~ Amazon Workshop Faculty~
The cadre of impassioned and informed professionals who serve as our workshop leaders will inspire you. They are knowledgeable and eager to share the fascinating aspects of the rainforest that motivate their own personal interests.
|DR. LUNDIE SPENCE|
|MARINE AND AQUATIC BIOLOGIST; COSEE DIRECTOR, SC SEA GRANT CONSORTIUM|
|CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA|
|Dr. Lundie Spence received her Ph.D. from North Carolina State University from the School of Education. Before this she studied biology and oceanography at the undergraduate and graduate levels at Mary Baldwin College and Florida State University. After over 15 years with the NC Sea Grant College Program in Raleigh, NC, she recently joined the S.C. Sea Grant Consortium to assume the role of Director of the SouthEast Center for Ocean Science Education Excellence (COSEE). Active in the National Marine Educators Association, Dr. Spence is a well-known environmental educator and has numerous certifications, honors, and grants to her credit. Join Dr. Spence in one of her most recent innovative initiatives to develop an ongoing water quality monitoring program and river deposition study of the Amazon. You will find her enthusiasm contagious!|
|Author of The Great Kapok Tree and other books about nature for children|
|FOUNDER AND DIRECTOR OF THE CENTER FOR CHILDREN'S ENVIRONMENTAL LITERATURE|
Lynne Cherry received a B.F.A. from the Tyler School of Art and an M.A. in history from Yale University. Author of her own environmental newsletter for children, she is currently artist-in-residence at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC. Teachers and nature enthusiasts alike celebrate her best-selling book, The Great Kapok Tree. Written and illustrated by Lynne Cherry, the book effectively personalizes the story of endangered rainforests in a story with a lesson and a happy ending. Her book releases, including The Shaman's Apprentice, are distributed around the world and continue to instill in children a love of and appreciation for the natural world. While demanding ecologically sound publishing practices for her own works, she actively promotes these practices as industry standards. Her book and interest in climate change has evolved into a new nonprofit based on Young Voices on Climate Change, a film series featuring young people who are making a difference through their activism to shrink the carbon footprint of their homes, schools and communities.
|DR. STEPHEN R. MADIGOSKY|
|PROFESSOR OF BIOLOGY/ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE|
|WIDENER UNIVERSITY; CHESTER, PENNSYLVANIA|
DIRECTOR OF RESEARCH; AMAZON CONSERVATORY OF TROPICAL STUDIES (ACTS), IQUITOS, PERU
Dr. Madigosky received his undergraduate degree in Natural Resources Conservation from the University of Connecticut. He received his Masters and Doctorate degrees from Ball State University, Muncie, Indiana in Resource Conservation, Biology, and Science Education. While in Indiana, Professor Madigosky conducted research at Indiana University in the Department of Paleobotany, studying the ecological habitats of ancient environments using plant spore systematics. Dr. Madigosky currently holds a joint appointment in the Departments of Biology/Environmental Science and Center for Education at Widener University. Aspects of tropical biology and conservation have been his focus for nearly two decades. As a researcher, he has been investigating the biochemical dynamics of select compounds in tropical plants and animals. The crux of his work centers on understanding how organisms obtain chemical protection from their diets. He also has been involved in trace metal research at the Louisiana State University Center for Excellence in Cancer Research. Most recently, he has been compiling a detailed climatic profile of the forest near the ACTS. He has obtained nearly one million dollars in grants over the past decade to support his research efforts along with educational programs to increase science literacy among K-16 teachers and students.
|DR. KEN ROSENBERG|
|DIRECTOR, CONSERVATION SCIENCE PROGRAM|
|CORNELL LAB OF ORNITHOLOGY; ITHACA, NEW YORK|
Dr. Ken Rosenberg completed his Ph.D. at Louisiana State University focusing his research on the foraging behavior of tropical rainforest birds in Peru and Bolivia. While at LSU he was involved in several expeditions to remote parts of South America before completing subsequent post-doctorate study at the Smithsonian Institution. He received a B.S. at Cornell University and M.S. at Arizona State University concentrating his early work on zoology. He has been at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology since 1993, directing the Birds in Forested Landscapes Project, as well as other citizen-science projects involving thousands of backyard birders and having great potential for use as a teaching tool in the classroom. He is also a national leader in the Partners in Flight initiative, spearheading conservation efforts for neotropical migratory birds in the U.S., Mexico, and Cuba. In his current position as the Conservation Science Program Director of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Dr. Rosenberg oversees research, training, and collaboration to insure that strategies for protecting species and their habitats are rooted in sound science.
