Research

 

My research leverages the disciplines of landscape ecology, conservation biology and population genetics to assess and mitigate threats to tree species and forest communities, particularly across broad scales. My research focuses on developing and applying innovative qualitative methods and models to address broad-scale, complex threats to forest health, with an emphasis on delivering tools that can enable better-informed management of forests and the tree species that constitute them.

Specifically, I have five central areas of research expertise:

 

Development of indicators of forest biodiversity and ecosystem function across broad regions using Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) data and incorporating evolutionary relationships among species.

Development of a framework to categorize and prioritize forest tree species for conservation and management actions based on life-history characteristics and external threats.

Investigating species invasion patterns and processes across broad spatial scales.

Completion of range-wide genetic variation studies of several at-risk forest tree species.

Coordination of national USDA Forest Service annual forest health reports, and contribution of research chapters that employ a novel technique for analyzing large-scale geographical patterns of fine-scale forest health data.

 

I am an author of 48 peer-reviewed journal articles, including 20 for which I was the lead author. As of February 22, 2021, my journal articles had been cited 1,540 times and had an h-index value of 22 and an i10-index of 41, according to Google Scholar. I have served as lead editor for 13 extensive USDA Forest Service annual national forest health reports, and written 48 peer-reviewed chapters for these documents. I have presented or contributed to more than 180 technical research presentations, a third of which were invited and 30 were at international ecology or forestry conferences. In addition to my publication record, my work has ongoing impacts on the conservation of at-risk species and in the assessment and monitoring of forest health across broad scales.