Chatham University

The Rachel Carson Legacy Conference 2012:
Our Planet and Our Health - The Impact of Silent Spring after 50 Years

Speaker Profiles

Francesca Santoro, Ph.D.

Francesca Santoro, Ph.D.

Program Manager, Intergovernmental Oceanic Commission, UNESCO

Francesca Santoro is currently Programme Specialist at the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO. She is part of the Tsunami and to the Ocean Sciences Sections. Moreover, she is the Gender Equality Focal Point for IOC at UNESCO. She is currently working on two EU funded projects: one on the development of a Tsunami Information Centre for the North-eastern Atlantic, the Mediterranean and connected seas, and a second one on the implementation of the Integrated Coastal Zone Management Protocol for the Mediterranean. She has been previously working for the Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change and for the University Ca' Foscari of Venice where she has been undertaking research activities on climate change adaptation in coastal zone. Moreover, she has been lecturer of the course "Climate Change and Coastal Zone" at the University Ca' Foscari of Venice PhD Programme in Science and Management of Climate Change. She has also been consultant for the United Nations Environmental Programme - Mediterranean Action Plan, and for the International Marine Centre. She has been working in a number of EU funded research and cooperation projects mainly on integrated coastal zone management and climate change adaptation. She holds a PhD in Analysis and Governance of Sustainable Development, and a Master in Integrated Coastal Zone Management, and an MSc in Environmental Sciences.

Nancy B. Jackson

Bill Kovarik

Professor of Communication, Radford University

Kovarik is Professor of Communication at Radford University in the Blue Ridge mountains of southwestern Virginia. He teaches science and environment writing, media history and media law. He has written extensively about environmental and energy issues for publications ranging from the New York Times to Earth Island Journal. He is also an environmental historian and has served as a consultant with the Nebraska State Historical Society, Lloyds of London and other organizations. Kovarik is a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University (1974), the University of South Carolina (M.A., 1983) and the University of Maryland (Ph.D., 1993). His Ph.D. dissertation, The Ethyl Controversy, explored the role of the news media in protecting the public interest in a scientific controversy over leaded gasoline and safer alternatives. Kovarik has also served as an academic representative on the board of directors of the Society of Environmental Journalists and on the editorial board of Appalachian Voice. Kovarik is the editor of the Environmental History Timeline and is working on a new book about the history of renewable energy called Brilliant.

Nancy B. Jackson

Nancy B. Jackson, Ph.D.

Manager, International Chemical Threat Reduction Department, Global Security Center, Sandia National Laboratories

The International Chemical Threat Reduction Department in the Global Security Center at Sandia National Laboratories assists the U.S. Department of State and other federal agencies in solving problems related to international chemical security. With the U.S. Department of State, Dr. Jackson has developed the Chemical Security Engagement Program (CSP) an international program to raise awareness of chemical safety and security among chemical professionals and to enable the practice of safety and security in the research, teaching, and commerce of chemicals. CSP has worked with universities and small/medium chemical companies in Southeast Asia, South Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa. Her group is responsible for encouraging the safe and secure practice of chemicals in an effort to prevent their misuse as weapons, poisons, explosives or environmental pollutants. This includes providing training in laboratory safety, process safety, and physical security.

Previously, Dr. Jackson was deputy director of Sandia’s International Security Program where she assisted the director in fulfilling its mission to create technology-based solutions through international cooperation to reduce the threat of weapons of mass destruction proliferation and terrorism. During the past four years, Dr. Jackson was responsible for leading the Laboratory Directed Research and Development program for Global Security which requires identifying and overseeing the research program in support of Global Security. Prior to her positions in Global Security, Dr. Jackson was involved in research and development at Sandia, as a principal investigator and a manager. Primarily her research was in heterogeneous catalysis with an emphasis on energy applications. Later work involved chemical imaging with a wide variety of applications from biological systems to homeland defense problems.

Dr. Jackson is a National Affiliate of the National Academies where she has served on several boards and chaired studies. She is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry and was recipient of the 2005 American Indian Science and Engineering Society Professional of the Year Award. She is a Research Associate Professor at the Chemical and Nuclear Engineering Department of the University of New Mexico. Dr. Jackson has a B.S. degree in chemistry from George Washington University from which she won a Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 2005 and has a Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of Texas at Austin.

In 2009, she was elected to the Presidential succession of the American Chemical Society. She will serve as President-Elect for 2010, President for 2011, and Immediate Past President for 2012.


Harry Campbell

Senior Scientist, Chesapeake Bay Foundation

With nearly 20 years of experience in water quality protection and restoration, Senior Scientist Harry Campbell shares his engages with a broad range of stakeholders to foster a better understanding of the challenges involved in achieving water quality improvements. Mr. Campbell works with all levels of government, scientists, businesses, and concerned citizens to engage discussion and to drive tangible improvements in water quality, which employs the specific skill and ability to translate the technical, regulatory, and policy-oriented aspects of clean water. Campbell serves on numerous statewide committees and workgroups that focus on water quality policies, guidance, and regulations for Pennsylvania and the Chesapeake Bay. His professional experience spans academia, private consulting, governmental, and non-governmental sectors, and he holds a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Resource Management and a Master of Science in Environmental Pollution Control from the Pennsylvania State University. See for more information about the Chesepeake Bay Foundation.


