NC State Names New Department Head for Forestry & Environmental Resources

Gower_Pic-webDr. Stith T. (Tom) Gower will join the College of Natural Resources at NC State University as head of the Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources.

Dr. Gower is an internationally recognized forest ecosystem ecologist, and is currently a professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology and Faculty Director of BioHouse, a living learning community program for undergraduates majoring in biological sciences.

He holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Furman University, a Master of Science in Forest Ecology and a minor in Soil Science from NC State University, and a PhD in Forest Ecology from the University of Washington.  He is a University of Wisconsin Systems Teaching Fellow and Scholar and an HHMI Faculty Fellow with the Institute for Biology Education.

Dr. Gower’s research focuses primarily on the effects of disturbance on carbon, water and nutrient budgets of forest ecosystems, life cycle inventories of greenhouse gases to produce wood and paper products, forest carbon adaptation and mitigation management, and whole system (biological and industrial) analysis of forest ecosystems and landscapes to optimize sustainable production of ecosystem goods and services.

He has served as PI or co-investigator on numerous large multidisciplinary research teams raising over $14 million in extramural funding from the Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation, the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. His research has built productive collaborative relationships with state, provincial, federal, and private industry in the USA, Canada, Russian Federation, Sweden, China, and Portugal.

Dr. Gower is a frequent speaker on the topic of forest carbon cycles in biological and industrial (e.g., life cycle inventory) ecosystems and national forest carbon management policy at national and international conferences and symposia. He is the co-author of two books, approximately 200 peer-reviewed journal articles, and numerous proceedings papers, book chapters, and presentation papers and abstracts. He has also served on numerous forestry and natural resource advisory boards such as Advisory Committee for the Oak Ridge National Laboratory Digital Active Archive Center, and served as subject editor for forestry journals such as Tree Physiology and the Canadian Journal of Forest Resources.

In recent years, Gower has become interested in education innovation, and is a recent co-recipient of a NSF Ideas Lab grant to promote quantitative sciences in natural sciences, as well as renewing a national dialogue on rewarding faculty for outstanding education. He is currently involved in developing a series of education innovation classroom case studies and curricula that emphasize student-centered learning.

“Tom Gower brings a wealth of new ideas and a proven record of accomplishment to the Department and the College,” says Dean Mary Watzin. “I am delighted that he is willing to take on this new challenge.  Tom has a solid record of interdisciplinary thinking – developing and implementing creative new curricula and first-year retention programs and fostering opportunities for students to engage in meaningful research experiences.  His research exploring the dynamics of forest ecosystems and the tradeoffs that exist under different future scenarios of natural and industrial forest management, along with an enthusiasm for sharing information and solving practical problems, make Tom an excellent match for our college.  I look forward to working with him and am fully confident that under his leadership, this strong department will rise to the next level of excellence.”

Originally from Kentucky, Dr. Gower is married to Connie Gower, a native of Hendersonville, NC and graduate of North Carolina State University. They have two daughters, Kristen and Cathy, both of whom graduated from or attended NC State.

“I am thrilled to be returning to NC State and building on the incredibly rich history of the department, college and institution” says Dr. Gower. “It is truly an honor to return and serve the students, staff, and faculty.”

Dr. Gower will assume the duties of department head on October 16, 2014.


NC State University Paper Science & Engineering Program to Celebrate 60 Years of Success

NC State Paper Science & Engineering 60th AnniversaryThe Paper Science & Engineering(PSE) program in the College of Natural Resources at North Carolina State University will celebrate a tradition of success with a 60th Anniversary Celebration in September 2014. Alumni, industry partners, donors, faculty, staff, and students are invited to join us.

Three days of activities are planned for September 10-12 including: an Open House at Biltmore, Robertson and Pulp and Paper Labs, a Celebration Banquet, a Paper Industry Career Fair, a Golf Tournament, a Corn Hole Tournament, Lunch at Lonnie Poole Golf Course, “Insider” Tours of campus, and the NC State Pulp & Paper Foundation Annual Meeting!

