Plenary Speakers

Opening Plenary

Tuesday, April 18, 2023
8:30am – 10:00am

Nicholas G. Aumen

Conference Chair

Regional Science Advisor – South Florida
USGS Southeast Region
Loxahatchee, FL

Nick Aumen is Regional Science Advisor for the U.S. Geological Survey (Southeast Region), overseeing the Greater Everglades Priority Ecosystem Sciences program. This program, involving USGS scientists nationwide, provides high quality science in support of Everglades restoration. Nick was an aquatic ecologist for 15 years with Everglades National Park, leading an interagency team of scientists tracking restoration progress. Prior to his National Park Service position, Nick was the Research Director at the South Florida Water Management District, directing a team of 120-plus scientists conducting research in support of ecosystem restoration. Nick received his B.S. and M.S. in biology at the University of West Florida, and his Ph.D. in microbial ecology at Oregon State University. He was a faculty member in the Biology Department at the University of Mississippi, and was a tenured Associate Professor of Biology when he returned to Florida. Nick presently is an affiliate faculty member at Florida Atlantic University (Department of Geosciences), and at the University of Florida (Soil and Water Science Department). He also served five years on the national Board of Directors of the Sierra Club, a 120-yr-old environmental organization with more than 750,000 members, and served two terms as its Vice-President and one as Treasurer.

K. Ramesh Reddy

Conference Co-Chair

Director, UF/IFAS School of Natural Resources and Environment
Graduate Research Professor, UF/IFAS Soil & Water Science Department
Gainesville, FL

Dr. K. Ramesh Reddy is the Director of the UF/IFAS School of Natural Resources and Environment and a Graduate Research Professor of the UF/IFAS Soil, Water, and Ecosystem Sciences Department. He holds a Ph.D. in soil science with specialization in biogeochemistry from Louisiana State University. He conducts research on coupled biogeochemical cycling of nutrients and other contaminants in wetlands and aquatic systems, as related to water quality, coupled biogeochemical cycling, ecosystem productivity, and restoration. He has worked on Florida’s wetlands and aquatic systems for more than 45 years. Dr. Reddy established an interdisciplinary program on biogeochemistry of wetlands and aquatic systems, through the Wetland Biogeochemistry Laboratory (WBL) established within the SWSD. Since its establishment in 1987, the WBL has provided a home for graduate students from various disciplines, postdoctoral associates and visiting scientists. He has served on numerous advisory committees at state, national, and international levels. He has served on the National Research Council Committee on Soil Science and the Committee on Independent Scientific Review of Everglades Restoration Progress. He also served on several U.S. Environmental Protection Agency committees including the Science Advisory Board Ecological Effects Committee, Wetland Connectivity Panel, and Lake Erie Phosphorus Objective Panel.

J. Scott Angle

Senior Vice President of Agriculture and Natural Resources
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL

Dr. J. Scott Angle is the University of Florida’s Senior Vice President for Agriculture and Natural Resources and leader of UF/IFAS. As chief executive of the agriculture and environmental sciences arm of a leading land-grant university, he champions public science as a path to improve lives and reduce human suffering. Dr. Angle leads nearly 2,300 employees who work in all 67 Florida counties. UF/IFAS encompasses the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, the Florida Cooperative Extension Service, and the Florida Agricultural Experiment Station.

Dr. Angle previously served as the Director of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) from October 2018 to July 2020. Prior to that, Angle worked for 24 years as a Professor of Soil Science and Associate Director of the Maryland Agricultural Experiment Station and Maryland Cooperative Extension at the University of Maryland. His early work focused on the study of losses of nutrients from agro-ecosystems and their impact on the Chesapeake Bay. He also studied the impact of heavy metals on the food chain with the goal of protecting our food supply from these harmful elements. Later, he concentrated his research on phytoremediation, the use of plants for extraction of heavy metals from soil. In 2005, he moved to Athens, Georgia, where he served as Dean and Director of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at the University of Georgia for 10 years.

A frequently published author, Angle is a fellow in the American Society of Agronomy and the Soil Science Society of America. He is also a Fulbright Fellow, having worked at Rothamsted Research in the UK.

Angle served as President and CEO of the International Fertilizer Development Center (IFDC) from 2015 to 2018, where he oversaw a staff of more than 800 and coordinated development projects in diverse regions of the world. IFDC provides solutions to alleviate global hunger and poverty through the promotion of economic development and self-sufficiency.

