Dorothy Noble received her BA degree from CU-Boulder in EPO Biology and her MS degree in Environmental Science from the University of Idaho. Dorothy participated in research projects in the Canadian Arctic, Nicaragua and the Pacific Northwest before spending 12 years at the City & County of Broomfield as a Water Quality Chemist. Dorothy currently works for CU-Boulder managing the Environmental Engineering research laboratories, including the DeRISK Center, and participating in water quality research projects, specifically on disinfection by-product formation research. In her spare time, Dorothy enjoys spending time with her husband and three kids, traveling, hiking, skiing and climbing mountains.
Post-Doctoral Research Associate
Rosa (Yun) Yu
Rosa is originally from Shanghai, China. She received both her MS and PhD degrees in Environmental and Water Resources Engineering from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Her research at UMass was focused on the formation and degradation kinetics and mechanisms of non-regulated disinfection byproducts (DBPs) in municipal drinking water systems and their association with public health concerns. Rosa joined CU Boulder as a postdoctoral research associate in 2016 and worked on projects looking at the physical and chemical transformation of soil organic matter due to forest fires and the role of pyrogenic organic matter as emerging DBP precursors. Her current research at CU Boulder focuses on the evaluation of the impacts of water conservation on water quality in premise plumbing and water distribution systems regarding health-relevant parameters, including DBPs and opportunistic premise plumbing pathogens. She is also involved in a research project investigating the control of DBP precursors through ozonation, biofiltration, and granular activated carbon (GAC) in wastewater reuse scenarios. Outside of the lab, she enjoys hiking in the Rockies and jigsaw puzzling.
Matt Bentley (in progress)
Matt received his BS in Engineering from Union University with a concentration in Mechanical Engineering, and he participated on a number of community development research projects during his time there. He is a part of the CU Engineering for Developing Communities program and has been very active in organizing the CU WASH Symposium the past two years. His experiences in refugee resettlement, relief, and development have led him to conduct research in sustainable water treatment in the developing world. Matt is researching biochar, a low-cost alternative to activated carbon, for the removal of trace organic contaminants in the environment, and his research has been funded initially through the NSF GK-12 Fellowship and currently by a NSF Graduate Research Fellowship. Matt also works with Yunnan Coffee Traders, a specialty coffee company committed to developing communities in rural Yunnan, China. When he is not in the lab, you would most likely to find him rock climbing in the Flatirons, backpacking a remote trail, or enjoying a quality cup of coffee.
Kelsey Reeves (in progress) co-advised with Professor Balaji Rajagopalan
Kelsey received her BS degree in Environmental Engineering at the University of Connecticut. Immediately after, she came to CU Boulder to pursue her PhD in Civil and Environmental Engineering. Her research is focused on modeling water quality from a watershed perspective. Kelsey is one of several students involved with a USEPA/WRF funded project titled “An Integrated Modeling and Decision Framework to Evaluate Adaptation Strategies for Sustainable Drinking Water Utility Management under Drought and Climate Change.” This interdisciplinary project integrates drinking water quality, climate variability and extremes, watershed hydrology, and decision support systems. Kelsey’s role entails modeling total organic carbon concentrations in influent of drinking water treatment plants using climate and land surface predictors. These models will be used to assess disinfection byproduct formation in drinking water. In her free time, she enjoys hiking in the mountains, bike riding, traveling, and spending time with family and friends.
Eric Peterson, PE (in progress) co-advised with Professor Sherri Cook
Eric is a native of Washington state and received his B.S. in Civil Engineering from the University of Washington in 2011, then worked as a civil engineer for KPFF Consulting Engineers primarily on urban site development and military design-build projects. He is also active in the Engineering for Developing Communities program at CU Boulder, including as a planning committee member for the annual Colorado Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Symposium hosted by CU. Eric's research interests are in biofiltration and applications in small and decentralized water reuse treatment systems. He has been funded by the DeRISK Center and a Dean’s Fellowship. Outside of school he enjoys spending time with his wife, Hannah, hiking in the Rockies, and hoping that this year will finally be the Mariners'year.
Kyle Thompson (2018) co-advised with Professor Sherri Cook
Kyle received his B.S. in Engineering from Missouri University of Science & Technology in 2013. Kyle interned at the A. B. Jewell Water Treatment Plant in Tulsa, OK and Betasso Water Treatment Plant in Boulder, CO. He received a M.S. in environmental engineering with a graduate certificate in Engineering for Developing Communities from the University of Colorado Boulder. He has worked with Second Mile Water in Nicaragua and travelled to Bolivia and Peru with Engineers Without Borders. He was awarded a NSF Graduate Research Fellowship and his PhD research area is greywater treatment utilizing biochar adsorption, biofiltration, chlorination and coagulation. Kyle is currently at the research las of the Southern Nevada Water Authority.
