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A collaborative firm, Ecosystem Sciences balances hands-on principal involvement on each project with effective technological capabilities.

The team of professionals at Ecosystem Sciences has an unparalleled, combined experience in the environmental, sciences and design fields. We believe in a collaborative process that requires a multi-discipline team approach to each unique endeavor.

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Mark T. Hill | Principal | Lead Scientist | Watershed and River Ecologist

Mr. Hill is responsible for the management of Ecosystem Sciences and the Ecosystem Sciences Foundation. He is the principal scientist in the organization and retains overall responsibility for project performance and quality control. He has over 35-years of experience in the environmental field and has managed numerous multidisciplinary projects.

Mr. Hill conducts large-scale watershed ecosystem studies and research, provides expert testimony for environmental litigation, and is a scientific advisor to several national and international organizations. Mr. Hill has published widely on stream and river restoration and ecosystem management and is a recognized expert nationally and internationally.

Mr. Hill leads Ecosystem Sciences’ team for the restoration of the Owens Valley in California for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. This is one of the largest river and ecosystem restoration projects in the world. Ecosystem Sciences is the lead scientific advisor and architects of the restoration and watershed project.

Education

  • M.Sc. Aquatic Ecology,
  • Michigan State University
  • B.Sc. Limnology
  • Michigan State University (Honors)
  • A.Sc. Fisheries, Lansing Community College

Professional Registrations

  • Associate Rank, 1985, American Institute of Fishery Research Biologists
  • Member Rank, 1993, American Institute of Fishery Research Biologists
  • Certified Fisheries Scientist
  • American Fisheries Society (No. 1374)

Membership Associations

  • American Fisheries Society
  • American Institute of Fishery Research Biologists
  • American Water Resources Association
  • Society for Conservation Biology
  • Ecological Society of America
  • American Institute of Biological Sciences
  • Northwest Scientific Association
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Timothy J. Maguire | Principal | Scientist | Biogeographer, GIS Professional

Tim specializes in biogeography, landscape ecology and geographic information systems (GIS). Tim utilizes his skills in designing and implementing innovative watershed management and restoration projects.

Tim is the GIS director at Ecosystem Sciences. GIS is a powerful tool for capturing, managing, analyzing, and displaying all forms of geographic information. Tim works with the collection of GIS data and compiling that data into a Geospatial Data Clearing House, which is a sharable GIS database for Ecosystem Sciences’ clients.

Tim’s principle expertise and interest lies in Geography and the mapping of landscapes, species habitat and species suitability, and environmental systems. With his in background in Geography, Tim understands a broad range of ecological topics within watersheds ranging from stream ecology, hydrology and riverine-riparian systems to vertebrate and invertebrate habitats. Tim has also spent considerable time examining the economics of water use in heavily managed watersheds in the United States.

Tim’s Master’s in Geography research focused on examining the effect of river restoration on avian communities at multiple scales. Tim acknowledges that scale is an often overlooked aspect of restoration, watershed management and ecological studies. Thus, he has devoted a significant portion of his career to ensuring that management actions related to watersheds are employed at the applicable scale.

Education

  • M.S. Geography, Portland State University
  • B.A. Environmental Studies Gettysburg College
  • Certified ESRI Spatial Hydrologist

Membership Associations

  • American Association of Geographers
  • Association of Pacific Coast Geographers
  • Ecological Society of America

Special Studies

  • American University, Environment and Development Program Washington, D.C. and Kenya.
  • American University, Environment and Development Program Washington D.C. and Costa Rica.
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Zachary Thorne Hill | Principal | Environmental Planning | Ecological Design

 

As Principal of Environmental Design and Planning Zach works to integrate ecosystems with the built environment and infrastructure. His work considers long-term ecosystem health and encourages the positive correlations between economic prosperity, designed development and environmental well being. How we build our communities, develop the landscape and grow is a critical component to ecological sustainability and this outlook is reflected in Zach's design work.  


Zach has won numerous awards for his work including a National Honor Award from the American Society of Landscape Architects, numerous Regional Honor Awards American Society of Landscape Architects; and an AIA Design Excellence Award, amongst others.  Zach is an architect and specializes in ecological design and environmental planning.


With over eighteen years of experience in urban and regional planning and resource management, with a specialization in the planning, design, implementation of integrated watershed management plans in the United States and abroad; Zach is recognized as a leading communicator in assessments and planning initiatives. Zach distills complicated information to a comprehensible format that is effective, compelling and communicates. As Principal of Environmental Planning and Design he provides professional services and consulting to meet complex environmental challenges, including assessments and planning, conserving sensitive natural resources, evaluating environments and impacts, optimizing resources, managing ecosystems, restoring ecological processes and functions, and integrating sustainability into design, and urbanization impacts and sustainability.


During his career, Zach has managed a wide diversity of planning, design, restoration and application projects that focused on improved techniques for community, environmental, and infrastructure management. 