|CURATOR, INVERTEBRATES, REPTILES, & AMPHIBIANS|
|CINCINNATI ZOO & BOTANICAL GARDEN; CINCINNATI, OHIO|
Randy Morgan holds an M.S. in entomology from the University of Wisconsin. Mr. Morgan has a broad area of responsibility overseeing the Reptile and Amphibian exhibits as well as Invertebrates at the Cincinnati Zoo. Well known among zoo professionals, he has a long career and many professional contributions to research, conservation biology, education, and the development of display methods.. He maintains and breeds a diverse collection of live arthropods, predominantly insects, and a small menagerie of insectivorous vertebrates and uses these to create naturalistic public education displays at the Cincinnati Zoo. In 2003, his work managing a Leaf-Cutting Ant Colony earned the Zoo a Significant Achievement Award issued by the American Zoo and Aquarium Association. This recognition was proceeded by other awards in 1999 for Bullet Ants, in 2000 for the long-term propagation of the Peruvian Fire Stick, and two in 2001 for the long-term propagation and captive management of the Giant Water Bug. Mr. Morgan's fascination with insects is contagious! He dispels the common fears about these creatures, as he comments that insects are by far the safest and least dangerous animals to work with in the zoo. Mr. Morgan led the JASON XV team of scientists in February, 2003 during their Rainforests at the Crossroads expedition to Panama and served as a JASON X researcher in the Amazon in March, 1999.
|DR. PHIL WITTMAN|
|RAINFOREST CANOPY ECOLOGIST|
|CANOPY QUEST; ORLANDO, FLORIDA|
Dr. Phil Wittman completed his doctorate degree at the University of Florida. Based in Orlando, Florida, Dr. Wittman is a rainforest canopy ecologist and canopy walkway consultant with Canopy Quest. As an active member of Canopy Construction Associates, he completes site surveys, designs and builds platforms and walkways in forest canopies around the world. For over 20 years, he has been involved in environmental assessments, field research and collection expeditions in the jungles of the tropics ranging from South America to Australia. Of special interest is his work in the upper Amazon of Northern Peru where he was: a guest researcher on “JASON X-Amazon Rain Forest” studying the contents of the many bromeliads found in the forest canopy; part of an Earthwatch project “Amazon Katydids” describing many new species; on assignment for the CDC; and involved in field research rearing rainforest caterpillars and studying of the life cycles of Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths). Dr. Wittman can be seen in the National Geographic Society’s documentary “Rain Forests: Heroes of the High Frontier.” He was also a Research Associate with Marie Selby Botanical Gardens in Sarasota, Florida, where he was active locally in central Florida - assisting in prescribed fires with The Nature Conservancy and plant surveys with the Florida Native Plant Society and volunteering with the Sea Turtle Nest Protection Program of Canaveral National Seashore.
|DIRECTOR OF EDUCATION & COMMUNICATIONS|
|NORFOLK BOTANICAL GARDEN; NORFOLK, VIRGINIA|
Donna Krabill has a B.A. from the University of Florida in Elementary Education with additional certification in music (a professional harpist), early childhood, and emotionally handicapped education. Her Master¹s in Curriculum and Instruction, through National-Louis University focused on student field studies at the canopy walkway site at Myakka River State Park in Sarasota, Florida. During her 17 years as a classroom teacher, she was selected as one of six teachers internationally to participate in the JASON Project expedition to the Peruvian Amazon with Dr. Robert Ballard for JASON X. More recently, as Director of Education for Selby Botanical Gardens, she was widely acclaimed for an outstanding poison dart frog exhibit of nearly 100 frogs. For over 9 years at Selby, Donna shared her enthusiasm for plants through the development of curricula for school field trips, summer camps, distance learning, special events for children, and was a regular member of the Amazon Workshop faculty. She uses inspirational moments on the canopy walkway to bring vision to her current role at Norfolk Botanical Garden where she directs a staff responsible for all of the education programs, interpretation, exhibits, volunteers, public relations, marketing, and community outreach.
|DR. KEVIN J. MCGOWAN|
|CURATORIAL/SENIOR RESEARCH ASSOCIATE, SECTION OF ECOLOGY AND SYSTEMATICS|
|CORNELL UNIVERSITY; ITHACA, NEW YORK|
Dr. McGowan received a B.S. and an M.S. in zoology from Ohio State University and a Ph.D. in biology from the University of South Florida. He is curator of the Bird and Mammal Collections at Cornell University and teaches classes in specimen preparation, field-collecting methods, the relationships of birds and neotropical canopy biology and canopy access. Previously, Dr. McGowan worked as a non-game biologist for the Florida Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission and was involved in a number of independent biological studies. Although he is a broadly trained ornithologist, his main research concerns the behavioral ecology of birds, especially social behavior. He is currently studying the reproductive and social behavior of two species of crows in the Ithaca area. He is an elected member of the American Ornithologists¹ Union and former secretary of the Ornithological Societies of North America.