P. Leigh Gilmore Terry (2017)
Leigh is from the south (specifically, Alabama) and received her BS degree in civil engineering from the University of Alabama and her MS degree in environmental engineering from CU-Boulder. While at CU-Boulder, Leigh was funded by a NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship Award, the DeRISK Center and was awarded a USEPA STAR Fellowship. Through the EDC program she spent time in Uganda and Kenya to work on environmental systems within schools and through the DeRISK Center time at University of Sheffield, UK. Her research area is biological treatment in the drinking water context with a focus on life cycle analysis. In her spare time, you could find her running the trails of Boulder and skiing the slopes of Colorado. Leigh joined the Civil Engineering Faculty at the University of Alabama in 2018 as an assistant professor.
Kyle Shimabuku (2017)
Kyle is from southern California and received his BS in civil engineering from San Diego State University and his MS in environmental engineering from the CU-Boulder. His work focused on adsorption of organic contaminants from drinking water, wastewater, and stormwater using traditional and low-cost adsorbents,biochar, that could be applied in both developed and developing countries. His work was been funded by USEPA STAR Fellowship, as well as an NWRI Fellowship and the AWWA American Water Scholarship. He has research experience in Arequipa, Peru (NSF-IRES), Mastatal, Costa Rica, and Mundri, South Sudan. He has also taught two courses, environmental organic chemistry and WASH, during his doctoral program. In his free time Kyle enjoys snowboarding, volleyball, surfing, and eating Professor Summers' cooking. Kyle current works at Corona Environmental.
Josh Kearns (2016)
Josh grew up in a working-class household in a small town in West Virginia. From a young age he witnessed environmental damage done by resource extraction and industry along with economic hardship endured by rural communities. Josh has a BS in Chemistry from Clemson University and an MS in Biogeochemistry from UC-Berkeley. Prior to coming to CU-Boulder, Josh became the Director of Science for Aqueous Solutions, a NGO based in Thailand and the US that promotes livelihood security, environmental and economic sustainability, and local self-reliance through appropriate technologies in WASH. While at CU-Boulder Josh received funding from the CU Chancellor's Fellowship for Research, as well as a USEPA STAR Fellowship. His dissertation is entitled "Biochar adsorbent for control of synthetic organic contaminants in affordable decentralized water treatment." He is also passionate about playing bluegrass and traditional Appalachian old-time music on the mandolin. Josh is an Assistant Professor of Environmental Engineering in Global WASH at the North Carolina State University.
Carleigh Samson (2016) co-advised with Professor Balaji Rajagopalan
Carleigh is from Rhode Island and received her BS degree in mathematics from McGill University in Montreal, her MA degree in education from John’s Hopkins University, and her MS degree in civil (environmental) engineering at CU-Boulder. While at CU-Boulder, Carleigh was funded by a NSF GK-12 Fellowship and was the lead editor of the TeachEngineering digital library. She also received funding from the AWWA-WITAF. Her PhD dissertation is titled “Modeling Relationships between Climate, Source Water Quality and Disinfection Byproduct Formation and Speciation in Treated Drinking Water”. In her spare time, Carleigh is an avid skateboarder and has appeared in some local skateboard videos. She currently works for Corona Environmental Consulting as a Water Process Engineer.
MS students (research based)
Marylia Duarte Batista (in progress)
Marylia is from Uberaba, Brazil and completed her BS in Environmental Engineering at the Federal University of Triangulo Mineiro. During the course of her undergraduate education, she was admitted to a Brazilian mobility program, which provided a full scholarship for a year of study at University of Colorado Boulder. In Brazil, she focused her research in the use of hydrodynamic cavitation for microalgae inactivation. Marylia is pursuing her MS in Environmental Engineering at CU Boulder. She is currently working on a project entitled “Water Conservation and Water Quality: Understanding the Impacts of New Technologies and New Operational Strategies” funded by USEPA, which aims to investigate the impacts of water conservation on water quality in premise plumbing and hot water systems. In her free time, she enjoys outdoor activities.
Steven Shiokari (in progress)
Steven is from San Jose, CA and completed his BA in Applied Mathematics at Azusa Pacific University. He is in the Engineering for Developing Communities (EDC) certificate program and has worked with small-scale community water systems in Zambia. His research interests are in ozone and biofiltration for water reuse treatments. In his spare time, Steven enjoys skiing, climbing, trail running, hiking.
Ben Murphy (in progress)
Ben is originally from the suburbs of Chicago, and he received his BA in Ecology from CU-Boulder before beginning his MS in Environmental Engineering. He also previously completed a BM in Music Composition and Music Technology at the University of Montana - Missoula. His current research focuses on the chemical activation of biochar for removal of organic contaminants in water. While pursuing his MS, he has interned with Carollo Engineers and Olsson Associates. In his spare time, Ben enjoys writing and recording music, playing with his adorable dog, hiking, and camping.
