Speaker Bios


COLIN ORIANS has a B.A. in Biology from Earlham College, and a Ph.D. in Entomology from Pennsylvania State University. He is currently a professor in the Biology department at Tufts University and Director of the Environmental Studies program. Currently his research focuses on the dynamic responses of plants to environmental heterogeneity, in an effort to understand how plants respond to spatial and temporal variation in specific environmental factors or how these effects are integrated at the whole plant level. His work combines physiological, chemical and isotope (stable and radio) techniques to elucidate patterns and identify mechanisms.

ANTJE DANIELSON became the TIE Program Director in the summer of 2008. She came to TIE from Durham University (UK), where she served as the Deputy Director for Sustainability, in May 2008. Previously, she worked with the Harvard Green Campus Initiative. A long-time resident of Cambridge, Mass, Antje also co-founded the innovative carsharing company Zipcar. She was born and raised in Berlin Germany, where she received her Ph.D. in Geochemistry from the Freie University Berlin. She has worked and studied in many countries including South Africa, Italy, the UK, Canada, and the US.

Monday, May 21st “From Environmental Literacy to Environmental Solutions: What, Where and How”

RUSTY RUSSELL holds a B.A. in history from Amherst College, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. He continues to work with regional nonprofit organizations and agencies on matters that connect environmental law, policy and communications. During the 1990s, he was an attorney and then director of communications for the Conservation Law Foundation, a New England-based environmental advocacy organization. Since 1997, he has taught graduate and undergraduate courses in environmental policy and law at Tufts, Brown, and Boston Universities, and the University of Massachusetts; energy regulation at Boston College Law School, and property law at Northeastern University School of Law. He recently published law review articles on the environmental impacts of affordable housing and offshore wind energy.

PATRICK HERRON joined Mystic RiverWatershed Association (MyRWA) in June 2009 as the full-time Water Quality Monitoring Director. MyRWA works to protect and improve environmental conditions for the more than one half million residents within the 22 community Mystic River Watershed. Patrick holds a Ph.D. in Plant Ecology from the University of Connecticut. He recently completed postdoctoral fellowships at the Rowland Institute at Harvard University and Marine Biological Laboratories at Woods Hole. He has performed research in Costa Rica, Utah and Connecticut and published research in a variety of areas including invasive species, nutrient cycling, and microbial biosensors. Patrick has broad training in ecology and microbiology and will seek to foster the interest of the scientific research community in water quality issues in the Mystic River watershed.

is a digital media technologist at Tufts University where he oversees the Digital Design Studio in Tisch Library. His research interests include information design as well as the role of learning analytics in assessment. He holds a master’s degree in library media from Salem State University.


AMY SCHLEGEL is the Director of Galleries and Collections at Tufts University and adjunct faculty in the Department of Art and Art History and in the Museum Studies Certificate Program at Tufts. Schlegel holds a Ph.D. in art history from Columbia University and a M.A. in art history from the University of Chicago. Her area of specialization is contemporary art. Prior to coming to Tufts in 2004, Schlegel served for four years as Curator at the Philadelphia Art Alliance, a multidisciplinary arts center, as postdoctoral Curatorial Fellow at The Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, as guest curator at the Brattleboro (VT) Museum and Art Center; as Predoctoral Fellow at the Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Art Gallery at Columbia University, and as curatorial assistant at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago. In addition, she has taught art history and women’s studies at Columbia University, the University of Vermont, and Moore College of Art & Design in Philadelphia. She is a contributor to the anthology Singular Women: Writing the Artist (University of California Press, 2003), has published essays in numerous exhibition catalogues, and has had articles or reviews published in Sculpture magazine, The Art Journal, and Third Text. Schlegel serves on the Board of Directors of the College Art Association and is also a member of ArtTable and of the New England Museums Association.

 is an award-winning freelance journalist who has written about science, health and the environment for more than three decades. She was a former national science reporter for The Washington Post and The Washington Star and is the current President of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing, a group of distinguished journalists and scientists dedicated to improving science news coverage for the general public. Ms. Russell is also a past president of the National Association of Science Writers and a contributor to A Field Guide for Science Writers (2006). She serves on the boards of the USC Annenberg School for Communication, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, the Commonwealth Fund and Mills College. She is an honorary member of Sigma Xi, the scientific research society, and has a biology degree from Mills College. She was a Spring 2006 Fellow at the KSG Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy. Her research focuses on the future of science writing and how to improve news media coverage of controversial scientific issues, from climate change to avian flu. She is organizing workshops for reporters and scientists and planning a book on current controversies in science, health and the environment.

