Laura is a Professor at the University of Rhode Island in the Department of Natural Resources Science. Laura works with invasive species, ecological restoration, ecosystem services, and environmental indicators. Laura serves as the director for the URI minor in Restoration Ecology. She teaches courses on restoration ecological restoration, invasion biology, management and policy. Laura serves as Associate Editor-in-Chief for the journal Biological Invasions and is an Associate Editor for the journal Neobiota. Laura serves on the international Science Advisory Board for Stellenbosch University in South Africa and is on the Invasive Species Advisory Council for the National Invasive Species Council. She is an Aldo Leopold Leadership Fellow and a Fulbright Fellow. Prior to coming to the University of Rhode Island, Laura was a staff scientist and research associate at the H. John Heinz Center for Science, Economics and the Environment. She worked on The State of the Nation's Ecosystem project, a report on national-level ecological indicators in the United States (http:www.heinzcenter.orgecosystemsindex.htm). This project covers the six major ecosystem types in the U.S. aggregating data on system dimensions, chemical and physical characteristics, biological components, and human uses. From September 2001 through August 2003, Laura was an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Environmental Fellow. She spent the first year of this fellowship working with EPA and the National Invasive Species Council (NISC) on biosecurity and invasive species. This work resulted papers in BioScience and Frontiers in Ecology, as well as a letter in Science. During the second year of her AAAS fellowship, Laura received an appointment as a research scientist at the Smithsonian Institution where she worked with the Global Invasive Species Program (GISP) on two global assessments (one for island systems, one for freshwater systems) for the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). These assessments are available on the CBD website (www.biodiv.org). Although the AAAS fellowship is complete, Laura continues working with the National Invasive Species Council. Prior to her time in Washington, DC, Laura spent a year at Brown University as an Adjunct Assistant Professor where she taught introductory ecology and continued her research on invasive species and wetland systems. Her scientific interests are in invasion science and conservation biology. Laura defended her dissertation, "Ecosystem-level effects of Invasive species: A Phragmites case study in two freshwater tidal marsh ecosystems on the Connecticut River" in May 2000 at Yale University, School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.
Fellow at a Glance
University of Rhode Island