Audrey Young (in progress)
Audrey is originally from the suburbs of Chicago and received her BS in Chemical Engineering from Washington University in St. Louis. She worked for three years in the industrial water treatment designing chemical treatment systems for cooling towers and boilers for institutional buildings. While in the field, Audrey developed a passion for the water industry and developing water conservation solutions. In addition, Audrey became interested in building water quality management. At the University of Colorado, Audrey is pursuing her MS in Environmental Engineering specializing in water engineering and management. She is currently working on the USEPA funded project “Water Conservation and Water Quality: Understanding the Impacts of New Technologies and New Operational Strategies,” investigating the effects of water conservation on building water quality. In her spare time, Audrey is an avid baker, mediocre gardener, kickboxer, traveler and outdoors enthusiast.
Sierra Johnson (in progress)
Sierra is from Laramie, WY and completed her BS in Civil Engineering and BA in African American and Diaspora Studies at the University of Wyoming. She is in the Engineering in Developing Communities certificate program and serves on the Colorado WASH Symposium planning committee. Sierra’s research interests are adsorption with alternative adsorbents, such as biochar. Outside of school, Sierra enjoys ballet class and whitewater rafting.
John Meyer (2016)
John is originally from Colorado Springs, CO. He completed his BS in environmental engineering at CU Boulder in 2014 and continued on with his MS degree. He earned certificates in International Engineering (Spanish) and Water Engineering & Management. As a graduate student, John worked for the USEPA funded DeRISK Center. His thesis was titled "Drinking Water Risk Assessment: Public Health Impacts of Alternative Disinfection Byproduct Control Strategies." During his time at CU John worked on projects in Peru and Nicaragua with several student organizations. In his free time he enjoys snowboarding, skiing, mountain biking and hiking. John currently works for Carollo Engineers.
Nathan Yang (2016)
Nathan is from Northern California and received his B.S. in Civil/Environmental Engineering from UC Davis. While at CU-Boulder, Nathan worked as part of the DeRISK Center. His master's thesis was titled “Evaluation of Adsorptive and Biological Mode DBP Removal in Activated Carbon Filters”. In his spare time, Nathan enjoys playing beach volleyball on the beaches of Southern California. He currently works for the Los Angeles Sanitation Districts as an Engineering Associate.
Ben Greiner (2016)
Ben is from Buena Vista, CO, and completed his BS in civil engineering, followed by an MS focused in environmental engineering, both at CU Boulder. He earned certificates in Engineering for Developing Communities (EDC), International Engineering (Spanish), and Applied Business. He received graduate scholarships from the CU Norlin Scholars program, WateReuse CO, and the Mortenson Center in EDC. During the course of his CU Boulder education, Ben worked on small- and medium-scale water and sanitation projects through three different organizations in Peru, Nicaragua, and Rwanda, with a cumulative total of six months in the field. Ben's MS thesis was titled "Thermal Regeneration of Biochar for the Adsorption of Synthetic Organic Contaminants in the Presence of Dissolved Organic Matter". In his spare time, Ben loves to be in the mountains, rock climbing, whitewater rafting, running, or backpacking.
Riley Mulhern (2016)
Riley grew up in Denver, CO and received his BS degree in physics and geology from Wheaton College in Wheaton, IL. After a six-month internship in Nicaragua where he studied quality of drinking water sources in an area affected by natural arsenic contamination, he returned to Colorado to pursue his MS in Environmental Engineering at CU Boulder. While at CU he received funding from the Water Research Foundation and studied activated carbon adsorption of wastewater-derived NDMA precursors. When he was not in the lab at CU he was enjoying the outdoors as much as possible climbing, camping, fly-fishing, and skiing. He now lives in Oruro, Bolivia with his wife where he works for an environmental justice nonprofit addressing issues of mining contamination in indigenous communities. He will attend the School of Public Health at the University of North Carolina.
Paige Pruisner (2016)
Paige is from Boulder, Colorado and received her B.S. in Environmental Engineering and MS in Civil Engineering (environmental engineering) from the CU- Boulder. She has numerous research experiences, including working at the Southern Nevada Water Authority where she completed her thesis research. Her thesis wastitled "Assessing Trace Organic Contaminant Removal Trends in Biologically Active Filters at Multiple Stages". Her research was funded by the Water Research Foundation. She has presented her research results at several conferences. Paige is passionate about mentoring young women in STEM fields and spending time in the great outdoors. She regularly volunteers on environmental restoration and sustainable trail building projects in Colorado. She currently works at Golder Associates.