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Faculty

John Downing - Professor

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John Downing is a professor of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, and the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering at Iowa State University. His research interests include limnology, aquatic ecology, terrestrial ecology, microbial ecology, biogeochemistry, population conservation, and whole ecosystem restoration and management. John is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography, an invited member of the North American Nitrogen Center, and has advised many policy-makers and citizens groups concerning water quality management. He received his BS from Hamline University (St. Paul, MN), his MS from NDSU (Fargo, ND) and his PhD from McGill University (Montreal, Canada). He was formerly a professor at McGill University and the University of Montreal where he was Director of the Laurentian Biological Station. He has been at ISU since 1995 and is the Director of the Iowa State University Limnology Laboratory and has surveyed water quality in Iowa’s lakes since 2000.

Email:downing@iastate.edu
Phone: (515)-294-8880

Staff (Professional and Scientific)


Dan Kendall – Research Associate Biology Lab

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Dan Kendall is a limnologist in the Limnology Laboratory at Iowa State University. His research interests are in aquatic biology and plankton ecology and his specialty is innovative strategies for monitoring aquatic ecosystems. He has a BS in Aquatic Biology from University of California (Santa Barbara). He has managed the Biology Laboratory for ISU Limnology Laboratory since 2003.
Email:dlk@iastate.edu
Phone: (515) 294-2170


Lisa Whitehouse – Research Associate Chemistry Lab

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Lisa is the Limnology laboratory supervisor in the Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology Department at Iowa State University. Before coming to Iowa State, Lisa earned her Bachelor’s in environmental science and the University of South Florida. Her undergraduate research interests included the automated analysis of phosphorus fractions in siliciclastic versus basaltic origin sediments from the Gulf of Mexico and Maui, Hawaii. She then received her Master’s degree in environmental science from Florida Atlantic University. Her graduate research interests included nutrient availability and limitation in the Indian River Lagoon, Florida and the Florida Keys and competition among morphologically and physiologically distinct macroalgae. Lisa enjoys water quality research and is very excited to have made the transition from oceanography to limnology.
Email:lwhiteho@iastate.edu
Phone: (515) 294-7373


Shanmukha Anjenaya Varma Pericharla – Systems Analyst

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Varma is a systems analyst in the Limnology Laboratory at Iowa State University. He manages the Information Technology systems of the laboratory. He is responsible for research data flow and utilization, database quality control, and data reporting with internet technologies. He has a BE in Electronics and Communications Engineering and is pursuing his Masters in Computer Science from Iowa State University (Ames, IA). He started working on Iowa water quality monitoring projects from 2015.
Email:varma@iastate.edu
Phone: (732) 983-8738

Post Doctorial

Christopher T. Filstrup – Postdoctoral Fellow

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Christopher Filstrup is a postdoctoral fellow in the Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology Department at Iowa State University. His research interests include limnology, phytoplankton ecology, biogeochemistry, and management of aquatic resources. He received his BS degree from the University of Texas at Austin and his PhD from Baylor University (Waco, TX) where he studied allochthonous organic matter contributions and eutrophication in water supply reservoirs under the direction of Owen T. Lind. Before joining the Iowa State University Limnology Laboratory in 2010, Chris worked for the Center for Spatial Research at Baylor University and was responsible for watershed and lake modeling and teaching introductory Geographic Information Systems (GIS) courses for the Geology Department.
Email:filstrup@iastate.edu
Phone: (515) 294-6363



Clayton J. Williams

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Clayton J. Williams is a postdoctoral fellow in the Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology at Iowa State University. Clay is interested in human-land-water interactions, the environmental consequences of these interactions, and developing sustainable outcomes from the management of these interactions. His research is rooted in aquatic microbial ecology, oceanography, limnology, and biogeochemistry but actively borrows from outside this foundation to form more comprehensive questions and understandings. Clay received his BS in Zoology and Psychology at the Ohio State University (Columbus, Ohio, USA) and his PhD from Florida International University (Miami, Florida, USA). Prior to joining Iowa State and the Downing lab, Clay was a postdoctoral fellow at Trent University (Peterborough, Ontario, Canada) investigating the impacts of land use/cover and human activity on stream, lake, and stormwater pond dissolved organic matter cycles and ecosystem quality.
Email:claytonw@iastate.edu       Clayton's CV
Phone: (515) 294-6363


Graduate Students

Anna Belyaeva

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Anna Belyaeva is a graduate student in the Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology at Iowa State University and a Research Assistant in the ISU Limnology Laboratory. She received a M.S. degree in Ecology from Siberian Federal University in 2006. She came to the USA after receiving the Great Lakes Fellowship from Cooperative Institute for Limnology and Ecosystems Research and worked on collecting and processing macroinvertebrate samples from the Great Lakes under Tom Nalepa (NOAA). She continued working as a research technician on other projects within Great Lakes Environment Research Laboratory. Since 2010 Anna is pursuing a PhD degree from ISU under Dr. John Downing. Her research interests include biological indication of water quality, restoration and community ecology.
Email:belyaeva@iastate.edu


Ana (Mindy) Morales

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Mindy is a graduate student in the department of Ecology, Evolution and Organismal Biology at Iowa State University. She received her B.S. in Biological Sciences at Florida International University in Miami, FL in 2009 and her M.Sc. in Environmental and Life Science at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario in 2011. Her M.Sc. thesis focused on the effects of dissolved organic matter quality on trace metal biogeochemistry in shallow lakes. She is currently pursuing a Ph.D. with Dr. John A. Downing to investigate triggers of cyanobacterial dominance in lakes. Her research interests include biogeochemical nutrient cycling, algal and microbial ecology, and harmful phytoplankton blooms in freshwater and coastal systems.
Email:ammora@iastate.edu


Hannah Carroll

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Hannah is a graduate student in the Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology at Iowa State University and a Research Assistant in the ISU Limnology Laboratory. She received a B.S. in Environmental Science at the University of Washington, Tacoma in 2008. In 2012, she joined the ISULL to pursue a Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology with John Downing. Her research focuses on the reconstruction of past environmental conditions and lake trophic status using the pollen record contained in lake sediments.
Email:hcarroll@iastate.edu

Lab Alumni

Adam Heathcote

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Adam Heathcote is a graduate student in the Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology at Iowa State University and a Research Assistant in the ISU Limnology Laboratory. He received a B.S. degree in Animal Ecology from ISU in 2005 and returned to work on his Ph. D. in 2007 under Dr. John A. Downing. His research interests include aquatic, restoration, and community ecology; paleolimnology; and computational statistics.
Email:aheathco@iastate.edu


Michelle Balmer

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Michelle Balmer is a graduate student in the Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology at Iowa State University and a Research Assistant in the ISU Limnology Laboratory. She earned her B.S. in Biology and Anthropology in 2007 from Iowa State University. Michelle came to the ISULL in 2008 as the first Carlander-Bachmann Intern and began working on her M.S. in 2009 under John A. Downing. Her research interests include applied, aquatic, and ecosystem ecology; biogeochemistry; watershed management; and the anthropogenic effects on water quality.
Email:mbbalmer@iastate.edu

Carlander-Bachmann Intern