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  • Tomas Höök
  • Professor
  • he/him/his

Tomas received his BS, MS and PhD from the University of Michigan. After completing his PhD, he worked as a research investigator at the Cooperative Institute for Limnology and Ecosystem Research. He has been a faculty at Purdue since 2008, and he also serves as Associate Director for Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant.

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  • Paris Collingsworth (Lab affiliate)
  • Research Assistant Professor

Paris earned a bachelors degree in biology from Samford University, a masters degree in zoology from Southern Illinois University and a Ph.D. in evolution, ecology and organismal biology from the Ohio State University. Prior to coming to Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant and Purdue, he did post-doctoral research at the US Geological Survey and the Cooperative Institute for Great Lake Research at the University of Michigan. His research focuses on ecosystem dynamics in the Laurentian Great Lakes. Working in these large systems, he uses ecological and statistical models as tools to develop a mechanistic understanding about how anthropogenic and natural stressors impact ecosystem structure and function. This research is interdisciplinary by nature and extensive requires collaborations with academic federal, provincial and state agency personnel from across the basin. Current projects include describing how food web structure changes along productivity gradients in Lakes Huron, Ontario, Erie and Michigan identifying sources of variation in the relationship between total phosphorus and chlorophyll concentrations in western Lake Erie and evaluating the ecological effects of hypoxia in central Lake Erie.

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  • Elvita Eglite
  • Post doc

Elvita's broad research interests are in natural consumer-resource relationships and how these interactions shape food webs in small and large-scale aquatic ecosystems. Her fascination with environmental processes began when she studied BSc and MSc in chemistry at the University of Latvia. During MSc studies and her first position as a research assistant, she investigated nitrogen cycling and microbial denitrification in the Gulf of Riga at the Latvian Institute of Aquatic Ecology. Afterwards, she moved to Germany to start a PhD research project in isotope ecology at the Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research in Warnemunde. She set up a state-of-the-art technique, compound-specific isotope analyses of individual amino acids. In 2020, she received her PhD in Natural Sciences (Marine Biology) from the University of Rostock on planktonic food web structuring using both traditional and advanced stable isotope applications. She continued with her first postdoc at the GEOMAR Helmholtz Center for Ocean Research in Kiel and laid the foundation for a future centralized stable isotope database of the Baltic Sea. She has also participated in over ten research and monitoring cruises in the Baltic Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. In October 2021, Elvita joined Purdue University as a postdoctoral researcher, and together with a team of fisheries biologists, she is studying the Great Lakes of North America.

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  • Peter Euclide
  • Research scientist

Peter is a research biologist who uses a combination of modern genomic techniques and ecology to answer questions related to animal movement, local adaptation, and evolution to inform management and conservation. Much of his research focuses on investigating the population genetic structure and local adaptation of fishes in the Great Lakes including walleye, lake trout, perch, and alewife.

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  • Alex Fields
  • PhD student

Alex earned a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in Biology from the University of Louisiana, at Monroe in 2017 and 2020 respectively. His master’s thesis research focused on the effects of damming on river ecosystems. He found widespread of evidence of disturbance both within a Himalayan river and outside its banks. Alex's PhD research at Purdue will focus on investigating the impacts of climate change and high nutrient concentrations in Lake Superior through size spectrum modeling and field sampling.

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  • Carolyn Foley
  • Research Associate
  • she/her/hers

Carolyn's background is in invertebrate biology. Her research focuses on growth and survival of benthic macroinvertebrates like Diporeia and Hexagenia, as well as small-bodied fishes like round gobies and young yellow perch. Techniques employed include diet analysis, stable isotope analysis, and RNA:DNA. Carolyn is also the assistant research coordinator for Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant.

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  • Spencer Gardner
  • PhD student

Spencer Gardner completed his BS in fisheries, wildlife, and conservation biology at North Carolina State University in 2016. While at NC State, Spencer worked as a research technician for the NC Cooperative Fish & Wildlife Research Unit, conducting independent research on the impact of methodological variability in generating population dynamic parameter estimates. In 2017, Spencer began his MS at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, where his research focused on understanding the ecological mechanisms that contribute to variable first year growth and recruitment in southern flounder. Spencer then joined the Höök Lab in 2021 to begin his PhD research on prey fish recruitment patterns in Lake Michigan. Over the next few years, Spencer will be developing an agent-based bioenergetics model to simulate larval alewife and yellow perch foraging, growth, and ultimate survival.

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  • Scott Koenigbauer
  • PhD student

Scott completed his BS in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Michigan in 2017, where he participated in studies of a Japanese reef fish and lake sturgeon. As an intern at the University of Arkansas, he researched the trophic interactions between smallmouth bass and crayfish in Ozark streams. His MS research at Purdue (completed 2020) investigated the variation of reproductive traits, such as egg size, particularly in yellow perch in Lake Michigan and inland lakes. His PhD research now evaluates reproductive utilization of a restored reef in Saginaw Bay, and more generally explores reproductive trait diversity in freshwater fishes.

