Panel 1: Research at the Nexus of Food, Energy and Water, Thursday 01-21-2016, 6:00 pm, The Commons at Spooner Hall

   Ashlynn Stillwell      University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Dr. Ashlynn S. Stillwell is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is a member of the Environmental Hydrology and Hydraulic Engineering faculty, and also among the faculty in the new Energy-Water-Environment Sustainability program. Dr. Stillwell teaches courses on water resources engineering, management, and policy. Her signature course, Water Technology & Policy, synthesizes engineering and policy content pertaining to water in an interdisciplinary educational setting, focusing on both technical concepts and communication. 

Dr. Stillwell has authored many publication on the energy-water nexus, including her award-winning master's thesis, and has a growing research program at UIUC. She earned a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Missouri (2006), and an M.S. in Environmental and Water Resources Engineering (2010), M.P.Aff in Public Affairs (2010), and Ph.D. in Civil Engineering (2013) from the University of Texas at Austin. Her previous work experience includes consulting engineering at Burns & McDonnell (2006-2007) and policy research at the Congressional Research Service (2009).  Her research interests include the water impacts of thermoelectric power generation and the energy-water nexus pertaining to urban metabolism and public policy.

   Kelly Fielding      University of Queensland, Australia

Kelly Fielding is an Associate Professor at The University of Queensland, Australia and a Vice Chancellor’s Research and Teaching Fellow. She is a social and environmental psychologist whose  research focuses on understanding the social and psychological dimensions of environmental decisions and behaviours and developing communication and behaviour change strategies that can promote greater environmental sustainability. A key focus of her current research is on sustainable urban water management, specifically, addressing how we can engage communities with this issue, how we can communicate about new water technologies such as recycled water, how we can promote water conservation, and how we can understand and communicate about drinking water supplies. Her research is also focused on understanding climate change beliefs and responses including climate change denial. Her past research has examined sustainable natural resource management, domestic and public place recycling, and environmental activism. She takes an interdisciplinary approach to her research and has worked with local councils, State Government, and catchment management authorities to undertake this research. Kelly is an associate editor for Environment and Behavior and is a project leader in the Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive Cities. 

Laura Lesniewski      Principal | BNIM

Laura led the design team efforts on the Omega Center for Sustainable Living (first LEED Platinum and Living Building certified) and contributed to the REGEN tool, created with the USGBC in its explorations on the next generation of sustainability.  Her projects include a zero carbon community redevelopment in Montreal and a zero carbon rural development in upstate New York.  Laura has also been engaged with several disaster recovery efforts as part of the BNIM planning team, including time in Greensburg (KS), Tuscaloosa (AL), and Springfield (MA).  Currently, her focus is on projects that support the U.S. Dept. of State’s mission of eco-diplomacy in their facilities worldwide.

Laura recently served as President of AIA-Kansas City and now serves on the Board of Westside Housing Organization, a non-profit focused on healthy affordable housing and communities in Kansas City.  She is a recognized resource for emerging technologies and philosophies in the design and construction industry.  Laura is a graduate of MIT and U.C. Berkeley, and co-authored FLOW: In Pursuit of a Living Building and The Power of Zero: Optimizing Value for Next Generation Green

Panel 2: Design at the Nexus of Food, Energy and Water, Friday 01-22-2016, 8:00 am, The Commons at Spooner Hall

 Steve McDowell      Principal | Director of Design, BNIM

As Director of Design, Steve leads studio directors, associates and designers at every level to produce architecture that celebrates site, environment, technical exploration and the joy of human life. His originality is creating a new definition of architectural practice in his city and across the country. Above all, he motivates others to go beyond their expectations. His design approach focuses on the space between buildings, the use of innovative materials and technology, and how to serve end users best. As a practitioner of holistic design, Steve looks at the totality of a space, its interior and exterior, and how this symbiotic relationship interests the users.

With his workplace functioning as a laboratory, he is instituting a practice that is founded on collaboration, with virtually no boundaries to peer critique, open exchange of ideas and free initiative. 

His unique way of harnessing creativity within the firm's projects has caused him to push the envelope of technical investigation. Steve's leadership by design is setting new ground in cutting-edge projects at the University of Georgia, the Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, NY, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston and the North Charleston Noisette Community Development in South Carolina, just to name a few. 

Tim Crews       Director of Research, Land Institute

Tim, director of research, is at the Land Institute because in his words, "the work is the most focused and far reaching of any organization I know. It promises to transform agriculture from being an ecological liability to an asset." Tim first visited The Land Institute in 1981 after reading New Roots for Agriculture as an undergraduate majoring in agroecology at University of California-Santa Cruz. Over the next three decades he pursued a doctorate degree at Cornell, carried out a post-doc fellowship at Stanford and developed an agroecology program at Prescott College in Northern Arizona. But all along he continued to track the work of The Land Institute, and in 2000 began to collaborate directly. In 2012 Tim joined the staff as director of research and an ecologist. He helps facilitate and coordinate research efforts of his colleagues, and conducts work on the ecosystem functions performed by soils.