Terry Collins

Teresa Heinz Professor of Green Chemistry and Director, Institute of Green Science, Carnegie Mellon University

A champion in the field of green chemistry, Terry Collins has been recognized internationally for his work in creating a new class of oxidation catalysts with the potential for enormous, positive impact on the environment. Experts worldwide believe that Collins’ systems can be used effectively to replace chlorine-based oxidants in large global technologies so that some of society’s most toxic chlorinated residuals are not produced. The systems also enable valuable new technologies for previously unsolved environmental and health problems. Collins’ honors include the Environmental Protection Agency’s 1999 Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award and the Pittsburgh Award from the American Chemical Society. Collins is an honorary professor and a Distinguished Alumni Award recipient of the University of Auckland, New Zealand, a fellow of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and the World Innovation Institute, and a Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar. He is associate editor for the Americas of the journal “Green Chemistry.” Collins earned his undergraduate and doctor’s degrees from the University of Auckland, New Zealand. He became a member of the Carnegie Mellon faculty in 1987.


Patricia DeMarco, Ph.D.

Director, Rachel Carson Institute at Chatham University

DeMarco is Director of the Rachel Carson Institute in the School of Sustainability and the Environment at Chatham University following a five year term as Executive Director of the Rachel Carson Homestead Association. She is a native of Pittsburgh, and received a Bachelor of Science and a Doctorate in Biology from the University of Pittsburgh. She pursued a career in biochemical genetics research at Yale University and at Boston University School of Medicine with a focus on mutation mechanisms. She spent thirty years in energy and environmental policy serving both public sector and private sector roles including Commissioner of Regulatory Commission of Alaska. DeMarco serves on the Leadership team for Women for a Healthy Environment and has been recognized by the Women and Girls Foundation among Outstanding Women Greening Pittsburgh in 2011. DeMarco has adjunct faculty appointments at the University of Pittsburgh and Duquesne University teaching energy and environmental policy.


Janice Webb Donatelli

Artemis Environmental

Janice Webb Donatelli is an educator, environmentalist and entrepreneur who offers consulting in product selection and integrating sustainable practices in this transformative ‘green’ building economy.

Donatelli co-founded ARTEMIS Environmental, a wholesale/retail company of sustainable building materials from the infra-structure to the interior design. The focus of ARTEMIS is to provide the architectural and design community; as well as the DIY, contractor and developer, the value of healthy living. Donatelli was named Entrepreneur of the Year for her business endeavors, mentoring and environmental stewardship. She was also recognized by the Women’s and Girl’s Foundation for Outstanding Women Greening Pittsburgh. Originally from Kentucky, Donatelli received her BA from the University of Kentucky and did her graduate studies at the University of Pittsburgh. She lives and works in Pittsburgh, PA and travels to promote environmental education by writing and speaking on sustainable practices. Donatelli has been featured on WQED and WTAE; in Pittsburgh Magazine, Pittsburgh Post Gazette, Business Times and other publications.


David Hassenzahl, Ph.D.

Dean of the School for Sustainability and the Environment at Chatham University

Hassenzhal is an internationally recognized scholar of sustainability and risk analysis, and has spent more than two decades addressing subjects as diverse as climate change, energy, toxic chemicals, and public health. His research focuses on incorporating scientific information and expertise into public decisions, with particular emphasis on the management, interpretation, and communication of uncertainty. Among his many publications are Should We Risk It, co-authored with Daniel M. Kammen, and Environment, with Peter Raven and Linda Berg. He holds a B.A. in environmental science and paleontology from the University of California at Berkeley, and a Ph.D. in science, technology and environmental policy from Princeton University. Dr. Hassenzahl’s efforts in climate change education have been supported by the National Science Foundation and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and recognition for his educational work includes the Society for Risk Analysis Outstanding Educator Award and the UNLV Foundation Distinguished Teaching Award. He is a Senior Fellow of the National Council for Science and the Environment, is a founding council member of the Association of Environmental Studies and Sciences, and serves on the Executive Committee of the Pennsylvania Environmental Resource Consortium. From 2000–2010, Dr. Hassenzahl was assistant professor, associate professor, and chair in the Department Environmental Studies Program at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Prior to his academic career, Dr. Hassenzahl worked in the private sector as an environmental manager at a pulp and paper mill, and in the public sector as an inspector for the (San Francisco) Bay Area Air Quality Management District.


George P. Cobb III, Ph.D.

