Technical Program


Oral Presentations

Most oral sessions will provide 20 minutes per presentation (17 minutes, presentation; 3 minutes, questions and discussion). Presentations must be prepared using PowerPoint or PDF formats. Presentations created on MacIntosh systems and converted to run on PC’s must be checked before arrival at the meeting and then again in the Speaker Ready Room (see below). One laptop with Windows7 (no Macs available) with Power Point 2010, one LCD projector, and one screen will be provided for all oral sessions. In addition in each room there will be lectern microphone, wireless microphone, wireless computer mouse and PowerPoint advancer, and a speaker timer. Speakers may not use their own laptops for presentation. Slide projectors, overhead projectors, and multiple screens will not be available. If you have special requests, you must contact the AV coordinator, Robert Sternberg ( not later than 15 February 2014.

The Speaker Ready Room (Walnut Room)
All oral session presenters must visit the Speaker Ready Room before their scheduled presentation to ensure their PowerPoint or PDF file is properly configured and operating and load it on one of the laptops. Failure to do so may result in presentations being omitted from session sequences. The Speaker Ready Room is open for program checking and speaker assistance as follows:

Saturday, 22 March: 4–9 p.m.
Sunday, 23 March: 7 a.m.–9 p.m.
Monday, 24 March: 7 a.m.–9 p.m.
Tuesday, 25 March: 7–10 a.m.

Each speaker must bring his or her PowerPoint or PDF presentation on a USB compatible flash drive (a.k.a. thumb drive or memory stick) or a CD-ROM disk to the Speaker Ready Room for checking and uploading to their session’s folder according to the deadlines below:

For Presentation Upload Not Later Than
Sunday, 23 March, AM 8:30 p.m., Saturday, 22 March
Sunday, 23 March, PM 10 a.m., Sunday, 23 March
Monday, 24 March, AM 5 p.m., Sunday, 23 March
Monday, 24 March, PM 10 a.m., Monday, 24 March
Tuesday, 25 March, AM 5 p.m., Monday, 24 March

Poster Sessions

All Poster Sessions will take place in Freedom Hall A, on the hotel’s lower level. Times and subjects are listed in the Program. Poster presenters have one 4’ by 8’ horizontal (landscape) poster display surface. Numbers on these display surfaces correspond to the poster booth numbers listed in the Program. The poster boards accept push pins, and some pins will be furnished for each poster.


S1. Tectonic Links between the Northern and Southern Appalachians.
Don Wise, Univ. Massachusetts–Amherst,; Hal Bosbyshell, West Chester Univ. of Pennsylvania,; Gale Blackmer, Pennsylvania Topographic & Geologic Survey,
Description: Pennsylvania lies at the junction of the Northern and Southern Appalachians. Despite decades of research, the nature of that junction remains a matter of conjecture. Recent studies have improved our ability to make positive correlations between “junction” rocks and those that are definitive of the Northern and Southern Appalachians, just as they have enhanced our picture of the structural evolution of the region. We invite papers that treat regional elements of this story in space or time, from all parts of the Appalachians and from any discipline from geophysics to geomorphology or any that lie between. The object is a day-long symposium providing a comprehensive tectonic picture of this critical but poorly understood link in the Appalachian chain.
S2A. Origin and Evolution of the Appalachian Critical Zone. I. Physical, Chemical, and Biological Processes.
Jason Price, Millersville Univ. Pennsylvania,;
Joel Moore, Towson Univ.,
Description: The regolith that constitutes the Appalachian Critical Zone observed today is the product of a combination of biological, physical, and chemical weathering processes operating over geologic time. The regolith may or may not be genetically related to the underlying bedrock, may be relict or modern, and may range from relatively pristine to anthropogenically perturbed. The present-day properties of the Critical Zone reflect a complex, often long-term interplay of climate, erosion, soil formation, biological, including microbial activity, mineral weathering, and land use. Investigations of these processes may include, but are not limited to, any combination of field techniques, paleo- and/or present-day climate measurements, elemental and isotopic analyses of solids and solutes, hydrologic monitoring, characterization of biological processes, microscopic observations, and/or numeric modeling.
S2B. Origin and Evolution of the Appalachian Critical Zone. II. Anthropogenic Sediments and Their Impacts on Aquatic Ecosystems.
Robert C. Walter, Franklin & Marshall College,;
Allen C. Gellis, USGS,;
J effrey Niemitz, Dickinson College,
Description: Excess suspended sediment is one the greatest stream pollutants in the United States. Many bays and estuaries in the northeastern US are negatively impacted by excess sediment loads, which may carry with them high concentrations of labile phosphorus, trace metals, or organic compounds that may severely impair aquatic ecosystems. Sources of fine-grained suspended sediment can be characterized by a variety of methods, including sediment budgets and chemical fingerprinting. The impact of these sediments on aquatic ecosystems depends on the transient state of sediment storage, its transit rate through fluvial systems into more permanent depocenters, and the biogeochemical process that act upon these sediments during transport and sedimentation. This session will characterize sediments from source to sink, distinguishing anthropogenic from other effects on the erosion, storage, and delivery of sediment and assessing its negative impacts on aquatic ecosystems. Potential speakers in addition to conveners: Kathy Boomer, Smithsonian Environmental Research Center; William Hilgartner, Johns Hopkins University, Cliff Hupp, USGS; Peter Kleinman, USDA; Milan Pavich, USGS; Bruce Wilkinson, Syracuse University.

