All Members


Asah, Stanley Tanyi
Dr. Asah is a conservation psychologist with the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, in the College of the Environment at the University of Washington.  His work focuses on understanding and promoting pro-environmental behavior, and facilitating the quest for common grounds in environmental problems.  Stanley has a B. S. in Agricultural Mechanization and Operations Management from the University of Dschang.  From the University of Minnesota, he has an M. S. in Water Resource Science and a Ph. D. in Human Dimensions of Natural Resource Management.

Kori Ault

Ault, Kori
Kori Ault coordinates research activities for numerous projects related to tree biotechnology and genomics, with particular focus on field data collection and site operations. Kori has been working with the Strauss Lab at Oregon State University as the Forest Genetics and Biotechnology Program Manager since 2011.  Her current projects include the regulation of flowering in poplar and sweetgum trees, and examining heterosis in hybrid poplars.  Kori received her B.S. from Cornell College in 2007 and M.S. from Central Washington University in 2010.


Budsberg, Erik
Erik is a PhD student at the University of Washington.  The need for efficient and sustainable use of our world’s resources has been at the center of Erik’s research focus for the last decade.  It started with studying solid earth processes at Western Washington University, where he received a bachelor of science in geology.  This deep understanding of earth’s dynamics and the limited availability of fossil fuel resources narrowed his interests and research to studying the development of new types of sustainable fuels.   Erik also has an MS from UW, which focused on possible environmental impacts that result from the use of new types of biofuels.  His work helps guides his colleagues in academia as well as those in the private sector to develop new types of fuels that reduce our overall impact on the environment.

Dr. Renata Bura is the leader of the AHB Conversion team.

Bura, Renata

Dr. Bura is a professor in the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences at the University of Washington and a researcher of the UW Bioenergy and Biochemicals Lab. Renata is the current leader of the AHB Conversion Team. Her research focuses on understanding and improving the process of converting lignocellulosic biomass into high-value, chemical products and biofuels. Renata has a B.Sc in Applied Chemistry and Biology from Ryerson University, a M.A.Sc. in Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry and Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Toronto, and a Ph.D. in Forest Products Biotechnology from the University of British Columbia.


Busby, Posy
Dr. Busby is a Postdoctoral Fellow with a joint appointment at the University of Idaho (Newcombe Lab) and the University of Washington (Tewksbury Lab). She received a Ph.D. in Biology from Stanford University, and a M.F.S. and A.B. from Harvard University. Busby’s research aims to determine the causes and consequences of plant disease in natural and agricultural systems.


Cooke, Andrew
Andrew is a Research Consultant with the University of Washington, School of Environmental and Forest Sciences.  He received his Master of Science in 2008 from the UW College of Forest Resources.  Andrew is a GIS analyst and programmer, and has extensive experience working with large datasets in many different formats and sources.  He has recently worked on developing both the Washington State Parcel Database and the Washington State Forestland and Biomass Databases, as well as supporting web-based data distribution and mapping. He has also worked on image correction and classification, statistical analysis of LIDAR metrics, and road network routing and distance calculations.


Davis, Laura
Laura serves as the project coordinator for AHB, working with the project director, Rick Gustafson. She is responsible for the fiscal and administrative needs of the project, including managing all project budgets and subcontracts, submitting progress reports, and planning meetings.

Laura completed a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Washington.  She has worked at the UW since 1994 and in 2012, she received the UW School of Environmental and Forest Sciences Administrative Staff Service award.


Sarah Dossey visiting the Pilchuck demonstration site.

Dossey, Sarah

Sarah is the social media specialist for the AHB project. She manages the AHB Facebook page, Twitter account and media relations. Her interests with the project include public STEM education and outreach. Sarah has a B.S. in Biological Sciences from University of Idaho and an M.Sc. in Plant Pathology from Washington State University.


