Biographical Information for Committee on the Scientific Bases of Colorado River Basin Water Management
Ernest T. Smerdon (NAE), Chair, is an expert in water resources engineering and management, especially in the U.S. West. Dr. Smerdon is a retired former vice-provost and dean of the College of Engineering and Mines at the University of Arizona. Dr. Smerdon has served as an advisor to the U.S. federal government and several foreign governments on water resources development and agricultural issues. Dr. Smerdon has served on several National Research Council (NRC) committees, most recently serving as chairman of the committee that authored Managing the Columbia River: Instream Flows, Water Withdrawals, and Salmon Survival (2004). Dr. Smerdon is thus well versed in western water science and policy matters and the NRC study process. Dr. Smerdon received his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees, all in engineering, from the University of Missouri.
Julio L. Betancourt is a research scientist with the U.S. Geological Survey Desert Laboratory in Tucson, Arizona. Dr. Betancourt’s research focuses on ecosystem and watershed responses to climate variability on different temporal and spatial scales. Dr. Betancourt employs various techniques and approaches to help reconstruct pre-instrumental hydrologic and climatic data. These include the use of rodent midden and tree-ring data in the Americas, and the design and testing of approaches that include historical documents and photographs, instrumental hydrologic and climatic data, long-term vegetation plots, tree rings, stable isotopes, ancient DNA, biometric measurements, alluvial stratigraphy, and ice core reconstruction. Dr. Betancourt received his B.A. degree in anthropology from the
University of Texas, Austin, and his M.S. and his Ph.D. degrees in geosciences from the University of Arizona.
Gordon W. “Jeff” Fassett, P.E., is the National Director for Water Resources at HDR Engineering, Inc. and is based in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Prior to joining HDR in 2006, he was president of Fassett Consulting LLC, where he specialized in water rights, water resources engineering, and water management and policy matters in the western states. Prior to opening his firm in 2000, Mr. Fassett served as the State Engineer of Wyoming from 1987 to 2000. In that post, he directed all policy, technical, and administrative issues of the cabinet-level state government agency responsible for the appropriation, beneficial use, and general supervision and regulation of all waters in the state. In addition, Mr. Fassett was Wyoming’s representative for all of the shared interstate rivers and worked on a variety of river, reservoir, and environmental water management issues, including those within the Colorado River basin. Mr. Fassett received his B.S. degree in civil engineering from the University of Wyoming.
Luis A. Garcia is a professor of civil engineering at Colorado State University, where he specializes in the fields of irrigation and drainage, decision support systems for water resources decision making, and computer modeling and geographic information systems applications. Dr. Garcia has worked on these issues in many locales across the U.S. West, as well as in several foreign countries, including Egypt, India, and Italy. Dr. Garcia received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in civil engineering from Texas A&M University, and his Ph.D. degree in civil engineering from the University of Colorado.
Donald C. Jackson is a professor of history at Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania. Dr. Jackson’s areas of professional interest are in western U.S. water development and history, and the engineering and political aspects of large dam construction and operations. Dr. Jackson’s books on these topics include Big Dams of the New Deal Era: A Confluence of Engineering and Politics, co-authored with David P. Billington (2006), Building the Ultimate Dam: John S. Eastwood and the Control of Water in the West (1995), and Great American Bridges and Dams (1988). Dr. Jackson has served as a fellow at the Dibner Institute for the History of Science and Technology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and as a fellow at The Huntington Library in San Marino, California. Dr. Jackson received
his B.S. degree in engineering from Swarthmore College, and his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in American studies from the University of Pennsylvania.
Dennis P. Lettenmaier is a professor of civil engineering at the University of Washington. Dr. Lettenmaier’s specialties are hydrologic modeling and prediction, hydroclimatology, and remote sensing. In addition to his service at the University of Washington where he has been a faculty member since 1976, he has served as a visiting scientist at the U.S. Geological Survey in Reston, Virginia (1985-1986) and as program manager of NASA’s Land Surface Hydrology Program at NASA Headquarters (1997-1998). Dr. Lettenmaier was the founding Chief Editor of the American Meteorological Society’s Journal of Hydrometeorology. He has authored or co-authored over 150 journal articles on topics ranging from the hydrologic impacts of climate change to Arctic hydrology. Dr. Lettenmaier received his B.S. degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Washington, his M.S. degree in civil, mechanical, and environmental engineering from George Washington University, and his Ph.D. degree in civil engineering from the University of Washington.