Theme Sessions

T1. Karst Research and the Sustainable Use and Management of Karst Aquifers.
Malcolm Field, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency,;
Neven Kresic, AMEC Environment & Infrastructure, Inc.,
Description: The main goal of this session is to raise awareness of the unique nature of karst water resources, including protection of their characteristic, groundwater-dependent ecosystems. The session will promote links among scientists, engineering, management, and regulatory communities involved in research on karst and its aquifers. We invite both general and specialized presentations on karst topics including but not limited to karst aquifer characterization, surface water-groundwater interactions, geomorphology, speleology, biology, karst-related hazards, applied hydrogeology, modeling, and water resources planning, development, management, protection and restoration.
T2. Interpreting Sedimentary Records of Past Changes in Climate and Ecology.
Eastern Section of SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geology)
Kira Lawrence, Lafayette College,;
David Sunderlin, Lafayette College,
Description: Understanding of past climatic and ecological change provides the context for modern changes in these earth systems. This session will bring together scientists who explore past changes in these systems on a variety of timescales, employing a variety of approaches. We invite contributions that span the geologic timescale and that: 1) provide data-based reconstructions of changes in climate or ecology; 2) explore the development or application of novel techniques for past climate and ecological studies, and/or 3) model past climatic or ecological change.
T3. Implementing Recent Innovations in Thermobarometry to Constrain Igneous and Metamorphic Evolution.
Kyle Ashley, Virginia Tech,;
Victor Guevara, Virginia Tech,;
Donald Stahr III, Virginia Tech,
Description: Thermobarometry holds significant importance in metamorphic and structural petrology for reconstructing pressure-temperature-deformation (PTD) histories of rocks. New advances in techniques are becoming widely exploited. For example, trace element thermobarometers (e.g. Ti-in-quartz) and pseudosection modeling have been applied in a wide variety of igneous and metamorphic environments to understand deformation, reaction and fluid flux histories throughout the evolution of these rocks. This session will focus on the application of these new techniques (or use of older, established techniques in unconventional ways) to advance understanding of igneous and metamorphic evolution. New insights into the applicability of various techniques in different circumstances will be particularly welcome.
T4. Gaining a Greater Understanding of Mars from Gale Crater and Beyond.
Rebecca Williams, Planetary Science Institute,
Description: Mars exploration is revealing a wealth of information regarding former environmental conditions and how these changed with time. Over a span of 15 years, we have continuous spacecraft observations of the red planet. An array of satellites has collected image, topography and other data to characterize the planet. Ground-based observations are on-going, conducted by the Curiosity and Opportunity rovers. For this session, we encourage contributions yielding new geological insights for Mars based on surface and orbital observations as well as terrestrial analog research.
T5. Embracing Digital Technologies and the Geoweb: The Changing Philosophies and Practices of Geologic Mapping.
Joseph Kopera, Massachusetts Geological Survey,;
John Van-Hoesen, Green Mountain College,
Description: The rapid evolution of digital technologies over the past decade has revolutionized how geologic data are collected and has created new frameworks for their visualization and distribution. This session will focus on how emergent technologies are currently utilized (or not) by the geologic mapping community, with a focus on the production and distribution of geologic maps at all scales. Presentations will cover a wide range of topics including digital field techniques and emerging technology (i.e., GigaPan, drones, portable LiDAR, mobile devices), map production workflows, data standards, social-media / geo-blogging, web-based data portals, GIS implementation, crowdsourcing, etc.
T6. Service Learning in the Geosciences: Deep Learning through Critical, Reflective Thinking and Civic Responsibility.
Steve Winters, Holyoke Community College,;
Lori Weeden, Univ. Massachusetts Lowell,
Description: When given the chance, students love turning their factual knowledge into actionable skill that can significantly address community needs.  This session will explore the many faces of service learning in the geosciences at two- and four-year colleges, as well as demonstrate the “nut and bolts” of planning, designing, and implementing a meaningful service experience at your school. Presentations on projects of all types and lengths are welcome.
T7. EarthScope Arrives on the East Coast.
Charles Scharnberger, Millersville Univ. Pennsylvania,
Description: EarthScope is a ten-year project to obtain geophysical data for improved understanding of North American crustal structure, seismicity, and volcanism. It includes three sub-projects: The Plate Boundary Observatory, the San Andreas Fault Observatory at Depth, and the USArray of seismic and magnetotelluric stations. The Transportable Array component of the USArray consists of 400 seismic stations that have been marching west to east across the conterminous United States since 2004. In 2013, the Transportable Array reached the East Coast, where stations will remain for two years. This session will be concerned with the deployment of the array in the East, as well as data collection and interpretation in this region.