 Jeffrey Bruce           Jeffrey L. Bruce & Company (JBC)

Jeffrey L. Bruce, FASLA, is Owner of Jeffrey L. Bruce & Company (JBC) a national landscape architectural firm. Founded 1986, JBC provides highly specialized technical support to many of the nation's leading Architectural and Landscape Architectural firms on a wide variety of project profiles including engineered soils, green roof technologies, urban agronomy, green infrastructure, performance sports turf, water harvesting, and irrigation engineering. 

Mr. Bruce's accomplishments, commitment and vision are well documented. He has received over 120 separate design and leaderhship awards. Award winning projects of his firm, Jeffrey L. Bruce & Company, have been published 200 times. He has been licensed to practice in 26 states and has served as an invited lecturer, visiting critic, and speaker at over 185 conferences and trade shows. In 1996, Mr. Bruce was elected Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects. He is Past President of the American Society of Irrigation Consultants (ASIC) and Chairman of the GRHC Accreditation Committee. Mr. Bruce is a LEED accredited professional, a certified irrigation designer and an EPA WaterSense Certified Professional. He was one of the first accredited Green Roof Professionals (GRP) in North America and is a founding member of the Sorts Turf Committee for the National Interscholastic Association of Athletic Administrators. Mr. Bruce is author of the "Integrated Water Management for Buildings and Sites" seminar for GRHC and ASIC.

Panel 3: Collaboration at the Nexus of Food, Energy and Water, Friday 01-22-2016, 2:00 pm, The Commons at Spooner Hall

  Kathleen A. Brosnan      University of Oklahoma

Kathleen A. Brosnan Travis Chair of Modern History, University of Oklahoma Kathleen A. Brosnan is the Travis Chair of Modern American History at the University of Oklahoma and the president of the American Society for Environmental History. She holds a J.D. from the University of Illinois and Ph.D. in history from the University of Chicago. In addition to numerous articles, she is the author of Uniting Mountain and Plain: Cities, Law, and Environmental Change along the Front Range (2002); the co-editor of City Dreams, Country Schemes: Community and Identity in the American West (2011) and Energy Capitals: Global Influence, Local Impact (2014); and the editor of the award-winning, four-volume Encyclopedia of American Environmental History (2010). Brosnan is co-editor of two edited volumes currently in development: Mapping Nature across the Americas, to be published with the University of Chicago Press, and a not-yet-named environmental history of the city of Chicago to be published with the University of Pittsburgh Press. She is completing a book manuscript, Napa Nature, exploring the environmental history of the Napa Valley wine industry.

 Sarah Jacobson           Williams College

Sarah Jacobson is an Assistant Professor of Economics at Williams College, which she joined in 2010. She completed her PhD in Economics at Georgia State University in 2010 and her Bachelor of Science in Engineering at Harvey Mudd College in 1998. She is an environmental and behavioral economist who studies interactions between preferences and institutions, mostly using laboratory experiments. Specific themes in her work include reciprocity, cases in which social preferences yield inefficient outcomes and punishment. She has current projects on the enforcement of water pollution regulations, risk preferences proxy decision-making, and racial bias.


 Joel Gerard Burken        Missouri S&T

Dr. Burken received his PhD from the University of Iowa in 1996, where he conducted some of the initial research on phytoremediation. He has been at Missouri University of Science and Technology (formerly University of Missouri – Rolla) since 1997, now serving as Interim Chair and Curators’ Professor.  While at Missouri S&T Dr. Burken led the formation of the environmental engineering program as well as the green campus committee and the campus wide sustainability minor. He currently serves as Director of the campus-wide Environmental Research Center. Dr. Burken has also held temporary positions at:  EAWAG in Zurich Switzerland (research intern), at the National Environment Research Institute (NERI) in Denmark (visiting researcher and OECD Fellow) and at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand as an Erskine Fellow.

Joel’s research and service efforts have focused upon low impact and natural treatment systems since 1991.  In that time, terms of sustainable-remediation, green infrastructure, and green-remediation have evolved and now promote the same fundamental aspects surrounding water quality and water resource management. His research in phytoremediation of organic contaminants and pioneering work in Phytoforensics have led to numerous publications, a patented environmental assessment method, and international recognition. This recognition includes twice winning the ASCE Rudolf Hering Medal and an NSF Career award. Dr. Burken has received Missouri S&T awards for teaching, service, advising and has received the Faculty Excellence award 7 times.  In 2012 he was also awarded he Alumni Merit Award from the Miner Alumni Association, and in 2015 Dr. Burken received the President’s Award for University Citizenship across the entire University of Missouri System.