One of the oldest and most respected paper science and engineering programs in the world, NC State has been building industry leaders and supporting a robust, innovative and sustainable industry since the creation of the Pulp and Paper program and the Pulp and Paper Foundation.

Students of the program are highly valued by companies as summer interns and semester co-ops. Nearly 100% of students graduate with multiple job offers with starting salaries among the highest at NC State University.

PSE graduates make significant contributions to the paper industry, other chemical process industries, and many other professional arenas. Our alumni include vice-presidents, mill managers, technical managers, research directors, consultants, sales personnel, business owners, professors, teachers, lawyers, doctors, and clergymen.

With a long history of outstanding student care and thorough engineering education, the PSE program has much of which to be proud.

A fine testament to NC State’s land grant mission, PSE’s research and technical service programs support the state’s Forest Products industry – an industry that contributes almost 30 billion dollars annually to North Carolina’s economy.

The program’s faculty has been recognized with numerous honors including six TAPPI Fellows, the highest honor awarded by the Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry, more than any other institution.

This coming year, PSE expects to have 170 undergraduates and 40 graduate students.

For details of the NC State Paper Science & Engineering 60th Anniversary Celebration

Contact: Jennifer Piercy, (919) 515-7709

McCord to Serve as Research Associate Dean for NC State College of Natural Resources

Dr. Marian McCord - NC State UniversityDr. Marian G. McCord has been selected as Associate Dean for Research in the College of Natural Resources at NC State University.

Dr. McCord is currently a professor with appointments in the Department of Textile Engineering, Chemistry, and Science at North Carolina State University, the Joint UNC/NCSU Department of Biomedical Engineering, and is an adjunct associate professor of medicine at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

She holds a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering from Brown University, as well as a Master of Science in Bioengineering and a Ph.D. in Textiles and Polymer Science both from Clemson University. She joined the faculty of the College of Textiles at NC State in 1994 and leads NC State’s Global Health Initiative.

Dr. McCord sees her research field as “textiles as interventions” – i.e., textiles that prevent or treat disease, or improve human health and well-being. Some of her global health related projects include nonchemical insecticidal bed nets and low cost hemostatic bandages. She is a scientific advisor to Sustainable Health Enterprises (SHE), a social venture dedicated to meeting the needs for safe and affordable sanitary products for women in the developing world. The College of Natural Resources is also a partner in the SHE project.

Dr. McCord has been the co-director of the Atmospheric Plasma Laboratory at the College of Textiles at NC State University for 14 years, and is a cofounder of Katharos, Inc., a company that aims to provide phosphate filtration solutions for end-stage renal disease patients.

She has made significant contributions to her field including serving on the editorial board of the Journal of Fiber Bioengineering and Informatics, as an officer and executive committee member of the Triangle Global Health Consortium Advisory Board and the steering committee of the NC One Health Collaborative.

Recently Dr. McCord was recognized as one of 125 Transformational Women at NC State for her work as Director of the Global Health Initiative and for her work with SHE.

“Over the last 20 years, Marian McCord has built an interdisciplinary portfolio of research focused on improving human health and wellness by developing novel textiles that prevent and treat disease. She has a proven track record assembling and leading multidisciplinary research teams and has received funding from a wide variety of sources.” says Dr. Mary Watzin, dean of the College of Natural Resources. “Through her work, Marian has earned a national and international reputation for solving practical global health challenges. I am delighted that she is willing to take on this new challenge and am confident that she will bring creativity, energy, and a genuine appreciation of power of collaboration to the College of Natural Resources.”

“I’m looking forward to joining CNR, and to working with the faculty, staff and students to advance the College’s research initiative” says Dr. McCord. “I think that CNR is the right place for me to be able to make a significant impact in addressing some of the greatest challenges facing society today.”

