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Jon Evans

Professor of Biology, Director of the Sewanee Herbarium

I study the dynamics of plant populations and the processes that determine the composition and structure of plant communities over time and across landscapes.  I am specifically interested in the role of clonal growth as a mechanism for population persistence in plant communities.  As a conservation biologist, I am interested in the consequences of land-use history, global climate change, and exotic species introductions on ecological communities. I am a strong advocate for the use of science to better inform management and public policy decision-making, so as to sustain biodiversity across the globe. 

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Mary Priestley

Herbarium Associate

Mary is editor and illustrator of the Friends of the Herbarium’s newsletter, The Sewanee Plant Press.  Active in the Tennessee Native Plant Society, she has served as the society’s president and assisted in writing and editing the TNPS field guide,Wildflowers of Tennessee, the Ohio Valley, and the Southern Appalachians. In 2011 she authored William’s Wildflowers, a guide to wildflowers of the Southern Appalachians. In 2014, she published Fiery Gizzard: Voices From the Wilderness

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Yolande Gottfried

Herbarium Associate

Yolande had a link with botany Professor emeritus George Ramseur through Dr. Albert E. Radford of the University of North Carolina, his Ph. D. advisor and her M.A. thesis advisor, which led to her becoming active in the management of the herbarium. She contributes to the herbarium newsletter, The Sewanee Plant Press, and arranges and helps lead wildflower walks and other activities. 

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Angus Pritchard C'22

Block Undergraduate Herbarium Fellow (2018-2022)

Born in Atlanta and raised in the great outdoors, I’ve been interested in ecology for as long as I can remember. My work as a Herbarium Fellow focuses on increasing student engagement with the Herbarium's resources and thus Botany and Natural History in general. Through restarting the Sewanee Natural History Society with several friends, I hope to develop a lasting enthusiasm among the student body for the appreciation of the southeast’s biodiversity. I am planning to pursue a biology major with a focus on ecology and biodiversity with the hope of attending graduate school for a PhD in ecology.  I am currently helping with the Sinking Pond research project at the Arnold Air Force Base where we are examining the long-term impact of climate change on an annually flooded forest.  I keep a flickr site with a portfolio of my bird photos.

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George Burruss C'22

Block Undergraduate Herbarium Fellow (2018-2022)

While my interest in ecology has only sprouted over recent years, nature and the outdoors have always been an integral part of my identity. Growing up in the foothill of the Appalachians in Lynchburg Virginia and spending my summers on the rocky shores of Caribou lake in northern Maine I spent my time hiking and exploring the outdoors.  As a Herbarium Fellow I plan on helping to educate and involve Sewanee students in Herbarium activities and contributing to several possible research projects including one that studies how the invasive Tallow tree on Sapelo island affects dune chronosequences and how we understand dune plant succession. I currently plan on pursuing a biology major with a focus on ecology. 

Lucy Rudman ‘22

Block Undergraduate Herbarium Fellow (2021-2022)


I was a late bloomer when it came to the appreciation of plants. Though I grew up playing outside in my little neighborhood, it wasn't until quarantine that I began to appreciate what my community had to offer in terms of plants. Using the Seek app, I identified every plant I could in my yard. That spring was also when I decided to major in Biology with a track in Ecology and Biodiversity. Although I am new to the Herbarium Fellows Program, it is my current goal to increase student body awareness of the plants in our immediate communities, especially the ones that might slip by in our day-to-days. I also work as a writing center tutor and, as a writing fellow, and I am a member of the Sewanee swim and dive team. I am very excited for the upcoming year!

 

Oliver Hutchens ‘23

Block Undergraduate Herbarium Fellow (2021-2023)

Student Greenhouse Manager


Living in Smyrna Tennessee my whole life, I have always shown interest in the natural world I found myself in. My parents always love telling me that when I was a child, I used to say that I wanted to be a bug doctor, as I did not know what an entomologist was at the time. My biological interests were broad for the longest time though, until I started a vegetable garden the summer of my sophomore year of high school
as part of a school project. I had an amazingly successful yield of over 1,000 tomatoes. The awe I felt toward what these plants were able to do introduced my heart to botany. I am now majoring in Ecology and Biodiversity, utilizing everything Sewanee has to offer to build my understanding of biological systems and the place of plants in them. As a Herbarium Fellow, I am looking forward to connecting with the
community through plants and taking part in research projects.