Wednesday, MAY 23rd “Environmental Challenges: Perception versus Reality”

AARON BERNSTEIN, M.D., MPH, is on faculty at Harvard Medical School and the Center for Health and the Global Environment. His work examines the human health dimensions of global environmental change, such as climate change and biodiversity loss, with the aim of promoting a deeper understanding of these subjects among policy makers, educators, and the public. Along with Nobel Peace Prize recipient Eric Chivian, he co-authored the Oxford University Press book Sustaining Life: How Human Health Depends on Biodiversity.

M.D., Ph.D., is the President of Tufts University. Monaco was formerly a Professor of Human Genetics and Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Planning & Resources) at the University of Oxford. He was also the Head of the Neurodevelopmental and Neurological Disorders Group at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics. Monaco earned his undergraduate degree as an independent concentrator in neuroscience and behavior at Princeton University, his PhD in Neurobiology from Harvard University and his MD from Harvard Medical School. His doctoral research led to his landmark discovery of the gene responsible for X-linked Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy. His fascination with genetics took him to the U.K., then the hub of this burgeoning field. He worked on the human genome project at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund (now Cancer Research UK) in London and in the human genetics laboratory at the Institute of Molecular Medicine, Oxford. As a distinguished neuroscientist, Monaco identified the first gene specifically involved in human speech and language.

TIM GRIFFIN is currently the Director of the Agriculture, Food and Environment Program at Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University. He has a B.S. and M.S. from the University of Nebraska and a  Ph.D. in Crop and Soil Science from Michigan State University. His primary interests are the intersection of agriculture and the environment, and the development and implementation of sustainable production systems. Griffin’s current research interests include environmental impacts of agriculture (nutrient flows, carbon retention and loss, and climate change), and impacts of policy on adoption of agricultural practices and systems.

Thursday, MAY 24th “Urban Environmental Issues: Merging Social and Environmental Justice” (Field Trip) 

JOVANNA GARCIA SOTO  is the Chelsea Green Space Organizer at the Chelsea Collaborative, a nonprofit organization that builds community through various community organizing projects, campaigns, and events and provides technical assistance to other non-profit agencies. She has a M.A. in Environmental Management and has extensive experience working with youth and in the development of environmental curriculum for formal education and for community environmental educators. Jovanna also has experience working with the state diesel campaign and community work in environmental justice populations. She is trilingual, speaking Spanish, Portuguese, and English.

PENN LOH is Professor of the Practice at Tufts University’s Department of Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning. From 1996 to 2009, he served in various roles, including Executive Director since 1999, at Alternatives for Community & Environment (ACE), a Roxbury-based environmental justice group. He holds an M.S. in environmental science and policy from Energy and Resources Group of the University of California at Berkeley and a B.S. in electrical engineering from MIT. Before joining ACE, he was Research Associate at the Pacific Institute for Studies in Development, Environment, and Security in Oakland, California and a Research Analyst at the Tellus Institute for Resource and Environmental Strategies in Boston. He has published broadly on environmental and social justice issues. He has served on the National Environmental Justice Advisory Council’s Health and Research Subcommittee, the Massachusetts Environmental Justice Advisory Committee, and on the boards of the Environmental Support Center, the Environmental Leadership Program, and Community Labor United. He is currently a board member of the New World Foundation and the Massachusetts Energy Facilities Siting Board.

Friday, May 25th “Implementation of Environmental Issues”

ANNIE SOISSON is a Senior Specialist for Learning and Teaching at Tufts University’s Center for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching (CELT). CELT is a central resource for schools on all three Tufts campuses intended to provide professional development opportunities, individual consultations for faculty on teaching, assessment and evaluation, and resources to support faculty programs. Soisson works with faculty to foster teaching innovation and to facilitate improved learning outcomes for Tufts students. She holds graduate degrees in education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and Boston University.

, BS, MSLIS is the Data Management  Services Coordinator and Science, Community Health, Environmental Studies and Urban & Environmental Policy and Planning research and instruction librarian at Tisch Library, Tufts  University. Working with Tufts A&S Research Affairs department, she leads a team of Tisch librarians who assist Tufts A, S & E faculty with their NSF and Digital NEH grants data management plans. Regina is on the editorial board for the e-Science Portal for New England Librarians and is a reviewer for the Journal of e-Science Librarianship. She has presented on STEM resources and information literacy at Computers in Libraries, ALA-ACRL STS, and ACRL New England NELIG. With her colleague Laurie Sabol, Coordinator of Library Instruction at Tisch Library, she co-teaches Research for Success: Using the Library for Thesis and Capstone Projects, a credit-bearing research methods class.