Originally from Newport Rhode Island, Dr. McCord lives in Apex with her husband and two children. She will assume her duties as associate dean of research on August 1, 2014 and will hold academic rank in the Department of Forest Biomaterials.

Myron Floyd to lead NC State’s PRTM department

Dr. Myron Floyd, NC State UniversityDr. Myron F. Floyd has been selected as head of the Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management (PRTM) at NC State University.

Dr. Floyd, has been the Director of Graduate Programs for PRTM since 2010 and a faculty member since 2005. Prior to coming to NC State, Floyd was the Director of the Center for Tourism Research and Development at the University of Florida and Coordinator of Graduate Studies.

He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Recreation and Park Administration and a Master of Science in Recreation and Tourism Management from Clemson University and a PhD in Recreation and Resources Development with a specialization in Natural Resource Sociology from Texas A&M University. He is a Fellow in the Academy of Leisure Sciences (2005). In 2008, he received the National Recreation and Park Association’s highest research honor, the Theodore and Franklin Roosevelt Award.

Over the last two decades, Dr. Floyd’s research has focused on racial and ethnic inequality in provision of parks, open space, and public recreation services.

Since 2005 his research program has focused almost exclusively on understanding the capacity of neighborhood parks and green space to promote physical activity and reduce health disparities. He has served as PI or co-investigator on numerous large multidisciplinary research teams funded by governmental and non-governmental organizations, including the USDA Forest Service, USDI Park Service and Fish and Wildlife Service, NOAA, USDOD Army Corps of Engineers, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJ).

Dr. Floyd is a frequent speaker on the topic of parks and health at national and international conferences and symposia. He is co-author of Race, Ethnicity, and Leisure: Perspectives on Research, Theory and Practice from Human Kinetics, as well as, 65 peer-reviewed journal articles, 22 peer reviewed monographs and proceedings papers, 15 book chapters and more than 100 presentation papers and abstracts.

Dr. Floyd’s has made significant contributions to his field serving as an Advisory Board Member for the National Policy & Legal Network to Prevent Childhood Obesity and on the Science Committee for the National Park Service’s Healthy Parks Healthy People Initiative.

In February 2014, Dr. Floyd was appointed to the Forestry Research Advisory Council (FRAC) by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. With a council of 11 distinguished members, he will present recommendations and advice to the Secretary on issues concerning forestry and natural resources.

Dean Mary Watzin of NC State’s College of Natural Resources had this to say when announcing the appointment, “Myron Floyd is a nationally renowned leader in natural resource sociology and outdoor recreation, with more than 25 years of experience in land grant universities. He brings maturity, imagination, and an interdisciplinary perspective that will help PRTM and our College continue our ascent to the next level of excellence. I am delighted that he is willing to take on this new challenge and I look forward to working with him in his new role.”

Originally from Loris, South Carolina, Dr. Floyd lives in Apex with his wife, Johnetta Holland. They have two sons – William, who will be a freshman at East Carolina University in the fall and Jonathan, a sophomore at Middle Creek High School.

Dr. Floyd will assume the duties of department head on July 1, 2014.



Devine Receives CESU National Network Award

Dr Hugh Devine, NC State UniversityCongratulations to Dr. Hugh Devine who has been awarded the 2014 Cooperative Ecosystem Studies Units (CESU) National Network Award. This prestigious award is presented biannually to recognize individuals who have contributed substantially to the development, implementation or accomplishments of the CESU Network.

Dr. Devine is an Alumni Distinguished Graduate Professor in the Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism Management and the Associate Director of the Center for Geospatial Analytics in the NC State University College of Natural Resources.

The CESU Network is a national consortium of federal agencies, tribes, academic institutions, state and local governments, nongovernmental conservation organizations, and other partners working together to support informed public trust resource stewardship. The CESU Network includes 354 partners, including 14 federal agencies, in seventeen CESUs representing biogeographic regions encompassing all 50 states and U.S. territories.