Izzie Berthelot ‘24

Block Undergraduate Herbarium Fellow (2021-2024)


I grew up in Lafayette, Louisiana, a perfect blend of city life and rural traditions. My mother’s side of the family was Cajun to the core and my father grew up in New Orleans. I chose to pursue my education at Sewanee because of the outdoor campus and biodiversity. When studying botany, I focus on ethnobotanical history and medicinal plants, largely influenced by the Louisiana cultures that I was submerged in. I am planning on double-majoring in Environmental Studies in the Arts and Humanities as well as Biology. I am also an artist and Arts Fellow and incorporate this in my plant studies through botanical illustrations and art. I am planning to continue my ethnobotanical studies and documentations during my time at Sewanee, as well as participate in Botanical Illustration workshops and Plant Press publications.

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             Lab Alumni

Cade Sterling C'22

Block Undergraduate Herbarium Fellow (2020)

 

Lillian Fulgham C'21

Block Undergraduate Herbarium Fellow (2018-2021)

Sidnee Everhart C'21 

Block Undergraduate Herbarium Fellow (2019-2021)

Honors thesis:  Environmental correlates of Arundinaria appalachiana (hillcane) distribution and abundance

Shelby Meckstroth C'17

Herbarium Post-Baccalaureate Fellow (2017-2018)

Honors thesis:   The amelioration of grazing and sand burial through physiological integration by a clonal dune plant.  Poster.   

Awarded the McCrady prize for the best poster in the biological sciences at Scholarship Sewanee (April 2017).

Current Position:  Masters in Public Health graduate student at Yale University

Callie Oldfield C'15

Herbarium Post-Baccalaureate Fellow (2015-2016)

Honors thesis:   Twelve years of repeated wild hog activity promotes population maintenance of an invasive clonal plant in a coastal dune ecosystem.  Poster.   NewsNews.   

Awarded the Yeatman Prize (Sewanee Biology Department).

 

Publications:

 

*Oldfield, C.A., J.P. Evans, and *S.C. Oldfield.  2020.  Long-term demography and matrix modeling reveal mechanisms of chestnut oak (Quercus montana) population persistence through sprouting and decline.  Forest Ecology and Management 118736

 

Evans, J.P., *C.A. Oldfield, and *J.L. Reid.  2019. Differential resistance to tree species loss between two dominant communities in a resilient southeastern landscape.  Natural Areas Journal  39:182-188.   Blog Feature

 

Evans, J.P., K. K. Cecala, B. R. Scheffers, C.A. Oldfield, N. Hollingshead, D. Haskell, and B. McKenzie.  2017.  Widespread degradation of vernal pools in the southeastern United States: Challenges to current and future management.   Wetlands 37:1093-1103.  Press Release

​Evans, J.P., C.A. Oldfield, M.P. Priestley, Y.M. Gottfried, L.D. Estes, A. Sidik, and G.S. Ramseur.  2016.  The vascular flora of the University of the South, Sewanee, Tennessee.  Castanea 81: 206-236.

 

Evans, J.P., C.A. Oldfield, K.K. Cecala, J.K. Hiers, C. Van De Ven, and M.A. Armistead. 2016. Pattern and drivers of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) herbivory on tree saplings across a plateau landscape. Forests 7:101.  Press release   News

Oldfield, C.A. and J.P. Evans. 2016.  Twelve years of repeated wild hog activity promotes population maintenance of an invasive clonal plant in a coastal dune ecosystem.  Ecology and Evolution 6: 2569–2578.  Press release   News

Evans, E.J. and C.A. Oldfield. 2014. Coral preference of the polychaete Spirobranchus giganteus in the Belizean Barrier Reef. Papers and Publications: Interdisciplinary Journal of Undergraduate Research. 3:1-7.  News

Recent Position:  Director of Research, Phinizy Center for Water Sciences

Thomas Walters C'15

Senior Research Paper: Disturbance ecology of hill cane (Arundinaria appalachiana) on the Cumberland Plateau. Poster.

 

Recent Position:  Wildland Firefighter with the US Forest Service

 

 

Meg Armistead C'14

Honors thesis: Spatial assessment of deer browse impacts on the Domain. Poster. News   

Awarded the Yeatman Prize (Sewanee Biology Department).

 

Publication: Evans, J.P., C.A. Oldfield, K.K. Cecala, J.K. Hiers, C. Van De Ven, and M.A. Armistead. 2016. Pattern and drivers of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) herbivory on tree saplings across a plateau landscape. Forests 7:101. Press release    News

 

Recent Position:  Program Technician at USDA Farm Service Agency

 

 

Ashley Block C'13

Herbarium Post-Baccalaureate Fellow (2015)

Honors thesis:  The King Farm: a case study in the effect of agricultural legacies on forest change dynamicsSeminar.    Awarded the Yeatman Prize (Sewanee Biology Department).

Sarah Delong C'13

Honors thesis: The effect of Kalmia latifolia as a persistent understory on oak regeneration.

Nathan Bourne C'11

Herbarium Post-Baccalaureate Fellow (2012-2013)

Planning document: Contributing editor of the Sustainability Master Plan for the University of the South. 2013.