Doty, Sharon
Dr. Doty is an associate professor in the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences (SEFS) in the College of the Environment at the University of Washington.  She earned a B.S. degree in Genetics from UC Davis and a Ph.D. in Microbiology at the University of Washington. She did postdoctoral research in plant biochemistry, focusing on developing improved methods for phytoremediation of organic pollutants. Sharon joined the faculty of the UW College of Forest Resources in 2003.  Her primary interests lie in plant microbiology including endophytic nitrogen fixation, remediation of pollutants, and bioenergy.

Chang Dou

Dou, Chang
Chang Dou is a PhD student in Bioresource Science and Engineering at the University of Washington working with Renata Bura and Rick Gustafson. Chang’s primary research focuses on converting hybrid poplar into biofuels and biochemical via biochemical processes. His goal is to make full use of the whole poplar tree and maximize the overall sugar recovery which includes optimizing the bioconversion pretreatment conditions and enzymatic hydrolysis.

Jesus Espinoza is an AHB team member at GreenWood Resources

Espinoza, Jesus


Jesus Espinoza is the Director of Silviculture Research for GreenWood Resources, Inc. Dr. Espinoza leads the program of applied research in intensive plantation management for a variety of markets and regions. He has over 20 years’ experience in siliviculture research and operations management. Dr. Espinoza holds a B.S. in Forestry Engineering from De Los Andes University in Venezuela, an M.S. in Forestry from North Carolina State University and a PhD in Forestry from North Carolina State University.


Estefania Elorriaga
Estefania Elorriaga is a PhD student with Steven Strauss at Oregon State University in the Molecular and Cellular Biology Doctoral program.  She received her Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Pennsylvania State University and her Master of Science in Biological and Ecological Engineering from Oregon State University.  As part of her research she is designing Transcription Activator-like Effector Nucleases (TALENs) and CRISPR associated nucleases to target floral genes in poplar.  Estefania is interested in the use of site-directed mutagenesis for crop improvement and transgenic crop development.

Tatiana is an Energy Associate at Washington State University Extension Snohomish County and supports the AHB Extension Team by working with the Latino community.

Giraldo, Tatiana
(425) 741-9953

Tatiana is an Energy Associate at Washington State University Extension in Snohomish County and supports the AHB Extension Team by working with the Latino community. She educates, and trains others to educate, about energy literacy and biofuels to Spanish-speaking audiences. She has been working with the Latino community in Washington State for the past 6 years as an educator, Parent Mentor (helping Hispanic parents navigate the US public school system and encouraging them to be more involved in their children’s education), and social worker, referring families to available resources to improve their quality of life and meet their immediate needs.

Tatiana has developed an extensive network of Latino leaders, educators, and volunteers who have enabled her to reach out to the Latino community, emphasizing the importance of making significant changes to the daily use of energy and discovering alternatives to fossil fuels that help the environment and our future generations. Tatiana is happy to be part of this project and to be the bridge of communication in the community.

Cat, in front of the poplar trees at the Jefferson, Oregon demonstration site in September 2016.

Gowan, Catherine

Catherine (Cat) Gowan is a human dimensions of natural resource management specialist working with AHB’s Extension team. Her work, both academic and applied, focuses on understanding and exploring the ways in which peoples’ perspectives, attitudes, and behaviors affect complex environmental issues. She has a BA in political science, with an emphasis on environmental studies, from New College of Florida. Cat joined the AHB project after receiving her MS in natural resource management from the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences at the University of Washington.


Guerra, Fernando
Dr. Guerra is conducting post-doctoral research in Professor David Neale’s lab at the University of California, Davis.  Fernando’s research analyzes the genetic mechanisms underlying traits of interest for biofuel production in Populus species.  He studies the genetic association between SNP-markers and wood composition (chemical and metabolome), water use efficiency, and growth.  Fernando is also a professor at the Institute of Plant Biology and Biotechnology at the Universidad de Talca, in Chile.

