Colorado State University’s Warner College of Natural Resources Names Two New Department Heads

The Warner College of Natural Resources at Colorado State University has named two new department heads: Sally Sutton in the Department of Geosciences and Kenneth Wilson in the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology.

Sutton first joined the Warner College of Natural Resources at Colorado State in 1992, where she has served as associate dean and interim dean of the College. She is an active member of the Geological Society of America, the American Association of Petroleum Geologists, the American Geophysical Union and the Society of Economic Geologists.

She received her doctorate in geology from the University of Cincinnati in 1987. Her research interests include geochemistry and petrology of sedimentary rocks, particularly how they controlled and recorded the passage of ore-forming fluids and petroleum and how they recorded ancient climate and atmospheric conditions.

The Department of Geosciences at Colorado State is known for educating well-trained professional geologists, as well its vigorous applied and basic research programs. The program capitalizes on it proximity to the Rocky Mountains and the Colorado high plains to give students unique educational opportunities in outdoor labs, as well as in traditional classroom and lab settings.

The departmental focus on non-renewable natural resources, especially water, hydrocarbons and minerals presents the students with prime opportunities for study and employment. The department offers a bachelor’s in geology, a master’s in geosciences and a doctorate degree in earth sciences, with specializations in both geology and watershed science. These degree programs are internationally renowned and known for their strong placement record of graduated students within industry.

Wilson has been a faculty member at Colorado State since 1991. His teaching has included a number of undergraduate and graduate courses, including the capstone course in the wildlife biology major. He has been recognized for his dedication to students with awards of Favorite Faculty in the Department of Fishery & Wildlife Biology in 2002 and 2004; the Harry E. Troxell Distinguished Service-to-Students Award from the College of Natural Resources in 1999; and CSU’s Jack E. Cermak Outstanding Advisor Award in 2003.

His research interests include wildlife management, conservation biology and ecology, specifically related to human impacts on wildlife; population ecology of small animals; and understanding patterns of species richness. Current research with graduate students and colleagues focuses on modeling of species richness to assess biodiversity assessments, roost site characteristics and foraging behavior of Myotis species in Mesa Verde National Park; understanding black bear-human conflicts in Colorado’s Roaring Fork Valley; and avian influenza risk assessment via modeling pathways of disease spread by wild birds.  

Wilson is a member of the Wildlife Society, the Society for Conservation Biology, the Ecological Society of America, the U.S. International Association for Landscape Ecology and the American Society of Mammalogists. He received his doctorate in Fisheries and Wildlife Biology from Colorado State University in 1991.  

Colorado State’s Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology is the only program in Colorado to offer comprehensive undergraduate and graduate degrees in fish, wildlife, and conservation biology. Students are encouraged to think critically about environmental issues and become ecologically literate citizens with the training to be successful in future careers. The department is one of the oldest and most prestigious Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology programs in the country and consistently ranks as one of the top programs in terms of scholarly productivity.