 

Recent Position:  Curate at  St. John's Episcopal Church in New Hampshire

Sean McKenize C'11

Honors thesis: Spatiotemporal correlations of land-use and non-equilibrium successional trajectories in Sewanee forests.  News.    

Awarded the Yeatman Prize (Sewanee Biology Department).

 

Recent Position:  Graduate Fellow at the Rockefeller University

Alfire Sidik C'09

Publication:   Evans, J.P., C.A. Oldfield, M.P. Priestley, Y.M. Gottfried, L.D. Estes, A. Sidik, and G.S. Ramseur.  2016.  The vascular flora of the University of the South, Sewanee, Tennessee.  Castanea 81: 206-236.

 

Recent Position:  Graduate Student at the University of Texas at Austin

Eric Keen C'08

Post-Baccalaureate Fellow (2010-2011)

Honors thesis: Pignut hickory (Carya glabra) recruitment failure on a Georgia barrier island.

 

Publication:   Evans, J.P. and E.M. Keen. 2013. Regeneration failure in a remnant stand of pignut hickory (Carya glabra) on a protected barrier island in Georgia, USA. Natural Areas Journal 33(2):171-176.

Recent Position: Visiting Professor in Biology at the University of the South!

Matt Hess C'07

Honors thesis: The effect of an introduced ambrosia beetle (Xyleborus glabratus) on red bay (Persea borbonia) mortality in maritime forest communities of St. Catherine’s Island, GA.

 

Publication: J.P. Evans, B.R. Scheffers, and M. Hess. 2013. Effect of laurel wilt invasion on redbay populations in a maritime forest community. Biological Invasions 16:1581-1588.  Press release   News.

Recent Position:   Treasurer, Board of Directors,  Communities for Sustainable Monterey County

Valerie Moye C'07

Honors thesis: Habitat suitability analysis for a potential mountain lion population on the southern Cumberland Plateau in Tennessee and Alabama.

Leighton Reid C'06

Herbarium Post-Baccalaureate Fellow (2007)

Honors thesis: Three decades of forest change on the Cumberland Plateau.

 

Publications:

Evans, J.P., *C.A. Oldfield, and *J.L. Reid.  2019. Differential resistance to tree species loss between two dominant communities in a resilient southeastern landscape.  Natural Areas Journal  39:182-188.   Blog Feature

Reid, J.L., J.P. Evans, J.K. Hiers, and  J.B.C. Harris. 2008. Ten years of forest change in two adjacent communities on the southern Cumberland Plateau. Journal of the Torrey Botanical Society 135:224-235.

 

Recent Position:  Assistant Professor and Restoration Ecologist at Virginia Tech University

Brett Scheffers C'05

Herbarium Post-Baccalaureate Fellow (2005)

Honors thesis: The location and fate of ephemeral ponds on the Cumberland Plateau, Tennessee.

 

Publications:

 

Evans, J.P., K. K. Cecala, B. R. Scheffers, C.A. Oldfield, N. Hollingshead, D. Haskell, and B. McKenzie.  2017.  Widespread degradation of vernal pools in the southeastern United States: Challenges to current and future management.   Wetlands 37:1093-1103.  Press Release

Scheffers, B.R., B.L. Furman, and J.P. Evans. 2013. Salamanders continue to breed in ephemeral ponds following the removal of surrounding terrestrial habitat. Herpetological Conservation and Biology 8: 715-723.

 

Evans, J.P., B.R. Scheffers, and M. Hess. 2013. Effect of laurel wilt invasion on redbay populations in a maritime forest community. Biological Invasions 16:1581-1588.  Press release   News

Recent Position:  Assistant Professor and Global Change Biologist at University of Florida

 

 

John Williamson C'04

Honors thesis:  Quercus prinus: the stable sprouter, overtopping the wake of oak decline in the absence of fire?  

Awarded the Yeatman Prize (Sewanee Biology Department).

 

 

Derek LeMoine C'03

Post-Baccalaureate Fellow (2003-2004)

Senior research paper: Remotely sensing the sustainability of timber harvesting.

 

Publication: Lemoine, D., J.P. Evans, and K.C. Smith. 2006. A landscape-level geographic information system (GIS) analysis of streamside management zones on the Cumberland Plateau. Journal of Forestry 104: 125-131.  News

 

Recent Position:  Associate Professor at the University of Arizona

 

 

Caitlin Elam C'03

Senior research paper: The flora of sandstone outcrops on the Cumberland Plateau.

Received a 2003 Young Botanist Award from the Botanical Society of America.

