Brooks named recipient of 2009 Faculty Outreach Award

March 19, 2009

Robert P. Brooks, professor of geography and ecology in the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences and director of the Penn State Cooperative Wetlands Center, has received the 2009 Faculty Outreach Award.

The award honors faculty who have positively and substantially affected individuals, organizations or communities through problem solving or development as a result of extending their scholarship.

Brooks’ contributions to higher education's outreach mission are evident in all aspects of his work -- research and teaching, community-based environmental protection and engagement with environmental conservation policies at the local, state, regional, national and international levels.

As the Wetlands Center director, he oversees and conducts research on wetlands and related ecosystems and the issues surrounding their regulation and management. A primary goal is the dissemination of this information to institutions, agencies, industries and citizens to inform policy and planning initiatives.

A recent Center project, a Habitat Conservation Plan to protect the federally threatened bog turtle, is designed to solve conflicts between private landowners, developers and conservationists in Pennsylvania and Delaware, all of whom seeks to manage lands and waters differently. Under his guidance as project director, the Center has developed and delivered dozens of presentations and several workshops with groups as varied as land developers, municipal and county officials, and land conservancies. The Center is awaiting approval of the plan by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

An outcome of the recently completed Atlantic Slope Consortium Project, involving multiple partners, was to explain and promote the use of various ecological and socio-economic indicators for assessing the condition and health of aquatic ecosystems in the Mid-Atlantic region. As project director, Brooks participated in and encouraged the delivery of multiple presentations and interviews with environmental decision-makers and resource managers.

Last Updated March 24, 2009