Eluid L. Martinez is the president of Water Resources Management Consultants LLC in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Prior to assuming his current position in 2001, Mr. Martinez served as the Commissioner of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation from 1995 to 2001. Before his service with the Bureau, Mr. Martinez served as the New Mexico State Engineer from 1990 to 1994. Mr. Martinez thus has experience in working with several western U.S. river management agreements and compacts, including the Colorado River, Rio Grande River, and the La Plata River. Mr. Martinez received his B.S. degree in civil engineering from New Mexico State University.
Stephen C. McCaffrey is Distinguished Professor and Scholar at University of the Pacific’s McGeorge School of Law and is an expert on international water resources law. He is a former chairman of the United Nations (UN) International Law Commission. During his time there he guided the work that formed the basis of the 1997 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Non-Navigational uses of International Watercourses, a treaty designed to ensure the equitable use of waters shared by more than one country. Dr. McCaffrey currently serves as legal consultant to the Nile River Basin Coopera-
tive Framework project, a UN-sponsored effort to forge a basin-wide agreement among the 10 basin states on utilization of Nile water resources. He has argued before the World Court, advised the State Department, and represented foreign governments in river-use disputes. Dr. McCaffrey has published a number of books and more than 70 articles in law journals. He received his B.A. degree from the University of Colorado, his J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley, and his Dr. iur. degree from the University of Cologne, Germany.
Eugene M. Rasmusson (NAE) is research professor emeritus in the Department of Meteorology at the University of Maryland in College Park. Dr. Rasmusson’s research interests are in the atmospheric general circulation and the global hydrologic cycle. Much of his research has centered on the relationship between sea-air interaction in the tropics and global precipitation variability, with particular emphasis on the El Niño phenomenon of the tropical Pacific. He also has interests in developing methods for improved prediction of climate variations and their impacts on water resources. Dr. Rasmusson received his B.S. degree in civil engineering from Kansas State University, his M.S. degree in engineering mechanics from St. Louis University, and his Ph.D. degree in meteorology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Kelly T. Redmond has served for 18 years as Regional Climatologist and 15 years as Deputy Director at the Western Region Climate Center, located at the Desert Research Institute in Reno, Nevada. He previously served 7 years as state climatologist for Oregon. Dr. Redmond’s research and professional interests span every facet of climate and climate behavior, its physical causes and variability, methods and properties of measurement systems, how climate interacts with other human and natural processes, and how such information is acquired, used, communicated, and perceived. He received a B.S. degree in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in meteorology from the University of Wisconsin.
Philip M. Smith is a consultant with Science Policy and Management in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He has been involved in national and international science and technology policy and program development for more than four decades. Mr. Smith has periodically been engaged in water research programs and policy over these years. From l981 to
mid-l994, he was Executive Officer of the National Academy of Sciences and the National Research Council. For more than 20 years Mr. Smith was a government research management and science and technology policy official with the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, Office of Management and Budget, and the National Science Foundation. He received B.S. and M.A. degrees from Ohio State University and was awarded an honorary D.Sc. degree by North Carolina State University.
Connie A. Woodhouse is an associate professor in the Department of Geography and Regional Development at the University of Arizona. Prior to joining the University of Arizona, she was a research scientist at the University of Colorado’s Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research and a physical scientist within the National Climatic Data Center of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration. In her research, Dr. Woodhouse has focused on the generation and interpretation of high-resolution records of climate for the past 2,000 years. Her current research includes tree-ring reconstructions of drought for the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains, and investigations into the mechanisms of long-term drought and impacts on ecosystems. Dr. Woodhouse received her B.A. degree from Prescott College, her M.S. degree in geography from the University of Utah, and her Ph.D. degree in geosciences from the University of Arizona.
Jeffrey W. Jacobs is a senior program officer at the NRC’s WSTB. Dr. Jacobs’ research interests include policy and organizational arrangements for water resources management and the use of scientific information in water resources decision making. He has studied these issues extensively both in the United States and in mainland Southeast Asia. Since joining the NRC in 1997, Dr. Jacobs has served as the study director of 17 NRC committees. He received his B.S. degree from Texas A&M University, his M.A. degree from the University of California, Riverside, and his Ph.D. degree from the University of Colorado.
Dorothy K. Weir is a research associate with the WSTB. She has worked on a number of studies including Everglades restoration progress, water quality improvement in southwestern Pennsylvania, and water sys-