 

Recent Position:  Botanist with TN Department of Environment and Conservation

 

 

Sarah Raines C'01

Senior research paper: Regeneration in a chestnut oak (Quercus prinus) stand in Sewanee, TN

 

Recent Position:  Land Trust for Tennessee

Katherine Crook C'00

Senior research paper: Two decades of change in an eastern deciduous forest on the Cumberland Plateau, TN.

 

Recent Position:  Neurology/Neurosurgeon at the Charleston Veterinary Referral Center

Sarah McCarthy Neumann C'99

Herbarium Post-Baccalaureate Fellow (2000-2001)

 

Senior research paper: Population dynamics of overcup oak (Quercus lyrata) in a seasonally flooded karst depression.  Received a 1999 Young Botanist Award from the Botanical Society of America.

 

Publications:

Wolfe, W.J., .P. Evans, S.E. McCarthy, W.S. Gain, and B.A. Bryan. 2004. Tree-regeneration and mortality patterns and hydrologic change in a forested karst wetland—Sinking Pond, Arnold Air Force Base, Tennessee. US Department of the Interior, US Geological Survey, Water-Resources Investigations Report 03-4217.  (Agency Peer-Reviewed)

McCarthy, S.E.  and J.P. Evans. 2000. Population dynamics of overcup oak (Quercus lyrata) in a seasonally flooded karst depression.  Journal of the Torrey Botanical Society 127: 9-18.

 

Recent Position:  Research Professor, Michigan State University

 

 

Madelaine Haddican C'98

Senior Research Paper: Effectiveness of the Tennessee Greenbelt Law as an incentive to protect biodiversity in Franklin County, TN: an analysis of landowner attitudes and intentions.

 

Recent Position: Physician at Westwood Dermatology

 

 

Alex MacKinlay C'98

Honors thesis: The effect of weevil (Curculio spp.) larvae predation on chestnut oak (Quercus prinus) seeds on the Cumberland Plateau.  

Received a 1998 Young Botanist Award from the Botanical Society of America. 

Ashley Brigham Morris C'97

Publications:

 

Evans, J.P., and *A. Morris.  2016.  Isolated coastal populations of Tilia americana var. caroliniana persist long-term through vegetative growth.   American Journal of Botany 103: 1687-1693.   AJB Noteworthy Article

Senior research paper: Reproductive biology of a gynodioecious plant (Hydrocotyle bonariensis)

 

Recent Position: Associate Professor at Furman University

David Royal C'97

Senior research paper: The impact of feral horses on spatial and temporal changes in plant community composition and structure in a coastal dune system.

 

Recent Position:  Medical Science Liaison at EVERSANA, Neurology & Immunology

Steven Howell C'97

Honors thesis: Effects of herbivory and resource availability on seedling establishment and recruitment in a chestnut oak population (Quercus prinus) on the Cumberland Plateau in SE TN.

 

Recent Position: Ophthalmologist in Louisville KY

Kevin Hiers C'96

Senior research paper: Effect of anthracnose blight on dogwood mortality and forest community structure in SE TN.

 

Publications:

 

Evans, J.P., C.A. Oldfield, K.K. Cecala, J.K. Hiers, C. Van De Ven, and M.A. Armistead. 2016. Pattern and drivers of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) herbivory on tree saplings across a plateau landscape. Forests 7:101.  Press release   News

Hiers, J.K. and J.P. Evans. 1997. Effects of anthracnose on dogwood mortality and forest composition of the Cumberland Plateau (U.S.A). Conservation Biology 11: 1430-1435.

 

Recent Position: Wildland Fire Scientist at Tall Timbers Reseach Station

Emily Sprouse C'95

Senior research paper: A computer tool for studying the biodiversity of Franklin, Marion, and Grundy Counties.

 

 

John Queng C'94 (Rice University)

Honors thesis: Clonal plant response to heterogeneous environments in Dichondra carolinensis.

 

Recent Position: Family Medicine at Austin Regional Clinic

 

 

Sherri Whitney C'88 (Duke University)

Honors thesis: Integration as a mechanism in a clonal plant (Hydrocotyle bonariensis) to alleviate salt stress.

 

Publication:   Evans, J.P. and  S. Whitney. 1992. Clonal integration across a salt gradient by a non-halophyte, Hydrocotyle bonariensis. American Journal of Botany 79:1344-1347

 

 

Sylvia Subong C'87 (Duke University)

 

Honors thesis: Structural responses in a rhizomatous perennial herb (Hydrocotyle bonariensis) to a variable nitrogen environment.

Leslie Davis C'87 (Duke University)

 

Honors thesis: Plant community succession on dredge spoil habitats in the Rachel Carson National Estuarine Reserve.

Shauna Tilly C'86 (Duke University)

 

Honors thesis: Intraclonal translocation of nitrogen in a rhizomatous plant, Hydrocotyle bonariensis.