of Mitigation Managers (KAMM) which is the state chapter of the Association of State Floodplain Managers. Including his duties at the Center, he owns his own planning company, RJH Planning LLC. that completes small scale hazard planning projects. His research interests include the Resiliency, Emergency Management Life Cycle, Homeland Security, and GIS, Regional Planning and the links between GIS technology and hazard research. His educational background was achieved in geography and regional planning from the University of Kentucky and the University of Tennessee.
- Andrea Pompei Lacy, M.U.P., M.P.A.
Project Manager, Center for Hazards Research and Policy Development
Department of Urban and Public Affairs
Andrea Pompei currently serves as Project Manager for the Center for Hazards Research & Policy Development, a research unit that advances community resilience by connecting research to practice. During Andrea’s four years with the Center, she has led the development of local multi-hazard mitigation plans in accordance with the FEMA Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000. For a pandemic planning and preparedness program through the Department of Homeland Security, she led the development of community preparedness planning guidance for pandemic. She has also participated as a technical partner for the HUD Sustainable Community Capacity Building grant on the water infrastructure team. Lastly, through the Kentucky Division of Emergency Management, Andrea is currently assisting with the development of facilitation guidance and navigational tutorials for the soon-to-be-implemented Comprehensive Hazard Assessment & Mitigation Planning System (CHAMPS), which will streamline mitigation efforts across multiple levels (Federal-to-Local and Sector-to-Sector), ultimately creating more resilient communities, right here in Kentucky. Andrea’s professional experience, to date, is in teaching (special education) within the public school system and in hazard mitigation planning within the Commonwealth of Kentucky. She holds a Masters in Public Administration and a Masters in Urban Planning from UofL, and a B.S. in Business Administration and Spanish from the University at Albany in New York. In her spare-time, she also serves as a volunteer of the Louisville Metro Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) and Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) at UofL.
- Melinda A. Leonard, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Psychological & Brain Sciences
International Service Learning & Research: Northern Ireland Faculty Director
Melinda Leonard’s research interest focuses on social/cognitive development of children and adults from communities in conflict. Her research perspective focuses on combining multicultural peace studies and social/cognitive research to enhance personal, family, and community relations; specifically, how cross-community engagement influences the social/cognitive elements of “peace building” (i.e., resilience, prejudice reduction, forgiveness, mental health). She is currently engaged in an international collaboration with the University of Ulster, Northern Ireland. Melinda developed and is the Faculty Director of the International Service Learning & Research Program (ISL&RP): Northern Ireland for the Department of Psychological & Brain Sciences, in which pedagogy and research/service learning are combined to provide an off-campus cultural immersion experience for undergraduate students. The ISL&RP along with her course titled “Intergroup Contact and Conflict Resolution” are part of the UofL Certificate in Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution within the College of Arts & Sciences. Along with these two classes, Melinda regularly teaches Introductory Psychology, Developmental Psychology, Psychology of Learning, and Experimental Psychology. She currently serves as Faculty Advisor for the Psi Chi: International Honor Society in Psychology. Melinda is an active member of the UofL Peace, Justice, & Conflict Transformation Program (PJ&CT), Peace & Justice Studies Association (PJSA), Kentucky Psychological Association (KPA), Southeastern Psychological Association (SEPA), and Association for Psychological Science (APS).
- Lisa Markowitz, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Chair, Department of Anthropology
Lisa Markowitz is a cultural anthropologist interested in agrifood systems at multiple scales, and popular efforts to transform them. Since the 1980s she has carried out ethnographic fieldwork in Andean South America, with foci on rural livelihood, food security, and value chains. Her current Peruvian project looks at the economic implications of that country’s gastronomic boom for peasant farmers. Markowitz’s concern with farm livelihood drew her into what has become rather wide ranging activist-research with the local food movement here in Kentucky. In particular, she has written about the creation of alternative models of food distribution which improve access to high quality food across class lines, while raising producer incomes. She also teaches courses on food systems, community food security, and food movements, and chairs the A&S Committee on Food Justice. Markowitz is co-editor of U.S. Food Policy: Anthropology and Advocacy in the Public Interest (Routledge, 2012), and, most recently, guest edited the “Local Foods” issue of KIESD’s Sustain.
