Photo of Rich Koehler next to a large rock wall.

Rich Koehler

Associate Professor, Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology


Dr. Koehler has been an Assistant Professor at the University of Nevada, Reno within the Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology since 2015. Prior to his current position he worked in state government and the private sector including positions as a Senior Earthquake Geologist at the State of Alaska Department of Geological and Geophysical surveys and as a Project Geologist at William Lettis & Associates in Walnut Creek, CA.

Research interests

Neotectonics, paleoseismology, earthquake geology, Quaternary geology, geomorphology, Quaternary stratigraphy, engineering geology, geologic hazard assessment.

Research focus areas include Nevada, California, Alaska, Caribbean Islands.


  • Ph.D., University of Nevada, Reno, 2009
  • M.S., Humboldt State University, 1997
  • B.A., University of California, Santa Cruz, 1992

Selected publications

  • Wong, I., Thomas, P., Koehler, R.D., and Lewandowski, N., (2019), Assessing the seismic hazards in Jamaica incorporating geodetic and Quaternary fault data, Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, Vol. 109, No. 2, pp. 716-731, doi: 10.1785/0120180205.
  • Koehler, R.D., (2018), Active faulting in the North Valleys region of Reno, Nevada: A distributed zone within the northern Walker Lane, Geomorphology, v. 326, p. 38-53,
  • Koehler, R.D., Carver, G.A., and Alaska Seismic Hazards Safety Commission, 2018, Active faults and Seismic Hazards in Alaska, Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys, Miscellaneous Publication MP 160, 59 p.,
  • Witter, R.C., Briggs, R., Engelhart, S.E., Gelfenbaum, G., Koehler, R.D., Nelson, A., LaSelle, S., Corbett, R., and Wallace, K., (2018), Evidence for frequent large tsunamis spanning locked and creeping parts of the Aleutian megathrust, Geological Society of America Bulletin,
  • Witter, R.C., Carver, G.A., Briggs, R., Gelfenbaum, G., Koehler, R.D., La Selle, S.P., Bender, A., Engelhart, S.E., and Hemphill-Haley, E., (2015), Unusually large tsunamis frequent a currently creeping part of the Aleutian megathrust, Geophysical Research Letters, v. 43, Issue 1, p. 76-84.

Google Scholar profile

Courses taught

  • GEOL 450, Field Geology
  • GEOL 260, Introductory Field Geology
  • GEOL 451, Summer Field Geology
  • GEOL 701j, Advanced Geology-Paleoseismic Trenching
  • GEOL 495, Special Problems, Independent Study

Professional certifications

California Professional Geologist, #7615