Rick G

Gustafson, Rick
(206) 543-2790
Dr. Gustafson is a professor in the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences at the University of Washington.  Rick is the primary investigator for the entire AHB project and co-leads the Sustainability Team.  His research focuses on bioresource science and engineering.  His lab investigates the development of integrated biorefineries that use biomass to produce a range of products, from commodity fuels to high value food additives. These biorefineries are characterized by having good process economics with minimal environmental impact. His lab uses process simulation as the major tool for process development work. Rick works with colleagues doing fundamental research to integrate state-of-the-art conversion technologies to produce globally optimized processes. Results from the process models are then used in economic assessments to determine financial viability and in life cycle assessments to evaluate the broad environmental impact of candidate process configurations. The process modeling work also extends to developing new methods to measure and control critical unit operations in biorefineries. His lab works with chemists to develop robust probes to measure critical performance variables and developing process control strategies to maximize productivity and product quality.  Rick has a B. S. in Wood and Fiber Science and a Ph. D. in Chemical Engineering both from the University of Washington.


Haider, Nora
(425) 741-9962
Nora is an Extension Coordinator at Washington State University Extension working on the AHB project. Nora is contributing to the development of bioenergy outreach material for the AHB project and is implementing key project activities to inform and educate stakeholders. Nora is also researching stakeholder perspective of bioenergy in the Pacific Northwest.  She holds a degree in Planning and Environmental Policy from Western Washington University where she studied land use planning, environmental science and environmental policy.

Noelle Hart, a member of the AHB Extension team

Hart, Noelle
As part of the Advanced Hardwood Biofuels Northwest (AHB) Extension Team, Noelle is developing outreach materials to communicate current knowledge in the area of biofuels. She is interested in how stakeholder values and science contribute to wise decision-making in social-ecological systems. Noelle has B.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Natural Resources from Cornell University and the University of Nebraska, respectively. Her research experience is primarily in the fields of adaptive management and forest ecology. She is excited to apply her academic skills to learning and sharing information about biofuels in the Pacific Northwest.


Hart, Quinn
Dr. Hart combines his interests in Geographic Information Systems (GIS), remote sensing and computer science with research in methods to provide database access to remote sensing data. He is also interested in the underlying database considerations and access methods. Quinn works to develop infrastructure to support collaborative environments for data discovery, distribution, and exchange.  This work supports cross-disciplinary studies on landscape ecology, environmental change detection, environmental decision making, weather systems, and climate change.


Himes, Austin
Austin Himes joined GreenWood Resources in early 2012 and has contributed by streamlining data collection and developing new experimental designs for hybrid poplar varietal testing. Austin has been working in the field of Forestry since 2003. He contributes to diverse projects including wildland fire operations, controlling mountain pine beetle outbreaks, forest and understory inventory, wildlife habitat surveys, and forest nutrition.   Austin earned a M.S. in Forest and Environmental Science from the University of Washington where he served as the vice president of the local chapter of Xi Sigma Pi, the national forestry honors society.

Bryan Jenkins

Jenkins, Bryan
(530) 304-1108
Dr. Jenkins teaches and conducts research in the areas of energy and power, with emphasis on biomass and other renewable resources.  Bryan is currently Director of the Energy Institute at the University of California Davis.  He has more than thirty years experience working in the area of biomass thermochemical conversion including combustion, gasification, and pyrolysis. His research also includes analysis and optimization of energy systems. He teaches both graduate and undergraduate courses on energy systems, heat and mass transfer, solar energy, and power and
energy conversion, including renewable energy and fuels, combined heat and power and cogeneration systems, economic analysis, and environmental impacts.  Bryan is a recipient of an Outstanding Achievement Award from the US Department of Energy for exceptional contributions to the development of bioenergy, and the Linneborn Prize from the European Union for outstanding contributions to
the development of energy from biomass.