|DR. MARGARET LOWMAN|
|DIRECTOR, NATURE RESEARCH CENTER, NC MUSEUM OF NATURAL SCIENCES|
|RESEARCH PROFESSOR OF NATURAL SCIENCES, NC STATE UNIVERSITY; RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA|
Dr. Meg Lowman received a B.A. with honors in biology and environmental studies from Williams College, an M.S. in ecology from Aberdeen University, and a Ph.D. in botany from the University of Sydney. Dr. Lowman is a pioneer in canopy ecology, particularly in the study of herbivory and plant-insect relationships. Her research spans over 30 years in Australia, Peru, Africa, the Americas, and the South Pacific using different research techniques including ropes, walkways, hot air balloons and construction cranes and is documented on her website http://www.canopymeg.com. She has authored over 100 peer-reviewed publications, and her first book, “Life in the Treetops,” received a cover review in the New York Times Sunday Book Review.
As Director of the Nature Research Center, Dr. Lowman oversees the NC Museum of Natural Sciences' new wing – addressing its research agenda and the important mission of communicating science to the public. Her role includes supervising senior research staff; developing, directing, implementing and fundraising for all research programs of the NRC; and assisting with the integration of existing Museum programs within Center operations. She also currently serves as Vice President of the Ecological Society of America; Treasurer of the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation; Executive Director of TREE Foundation; Board of Directors for The Explorers Club; and Climate Change Adviser to Alex Sink, CFO of the Florida Cabinet. Prior, Dr. Lowman was Professor of Biology and Environmental Studies and Director of Environmental Initiatives at New College of Florida in Sarasota, Florida She also served as Director of Research and Conservation and then Chief Executive Officer of Selby Botanical Gardens. Prior to joining Selby, she was a professor in Biology and Environmental Studies at Williams College, Massachusetts where she pioneered several aspects of temperate forest canopy research and built the first canopy walkway in North America in an oak-maple forest where she and her students studied canopy insects, plants and small mammals. She co-chaired the first and second International Conferences on Forest Canopies in 1994 and 1998. Recently, she received the Achievements in Canopy Ecology award from her peers at the 5th International Canopy Conference in Bangalore, India.. Dr. Lowman was chief scientist for the JASON X expedition to the Amazon and has been involved with other rainforest expeditions sponsored by the JASON Foundation for Education.
|DR. H. BRUCE RINKER|
|SCIENCE DEPARTMENT CHAIR|
|NORTH CROSS SCHOOL, ROANOKE, VIRGINIA|
Dr. Bruce Rinker has a B.S. from Virginia Tech's College of Forestry and Wildlife Resources and a doctorate degree in environmental studies from Antioch New England Graduate School in Keene, NH. Along with serving in his current position as Science Department Chair at North Cross School, Dr. Rinker is a regular contributor to the column "Perspective" of the Roanoke Star-Sentinel and co-editor of the 2010 book release Gaia in Turmoil: Climate Change, Biodepletion, and Earth Ethics in an Age of Crisis. Prior, we worked with the Environmental Lands Division in Pinellas County, Florida, developing and implementing the long-term land management plans for county-owned environmentally sensitive properties. He was also the Director of Research & Conservation at The Marie Selby Botanical Gardens in Sarasota, Florida. He is a National Fellow of the Explorers Club, a Switzer Environmental Fellow, and a Fellow of the New York Academy of Sciences. He is a member of the board of directors for the Amazon Conservatory for Tropical Studies (ACTS). His scientific expeditions include trips to the Galápagos Islands; into the High Andes of Ecuador and Peru; the Amazon Basin of Ecuador, Brazil, and Peru; the rainforests of Puerto Rico, Cuba, Costa Rica, French Guiana, and Australia; the Congo Basin of Cameroon, West Africa; the deserts and reefs of the Middle East; and other places. He has participated twice on the French-sponsored international Radeau des Cimes mission with its colorful dirigible, treetops raft, and sled. Dr. Rinker has won numerous awards in the academic and scientific community as well as being published in various journals and periodicals.
