Principle Investigator

Rebecca Neumann

Becca joined the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department at the University of Washington in the summer of 2011. Prior to this, she was a NOAA Climate and Global Change postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University where she studied how plant roots and soil conditions modulate the amount of water moved through the landscape. She obtained her Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a thesis project focused on understanding one of the major human health problems in Bangladesh: arsenic contaminated groundwater. Prior to graduate school, Becca worked as an environmental engineering consultant for EG&G Technical Services, and received her B.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering and B.A. in Art and Art History from Rice University. Outside of work, Becca enjoys hiking, mountaineering and rock climbing with her husband and two kids.
Contact: Email Phone: (206) 221-2298 Office: Wilcox 168

Postdoctoral Researchers

Pamela Barrett

Pam is a postdoctoral researcher with the Hydro-biogeochemistry group investigating arsenic cycling in contaminated urban lakes in western Washington. She received a PhD in chemical oceanography from the University of Washington in 2015 where she studied the role of particles in marine trace metal biogeochemistry. Prior to graduate school, Pam taught high school chemistry, physics, and biology in the Oakland Unified school District. Pam completed her undergraduate work at the University of Rochester, earning a B.S. in chemistry and a B.A. in political science. Outside of work, she enjoys biking, reading, and dance and is learning to sail.
Contact: Email Office: Wilcox 267 CV

Graduate Students

Nick Waldo

Nick received his A.B. in Environmental Science and Engineering from Harvard University in 2013, where he conducted research in ultrasound water purification. Before coming to the University of Washington, he was a research assistant at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution working on paleotempestology. At UW, Nick is researching how interactions between plants, microbes, and environmental conditions affect methane emissions from wetlands. While away from research, Nick enjoys hiking, skiing, climbing and any other excuse to adventure outdoors.
Contact: Email

Yasmine Farhat

Yasmine received her BS from the University of Nebraska Omaha in 2015, where she double majored in biology and chemistry. During her time at UNO she conducted research on the endocrine disrupting effects of agricultural run-off. Her current project in the hydro-biogeochemistry group looks at the impact of climate change on the nutritional quality of rice. Outside of work she enjoys swimming, traveling, cooking and listening to public radio.
Contact: Email

Lab Technicians

Jesse Turner

I received my B.S. in Oceanography from the University of Washington in the spring of 2016. During my undergraduate experience, I was involved in the VISIONS research cruises dedicated to laying one of the largest underwater cabled observatories in the world’s oceans. Additionally, I was a research and writer for a project examining the biogeochemical cycles of the oceans off of Qatar. Over the summer of 2016, I worked in Alaska as a part of the hydro-biogeochemistry group to collect data on the relationship between climate change and methane emissions in wetlands. Currently, I am helping to analyze the 2015 and 2016 summer data from Alaska. When I’m not involved with science, I love skiing, mountaineering, soccer, biking, and any reason to enjoy the great outdoors of the north-wet.
Contact: Email

Undergraduate Students

Bobby Ardissono

Bobby is an undergraduate working towards a B.S. in Civil Engineering. He joined the lab in the winter of 2014. Outside of the lab and school, Bobby works as a ski instructor and enjoys hiking, running,​and mountain biking.
Contact: Email

Olivia Hargrave

Olivia joined the Hydro-biogeochemistry group in June 2016. She is a senior pursuing a B.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering. Her research primarily pertains to arsenic contamination in Tacoma's urban lakes. In her free time, she enjoys reading, birding, and learning guitar.
Contact: Email

Maddie Hubbard

Maddie joined the Hydro-biogeochemistry group in June of 2016. They are an undergraduate senior in the Civil and Environmental Engineering department, with a focus in Environmental engineering. They work on a number of projects in the lab, including the impacts of climate change on the quality of rice, and carbon dioxide and methane fluxes in Alaskan wetlands. Outside the lab, Maddie likes to cook, craft, and write.
Contact: Email

Marina Kochuten

Marina is an undergrad in the Civil and Environmental Engineering department who joined the research team in fall 2016. When outside of school and lab, Marina enjoys exploring new places, hiking, and playing music.
Contact: Email

Former Group Members

Postdoctoral Researchers

Mickey Jarvi

Mickey is now a Professor of Forestry at the College of the Redwoods. Mickey was part of the Hydro-biogeochemistry group as a postdoctoral research from January 2016 to August 2016. He investigated how belowground flora and microfauna interact to influence atmospheric fluxes of carbon dioxide and methane from a bog in central Alaska. He is a genuine Yooper and completed his M.S. (forest ecology) and Ph.D. (forest science) from Michigan Technological University with a background in tree root responses to changes in soil conditions induced by climate change. In his free time Mickey enjoys relaxing with his fiancée, taking their dog to off-leash dog parks, and exploring the woods for organisms as small as mycorrhizae and as large as the mighty sequoia.