Kallestad, Jeff
Jeff Kallestad is a Research Intern in the department of Entomology at Washington State University at the Puyallup Research and Extension Center. Jeff has worked closely with GreenWood Resources to develop NIR spectroscopic calibrations for measuring lignin, cellulose, and hemicellulose composition in poplar wood. For the AHB project he is using this technology to measure plant defensive compounds in poplar foliage and bark. Jeff is a graduate of the University of Washington and received his master’s degree at New Mexico State University.

Zareen Khan

Khan, Zareen
Dr. Zareen Khan is a research scientist working on a wide range of topics including phytoremediation of environmental pollutants, bioenergy, and nitrogen fixation. Since 2006, she has been working in Dr. Sharon Doty’s lab at the University of Washington. Zareen earned her Master’s of Science in Technology degree in Environmental Chemistry and a Ph.D in Environmental Science Technology from Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University, in India. She also conducted post-doctoral research in France focusing on bioremediation of carcinogenic polyaromatic hydrocarbons.


Klocko, Amy
Dr. Klocko is a postdoctoral research associate in the lab of Steven Strauss.    Her previous research experiences include analysis of polarized cell growth in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana, and surveying wildlife and aspen trees for the US Forest Service.  Her current research interests include the regulation of flowering and floral morphology in poplar and eucalyptus trees.  She is an author on five published peer-reviewed papers and one book chapter.  Amy earned a B. S. degree in Biology from Linfield College and a Ph. D. in Plant Biology from Washington University in St. Louis.


Lenentine, Miku
206-543-3507 x3
Miku Lenentine is a predoctoral research associate working with Professor Stanley Asah in the School of Environmental and Forest Science’s Human Dimensions of Natural Resource Management Lab at the University of Washington. Miku is assessing the social impacts of biofuels in the Pacific Northwest. Specifically, her research considers the social discourse surrounding the “biofuels conversation” through a computer assisted content analysis of online news articles, blogs, websites and social media. She is also applying Q-methodology to examine values, attitudes and perceptions of different stakeholders. Miku completed a master’s of Resource Management from Simon Fraser University in British Columbia in 2010.

Roger Li

Li, Yuanzhe (Roger)
Yuanzhe (Roger) Li is a Ph.D student in Civil Engineering at the University of California, Davis, affiliated with the Institute of Transportation Studies.  Roger’s research interests lies in energy infrastructure system modelling and optimization, transportation networks, and supply chain design. His primary focus is to applying numerical optimization methods to address the decision-making problems in energy system design under various uncertainties. Before coming to U.C. Davis, Roger studied at Tsinghua University in Beijing for his bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering.

Haiwei Lu

Lu, Haiwei
Haiwei Lu is a graduate student working with Dr. Steven Strauss at Oregon State University.  Her current research focuses on the feasibility of genetic containment of transgenic trees using zinc-finger nucleases.  She earned a B.S. degree in Forestry from Beijing Forestry University in 2011.

Cathleen Ma

Ma, Cathleen
Cathleen Ma is a Senior Faculty Research Assistant and biotechnology lab manager in the lab of Steven Strauss at Oregon State University. Her current research is on improving the efficiency with which poplar and eucalyptus can be transformed and regenerated.  She is also studying and evaluating genetically engineered reproductive sterility poplar and eucalyptus trees under greenhouse and  field conditions. Cathleen has published 40 scientific papers and is an author on two book chapters. She received a B.S. degree in Horticulture from Northwestern Agriculture University in China.


Marquardt, Brain

Dr. Marquardt is Director of the Center for Process Analysis and Control (CPAC) and Senior Principal Engineer at the Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Washington. His research interests include the development and application of spectroscopic instrumentation, primarily Raman, for continuous real-time chemical, biological and environmental analysis.  A major research focus is the design and implementation of novel fiber-optic sensors/probes for real-time monitoring of industrial and environmental processes.  Brian’s primary research goal is to understand the optical sampling characteristics of various spectroscopic techniques to improve measurement precision, accuracy and stability for improved process understanding and control.


