Regional Education Contacts

Paleontology is a lively area of research, and media coverage of new discoveries creates a sense of excitement about our field in students and the general public. As part of the Paleontological Society’s mission to advance the science of paleontology, we encourage paleontologists to engage the public, the media, government officials, P-16 educators and their students to promote understanding of the importance of paleontological research.

The following Paleontological Society members have volunteered to serve as regional resources for the public, the media, local and state governments, and P-16 educators and their students.  These scientists have agreed to field general questions in paleontology; each paleontologist’s more specific areas of expertise are also listed.

Please contact a resource person directly to gather basic paleontological information or solicit expert feedback on paleontological questions. Note that the views expressed by these scientists are their own, and do not necessarily reflect the official position of the Paleontological Society.

The Paleontological Society hopes that you will take advantage of this opportunity to communicate with active researchers in our field. If you have questions about this program, please contact Laurie Collins.

Researcher

Principal Topics

Bruce Runnegar

Precambrian Paleobiology, Cambrian Explosion, Ediacaran organisms, Molecular Evolution 

and the fossil record

Douglas Erwin

End Permian Mass Extinction, Recoveries from Mass Extinctions, Cambrian Radiation, 

Burgess Shale Fauna, Evolution of Molluscs

Jere H. Lipps Microfossils, Foraminifera, Science and the Media, Museum Outreach, Paleoceanography

 

 

NORTHEASTERN

In the United States: Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont. In Canada: New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Ontario east of the 89th meridian.

Mark Erickson
Chapin Professor Emeritus
Geology Department
St. Lawrence University, New York
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics:  Paleontology

Michael Knell
Assistant Professor
Department of Earth Sciences
Southern Connecticut State University
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics:  General paleontology, vertebrate paleontology, Mesozoic reptiles, paleoecology, taphonomy

Richard Laub
Curator (retired)
Geology Division
Buffalo Museum of Science, New York
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics: Ice Age paleontology, archeology and stratigraphy; mastodons, dinosaurs, eurypterids

Ronald McDowell
Senior Research Geologist 
Head of Geoscience Section
West Virginia Geological and Economic Survey 
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics: Trace fossils, bedrock mapping and environmental interpretation

Mike Meyer
Researcher and Keck Project Manager
Geophysical Laboratory
Carnegie Institution for Science, Washington, D.C.
email: [email protected]
Topics: General paleontology, geobiology, paleoecology, trace fossils, early life, development of complex and Ediacaran life, taphonomy, advanced analytical methods such as CT, SEM and RAMAN

D. Jeffrey Over
Professor
Department of Geological Sciences
State University of New York, Geneseo
email: [email protected]
Topics:  Invertebrate paleontology, micropaleontology, mass extinctions, sequence stratigraphy

Sara Pruss
Associate Professor
Department of Geosciences
Smith College, Massachusetts
email: [email protected]
Topics: Invertebrate fossils, fossil preservation, Cambrian radiation, Snowball Earth, mass extinction

Jonathan Wilson
Assistant Professor 
Department of Biology
Haverford College, Pennsylvania 
e-mail: [email protected]  
(610) 896-4217 or (626) 325-8448
Topics: Paleobotany, paleoecology, mathematical methods, evolution

 

SOUTHEASTERN

In the United States: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virgina, West Virginia, Puerto Rico. In Mexico: Campeche, Quintana Roo, Yucatán.

David Campbell
Assistant Professor 
Geology
Gardner-Webb University, North Carolina 
e-mail: [email protected] 
Topics: Invertebrates, evolution

Cynthia Crane
Director 
Aurora Fossil Museum
Aurora, North Carolina 
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics: Vertebrate paleontology, taphonomy, sedimentology

Michael Gibson
Professor
Department of Agruculture, Geosciences and Natural Resources
University of Tennessee, Martin
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics: Invertebrate paleontology, marine paleoecology and geology, geoscience education

Steven Hageman
Professor
Department of Geology
Appalachian State University, North Carolina 
e-mail: [email protected] 
Topics: Paleozoic fossils, Appalachian geology

Andrew B. Heckert
Professor
Department of Geology
Appalachian State University, North Carolina 
e-mail: [email protected]  
Topics: Triassic, vertebrate paleontology, microvertebrates, reptiles

 

NORTH CENTRAL

In the United States: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, Wisconsin. In Canada: Manitoba, Ontario west of the 89th meridian.

R.A. Davis
Professor
Biology
College of Mount St. Joseph, OH
e-mail: [email protected]
(513) 244-4699
Topics: Marine Invertebrates, Cephalopods, organic evolution, General paleontology

Rodney Feldmann
Professor Emeritus
Geology
Kent State University, OH
e-mail: [email protected]
(330) 672-2506
Topics: Marine invertebrate fossils, Antarctic paleontology, Fossil decapod crustaceans from New Zealand, Antarctica, Patagonia, Romanian, Jurassic evolutionary explosion of fossil crabs
Website

Daniel Hembree
Assistant Professor
Geological Sciences
Ohio University, OH
e-mail: [email protected]
(740) 597-1495
Topics: Trace fossils, Paleosols, Vertebrate paleontology
Website

