Harold Wanless

Dr. Harold R. Wanless

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Dr. Harold R. Wanless is Professor and Chair of the Department of Geological Sciences and was Cooper Fellow in the College of Arts and Sciences 2010-2013. From 1971-1992 he was a faculty member in Marine Geology and Geophysics at RSMAS, and in Geological Sciences in the College of Arts and Sciences since 1992. Since joining the University of Miami, he and his students have been studying the dynamics and evolution of tropical shallow marine and coastal environments of south Florida and the Bahamas. Especially important to this research has been documenting the influence of changing sea level and catastrophic events, such as hurricanes. They are now using this understanding to better predict the future of our coastal environments in the face of global warming and project future rates of sea level rise.

He completed a B.A. in Geology at Princeton University in 1964 with a Thesis on the Beach Sands of Molokai, Hawaii.

His M.S. degree was in Marine Geology and Geophysics at the University of Miami in 1967 with a Thesis on “Holocene Sediments and Paleo-Environmental Evolution of Biscayne Bay, Florida” (in part refining the post-glacial sea level rise towards its present position).

His Ph.D. in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Johns Hopkins University was completed in1973 with a Dissertation on the “Geology and Paleo-environmental Reconstruction of the Cambrian sedimentary Sequences of Grand Canyon, Arizona” (a study of the sedimentary record in a time of natural sea level cycles).

In 2016, Dr. Wanless, together with Mayor Phil Stoddard, was named one of Politico’s 50 plus ‘thinkers, doers and visionaries who are transforming American Politics in 2016.’

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