Merz, Justin
Justin Merz has worked at the Center for Spatial Technologies and Remote Sensing at the University of California, Davis since 2006 developing online GIS applications and tools.  Justin has a strong knowledge of web frontends built using the latest HTML5 standards.  Justin also works on the application backend developing the server and database.  For the AHB project, his primary role is creating online tooling including an application to view the Poplar 3PG growth model as well as customizing the model with user provided input parameters. Justin has a B.S. in Computer Science and Engineering from UC Davis.

Rodrigo Morales

Morales Vera, Rodrigo
Dr. Morales is a postdoctoral research associate in Bioresources Science and Engineering in the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences at the University of Washington. He obtained his engineering degree in the Faculty of Forest Sciences at the University of Chile. Morales’ primary research focus is the bioconversion of biomass to fuels and chemicals. His work for the AHB project includes design and modeling the process to make poplar to glacial acetic acid economically feasible and sustainable.

Brian Moser - crop

Moser, Brian
Brian W. Moser founded the Rocky Mountain Wildlife Institute in 2008 after working as a wildlife biologist in the hybrid poplar and forestry industries for 11 years.  Brian earned his Ph.D in Wildlife Biology from the University of Idaho, and has published a number of papers on wildlife use of hybrid poplar plantations, as well as wildlife-forestry relationships. The RMWI exists to help agencies and landowners achieve their environmental, economic, and social stewardship goals.


Mozharov, Sergey
Dr. Mozharov obtained his MS in Chemistry from Moscow State University (Russia) and PhD in Analytical Chemistry from University of Strathclyde (UK). He joined Brian Marquardt’s group at Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Washington, in 2011.  Having background in Analytical Chemistry and Photonics, Sergey’s primary research focus is addressing fundamental and practical challenges in development and application of spectroscopic tools to various process environments. This includes design and implementation of specialized fiber-optic and free space sensors, development of sampling interfaces and novel data processing algorithms. His interests cover a wide range of spectroscopic techniques. Currently Sergey’s work is focused on Raman, Fluorescence and Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy. He designed a number of sensors and probes that were successfully applied to monitoring batch, microfluidic, and continuous flow processes in harsh environments.


Rogers, Luke

Luke Rogers is a research scientist and forest engineer at the University of Washington. Since 2001 Luke has been devoted to increasing the understanding of Washington state forests through the assembly of a statewide land parcel database, researching forestland conversion trends, identifying conservation opportunities, and developing mitigation strategies and incentives. For the AHB project, Luke is utilizing GIS technology to identify the best areas to grow poplar for biofuels in the Pacific Northwest. Luke earned a master’s of Science in Forest Engineering in 2005 from the University of Washington’s College of Forest Resources.

Jason Selwitz

Selwitz, Jason
(509) 527-3678
Jason became the Project Manager for the Agriculture Center of Excellence in late 2011.  After graduating from Penn State in Park Management, Jason served in the Philippines with the Peace Corps and co-founded the Palawan Conservation Corps.  Afterward, Jason was a four season wilderness educator leading multi-week expeditions and service projects in Oregon, California, Nevada, British Columbia, and Hawaii.  Jason earned his Masters in Regenerative Studies from Cal Poly Pomona by completing lab research on two strains of freshwater algae and their ability to treat human wastewater and produce biodiesel.  For over four years, Jason was the Program Manager with Green Empowerment where he collaborated with colleges and universities to provide rural farming communities in Latin America, Southeast Asia, and eastern Africa with access to appropriate technology, renewable energy, and watershed restoration.  Jason holds Certificates in River Restoration and Wetland Delineation from Portland State University.

