During the past 38 years as a professional geologist, I have pursued my research in a variety of locations. Much of my field time has been spent in western North America, including several years in Nevada working on Carlin-type deposits, both in regional exploration efforts and in detailed research efforts.
In addition, I was a mine geologist at Climax for two years and spent three years in Alaska doing regional exploration. Before coming to the University of Nevada, I spent three years in New Zealand studying volcanic and geothermal systems and epithermal gold deposits.
Although much of my present research is geochemical in nature, it is based on fieldwork, and attempts to solve problems that were generated in the field. Understanding of field relations is of paramount importance for laboratory or experimental studies.
When not pursuing geological topics, much of my spare time is spent with aviation. I've been a pilot since 1979 and recently (2008) built my own airplane (in my garage) which I utilize to travel to field sites in western North America (I've taken it to places ranging from Texas to the Yukon). I also enjoy skiing (Telemark and cross-country) as well as hiking.
My research encompasses geochemical approaches to geological problems, particularly applications of both stable and radiogenic isotope geochemistry to problems of ore deposits, petrology, and fluid-rock interaction. Much of my current research focuses on Carlin-type and porphyry-epithermal mineral deposits, both in the Great Basin and worldwide at a variety of scales. I am also involved in crustal-scale isotope studies, utilizing stable isotopes in conjunction with other geochemical measures to elucidate crustal architecture. My work has been supported through grants from NSF, DOE, USGS, NATO and private industry.
Developed and funded the acquisition of the Nevada Stable Isotope Laboratory and acted as Director for 10 years; Research Scientist at the Institute of Geological and Nuclear Sciences, New Zealand, 3 years; Postdoctoral Fellow at Argonne National Laboratory, University of Chicago, Illinois, 3 years; 9 years working for various mining companies and as an independent consulting geologist (which I continue to do on a sporadic basis) in various locations worldwide.
My primary teaching responsibilities at the University of Nevada include introductory and advanced courses in Economic Geology and Isotope Geochemistry as well as field courses (including Directing our Summer Field Camp). Two important skills I hope to embody in my teaching are communication and critical thinking, in a geological context. Critical thinking skills are necessary for sorting the useful from the non-useful, for reading others' work with a discriminating eye when comparing contrasting ideas.
In my courses, I emphasize excelling in both writing and speaking skills. Finally, while it is important to direct students toward current job markets, that should not be done to the detriment of a broad general education in geology. Those who have been successful in making job transitions between different areas of geology are those who have a solid, varied background. I make all of my students aware of this, and encourage a broad education. For a more complete description of the courses in which I am involved see the link above.