Angle earned his B.S. and M.S. at the University of Maryland in Agronomy and Soil Science, respectively. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Missouri with an emphasis on Soil Microbiology.

David Krabbenhoft

Keynote Speaker

Senior Scientist (Emeritus)
USGS Mercury Research Lab
Madison, WI

Dr. David Krabbenhoft is a Senior Research Scientist (emeritus) with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Mercury Research Lab, located in Madison, Wisconsin. Dave began working on environmental mercury sources and cycling in 1987, and since that time the topic has consumed his professional life. In 1993, Dave established the USGS’s Mercury Research Laboratory (MRL), which includes a team of multi-disciplinary mercury scientists and a state-of-the-art analytical facility strictly dedicated to low-level speciation and isotope analysis of mercury in all environmental media. Since its inception, the MRL as conducted mercury research projects that span environments as far ranging as the each of the world’s oceans, and freshwater systems from Alaska to Florida, California to New England, and more recently across the entire Great Lakes ecosystem.

While environmental mercury research has been his focus, the specifics of his research are wide ranging, including: atmospheric mercury sources and transport at local-to-global scales; cycling and fluxes of mercury in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems; biogeochemical controls on the bioavailability of mercury to methylation; and, human epidemiology studies. Over his career, Dave served on a large number of national and international level committees and panels regarding mercury pollution of the environment and has given testimony to the US Congress on several occasions. In 2006, he served as the co-host for the International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant, which was attended by over 1,200 researchers representing 54 countries across the globe. Since 1990, he has authored or coauthored over 190 papers on mercury in the environment. In 2015, Dave was promoted by USGS, Department of the Interior to Senior Research Scientist (ST), the highest level attainable by a scientist in the federal government system.

Design, Innovation and Governance (DIG) Plenary Session

Wednesday, April 19, 2023
8:30am – 10:00am

Fred Sklar

DIG Organizer

Director of the Everglades Systems Assessment Section
South Florida Water Management District
West Palm Beach, FL

Fred H. Sklar has a Masters in Oceanography and a Ph.D. in Wetland Ecology. He is currently the Director of the Everglades Systems Assessment Section of the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) in West Palm Beach. Dr. Sklar has published over 100 articles on the hydrology, soil, plant, and animal processes associated with both the degradation and restoration of wetland and coastal ecosystems. He is an Associate Editor for the ESA journal: Frontiers in Ecology; an executive member of the steering committee for the Florida Coastal Ecosystem LTER Program and a RECOVER Executive Committee member for the Restoration of the Everglades. Past memberships include the National Environmental Advisory Board to the Chief of the USACE; the Science and Engineering Advisory Committee for the Louisiana Water Institute of the Gulf; and scientific coordinator for the North Inlet Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER) program at the University of South Carolina.

Jeremy Conrad

Coastal Ecologist
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Sanibel Island, FL

Jeremy Conrad is a coastal ecologist with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service in the branch of Inventory and Monitoring providing natural resource program support for thirty National Wildlife Refuges throughout Florida and the Caribbean. Jeremy is a native of S. Florida and spent much of his free time as a youth at the beach or in the Everglades. His passion for the outdoors and conservation led him to earn a M.S. in Marine Ecology and a Ph.D. in Coastal/Estuarine Ecology focused on Everglade’s watershed management and the eutrophication of estuarine ecosystems. He has worked for the USFWS for over 15 years focusing on land management for federal trust species in Florida’s Everglades, Estuaries and Barrier Island systems. His experience and interest include wetland ecology with a focus on coastal wetland resiliency to large disturbance events and rising sea levels, disturbance ecology, climate change and ecological transformation, and non-native invasive species management.

Lawrence Glenn

Director, Water Resources Division
South Florida Water Management District
West Palm Beach, FL

Lawrence serves as Director of the Water Resources Division of the South Florida Water Management District. Glenn manages the Water Supply, Water Quality, and Applied Sciences Bureaus at the District. He supervises the water quality monitoring conducted across the District, updating of regional water supply plans, rulemaking for Minimum Flow and Levels and Water Reservations, and scientific monitoring to evaluate ecological conditions in the District’s lakes, rivers, estuaries, and Greater Everglades including Florida Bay. He is a 25-year veteran of participation in large-scale ecosystem restoration projects across the central and south Florida Landscape. He also serves as the Chairman of the South Florida Environmental Restoration Task Force Science Coordination Group and serves on the RECOVER Leadership Group.

