Hopkins Memorial Forest

People

Faculty

David Dethier

Ph. D., Chair of Geosciences Department Chair of Hopkins Forest Users Committee
Professor Dethier revitalized the meteorogical and hydrological monitoring program (originally established by the U.S. Forest Service in the 1930s) in the Hopkins Forest shortly after his arrival at Williams in 1983. There, in addition to standard quantitative parameters, Dethier and his staff monitor precipitation and stream chemistry as well. Additionally, he studies sediment transport within the Birch Brook system, the Forest’s main watershed, and has done a good deal on local glacial geology and groundwater and has investigated the effects of acid rain on New England soils. When he is not in the Forest, Dr. Dethier studies geomorphology in the western states. email

Henry Art

Ph.D. Biology
Dr. Art’s research involves the investigation of long-term changes in the various plant communities in the Hopkins Forest, and the extent to which natural and human-use disturbances have played a role in shaping the present patterns of these communities and ecosystems. This study has involved the collection of data from a grid of permanent monitoring plots initiated in 1935 by the U.S. Forest Service when they operated the facility. Deed history, oral history, and other socioeconomic data have complemented the ecological data bases on the Hopkins Forest. . email

Joan Edwards

Ph.D. Biology
Joan Edwards’ study of the population dynamics of the invasive plant, garlic mustard (Alliaria petiolata), continued into 2000. Student assistants continued collecting data on established plots in three different areas in Hopkins Forest. By analyzing these data over a number of years, Dr. Edwards aims to gain insight into garlic mustard’s success in forests of different ages, its rate of invasion, and its effects on native flora. In addition, Dr. Edwards has been studying the population dynamics of several boreal plant species on Isle Royale, Michigan. email

David C. Smith

Ph.D. Biology
A main area of interest to Dr. Smith is the Evolutionary Ecology of Vertebrates. His research focuses on the factors determining the distribution and abundance of vertebrates with a current emphasis on how phenotypic traits interact with ecological factors to shape natural amphibian communities. In addition to studying chorus frogs and spring peepers in Michigan, Dr. Smith has investigated the winter flocking and foraging ecology in black-capped chickadees in Hopkins Forest in the past. He also spends considerable time in the forest while teaching “Communities and Ecosystems” (BIOL 312).email

Jay Thoman

As a fisherman, Dr. Thoman is particularly concerned about toxic metals that have been found in the flesh of fish. In collaboration with Prof. David Dethier of the geology department, he has been investigating the distribution and bioaccumulation of heavy metals in the local environment. Dr. Thoman also co-teaches Introduction to Environmental Science (ENVI 102), which features the forest in many of its labs.

 

Manuel Morales

Ph.D. Biology
The newest comer to Hopkins Forest, Dr. Morales is interested in the symbiotic relationships between homopterans and ants in goldenrod communities. Dr. Morales will be setting up plots, aimed at exploring these relationships, in the Hopkins Forest in the upcoming year. Morales co-teaches the “Introduction to Environmental Sciences” course (ENVI 102) which makes extensive use of the Hopkins Forest. email

Staff

Drew Jones

Manager of Hopkins Forest
Drew came to Williams to manage Hopkins Forest in the summer of 1999. In addition to his managerial responsibilities, and with a background in wildlife biology, Drew is interested in the issues of biodiversity within the forest. email

 

Jay Racela

Technician–Environmental Analysis Lab
As the Technical Assistant for the Environmental Analysis Lab, Jay is charged with data retrieval and upkeep of the Forest’s four weather stations and two stream gauging stations. Jay is also responsible for chemical and quantitative analysis and management of those data. Jay arrived at CES in the Fall ’03–we’re glad to have him and his impressive credentials aboard. email

Scott Lewis

Director of Williams Outing Club
Mr. Lewis is involved in the Hopkins Forest primarily as a recreational resource. He, along with the student members of the Williams Outing Club, conduct recreational and educational programs in the forest; under his purview falls the Outing Club cabin, ropes course and maintenance of certain trails. email