Denison University’s 178th Commencement took place on Saturday, May 18. Watch the ceremony in its entirety including commencement keynote speaker Jennifer Garner ’94.
Dr. Doug Spieles (B.S. Biology, University of Dayton; M.S., Ph.D. Environmental Science, The Ohio State University) is a native or northwest Ohio. As a graduate student, Doug worked first in environmental entomology and then in wetland ecology. His dissertation work was completed with advisor Dr. Bill Mitsch, one of the leading wetland experts in the U.S.
From 1998 to 2002, Dr. Spieles was an assistant professor of environmental science at Southwest State University in Marshall, MN. While in this position, he helped guide the formation of a new environmental science program, which involved curriculum design, course development, recruitment, advising, and teaching.
In his scholarship, Dr. Spieles focuses on the ecological development of constructed wetlands, primarily from the point of view of community and ecosystem ecology. He also has interests in geographic information systems and conservation. Doug is a member of the Society of Wetland Scientists, the Association for Environmental Studies and Sciences, the Ecological Society of America and the Licking Land Trust.
Doug is the author of the 2010 book Protected Land: Disturbance, Stress and American Ecosystem Management (Springer) and contributing author for the 2016 volume Invertebrates in Freshwater Wetlands: An International Perspective on their Ecology (Springer).
Doug joined Denison's Environmental Studies Program in 2002 and has been instrumental to the program both in teaching (Science & the Environment, Geographic Information Systems, Wetland Ecology and Ecosystems Management) and in developing an analytical laboratory facility in Barney, which is used for water, soil, and biotic analyses in both curricular lab exercises and scholarly research projects.
I study the ecological development of constructed wetlands. The number of constructed and restored wetlands in North America is growing through mitigation for legal compliance and conservation efforts, but we still know very little about ecosystem assembly. I study the communities that develop in newly created or restored wetlands and the nutrient and energy flow through those communities. Some of my work describes research at this level: nutrient flow through constructed wetlands (Ecological Engineering Vol. 14), invertebrate community development in constructed wetlands (Wetlands Vol. 20 No. 4), and energy flow through the primary and secondary production of developing wetlands (Ecological Modelling Vol. 161). Such community/ecosystem level research is valuable in that it contributes to our understanding of freshwater wetland structure and function and as it improves our ability to successfully restore or create wetlands. I’m also interested in ecosystem structure and function at larger spatial scales, as published in the Journal of Freshwater Ecology 28(5) and ISRN Ecology 2011:1-10.