Rich Shuren works for GreenWood Resources

Shuren, Richard
Richard is Director of Tree Improvement Operations at GWR.  He began his career with the Crown Zellerbach Company working on conifer forest regeneration projects. In 1983, Richard participated in establishing the first hybrid poplar research plantings near Boardman, OR and later worked in poplar tree improvement.  In 2000, he started directing GWR’s Westport, OR Tree Improvement Station, where he oversees a program of hybrid poplar breeding and testing that distributes improved plant material to GWR’s global operations.  Richard graduated from Humboldt State University, in Arcata, California in 1976 with a B. S. degree in Forestry.

Brian S

Stanton, Brian
(971) 533-7052
Dr. Stanton is the Chief Science Officer at GWR.  He has more than 25 years of experience in poplar genetics and is an internationally recognized expert.  His research has produced some of the finest breeding collections of Populus deltoides, Populus trichocarpa, and a variety of Asian Tacamahaca poplar.  Brian has overseen hybrid varietal development for poplar commercial tree farms in the U.S. as well as varietal testing in Chile, China, and Europe. Brian is past chair of the Poplar and Willow Working Party for the International Union of Forest Research Organizations and the past chair for the Society of American Foresters Genetics and Tree Improvement Working Group.  Brian received a B.S. in biology from West Chester State College, an M.S. in forestry from the University of Maine, and a Ph.D. in forest resources from Pennsylvania State University.

Rick Stonex - crop

Stonex, Rick
Rick Stonex is the Westside Tree Farm Manager for Greenwood Resources, Inc. Since 2006 he has managed the Lower Columbia Tree Farm and other GreenWood Resources operational activities in Western Oregon and Washington. Rick has 33 years of experience in both conventional and short rotation forestry in the Pacific Northwest. He received a B.S. in Forest Engineering from Oregon State University in 1981.

Steve Strauss

Strauss, Steve
Dr. Steven H. Strauss is a Distinguished Professor of Forest Biotechnology in the Department of Forest Ecosystems and Society at Oregon State University, and has a joint appointment in the Molecular and Cellular Biology Program.  Dr. Strauss has earned degrees in biological sciences from Cornell (B.S.), Yale (MFS), and the University of California at Berkeley (Ph.D), published more than 200 scientific papers, and obtained more than $18 million of grant support.

Patricia Townsend

Townsend, Patricia
(425) 741-9963
Dr. Townsend is a Regional Extension Specialist at Washington State University and co-lead for the AHB Extension team. Patricia is playing an active role in developing ecosystem service markets for poplar trees, creating outreach materials, and conducting research on the needs and concerns of stakeholders regarding bioenergy. She completed her Ph. D at the University of Washington (UW) working closely with local landowners on tropical forest restoration and conservation in Costa Rica. While at UW, Patricia also worked on the environmental impacts of biofuel feedstocks. Currently, she is happy to be providing outreach to build a sustainable poplar energy and ecosystem services system in the Northwest.


Zerpa, Jose
Dr. Zerpa is a silvicultural researcher at GWR.  His research centers on the management of site resources to improve stand productivity and value, with emphasis on tree nutrition.  His experience includes operational management of eucalyptus, gmelina, and Caribbean pine plantations in the tropics, and silvicultural research on loblolly pine systems in the Southeast US.  He is currently responsible for GWR’s silvicultural research at the Boardman and Lower Columbia Tree Farms, and for the research trials installed at in the AHB poplar demonstration plantings.  Jose obtained his M. S. and Ph. D. in Forestry at North Carolina State University.

Kevin Zobrist

Zobrist, Kevin
(425) 357-6017
Kevin serves as the Washington State University Regional Extension Forestry Specialist for the North Puget Sound area. He is based in Everett, WA, where he coordinates and teaches public forestry education classes, predominantly for owners of small-acreage forests. Kevin also does research related to small-scale forestry and education methods, and develops technical publications for landowners. Before joining the WSU faculty in 2007, Kevin was a forestry research scientist for the University of Washington. Kevin has a BS in forest management and an MS in forest economics, both from the University of Washington. Kevin’s top interests are ecology, native trees, woody biofuels, and using technology in forestry education.