Invited Speakers

Meet our 2024 UMSRS Invited Speakers


Emily Fairfax

Emily Fairfax is Assistant Professor of Physical Geography in the Department of Geography, Environment, and Society at the University of Minnesota. Fairfax is also an affiliate faculty member at the Saint Anthony Falls Laboratory at the University of Minnesota. Fairfax uses a combination of remote sensing, modeling, and field work to understand how beaver ecosystem engineering can create drought and fire-resistant patches in the landscape under a changing climate. Her research has been featured in National GeographicBBCNPRPBSScientific American, the Los Angeles Times, and the New York Times, amongst others. Fairfax teaches courses in data visualization, environmental data analysis, hydrology, and geomorphology. When Fairfax says she can talk about beavers all day, she’s not kidding. More information about Emily Fairfax on her page


Keith Schilling

Dr. Keith Schilling is the State Geologist of Iowa and Director of the Iowa Geological Survey at the University of Iowa. Dr. Schilling is also a research engineer at IIHR-Hydroscience and Engineering at the University of Iowa and an adjunct professor at the University of Iowa Department of Earth and Environmental Science and at Iowa State University Department of Natural Resources Ecology and Management. He received an M.S. degree in Water Resources from Iowa State University and a Ph.D. degree in Geology from the University of Iowa. His research has focused on a variety of water-related issues in Iowa, including groundwater flow and quality, surface and groundwater interaction, nonpoint source pollution and watershed and floodplain processes.