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  • Rajeev Kumar
  • PhD student

Rajeev Kumar completed his BS in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville in 2019. There, he partook in studies of cyanobacteria, fish ecology, and amphibian disease ecology. Rajeev’s PhD work at Purdue examines the feasibility of successfully reintroducing Cisco into Lake Erie.

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  • Justin Meyer
  • MS student
  • he/him/his

Justin completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Central Florida in 2021. He completed courses in an Ecology, Evolutionary and Conservation Biology track to earn a BS in Biology, while also receiving a minor in Environmental Studies. While at UCF, Justin completed an undergraduate thesis that utilized stable isotopes to gain insight into the trophic niche of an invasive crab in the Indian River Lagoon. At Purdue, his MS research will investigate the dynamics of hypoxia in productive embayments in the Great Lakes.

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  • Les Warren
  • PhD student

Les completed his BS in Ecology and Environmental Biology at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire in 2015. After graduation, he started his MS at St. Cloud State University, MN in Aquatic Toxicology and Ecology Biology. His master's thesis research focused on contamination from septic systems around Minnesota lake shores and the biological effects on adult and larval Bluegill sunfish and fathead minnows. Les's PhD work at Purdue will focus on investigating larval Alewife recruitment from near-shore and tributary habitats in Lake Michigan.

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  • Mitch Zischke (Lab affiliate)
  • Clinical Extension Assistant Professor

Mitch has a strong interest in the natural world, particularly fish. This stems from a desire to spend as much time outside, in or on water, as he can. To foster this interest, he completed a Bachelor of Science (Honors) majoring in Tropical Marine Science at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia (where he is from). After finishing his BSc, he worked as fisheries management officer at the Australian Fisheries Management Authority - the national government department responsible for Australia's fisheries resources. After this, he returned to research where he completed a Ph.D. in Fisheries Science at the University of Queensland. He then worked with Fisheries Queensland, a state-level fisheries monitoring, assessment and management agency. In August 2014 he moved from Australia to West Lafayette, IN to start a postdoctoral position in the Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences research group at Purdue University.


Hiu-Yu Wang, PHD 2008.

Currently Assoc. Professor National Taiwan University

Greg Jacobs, MS 2008

Currently Cornell University

Kristin Arend, Postdoctoral researcher.

Currently Fish Biologist Bureau of Reclamation

James Roberts, PhD 2010.

Currently Fishery Biologist USGS

Daniel Ryan, MS 2010

Currently Fisheries Biologist Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission

Daisuke Goto, Postdoctoral researcher

Currently, Swedish Agricultural University

Charlie Roswell, MS 2011

Currently, Fishery Biologist Illinois Natural History Survey

Chris Middaugh, MS 2011

Currently, Research Biologist Arkansas DNR

Christian Perry, MS 2011.

Currently, Utah State

Lori Ivan, Postdoctoral researcher

Currently, Michigan State University

Alicia Roswell, Research Technician

Jonah Withers, MS 2013

Currently, Vermont

Lee Henebry, MS 2014

Currently, Fishery Biologist Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

Andrew Honsey, MS 2014

Currently Biologist USGS

Jay Staton, Lab Technician

Currently, Humboldt State

Tim Sesterhenn, Postdoctoral researcher

Currently Assoc. Professor Morningside College

David Coulter, PhD 2015

Currently Post-Doc Southern Illinois University

Allison Hrycik, MS 2015

Currently Research Scientist Buffalo State University

Zoe Almeida, MS 2016

Currently Post doc Oregon State University

Margaret Hutton Stadig, MS 2016

Currently Research Biologist Texas Parks and Wildlife

Nick Kalejs, MS 2017

Currently Fisheries Biologist Maine DNR

Sam Guffey, Lab Manager

Zach Feiner, PhD 2015 and Postdoctoral researcher

Currently Researcher Wisconsin DNR and University of Wisconsin

Sarah Stein, PhD 2018

Currently, Policy Analyst, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Ben Leonhardt, MS 2018

Currently Biologist USGS

Tim Malinich, PhD 2019

Currently Biologist California Department of Fish and Wildlife

Taylor Senegal, MS 2019

Currently US Fish and Wildlife Service

Alex Gatch, MS 2019

Currently Biologist US Fish and Wildlife Service

Patricia Nease, MS 2019

Currently Midcoast Conservancy

Annie Scofield, Postdoctoral researcher

Currently US EPA Great Lakes National Program Office

Jay Beugly, Aquatic ecology specialist

Currently Bois Blanc Island

Chris Malinowski, Postdoctoral researcher

Currently South Florida Water Management District

Josh Tellier, MS 2021

Currently Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy

Marissa Cubbage, MS 2021

Currently Indiana Department of Environmental Management

Suse LaGory, MS 2022