- W. Mark McGinley, Ph. D., PE, FASTM
Professor and Endowed Chair for Infrastructure Research, Civil and Environmental Engineering, J.B. Speed School of Engineering
Dr. McGinley is a structural engineer and building scientist with an excess of 25 years of research and forensic engineering practice in building systems. Prior to joining U of L, he served 20 years at North Carolina A & T State University in the Civil, Architectural, Agricultural and Environmental Engineering Department. He is an expert in masonry building systems, in particular, masonry building envelopes. Dr. McGinley's research has included research on the structural performance of masonry walls, water penetration experiments on envelopes and the building envelope performance of brick veneer and steel stud wall systems. He has also been involved in, multidiscipline efforts on the evaluation of the energy systems of existing buildings and demonstration projects evaluating condensing heat exchangers and thermal mass effects of night time ventilation. He has been a primary author of all seven editions of the Masonry Designers Guide. His current research foci include energy and water efficient design in the built environment. Recent research projects include “Cost Effective Energy Efficient Design for Schools”, PCM Light Weight Concrete Masonry Units for Use in Reactive Building Envelopes, Alternative Energy Efficient Designs for Single Wythe Masonry Structures and he is currently the PI of team Kentuckiana’s 2013 Solar Decathlon Team.
- Carol Norton, M.U.P., AICP
Assistant Director, Environmental Finance Center which serves EPA Region 4 and
Center for Environmental Policy and Management
Carol Norton is a certified planner with the American Planning Association and earned her Master degree in Urban Planning (MUP) from the University of Louisville and a Bachelor of General Studies (BGS) from Indiana University Southeast. Her previous work included a public sector internship on Town and Country planning in England and serving as a planning commissioner in Corydon , Indiana and Louisville , Kentucky , as well as serving on the Metro Louisville Landmarks Commission. As Assistant Director, she is currently involved in the writing, editing and distribution of practice guides throughout Region 4 – the Southeast – in an effort to increase education about environmental planning, sustainable development, water quality and community revitalization. She has worked on projects that include land use and housing inventories and affordable housing policies and practices. She has also co-authored the Kentucky Wet Growth Tools for Sustainable Development: A Handbook on Land Use and Water for Kentucky Communities with Prof. Tony Arnold and Dustin Wallen of the U of L Center for Land Use and Environmental Responsibility.
- Tommy Parker, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor Dept of Biology
Principal Investigator, Urban Wildlife Research Lab
Dr. Parker’s research interests broadly revolve around themes essential for understanding the affects of urbanization and urban areas on vertebrate species. He asks the question, “What are the habitat and landscape characteristics correlated with the synurbization (the process of becoming urbanized) of wildlife?” To answer this, he measures the population dynamics and behavioral adaptations exhibited by various species and assess the relationship of these adaptations to features of urban settings and specie’s resource requirements. This relationship is then quantified and modeled at fine (habitat) and coarse (landscape) scales with a focus on population-level dynamics, behavior, and resource availability. The overarching goal of his work is to provide policy makers, planners, and other stakeholders the necessary information to develop cities in a sustainable manner with reduced impacts to biodiversity.
