The Paleontological Society

Photo courtesy of the University of Colorado Museum of Natural History


Paleontology is a lively area of research, and media coverage of new discoveries creates a sense of excitement about our field in students and the general public.  As part of the Paleontological Society’s mission to advance the science of paleontology, we encourage paleontologists to engage the public, the media, government officials, P-16 educators and their students to promote understanding of the importance of paleontological research.

The following Paleontological Society members have volunteered to serve as regional resources for the public, the media, local and state governments, and P-16 educators and their students.  These scientists have agreed to field general questions in paleontology; each paleontologist’s more specific areas of expertise are also listed.
Please contact a resource person directly to gather basic paleontological information or solicit expert feedback on paleontological questions.  Note that the views expressed by these scientists are their own, and do not necessarily reflect the official position of the Paleontological Society.

The Paleontological Society hopes that you will take advantage of this opportunity to communicate with active researchers in our field.  If you have questions about this program, please contact Peter Wilf

Researcher  Principal Topics
Bruce Runnegar Precambrian Paleobiology, Cambrian Explosion, Ediacaran organisms, Molecular Evolution and the fossil record
Douglas Erwin End Permian Mass Extinction, Recoveries from Mass Extinctions, Cambrian Radiation, Burgess Shale Fauna, Evolution of Molluscs
H. Richard Lane Paleontology in Industry, Paleozoic Life, Conodont Microfossils, Biostratigraphy, Employment in Paleontology, Paleozoic Reefs, Endangered Fossil Sites, Oil Exploration, 21st Century Paleontology
Jere H. Lipps Microfossils, Foraminifera, Science and the Media, Museum Outreach, Paleoceanography

US Regions Cordilleran North Central Northeastern Rocky Mountain South-Central Southeastern


- Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont

FirstName LastName Title Department Institution State Email Phone Website Topic1 Topic2 Topic3
Susan Butts Senior Collections Manager Division of Invertebrate Paleontology Yale - Peabody Museum CT 203-432-3037 Brachiopods and Marine Invertebrates


Silicified fossils

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- Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virgina, West Virginia, Puerto Rico

FirstName LastName Title Department Institution State Email Phone Website Topic1 Topic2 Topic3 Topic4 Topic5
David Campbell Research Associate Biological Sciences University of Alabama AL     Invertebrates Evolution      
Martin Farley Assistant Professor Geology & Geography Univ. of North Carolina at Pembroke NC 910-521-6478   Palynology Stratigraphy Cretaceous Cenozoic Science education
Patricia Kelley Professor Geography and Geology University of North Carolina Wilmington NC     Marine invertebrates Coastal Plain Evolution Creationism Science and religion
David Kopaska-Merkel Section Head Petroleum Systems and Technology Geological Survey of Alabama AL 205-247-3695   Carbonate geology Science education Invertebrate paleontology Petroleum geology Jurassic
Rowan Lockwood Associate Professor Geology College of William & Mary VA 757-221-2878 Mass extinction Evolution Mollusks Coastal Plain fossils K/T extinction
Sally Walker Associate Professor Geology University of Georgia GA 706-542-2396 Marine and terrestrial invertebrates Fossil forensics (taphonomy) Evolution Paleoecology  

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- Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, Wisconsin

FirstName LastName Title Department Institution State Email Phone Website Topic1 Topic2 Topic3 Topic4 Topic5
R.A. Davis Professor Biology College of Mount St. Joseph OH 513-244-4699   Marine invertebrates cephalopods organic evolution General paleontology  
Rodney Feldmann Professor Emeritus Geology Kent State University OH 330-672-2506 Marine invertebrate fossils Antarctic paleontology Fossil decapod crustaceans from New Zealand, Antarctica, Patagonia, Romanian Jurassic evolutionary explosion of fossil crabs  
Daniel Hembree Assistant Professor Geological Sciences Ohio University OH 740-597-1495 Trace fossils Paleosols Vertebrate paleontology    
Roy Plotnick Professor Earth and Environmental Sciences University of Illinois at Chicago IL 312-996-2111 Paleoecology Macroevolution Mathematical methods Marine invertebrates Chicago area geology
Carrie Schweitzer Associate Professor Geology Kent State University OH 330-244-3303 or 330-672-2505 Decapoda Crustacea excluding Ostracoda Marine Invertebrates Evolution Paleogene
Alycia Stigall Associate Professor Geological Sciences Ohio University OH 740-593-0393 Marine invertebrates Cincinnati fossils Mass extinction Evolution Biogeography
Margaret Yacobucci Associate Professor Geology BGSU OH 419-372-7982 Fossil cephalopods (ammonites) Marine invertebrate animals Evolution Cretaceous Period Undergraduate science education

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- Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Texas

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- Arizona north of lat 35°N, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Wyoming

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- Alaska, Arizona south of lat 35°N, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Oregon, Washington


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