RESEARCH & CHEMISTRY SCIENCE INSTRUCTOR
CUSHING ACADEMY; ASHBURNHAM, MASSACHUSETTS
Dr. Sponholtz earned a PH.D. in organic synthetic chemistry with an emphasis in Natural Products Chemistry from Dartmouth College, a M.S. in organic synthetic chemistry from University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and a B.S. degree in chemistry from Pfeiffer College. In addition, Dr. Sponholtz has studied natural products chemistry and has done research at the University of Hawaii. Dr. Sponholtz teaches Introductory and Advanced Placement Chemistry, while offering several other independent studies courses ranging from screenwriting to multi-dimensional nuclear magnetic resonance. His research interests include the isolation and structural determination of bioactive secondary metabolites; i.e., drug discovery, which earned him the Massachusetts Chemistry Teacher of The Year Award from the American Institute of Chemists. Dr. Sponholtz has involved his students in social entrepreneurship (see his website http://sponholtzproductions.com) creating software that assists students in visualizing atoms and molecules in 3-D to better understand bonding and hybridization theory. His afternoon research group, is exposed to various extraction techniques, chromatographic techniques (including flash, preparative, thin layer, and high pressure chromatography), and structure determination techniques as they hunt for novel, bioactive compounds. He and his students are also working with indigenous healers and Shaman located in the Peruvian rainforest to isolate novel natural products that could have potential medicinal value. Dr. Sponholtz has authored various publications in scientific journals reporting novel, facile synthetic routes to previously unreported compounds with potential applications ranging from high-energy high-density explosives to medicinal compounds. In addition to his teaching and research interests, Dr. Sponholtz has coached soccer, skiing, and tennis at Cushing Academy.
|D. C. RANDLE|
|BIOLOGY & WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT INSTRUCTOR|
|ST. FRANCIS HIGH SCHOOL; SAINT FRANCIS, MINNESOTA|
D.C. Randle has a B.S. in Biology from Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa. He has Special Education Certification from St. Cloud State University and is currently working on his Masters of Education with a science emphasis in classroom instruction at St. Marys University in Minneapolis, MN. Mr. Randle is currently on the Education Committee of the Ecological Society. Prior to his current work at St. Francis High School, Mr. Randle taught at-risk students at Crossroads School in St. Francis. He was selected, as one of six teachers internationally, to participate in the JASON V expedition to the Belize with Dr. Robert Ballard. He has held numerous board and teacher advisory positions with environmental and education organizations. He is an active fundraiser for several of the cultural exchange and assistance programs in the Amazon. Further, he has participated in ongoing herbivory and leaf-tagging research and as a Teacher Researcher with the Amazon Rainforest Workshop over the last several years.
|J. C. MEERMAN|
|DIRECTOR, BELIZE TROPICAL FOREST STUDIES|
Mr. Meerman completed an M.S. in biology and ecology at the University of Wageningen after his undergraduate work in literature at the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands. His early interest in research focused on insect-plant relationships. He moved to Belize in 1989 to manage a 20,000-acre nature reserve in the Corozal District. In 1992 he joined the Board of Directors as the scientific advisor of Slate Creek Preserve in the Cayo District and has become well known in the Belizean conservation community for his studies of biodiversity. Mr. Meerman has conducted a number of environmental impact assessments in Belize and published numerous scientific articles on European, African and Arabian zoology. He is the co-owner of Green Hills, a butterfly study and breeding center and authored the first field guide to the butterflies of Belize. See his website http://biological-diversity.info for an update on his continuing biodiversity research and studies in Belize.
|DR. LINNEA SMITH|
|INDEPENDENT PHYSICIAN IN THE AMAZON RAINFOREST|
Dr. Linnea Smith¹s medical career has taken her from a successful group practice in Wisconsin to an independent practice in the Amazon rainforest with an almost total lack of modern amenities. Her skills in internal medicine have not only benefited the local Yagua and Ribereño people, but also strengthened the relationship she shares with them. Though the people of the region have their own shaman, they have become receptive to the complementary skills of Dr. Smith's Western medicine. We will visit Dr. Smith¹s clinic during our workshop week. Check her website http://www.amazonmedicalproject.org for background.
|DR. FRANCES GATZ|
|DIRECTOR, RAINFOREST WORKSHOPS|
|ENVIRONMENTAL EXPEDITIONS; SILVER SPRING, MARYLAND|
Dr. Gatz completed her Ph.D. at Indiana University in Instructional Systems Technology. She is the creator and organizer of travel programs designed to meet the special needs of students, K-12 educators, naturalists, and healthcare professionals. She has directed the Rainforest Workshop program series since 1992. During this time she also held the position of Education Outreach Manager for Project 2061 of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and served on the 20-member Geography Planning Committee for the 1994 National Assessment of Educational Progress. Prior, while she was a partner in EcoVentures, an environmental media company, she was a co-organizer of The Ecotourism Society, an international non-profit organization designed to ensure that travel to environmentally sensitive parts of the world benefits conservation and the well being of local people.
FRANCES A. GATZ, PH.D.
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