John Stephen Kominoski

Associate Professor
Florida International University
Miami, FL

John Kominoski is an Associate Professor in the Institute of Environment and Department of Biological Sciences at Florida International University. He is the Lead Principal Investigator of the Florida Coastal Everglades Long Term Ecological Research program, which is funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF). His research focuses on biogeochemistry and ecosystem ecology, especially on organic matter processing and the dynamic role of disturbances on spatiotemporal patterns of carbon and nutrients in coastal ecosystems. John's research spans streams, wetlands, and coastal marshes and mangroves. He has conducted research for over 10 years in the Florida Everglades. John collaborates broadly and incorporates both ecological theory and application in his research. He is co-leading an NSF-funded Research Coordination Network called "Hurricane Ecosystem Response Synthesis" that compares storm characteristics and ecosystem responses across subtropical and tropical ecosystems. John has published more than 100 peer-reviewed articles, been awarded grants that have totaled over $15 million, and advised 9 Ph.D. and M.S. students. In 2022, he was honored as a Fellow by the Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography for his advances to aquatic ecology.

Denise J. Reed

Professor of Research GRATIS
University of New Orleans
New Orleans, LA

Denise J. Reed is an expert in coastal marsh sustainability and the role of human activities in modifying coastal systems with over 35 years of experience studying coastal issues in the United States and abroad. She has been involved in restoration and resilience planning in coastal Louisiana for over three decades, as well as in the California Bay-Delta, San Francisco Bay and Puget Sound, and has published extensively on the effects of sea-level rise on coastal marshes. Dr. Reed has served as a Distinguished Research Professor at the University of New Orleans and spent five years as Chief Scientist at The Water Institute of the Gulf. She has served on numerous boards and panels addressing the effects of human alterations on coastal environments and the role of science in guiding restoration including the NOAA Science Advisory Board, the Chief of Engineers Environmental Advisory Board, and a number of National Academies’ committees including USACE planning, Everglades restoration and the protection of sheltered shorelines. Dr. Reed received her B.S. degree in Geography from Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge and her M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from University of Cambridge, UK.

Stephanie Romañach

Research Ecologist
U.S. Geological Survey’s Wetland and Aquatic Research Center
Fort Lauderdale, FL

Stephanie Romañach is a Research Ecologist with the U.S. Geological Survey’s Wetland and Aquatic Research Center. Stephanie leads Joint Ecosystem Modeling (JEM), focused on developing predictive ecological models and decision support tools that help decision makers explore potential ecological impacts from ecosystem restoration and climate change. In addition to her work on Everglades restoration and conservation planning in Florida, she also works on natural resources conservation in Africa and Asia. She earned her Ph.D. and M.A. in Ecology from the University of California at Santa Barbara, and her B.S. in Zoology from the University of Florida.

G. Lynn Wingard

Research Geologist
USGS Florence Bascom Geoscience Center
Reston, VA

Lynn Wingard has been a Research Geologist with the U.S. Geological Survey since 1991 and is Project Chief of two Everglades projects. The majority of her work over the last 25 years has been in support of Everglades Restoration. Her research focuses on analyzing estuarine sediment cores to determine changes in coastal environments over the last 100-5000 years. Lynn’s combination of paleontological and modern data has provided Everglades resource managers with information on changes to freshwater flow into the estuaries, changes in habitats and species in the coastal environments, and long-term trends in sea level and climate. Her examination of centennial to millennial scale changes provides a long-term perspective on the impacts of drivers on the ecosystem. She has served on numerous scientific panels, is an associate editor of two journals, and is adjunct faculty at two universities. Lynn has served on several RECOVER Project Delivery Teams, most recently the Biscayne Bay Southeast Everglades Restoration PDT. She received her B.S. degree in geology from the College of William & Mary, Williamsburg, VA, and her M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from George Washington University, Washington, DC.

Closing Plenary

Thursday, April 20, 2023
3:30pm – 4:30pm

Shannon A. Estenoz

Keynote Speaker

Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks
Department of the Interior
Washington DC

Shannon Estenoz is the Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks with the U.S. Department of the Interior. She was most recently the Chief Operating Officer of The Everglades Foundation. Previously, Shannon served as Interior’s Director of Everglades Restoration Initiatives and Executive Director of the South Florida Ecosystem Restoration Task Force.

Shannon’s twenty four-year career in conservation includes roles with the World Wildlife Fund and the National Parks Conservation Association, and appointments by three Florida Governors including to the Governing Board of the South Florida Water Management District. Shannon is a fifth generation native of Key West, Florida, and holds degrees in International Affairs and Civil Engineering from Florida State University.