Leitzel Center Faculty & Staff
Ruth K. Varner
Director, Associate Professor
Ruth Varner is an Associate Professor of Earth Sciences, with a joint appointment in the Earth Systems Research Center of the Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space. She received a Bachelor's degree in Geology from Hartwick College in 1991, a Master's Degree in Hydrology in 1993 (UNH) and a Ph.D. in Geochemical Systems in 2000 (UNH). Her research experience at UNH began with developing a gas chromatography/cryo-focusing technique to quantify methyl bromide in ambient air samples. This work led to the discovery of soil as a significant biological sink of atmospheric methyl bromide. This research also led to the discovery of freshwater wetlands as a source of methyl bromide and methyl chloride to the atmosphere. Her work at UNH also includes carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide exchange using autochamber technology in terrestrial ecosystems: boreal (BOREAS, NASA), temperate and tropical forests (LBA, NASA). Currently, her research focus is on the measurement of trace gas emissions from agricultural and wetland ecosystems with funded projects from the USDA, USGS and NSF. Ruth is also the Director of the Northern Ecosystems Research for Undergraduates program, an NSF funded REU site.
Stephen R. Hale
Steve earned his Masters degree in vertebrate morphology and evolution from Louisiana State University and his Ph.D. in Natural Resources from the University of New Hampshire in 2001. His doctoral research focused on developing satellite and GIS based habitat models for Bicknell’s Thrush. Steve joined the Leitzel Center in 2005, increasing interest and enthusiasm for STEM disciplines for underserved and minority students in the NSF funded Watershed Watch program. Steve maintains his diverse interests in ornithology and vertebrate ecology, while his professional interests have broadened toward efforts to increase all-levels of students’ interest, enthusiasm, and achievement in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) disciplines. Active projects include Transforming Earth System Science Education, Research Experience for Teachers in Engineering, Climate Education for Minority Serving Institution Faculty, the US Army’s STEM Teacher Program Initiatives, and directing Workforce Development components of the NH EPSCoR project.
Education & Outreach Specialist
Erik began working with the Leitzel Center in 2007, through the Transforming Earth System Science Education (TESSE) program, and has since become involved in several other projects associated with the center. He serves as the graduate fellow advisor for TESSE and is active in working with K-12 teachers, through both TESSE, as well as other professional development activities that the Leitzel Center conducts. His particular focus has been in promoting authentic research by students, and in providing schools with more direct access to scientists and contemporary research in the geo-sciences. Prior to his positions at UNH, Erik was a Special Education teacher of students with emotional and behavioral disabilities at Noble Middle School in Berwick, Maine. He is a graduate of the UNH Masters in Environmental Education program and is a past board member of the New Hampshire Environmental Educators.
Program Support Assistant
Sandy is our new Program Support Assistant coming to the Leitzel Center after dividing her time between the Department of Geography for the last seven years and also the Humanities Program for the last two of those years as their administrative assistant. Working part-time has allowed Sandy to continue to focus on her family – husband, Mike (a UNH alum!), and two kids, Sara and Sean – in addition to her treasured and varied activities, especially involving the beautiful NH outdoors. Sandy loves New England, but maintains a soft spot in her heart for Minnesota where her family and many close friends live.
Graphic Design & Website Communication
Kristi is a graphic designer and part-time website/communication staff member with Leitlzel Center. When not working with the Letizel Center she works as a graphic design and communications staffer with the UNH Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space. She is also part-time graphic designer for the New Hampshire Writer's Project. Her interest in communication design, prepress production, electronic communications and photography takes her to many interesting places—sometimes for employment and sometimes just for fun.