 

Education

  • Bachelor of Architecture (Honors)
  • Master of Architecture; Environmental Design and Planning (Honors)
  • Master of Ecological Design

Professional Registrations

  • Licensed Architect
  • American Institute of Architects (AIA)
  • National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB)
  • LEED AP

Professional Associations

  • Association of Landscape Ecologists International
  • American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) Affl.
  • American Water Resources Association

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Derek Risso | Principal | Scientist | Restoration, Riparian and Watershed Ecology

Derek works nationally and internationally in the fields of watershed management, restoration ecology and environmental education. He understands that humans are at the center of watershed management, and that a watershed’s ecological health and trajectory hinge on sustainable development of its human communities.

Derek seeks to balance the needs of all those within the watershed with innovative restoration projects that implement advanced ecological paradigms. His projects utilize modern mapping techniques designed for GIS technology, but also include simple, standardized, time-tested methods. In his stream restoration projects, Derek emphasizes long-term planning and monitoring, as passive restoration and patience are often all that resilient riverine/riparian systems require. Derek's current ecological research includes groundwater-surface water interactions, disturbance, riparian, restoration and watershed ecology.

Derek has experience in many aspects of watershed management including project development and management, data collection and analysis, report writing, budget management, agency coordination, stakeholder integration, and education and outreach. In his current work in Mexico, Derek is focused on implementing sustainable management solutions to long term catchment-scale problems. Recent projects have involved partnering with government agencies and local and national non-government organizations to implement rainwater harvesting systems in rural areas with drinking water contamination.

Education

  • M.Sc. Fisheries and Wildlife, Oregon State University
  • B.A. Environmental Studies, Gettysburg College

Membership Associations

  • Ecological Society of America
  • Society for Wetland Scientists

Special Studies

  • University of Tennessee, Chattanooga. Graduate Study in Ecology
  • American University, Washington D.C. and Kenya, 1994. Completed International Environment and Development Semester.
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Shannon Campbell | Associate | Scientist | Environmental Compliance, Technical Writer

Shannon works extensively with land management planning documents, and collaborates with teams of specialists to determine environmental impacts of proposed projects and develops alternatives to achieve a balance between ecosystem health and resource needs. She has technical expertise in writing and researching scientific documents and writes and edits Environmental Impact Statements, Environmental Assessments, and Categorical Exclusions to meet National Environmental Policy Act and Forest Plan guidelines, as well as Habitat Conservation Plans and Integrated Regional Water Management Plans.

During project development phases, she works closely with resource specialists to address concerns of the public and other interested parties and amends project activities accordingly. She edits and revises all sections of resource planning documents and reviews all project activities and impacts for compliance with applicable state and federal laws. She also organizes and attends numerous public meetings to discuss projects and addresses concerns about project impacts.

Shannon’s experience in analyzing project environmental impacts and providing alternatives to mitigate those effects has been successful as a result of a strong commitment to collaboration, where diverse viewpoints and agendas guide the project direction. Adjusting project activities to meet disparate viewpoints (and within the confines of applicable laws) provides for more effective environmental documents and projects.

Education

  • M.S. Geography, Portland State University
  • B.A. International Studies, American University, 1992 (Cum Laude)

Membership Associations

  • Gamma Theta Upsilon, International Geographical Honor Society
  • Friends of Geography

Special Studies

  • Managing NEPA Processes
  • Writing Effective NEPA Documentation
  • Forest Plan Implementation, and Cumulative Effects
  • CEQA Process and Writing
  • HCP/USFWS Process and Writing
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Joshua Ellsworth | Associate | Ecologist | Foundation Program Director

Josh has 15 years of experience with restoration ecology, forestry, wildlife biology, community development and environmental economics. He is an expert on invasive plant biology and control and has managed numerous public and private ecological restoration projects. He served as a forester for the City of New York where he was responsible for forest restoration projects in more than 1,000 acres of parkland and led job training crews comprised of welfare recipients. He also managed an environmental education program in the ten lowest performing schools in New York City.

Josh coordinates Ecosystem Sciences Foundation’s projects in Mexico and oversees grant writing and foundation strategy. His work in Mexico is focused on the building the capacity of local watershed management institutions and the integration of ecological conservation with rural economic development strategies. He advocates for the full-participation of local people in land-use planning and believes that land management strategies must be conceived and framed in response to the realities of local cultures, economies, and policies. In addition to his experiences in the field, he has studied local participation and institution building in an academic context; his 2007 master’s thesis from Brandeis University examined the potential successes and limitations of a payment for watershed services program for San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.

Education

  • M.A. Sustainable International Development (Frieze Fellow), Brandeis University
  • M.Sc. Forestry, University of Massachusetts–Amherst
  • B.Sc. Wildlife Biology, Montana State University (Honors)

Professional Associations

  • New England Chapter of the Society of American Foresters
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William Platts, Ph.D. | Advisor | Scientist | Watershed and River Ecologist

Dr. Platts has over 50-years of experience in research and evaluation of environmental systems. Dr. Platts is a noted leader in the study of riverine-riparian systems, wetlands systems and livestock grazing and logging impacts on fisheries and habitat throughout the West. He has performed numerous projects for industry, private landowners, utilities, and government agencies. Dr. Platts has extensive experience in writing and advising on Environmental Impact Reports and Statements, CEQA, NEPA, Habitat Conservation Plans and other technical and legal environmental documents.