Professor, Baylor Univesity

Dr. George P. Cobb is a Professor at Baylor University, where he serves as Chair of the Department of Environmental Science. Prof. Cobb received a BS in Chemistry from the College of Charleston (1982), where he conducted his first environmental research project, evaluating the uptake of pesticides and metals into sea turtles on the South Carolina Coast. Thereafter, he received a Ph.D. in Chemistry from The University of South Florida (1989), where he developed sampling strategies to determine vapor/particle distribution of atmospheric organic chemicals.

Prof. Cobb began his academic career in 1990 as a charter member of the Department of Environmental Toxicology at Clemson University. He then served as a charter member of the Department of Environmental Toxicology at Texas Tech University (1997-2011).

Throughout his career, Prof. Cobb has used novel sampling and analysis techniques to evaluate toxicant transport, transformation, and biological exposure processes. He has applied these techniques to the rapid and cost effective assessment of risks at hazardous waste sites, in industrial settings, within agricultural monocultures, and near concentrated animal feeding operations. He has published over 105 peered reviewed journal articles and numerous book chapters. Prof. Cobb has graduated 27 Masters and Ph.D. students with degrees that encompass mathematics, engineering, chemistry and environmental toxicology. These alumni have established impactful careers in academic, industry and government settings.

Prof. Cobb serves in leadership positions within the American Chemical Society, primarily within the Division of Environmental Chemistry. He is an alternate Councilor and Treasurer for ENVR. Prof. Cobb was also part of an ACS delegation that traveled to Serbia and Montenegro to establish a Memorandum of Understanding between ACS and the Serbian Chemistry Society. Prof. Cobb has participated in many United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) panels to evaluate risks of pesticides and genetically modified organisms. He also serves on the World Council for the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC), and is the immediate past President of SETAC North America.


Robert Kumpf, Ph.D.

Chief Operating Officer, for Plextronics, Inc.

Dr. Kumpf leads the Plextronic’s research, engineering, and manufacturing operations. He came to Plextronics after a successful 25-year career at Bayer Material Science where he most recently served as Bayer Material Science’s Chief Administrative Officer. During his tenure at Bayer he also held executive leadership roles in the Polymer Division, Polyurethane Division, Plastics Division and Future Business Group. During this time he served two European assignments for Bayer Material Science. Dr. Kumpf joined Bayer in 1988 as a research chemist after graduating with a doctorate degree from the Materials Science and Engineering Department at The Pennsylvania State University. He currently holds 20 U.S. and European patents and has published 21 articles in various scientific journals. He is active in various non-profit organizations and currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Industrial Research Institute. In addition, he is a member of the Board of the Pennsylvania Nanomaterials Commercialization Center, the Pennsylvania State University Materials Science and Engineering External Advisory Board, and the Carnegie Science Center STEM Advisory Board. Dr. Kumpf was appointed by PA Governors Rendell and Corbett to serve on the board of directors for the Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority, one of the largest technology development programs in the nation. In 2010, Dr. Kumpf was named Adjunct Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at The Pennsylvania State University. See for information about the company.


Joel Thomas

Manager, Business Development, Community Energy, Inc.

Joel is the project manager for the marketing and sales of Keystone Solar RECs. The Keystone Solar Project will be the largest solar project upon completion. In this role, Joel is working with universities and commercial institutions to bridge the gap between today, when renewables are more expensive, and tomorrow, when renewables achieve grid parity. Joel has led the product development and marketing for multiple products, including Community Solar Shares, Residential Solar Leases, and Keystone SRECs. Through these products, Joel has marketed and sold green solutions to residential as well as commercial institutions. Joel also serves as an adjunct professor at UNC Kenan-Flagler, teaching a renewable energy course on Wind and Solar project development and financing in Kenan-Flagler’s full time MBA program.

Prior to Community Energy, Joel co-founded and directed Nourish International, which engages college students and empowers students to eradicate global poverty. Joel holds a BS in Biology from UNC-Chapel Hill and an MBA from UNC Kenan-Flagler. See for more information about Community Energy Inc. at www.


Wenying Xu, Ph.D.

Vice President for Academic Affairs, Chatham University

Wenying Xu, Ph.D. provides administrative oversight and academic leadership at Chatham, which has experienced the fastest-growing enrollment in the Pittsburgh region throughout the past decade. Xu most recently served as professor and chair of English and interim associate dean of the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Fla., where she was closely engaged in accreditation and enrollment management and oversaw budget, tenure cases, and graduate programs. She just completed a three-year term serving as president of the Society for the Study of the Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States. Born and raised in China, Xu received her B.A. in English from Hebei University, where she taught English for three years after receiving her degree. She came to the United States for graduate studies at West Virginia University, where she received an M.A. in English. Xu received her Ph.D. in English from the University of Pittsburgh, where she wrote her dissertation on a comparative study of 19th century American and Chinese realism, a study of literature as social criticism in two different cultures. She had the honor of serving as a Fulbright Lecturer at Xiamen University in China. In 1999, Xu attended the prestigious Iowa Summer Fiction Workshop.