Karen J. Graham
Karen Graham is Professor of Mathematics in the UNH Department of Mathematics and Statistics. She was appointed to serve as the inaugural director of the Leitzel Center in January 2003. She received her Ph.D. in Mathematics Education from UNH in 1986. She taught mathematics in Pine Plains NY prior to beginning work on her doctorate and taught at Western Michigan University (Kalamazoo, MI) prior to joining the faculty at UNH. Dr. Graham also directs the UNH Master of Science for Teacher (MST) in mathematics program. Her professional and scholarly interests include the teaching and learning of calculus, mathematics education reform based research, and mathematics teacher development. Dr. Graham has served as the project director of many state and federally funded projects. She has presented numerous workshops at local, state, regional, and national conferences. In addition she has served as a documentation consultant on several national research projects designed to explore mathematics education reform efforts, the QUASAR (Quantitative Understanding: Amplifying Student Achievement and Reasoning) Project, the R3M (Recognizing and Recording Reform in Mathematics Education) Project, and the CCH Evaluation and Documentation Project. In 1999, Dr. Graham received the Richard H. Balomenos Mathematics Education Service Award from the NH Association of Teachers of Mathematics. Read More...
- Eleanor Abrams, Professor, Dept. of Education; Sr. Faculty Fellow, Office of Engagement and Outreach
- Christopher Bauer, Professor, Dept. of Chemistry; Leitzel Center Faculty Fellow, 2004-2005
- Julia Bryce, Assoc. Professor and Chair, Dept. of Earth Sciences
- Janet Campbell, Professor Emeritus, Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space
- Gale Carey, Professor, Dept. of Molecular, Cellular, and Biomedical Sciences
- Will Clyde, Assoc. Professor, Dept. of Earth Sciences
- Vaughn Cooper, Assoc. Professor, Dept. of Molecular, Cellular, and Biomedical Sciences
- Diane Foster, Assoc. Professor, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering
- Timothy Fukawa-Connelly, Asst. Professor, Dept. of Mathematics and Statistics
- Kevin Gardner, Professor, Dept. of Civil Engineering; NH EPSCoR Assoc. Director
- Lara Gengarelly, Lecturer, Dept. of Education
- Barbara Hopkins, Assistant Supt. SAU 21, Hampton, NH; Leitzel Center Assoc. Director for Outreach, 2003-2006
- Jennifer Jacobs, Professor, Dept. of Civil Engineering
- Joel Johnson, Assoc. Professor, Dept. of Earth Sciences
- Brad Kinsey, Professor, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering
- Anita Klein, Assoc. Professor, Dept. of Biological Sciences
- Dovev Levine, Academic Counselor, Graduate School
- Mary Martin, Research Asst. Professor, Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space
- Sharon McCrone, Assoc. Professor, Dept. of Mathematics and Statistics
- Michael Middleton, Assoc. Professor and Chair, Dept. of Education
- Tim Moore, Research Scientist, Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space
- Samuel Mukasa, Dean, College of Engineering and Physical Sciences; Professor, Dept. of Earth Sciences
- Jan Nisbet, Sr. Vice Provost for Research; NH EPSCoR Director
- Michael Palace, Research Asst. Professor, Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space
- Barrett Rock, Professor Emeritus, Dept. of Natural Resources & the Environment
- Annette Schloss, Research Scientist, Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space
- Jeff Schloss, Extension Professor and Water Resources Specialist, Cooperative Extension
- Christine Shea, Professor, Whittemore School of Business and Economics
- Harlan Spence, Director, Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space; Professor, Dept. of Physics
- Cameron Wake, Research Assoc. Professor, Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space;
Josephine A. Lamprey Fellow in Climate and Sustainability, UNH Sustainability Institute
- Cheryl Whistler, Assoc. Professor, Dept. of Molecular, Cellular, and Biomedical Sciences
- Julie Williams, Sr. Vice Provost for Engagement and Academic Outreach
- Jon Wraith, Dean, College of Life Sciences and Agriculture; Dir., NH Agricultural Experiment Station
The Leitzel Center prides itself on developing partnerships with individuals and institutions in implementing creative programs in STEM education. The list below represents UNH faculty/staff members who have collaborated with or served in leadership positions within the Leitzel Center since its dedication in 2003. We thank them for their participation and look forward to future collaborations.
Leitzel Center Strategic Planning & Implementation CouncilSept. 2002 - June 2007
Note: Affiliations are listed as of time of service on the council