Colby Moorberg

Colby is now an Assistant Professor in the Department of Agronomy at Kansas State University. He is a soil scientist with interest in soil-root interactions. Colby joined the Hydro-biogeochemistry group as a postdoctoral researcher from January of 2014 to January 2015 to investigate effect of plant roots on methane oxidation in boreal wetlands in Alaska. In his free time Colby and his wife, Stacy enjoy cycling, as well as hiking and camping with their two beagles.
Contact: Website

Javier Espeleta

Javier Espeleta is now a consultant in Costa Rica. He joined the Hydro-biogeochemistry group from January 2013 to August 2015 with the goal of studying how plant hydraulic redistribution interacts with soil carbon and nutrient cycling. Javier obtained a Ph.D. from the University of Georgia, a M.Sc. from the University of Florida, and B.Sc. and Lic. degrees from the University of Costa Rica. His main research area is plant ecophysiology, primarily the study of plant roots and the interactions with ecosystem processes. Outside of work, Javier likes to hike, play soccer and run, and also support the sport and academic activities of his two kids and wife.
Contact: Email

Graduate Students

Lara Pracht

Lara Pracht completed her PhD in November 2016 and is now a Laboratory Resource Coordinator at Oregon Institute of Technology. Her thesis was titled, "Arsenic contaminated groundwater: exploration of the role of organic carbon in mobilization processes and evaluation of mechanisms of arsenic sequestration by in situ treatment systems." She received her B.S. in Civil Engineering in 2010 at the University of Kansas.

Farnaz Aslkhodapasand

Farnaz completed her master's degree in November 2016 and is now a Staff Water Resources Engineer at Cardno. Her thesis was titled, "Integration of dynamic rhizospheric methane oxidation into a process-based methane emissions model." She received her B.S. in Civil Engineering in 2012 from Sharif University of Technology in Terhan, Iran.

Andrea Wong

Andrea now works for King County mapping stormwater. She was involved with field efforts researching the effects of plants on methane emissions from Alaskan wetlands while working towards her non-thesis based MSCE degree, which she completed in 2016. She received her B.S. in Environmental Engineering from the University of Southern California in 2011. Prior to graduate school, Andrea interned as a restoration ecologist with the National Park Service and worked as an environmental engineering consultant with AECOM.

Lab Technicians

Jen Levye

Jen is a former research technician for the Hydro-biogeochemistry group. She left in 2013 to become a PhD student at the University of Minnesota in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior. Outside of work, Jen enjoys hiking and camping, baking, and boardgames with friends.


Brianna Hunt

Brianna Hunt is now an environmental consultant in the Seattle area. She joined the Hydro-biogeochemistry group from August 2015 to September 2016 and an undergraduate in the Earth and Space Science Department majoring in geology, with a double degree in Anthropology. She worked on lab experiments determining methane oxidation rates in wetlands as they relate to microbial populations and activity within the rhizosphere. She enjoys to paint and cook, and is also an avid downhill skier.

Joe Ellingson

Joe Ellingson received his B.S. in Civil Engineering in 2014 and is now an environmental engineer in the Seattle area. He worked as an assistant on multiple research projects in the lab during his junior and senior year of undergrad. Joe spends his time outside of school backpacking, rock climbing and playing guitar.

Hunter Brown

Hunter Brown received his B.S. in Civil Engineering in 2013. He now works an environmental engineer in the Seattle area. He worked in the Hydro-biogeochemistry group as a research assistant during his senior year of undergrad and for an additional six months post graduation. While here, he focused on the design and construction of sediment test columns, as well as calculating experiment parameters, to analyze the capacity and removal mechanisms of a PRB, to remove arsenic from contaminated groundwater. Outside of work Hunter enjoys slacklining and biking around Seattle, hiking, wildcrafting, stacking rocks, and rock climbing.

Alex Fussell

Alex worked in the Hydro-biogeochemistry group as an undergraduate researcher during the 2011-2012 academic year. She is now employed as an environmental engineer in a local engineering firm. Alex is an avid ultimate frisbee player and was a member of the Washington women's team, Element Ultimate, and enjoys rock climbing, running and taking advantage of Seattle's rare but beautiful sunny days.