Dr. Frank J. Coale is Professor and former Chair of the Department of Environmental Science and Technology. His career-long contributions in research, Extension education, teaching and service have been keenly focused and have had a lasting impact on better management of our agricultural ecosystems. His work has resulted in positive changes in agricultural best management practices, environmental preservation, policy development and citizen understanding. Dr. Coale has exhibited a steadfast commitment to understanding the relationships between agricultural production and the wellbeing of the surrounding ecosystem. He has excelled in transferring that understanding into implementable on-farm management practices and development of science-based public policies.
Dr. Coale has served on technical advisory committees to local, state and federal agencies including USDA, USEPA, Maryland Department of Agriculture, and the Maryland Governorís Office. Providing technical guidance to policy makers and regulating agencies accelerates the infusion of sound science into policy development and is a highly effective mode of Extension education.
Dr. Coale has served as Department Chair for two different academic departments at the University of Maryland. After an international search, Dr. Coale was appointed Chair of the Department of Natural Resource Sciences and Landscape Architecture in 2005. In this role, he had administrative responsibility for management of teaching, research, and Extension programs in a discipline-diverse academic department of 45 faculty members. After one year, as the result of college reorganization, the new Department of Environmental Science and Technology was established. Dr. Coale was appointed as the inaugural Chair of a newly formed Department of Environmental Science and Technology and served in this capacity from 2006 to 2011. Dr. Coale was responsible for constructing new departmental structure; development and approval of new undergraduate and graduate academic programs; curriculum development; recruitment of faculty; administration of budget, personnel and facilities; management of teaching, research and Extension programs.
The Gemstone Program in the Honors College at the University of Maryland is a unique multidisciplinary four-year research program for academically talented undergraduate students of all majors. Under guidance of faculty mentors and Gemstone staff, teams of students design, direct and conduct significant research. Gemstone students are members of a living and learning community comprised of fellow students, faculty and staff who work together to enrich the undergraduate experience. This community challenges and supports the students in the development of their research, teamwork, communication and leadership skills. In the fourth year, each team of students presents its research in the form of a thesis to experts, and the students complete the program with a citation and a tangible sense of accomplishment.
I am grateful to the Gemstone Director Search Committee, chaired by Professor Robert Briber, for their service.
Let me also express my great admiration for and thanks to outgoing Gemstone Director, Professor Jim Wallace, who after 11 years of outstanding service, will return to the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Professor Wallace's extraordinary vision and leadership have made Gemstone a national model for undergraduate team-based mentored research and best practices for undergraduate living and learning programs for academically talented students.
With best wishes,
Professor William Dorland
Honors College Director
August 15, 2012