T8. Coastal Storms in the Mid-Atlantic: Research and Teaching Opportunities.
GSA Geoscience Education Division; GSA Sedimentary Geology Division; Eastern Section of SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geology); National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT); Paleontological Society
Marcus Key, Dickinson College,;
Sean Cornell, Shippensburg Univ. Pennsylvania,
Description: This session will focus on research and teaching opportunities arising from coastal storms such as Hurricane Sandy. We are looking for participation from scientists and faculty who use the Mid-Atlantic coastline for their field-based research and/or to inform their teaching practices. We encourage contributions from a variety of perspectives, methodologies, and disciplines (e.g., marine science, oceanography, geomorphology, sedimentology, stratigraphy, and paleontology) that show how the record of storms in the Mid-Atlantic region is being utilized to advance our understanding of storm impacts and ways in which these lessons can be brought into the classroom.
T9. Acadian Paleoenvironments of the Appalachians: Mountains Carved by “Alpine” Glaciers, Forested Lowlands and Swamps, and a Marine Foreland Basin with Limited Circulation.
Eastern Section of SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geology)
Alexander Bartholomew, SUNY New Paltz,;
Edward B. Daeschler, Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel Univ. of Philadelphia,;
Frank R. Ettensohn, Univ. Kentucky,;
William E. Stein, Binghamton Univ.,
Description: Recent studies imply that diamictites of Late Devonian age, occurring in Pennsylvania and Maryland, are glaciogenic. An enormous granitic dropstone has been reported in marine black shale in Kentucky. In conjunction with classic studies of the Catskill Delta and new work on lowland forests, soils, and freshwater faunas of the Late Devonian, these observations have strong implications for slopes, paleoenvironments and climatic gradients. Papers are solicited for a session focusing on processes that acted in these settings, from the high elevations at which mountain glaciers originated, across the foothills, alluvial plains and deltas, and into a marine realm with high organic inputs and limited circulation.
T10. Paleoclimate Records of All Types and Ages.
Eastern Section of SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geology)
John Rayburn, SUNY New Paltz,;
David Barclay, SUNY Cortland,;
Tara Cutrin, Hobart & William Smith Colleges,
Description: This session will highlight a variety of paleoclimate studies undertaken on records from any part of geological history, from deep-time to the Holocene. We invite studies using any traditional or innovative proxies and methods. We welcome paleoclimate records from a variety of sources including (but not limited to) rocks, sediments, fossils, ice, water, and atmosphere.
T11. Examples of Next-Generation Science Standards Implemented in the K–12 Classroom by and for Teachers.
Tanya Furman, Penn State,;
Laura Guertin, Penn State, Brandywine,
Description: This session seeks to encourage K–12 teachers to present their instructional methods and curricular innovations as they integrate the new NGSS (The Next Generation Science Standards) into their classroom teaching. We look forward to having K–12 teachers share early successes and challenges with the NGSS. In addition, we welcome university faculty and informal science educators to share their materials and resources that are benefitting K–12 teachers and classrooms.
T12. Geologizing in America: From Wilderness to Megalopolis.
Jeri L. Jones, Jones Geological Services,;
Mary Ann Schlegel, Millersville Univ. of Pennsylvania,;
Nicholas G. McDonald, Westminster School,
Description: Practical considerations relating to building materials, mineral resources, coal and agriculture motivated most geologic investigations in colonial America, and they continued to do so through the 19th Century, up to the present day. However, by the 1850s, when the ‘geosynclinal’ concept emerged in the northeastern U.S. and the first oil well was drilled in Pennsylvania, American geologic thought and practice were becoming increasingly independent of European influence. Papers are invited on any aspect of this transition, including but not limited to studies of the history of geologic mapping, mining and other exploitation of resources, mineralogy, structural geology, paleontology, geophysics, and impacts of these activities on the natural environment.
T13. Scratching the Surfaces: Advances in Continental and Marine Ichnology.
Eastern Section of SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geology)
Ilya Buynevich, Temple Univ.,;
Logan Wiest, Temple Univ.,
Description: This session will bring together research on modern and ancient traces, from discoveries in the rock record and biogeomorphology, to neoichnological experiments and applications of novel techniques to trace identification and characterization. We welcome presentations spanning continental and marine settings, siliciclastic and carbonate substrates, and a variety of interactions emphasizing the paleontological and sedimentological interplay reflected in biogenic structures.
