Harold C. Connolly, Jr., Professor and Department Chair

He is the Mission Sample Scientist and Co-I on NASA’s New Frontiers 3 asteroid sample return mission, OSIRIS-REx, and Co-I on JAXA’s Hayabusa2 asteroid sample return mission. Dr. Connolly’s research is focused on understanding the origin of rocky bodies in the Solar System through the study of asteroids and meteorites, the oldest rocks in our collections. He is the recipient of the Antarctic Service Medal from the U.S. government, has an asteroid named over him, 6761 Haroldconnolly, and is co-discoverer of the third mineral to form in the Solar System, Krotite.


Kenneth J. Lacovara, Professor of Paleontology and Dean of the School of Earth and Environment

Dr. Lacovara is a world-renowned paleontologist, best known for his discovery of the giant plant-eating dinosaur Dreadnoughtus, which weighed more than nine T. rex. He is the founding Dean of the School of Earth & Environment and founding Director of the Jean and Ric Edelman Fossil Park of Rowan University, where he and his team are investigating the mass extinction of the dinosaurs and 75% of life on Earth that occurred 65 million years ago. His work is featured in television documentaries, newspapers around the world and his TED has have been viewed by over one and a half million people. His book, Why Dinosaurs Matter, is available in bookstores around the globe and is an Amazon best-seller.

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Luke D. Trusel, Assistant Professor of Geology

Dr. Trusel’s works on the cutting-edge of climate change studies. By using ice cores from Greenland and Antarctica, he unravels the history of past Earth climates to help us better understand climate change in our future. Prior to arriving at Rowan University, Dr. Trusel was a Post-doctoral Fellow at the prestigious Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute.



Paul V. Ullman, Assistant Professor of Geology

Dr. Ullmann examines taphonomic and geochemical controls on the preservation of soft tissues and biomolecules in vertebrate fossils, seeking to shed light on chemical reaction pathways that facilitate their long-term preservation into the fossil record. His diverse research interests also include the anatomy and functional morphology of sauropod dinosaurs and the paleoecology of Jean and Ric Edelman Fossil Park at Rowan University.


Gerald T. Rustic, Assistant Professor of Geology

Dr. Rustic studies climate variability at human time scales to understand how short-term variability relates to long-term, large scale climate change. His main research focus is the El Niño Southern Oscillation, the largest source of interannual climate variability on planet Earth. He reconstructs past ocean states by analyzing the geochemical signatures of single-celled organisms called foramininfera found in deep-sea sediment cores. Before coming to Rowan, Gerry was a postdoctoral research scientist at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.



Post-doctoral Researchers

Kristyn K. Voegele, Postdoctoral Fellow.

Dr. Voegele's diverse research interests include myological reconstruction and biomechanical modeling of sauropod dinosaurs, as well as the study of ancient proteins. Her interdisciplinary research primarily explores the application of biomedical engineering models to extinct organisms. She is also assisting with investigation of the chronostratigraphic placement of the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary at the Jean and Ric Edelman Fossil Park at Rowan University.