Science Experts

Scientists at the Academy are experts in their fields. They have broad knowledge of their subjects and detailed knowledge of their specialty. The media is welcome to interview the scientists below for stories about their research and related issues.

Interviews can be conducted in person, by e-mail, by phone, or by SKYPE. To arrange an interview, contact Carolyn Belardo at belardo@ansp.org, or 215 299-1043.

Watershed and Aquatic Ecology Issues

David Velinsky 

David Velinsky, Ph.D. 

Vice President, Academy Science, and Department Head, Department of Biodiversity, Earth, and Environmental Science at Drexel University
Expertise: Fate and transport of chemical and other contaminants in water systems, especially in estuaries near urban centers. Profile

 Don Charles

Donald Charles, Ph.D.

Senior Scientist, Phycology, and Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science, Drexel University
Expertise: Ecology of freshwater diatoms and their use as indicators to assess current and past environmental conditions. Profile

 Rich Horwitz

Richard Horwitz, Ph.D. 

Ruth Patrick Chair of Environmental Sciences; Senior Scientist, Fisheries, and Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science, Drexel University
Expertise: Reproductive ecology, life history and distribution of freshwater fishes; effects of land use on species. Profile

 Jerry Mead

Jerry Mead, Ph.D. 

Assistant Scientist and Section Leader, Watershed and Systems Ecology; and Assistant Research Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science, Drexel University
Expertise: Aquatic ecology and ecological and biophysical economics. Profile

 Marina Potapova

Marina Potapova, Ph.D.

Assistant Curator, Diatoms, and Assistant Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science, Drexel University
Expertise: Ecology and taxonomy of freshwater diatoms and their use to monitor human impacts. Profile

Ling Ren 

Ling Ren, Ph.D.

Research Scientist
Expertise: Nutrient dynamics and their enrichment on water quality issues; human impacts on phytoplankton growth and harmful algal blooms in estuaries and coastal ecosystems. Profile

Biodiversity, Evolution, and Systematics Issues

The foundation of this scientific work is the collection of more than 18 million plant and animal specimens used by researchers around the world.

Fossils and Paleontology

Ted Daeschler

Edward Daeschler, Ph.D

Vice President, Collections Management and Resources; Chair and Associate Curator, Vertebrate Paleontology, and Associate Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science, Drexel University
Expertise: Evolution of early tetrapods, including Tiktaalik roseae, and the collecting and describing of fossils. Profile

Ned Gilmore

Ned Gilmore 

Collection Manager, Vertebrate Paleontology
Expertise: Late Cretaceous and Early Tertiary fossils of eastern North America. Profile

Fish

John Lundberg 

John Lundberg, Ph.D.

Curator Emeritus, Ichthyology
Expertise: Biogeography, vertebrate morphology and paleobiology of fish, especially from South America. Co-principal of the global All Catfish Species Inventory. Profile

 Mark Sabaj-Perez

Mark Henry Sabaj Peréz, Ph.D.

Collection Manager, Ichthyology
Expertise: Catfishes, South American rivers and fishes, taxonomy and evolution. Co-principal of the global All Catfish Species Inventory. Profile

Insects

Jon Gelhaus 

Jon Gelhaus, Ph.D. 

Curator, Entomology, and Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science, Drexel University
Expertise: Systematics and ecology of worldwide crane flies. Leader of the Mongolian Aquatic Insect Survey, including water quality research in Mongolia. Co-leader of New Jersey Pinelands (Pine Barrens) insect survey. Profile

Jason Weintraub

Jason Weintraub

Collection Manager, Entomology
Expertise: Biogeography, ecology, and evolution of worldwide butterflies and moths. Profile

Greg Cowper

Greg Cowper 

Curatorial Assistant, Entomology
Expertise: Systematics, evolution, and biogeography of Heteroptera, the true bugs; history of entomology. CV

Mollusks

Gary Rosenberg 

Gary Rosenberg, Ph.D 

Pilsbry Chair and Curator, Malacology, and Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science, Drexel University
Expertise: Origin and magnitude of mollusk species diversity, identification of seashells worldwide, evolution of land snails in Jamaica. Profile

 Paul Callomon

Paul Callomon 

Collection Manager, Malacology
Expertise: Mollusks in general, specifically mollusks of Japan and its region; history of molluscan studies in Asia. Profile

Birds

Nate Rice

Nathan Rice, Ph.D. 

Collection Manager, Ornithology
Expertise: Evolutionary biology of neotropical bird groups, especially antbirds and their relatives. Profile

 Jason Weckstein
 

Jason Weckstein, Ph.D.

Associate Curator of Ornithology and Associate Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science, Drexel University

Expertise: Avian phylogenetics, comparative biology and evolutionary history; biodiversity surveys of birds and their parasites and pathogens; and co-evolutionary history of birds and their parasites. Profile

 Doug Wechsler

Doug Wechsler 

Director, Visual Resources in Ornithology (VIREO)
Expertise: General naturalist. Photographs and maintains one of the worlds most comprehensive collections of bird images. Profile

Plants

Tanya Livshultz

Tatyana Livshultz, Ph.D. 

Assistant Curator, Botany, and Assistant Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science, Drexel University
Expertise: Evolution and pollination of plants, especially the milkweed and dogbane family. Profile

 Rick McCourt

Rick McCourt, Ph.D. 

Associate Curator, Botany, and Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science, Drexel University
Expertise: Evolution and systematics of green algae. Profile

 Alina Freire-Fierro

Alina Freire-Fierro

Collection Manager, Botany
Expertise: Neotropical plants, in particular the family Polygalaceae. Profile

Ernie Schuyler

Alfred E. Schuyler, Ph.D.

Curator Emeritus, Botany 
Expertise: Systematics and ecology of rare plant species, relationships between plant diversity and environmental quality, and history of botany.
Profile

Mammals, Reptiles, and Amphibians

Ned Gilmore

Ned Gilmore 

Collection Manager, Mammalogy and Herpetology
Expertise: Mammals of Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. Profile

Diatoms

 Marina Potapova

Marina Potapova, Ph.D. 

Assistant Curator of Diatoms
Expertise: Ecology and taxonomy of freshwater diatoms and their use to monitor human impacts. 
Profile

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