Jerry Melillo and Gus Shaver of the Ecosystems Center have been named Fellows of the Ecological Society of America (ESA). They are in the first group to be named to the new Fellows program by the 10,000-member society, the world's largest organization of professional ecologists. A total of 40 Fellows were named. At the same time, ESA also established an Early Career Fellows program honoring young scientists.
“The Fellows and Early Career Fellows programs will recognize the many ways in which our members contribute to ecological research and discovery, communication, education and pedagogy, and to management and policy,” said ESA President Scott Collins.
Both Jerry and Gus have conducted research at the Ecosystems Center for more than three decades. Jerry, distinguished scientist and former co-director of the Center, is also a professor of biology at Brown University. In his research, he studies the impacts of human activities on the biogeochemistry of terrestrial ecosystems. He has studied carbon and nitrogen cycling in ecosystems across the globe, including arctic shrublands in northern Sweden, temperate forests in North America, and tropical forests and pastures in the Amazon Basin of Brazil. Jerry served as ESA’s President in 2004-2005.
Gus is a senior scientist at the Center and a professor at Brown. He studies plant growth and nutrition and the role of plants in ecosystem element cycle, focusing his research on Alaskan tundra ecosystems, where low temperatures, low light intensities, low nutrient availability, and a short growing season all interact to limit plant growth. He is lead principal investigator of the Arctic Long Term Ecological Research program, based at Toolik Lake, Alaska. Gus was ESA’s Vice-President for Science 2004-2007.