- Russell Prough, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Director, Center for Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences
Russell Prough’s research program focuses on how genes that encode foreign compound metabolizing enzymes are regulated at the molecular level. The studies focus on those genes that metabolize aldehydic products of volatile organic compounds, sterols, and polychlorinated hydrocarbons. Specifically, we are addressing the regulation of these genes through action of nuclear receptors such as AhR, CAR, PXR, LXR, and FXR, as well as other transcription factors such as Nrf2 and AP-1. Many aldehyde metabolizing enzymes are regulated through action of the reactive processes of the aldehydes themselves on nuclear receptors, serving as electrophilic metabolites. The studies continue with our ongoing collaboration with Aruni Bhatnagar, Daniel Conklin, and Sanjay Srivastava in Cardiology, Department of Medicine. Currently, I am working with Matthew Cave in the Division of Gastroenterology looking at how PCBs alter intermediary metabolism through the nuclear receptors that utilize bile acids as ligands (PXR, LXR, FXR). The work over the past 30 years allows my program to assess effects of obesity on the expression and regulation of genes encoding foreign compound metabolizing enzymes. A third study is focused upon a new human gene of the 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenases that Boaz Robinzon, Hebrew University, Jerusalem, and I discovered that is expressed in human liver nuclei and microsomal protein fractions catalyzes the oxidation of glucocorticoids by NADP+. This gene is not expressed in rodents. We are expressing the gene product in E. coli and characterizing its biochemical properties, such as organelle localization in the human hepatocyte and its substrate specificity, including sterol derivatives such as 7α-hydroxy derivatives of cholesterol, dehydroepiandrosterone, and related sterols. We are also studying its expression during the obese state, in collaboration with Stephen Winters, M.D., Division of Endocrinology, Department of Medicine.
- Dorothy Rush, B.A.
J.D. Candidate 2013, Brandeis School of Law
President, Environmental Law and Land Use Society
Dorothy Rush is completing her J.D. focusing on environmental law and agricultural land-use practices. She joined Environmental Law and Land Use Society in 2010 as Vice President of the Environment and was elected President the following year. Under her leadership, ELLUS has begun hosting annual Beargrass Critical Mass Bike Rides to raise awareness about impairment of urban streams. She is also a member of the Brandeis School of Law Sustainability Committee. During her time at Brandeis, she has primarily studied the effect of agriculture on environmental practices. She currently works as an office manager at W.H. Graddy & Associates in Versailles, Kentucky.
- Elizabeth M. Shiels, ABD-Ph.D., MSSW, LCSW
Institutional Director, Ohio Valley Appalachian Region/Geriatric Education Center
Kent School of Social Work
Betty Shiels is the Institutional Director for the Ohio Valley Appalachian Region/Geriatric Education Center (OVAR/GEC), a collaborative of four universities including the University of Kentucky, University of Cincinnati, and East Tennessee State University that advances geriatric education at the university level as well as the community level. Funded activities from the Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA-DHHS) include The Kentucky Emergency Preparedness & Aging Program, a collaboration with the University of Kentucky, additionally funded by the KY Dept. for Public Health through funds from the Asst. Secretary for Preparedness & Response (ASPR) at DHHS. The KY Emergency Preparedness & Aging Program develops emergency preparedness training and training tools and facilitates training to a wide variety of organizations daily serving over 70,000 medically vulnerable seniors living in Kentucky. The EP&A program has developed the KY All-Hazards Long Term Care Emergency Response Manual which serves as a model for all 300+ long term care facilities in Kentucky and has been recognized as the best practice for long term care preparedness in the nation by ASPR. Since 2003, all nursing facilities in the state have been trained by the EP&A program as well as all publically-funded community based programs serving older persons, the KY Home Health Association, the KY Assisted Living Association and the KY Multi-Family Housing Association. The program has delivered training and professional presentations to many regional, state and national groups including the KY Public Health Association, the Governor’s Emergency Preparedness Conference, the Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program national conference, the American Society on Aging AGHE, and Leading Age national conferences. The program has developed distance learning modules, newsletters, training DVDs on the National Incident Management System (NIMS) for Long Term Care and a DVD on Sheltering Long Term Care in Catastrophic Disasters in conjunction with the U.S. Public Health Service. Betty co-authors annual webinars on emergency preparedness & aging with Stanford University, the University of Kentucky and the University of New England (UNE). In addition, she is working with the co-editors of two book chapters for Springer Publishing on emergency preparedness and aging and is co-author on the chapters with Joan Weiss (HRSA-DHHS) and geriatric researchers from Stanford University, UK, Baylor University, UNE, and the Mt. Sinai School of Medicine. She participates in partnerships with the KY Hospital Preparedness Program, the Kentucky Hospital Association, KAHCF, Leading Age KY, the KY Long Term Care Ombudsman Program and the KY Office of Inspector General, the KY Area Agencies on Aging, the KY Community Crisis and Response Board , American Red Cross, KY Division of Emergency Management and serves as a consultant/first responder to KY ESF#8. Betty is also a Board member of the National Association of Geriatric Education and the National Association of Geriatric Education Centers. Her educational background was achieved in sociology and urban planning from Trinity University and the University of Louisville Kent School of Social Work.