Dr. Platts is a past president of the American Fisheries Society and has served as a consultant on numerous projects for industry, private landowners, utilities and government agencies in the U.S. Dr. Platts has served many national, regional and local professional organizations by appointment. Some of those organizations include: USDI BLM Resource Advisory Committee; Affiliate Professor of Fishery Resources at University of Idaho; United States Forest Service national framework ecosystem management planning group; Idaho Watershed Improvement Forum; Center for Strategic Studies in Resource Policy at Texas A&M University; Steering Committee for Riparian Conference at the University of Arizona; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Science Advisory Board; Congress of the U.S., Congressional Office of Assessment Advisory Panel; National Steering Committee for the Forest Service Wildlife and Fish Habitat Relationships Program; National In-Stream Flow Steering Committee; and the National Resource Planning Act Interdisciplinary Team. Dr. Platts has over 160 publications in scientific journals.

Education

  • Ph.D. Fisheries Science, Utah State University
  • M.Sc. Wildlife Management, Utah State University
  • B.Sc. Conservation Education, Idaho State University

Professional Registrations

  • Certified Fisheries Scientist
  • American Institute of Fishery Research Biologists
  • American Fisheries Society (No. 698)

Membership Associations

  • American Institute of Fishery Research Biologists
  • Nature Conservancy
  • Pacific Fisheries Biologist
  • American Fisheries Society
  • High Desert Museum
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Robert Beschta, Ph.D. | Advisor | Scientist | Forest and Range Hydrologist

Dr. Beschta is lead hydrologist and scientific advisor for many of Ecosystem Sciences projects. Dr. Beschta is an expert in hydrological systems and Professor Emeritus at Oregon State University. Dr. Beschta research activities have included such topics as suspended and bedload sediment transport in mountain streams, effects of riparian vegetation on stream temperatures, stream temperature modeling, large organic debris, channel morphology, subsurface flow in riparian areas, hydrology of wetlands, peakflow simulation models, road drainage and slope stability, the influence of management upon stream water quality, and others. He has also taught in a variety of workshops and short courses involving such topics as the hydrology of old-growth forests, precipitation and runoff of mountain slopes, the effects of vegetation on the hydrology of riparian areas, restoration of riparian areas, effects of forest practices and grazing upon riparian functions, channel morphology, water quality monitoring, hydrology of wetlands and riparian areas, and others.

He has been a co-organizer of several major Pacific Northwest symposiums on erosion and sedimentation, management of riparian and aquatic systems, and watershed management. He is currently chair on a project addressing the cumulative effects of forest practices in Oregon. He has also participated on two National Research Council committees that focused on: (1) factors affecting salmonid stocks in the Pacific Northwest and (2) management of riparian areas. Dr. Beschta has authored or co-authored over 70 publications related to the hydrology of forest and rangeland watersheds.

Education

  • Ph.D. Watershed Management (Minor in Hydrology), University of Arizona
  • M.Sc. Forest Hydrology, Utah State University
  • B.Sc. Forest Management, Colorado State University

Professional Registrations

  • Certified Professional Hydrologist (#317) by American Institute of Hydrology
  • Professor Emeritus, Oregon State University
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J. Boone Kauffman, Ph.D. | Advisor | Scientist | Riparian Ecologist

Dr. Kauffman is an expert in fire and riparian ecology, having studied the effects of disturbance events and regimes in temperate and tropical ecosystems. His special interests include the roles of natural and anthropogenic disturbances in ecological analysis, wetlands ecology, biogeochemistry, and ecosystem restoration. Dr. Kauffman has diverse and wide international experience in ecological analysis: he has designed restoration initiatives for small streams in his home state of Oregon as well as quantified the synecological effects of cattle grazing to fire ecology in Brazil.

Also, he currently conducts carbon sequestration investigations in North America, Amazon Basin, and Central America, in compliance with 1997 Kyoto Protocol. Dr. Kauffman has taught at the Universidade de Brasilia and authored or co-authored over 50 professional publications as well as numerous book chapters during his career. Dividing his time between education, research, and consultation, Dr. Kauffman is an associate with Ecosystem Sciences participating in US and international watershed ecosystem management projects. He is an expert at creating study designs for ecological trend detection and analysis, meeting the empirical and theoretical needs of scientific rigor and the practical demands of logistical and economic capacity.

Education

  • Ph.D. Wildland Resource Science/Forest Ecology, University of California Berkeley
  • M.Sc. Rangeland Resources, Oregon State University
  • B.Sc. Range and Wildlife Science, Texas Tech University

Research Expertise

  • Ecosystems Ecology and Restoration
  • Fire Ecology
  • Wetlands/Riparian Ecology and Restoration
  • Disturbance Ecology
  • Ecology and effects of large herbivores on ecosystems
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