Roy Plotnick
Professor
Earth and Environmental Sciences
University of Illinois at Chicago, IL
e-mail: [email protected]
(312) 996-2111
Topics: Paleoecology, Macroevolution, Mathematical methods, Marine invertebrates, Chicago area geology
Website

Carrie Schweitzer
Associate Professor
Geology
Kent State University, OH
e-mail: [email protected]
(330) 244-3303 or (330) 672-2505
Topics: Decapoda, Crustacea excluding Ostracoda, Marine Invertebrates, Evolution, Paleogene
Website

Alycia Stigall
Associate Professor
Geological Sciences
Ohio University, OH
e-mail: [email protected]
(740) 593-0393
Topics: Marine invertebrates, Cincinnati fossils, Mass extinction, Evolution, Biogeography
Website

Margaret Yacobucci
Associate Professor
Geology
BGSU, OH
e-mail: [email protected]
(419) 372-7982
Topics: Fossil cephalopods (ammonites), Marine invertebrate animals, Evolution, Cretaceous Period, Undergraduate science education

 

SOUTH CENTRAL

In the United States: Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Texas. In Mexico: Coahuila, Nuevo León, Tabasco, Tamaulipas, Veracruz.

Rena M. Bonem
Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies in Geology 
Department of Geosciences
Baylor University, Texas 
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics: Invertebrate paleontology, modern and ancient reefs, Texas dinosaur trackways

Joseph Frederickson
Ph.D. candidate 
Department of Biology
University of Oklahoma 
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics: Cretaceous marine and terrestrial vertebrate paleontology, terrestrial Mesozoic geology, vertebrate paleoecology, dinosaurs

G. Alex Janevski
Senior Geologist
Shell Exploration and Production Co.
New Orleans
email: [email protected]
telephone: (504) 425-6214
Topics: Invertebrate paleontology, geology, evolution, mass extinctions

Ryan Morgan
Assistant Professor 
Department of Chemistry, Geology and Physics
Tarleton State University, Texas 
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics: Invertebrate identification, burrows, dinosaur tracks, evolution, preservation, Cretaceous

 

ROCKY MOUNTAIN

In the United States: Arizona north of lat 35°N, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Wyoming. In Canada: Alberta, Saskatchewan. In Mexico: Chihuahua.

Benjamin Burger
Assistant Professor
Department of Geology
Utah State University, Vernal
email: [email protected]
Topics:  Vertebrate paleontology, fossil mammals, dinosaurs, evolutionary processes, Cenozoic-Mesozoic fossils, geology of Colorado, southern Wymoing and eastern Utah

David Elliott
Professor
School of Earth Sciences and Environmental Sustainability
Northern Arizona University
Flagstaff, Arizona
email: [email protected]
Topics:  General paleontology, vertebrate paleontology, Paleozoic jawless vertebrates

Karl Osvald
Senior Geologist 
U.S. Department of Interior/ Bureau of Land Management
Casper, Wyoming 
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics:  Vertebrate paleontology

Darrin Pagnac
Assistant Professor
Department of Geology and Geological Engineering
South Dakota School of Mines and Technology
email:  [email protected]
Topics:  Vertebrate paleontology, general paleontology, evolution, taphonomy, Great Plains and Rocky Mountain sedimentary geology

Daniel Peppe
Associate Professor
Department of Geosciences
Baylor University
email: [email protected]
Topics:  Paleobotany, paleoclimate, paleoecology, evolution, stratigraphy, paleomagnetism, Cretaceous, K-T boundary,  Paleogene, Cenozoic

David Varricchio
Associate Professor 
Department of Earth Sciences
Montana State University 
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics:  Dinosaurs, Cretaceous, taphonomy

 

CORDILLERAN

In the United States: Alaska, Arizona south of lat 35°N, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Oregon, Washington. In Canada: British Columbia, Yukon Territory, Northwest Territories, Nunavut Territory. In Mexico: Distrito Federal, Aguascalientes, Baja California, Baja California Sur, Chiapas, Colima, Durango, Guanajuato, Guerrero, Hidalgo, Jalisco, México State, Michoacán, Morelos, Nayarit, Oaxaca, Puebla, Querétaro, San Luis Potosí, Sinaloa, Sonora, Tlaxcala, Zacatecas.

David R. Greenwood
Professor 
Department of Biology and J.R. Brodie Science Centre
Brandon University, Canada 
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics: Fossil  leaves, paleobotany, paleoclimates, Tertiary; Canadian paleontology, especially British Columbia and Nunavut

Matthew Clapham
Associate Professor
Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences
University of California, Santa Cruz
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics: Marine invertebrates, paleoecology, mass extinctions

Fabian C. Hardy
M.S. Geosciences
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics: Pleistocene megafauna

Elizabeth Nesbitt
Curator and Associate Professor
Burke Museum, and Earth and Space Sciences Department
University of Washington, Seattle
e-mail: [email protected]
Topics:  Pacific Northwest invertebrate faunas, foraminifera, museum outreach

Gary D. Webster
Emeritus Professor of Geology
School of the Environment
Washington State University
email: [email protected]
Topics:  General paleontology, invertebrate paleontology especially echinoderms, evolution, fossils through time, paleogeography