- David M. Simpson, PhD, AICP
Fifth Third Bank Professor of Community Development
Chair, Department of Urban and Public Affairs
At UofL since 1999, Dr. Simpson has been active in the region for planning and sustainable development issues. Dr. Simpson was a founding faculty in the creation of UofL’s Master of Urban Planning degree (the only one offered in Kentucky), and as the director of the program, led it to national accreditation in 2009. Dr. Simpson has directed the Center for Hazards Research since 2003, bringing in over $10 million dollars in external funding from NSF, FEMA, DHS, and other agencies and foundations. In 2012, Dr. Simpson was named as the Chair of the University’s Sustainability Council. His most recent efforts have been directed toward the creation of undergraduate and graduate degrees in Sustainability. In addition to technology and physical planning, Dr. Simpson’s research interests focus on the interactions of society and hazards, looking at the idea of resiliency and sustainability as a fundamental part of hazards planning and mitigation.
- Abu M. Sufiyan
PhD Candidate, Department of Urban & Public Affairs
Graduate Research Assistatn, Center for Hazards Research and Policy Development
Abu Sufiyan is pursuing his PhD in Urban and Public Affairs. He joined in Center for Hazard Research in August 2009 where he works as a Graduate Research Assistant with a focus on natural disaster, hazard mitigation and planning. He holds a B.Sc. in Civil Engineering, and a Masters in Development Studies. Currently, Abu is doing his dissertation on differential impacts of disaster on poor. Abu’s academic interests includes, Poverty and Disaster, Sustainable development, Environmental Policy and Community Disaster Resilience. He is also interested in sustainable hazard mitigation policies using land use planning tools, building codes, prediction, forecast, and warning, because coordination among local, state and federal policies is crucial for achieving the goals of sustainability.
- John W. Vick,
John’s research and practice involve community-based urban planning and design, urban policy, and community development. His perspective on sustainability includes broad participation in decision-making as essential to the development of truly sustainable and resilient communities. John current position at the Center for Environmental Policy and Management at the University of Louisville’s School of Urban and Public Affairs involves community-based urban planning, housing and environmental policy analysis, and technical assistance to communities, organizations, and governments on a variety of sustainability-related issues. As a Ph.D. candidate (ABD) in the Community Research and Action program at Vanderbilt University, his research program examines the relationship between participation, public policy, and the built environment through applied research methodologies and ecological analysis.
- Haifeng (Charlie) Zhang, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Geography & Geosciences
Charlie is a human geographer with research interests in urban and social issues such as crime, race/ethnicity, segregation, and school choice. In particular, Charlie has expertise in applying GIS and spatial statistical methods to the mapping and analysis of socioeconomic and environmental data. Charlie’s publications have appeared in a number of peer-reviewed journals such as Annals of GIS, Internet Journal of Criminology, Journal of Geography, Journal of Maps, Southeastern Geographer, Urban Geography, and International Journal of Applied Geospatial Research. He has presented papers at numerous academic and practical conferences such as the International Conference on Population Geographies, annual meetings of the Association of American Geographers (AAG), and Crime Mapping Research Conferences. Additionally, Charlie is a board member of the Ethnicity Specialty Group of AAG and serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Geography and Natural Disasters. His current research projects deal with housing foreclosures, environmental justice, and school segregation in metropolitan areas.