T14. An Interdisciplinary Approach to Taphonomy: The Impact of Morphological, Molecular, and Isotopic Changes on Environmental Proxies.
Eastern Section of SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geology)
Qin Leng, Bryant Univ.,;
Chris Williams, Franklin & Marshall College,;
Hong Yang, Bryant Univ.,
Description: This session examines how taphonomic processes impact on changes of fossil morphology, anatomy, physiology, as well as their biomolecules and isotopic signals on which proxies for paleoclimate and paleoenvironmental reconstructions have been based. Participants will present their latest research results on climatic and environmental factors that control tissue decay in laboratory controlled experiments, natural settings, and fossil analyses.
T15. Significant 21st-Century Paleontological Discoveries in Northeastern North America.
Roger D.K. Thomas, Franklin & Marshall College,,
Roger Cuffey, Penn State,
Description: New England, the mid-Atlantic states and the Maritime Provinces of Canada are geologically well known. Knowledge of fossil faunas and floras that occur here has been accumulating for over 300 years, since Martin Lister illustrated Chesapecten and two other fossil mollusc shells from Virginia in 1687. Nonetheless, important new finds, spanning up to a billion years and bearing on major developments in the evolution of life on Earth, continue to emerge from this long-studied terrain. Contributions to this session will highlight the most significant recent discoveries in the region.
T16. Emerging Techniques and Applications in Paleolimnology.
Eastern Section of SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geology)
Greg de Wet, Univ. of Massachusetts, Amherst,
Description: Lake sediment records can be powerful archives of paleoclimate. High-resolution, multi-proxy studies are increasingly common, enabling us to better understand climate change in the past. Improvements to existing techniques in paleolimnology allow for more proxies to be analyzed at lower cost and higher resolution. In addition, relatively new proxies, such as organic lipid biomarkers, reveal specific details about climate and paleo-environments that have not always been attainable. This session seeks to highlight the recent developments in paleolimnology that increase the accuracy of climate interpretations and/or allow for higher resolution sampling of sediment records. Studies incorporating all timescales and locations are encouraged.
T17. Glaciers, Sediments, and Landforms of Northeast North America and Beyond.
Sarah Principato, Gettysburg College,;
Benjamin Laabs, SUNY Geneseo,
Description: This session invites presentations of new research on glaciers, sediments and landforms from Northeast North America and elsewhere. Both modern glacier studies and ice sheet reconstructions will be discussed, along with studies of glacial chronology, glacial geomorphology, and glacial sedimentology.
T18. Using LiDAR Imagery to Map Features Generated by Quaternary Glacial, Periglacial, and Mass Movement Processes.
Duane Braun, Bloomsburg Univ. of Pennsylvania,;
Gary Fleeger, Pennsylvania Geologic & Topographic Survey,
Description: The session will focus on small-scale features that have been detected for the first time using LiDAR imagery, as well features that have long been known, like slumps in glacial lake clays or gelifluction lobes, that could not be detected or mapped in detail until LiDAR imagery became available.
T19. Echoes of Exhumation: Comparing Exhumation Processes of the Ancient Appalachians to Those of Currently Active Orogens.
Craig Dietsch, Univ. of Cincinnati,;
Eva Enkelmann, Univ. of Cincinnati,
Description: This session will focus on comparing exhumation processes of the ancient Appalachians, derived from thermochronometry, stratigraphic sequences, and numerical modeling, with ongoing exhumation of currently active orogens. What can we learn from modern exhumation studies? Can we recover linkages among tectonics, surface processes, and climate in the ancient rock record? Are there particular signals of exhumation patterns that can be recognized in the ancient Appalachians? Contributions that explore these topics are encouraged.
T20. Groundwater Contamination and Remediation: Challenges and Innovative Solutions. Martin Helmke, West Chester Univ. of Pennsylvania,;
Tripp Fischer, Brownfields Science and Technology,
Description: Groundwater contamination continues to pose a ubiquitous threat across the U.S., in agricultural, industrial, urban, and rural landscapes. We invite submissions pertaining to groundwater contamination, innovative remediation strategies, and contemporary research on groundwater quality.
T21. Abandoned Mine Drainage: Impacts, Treatment and Developing Novel Uses for AMD.
Jennifer Whisner, Bloomsburg Univ. Pennsylvania,;
Cynthia Venn, Bloomsburg Univ. Pennsylvania,
Description: Abandoned mine drainage (AMD) is an ongoing issue throughout the Appalachian coal region, with thousands of miles of AMD -impacted streams in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania alone. Many efforts have been made over the years to improve water quality with varying degrees of success. In this session we encourage both oral and poster contributions from investigators involved in the following activities: 1) documenting current impacts of AMD on surface and groundwater, 2) assessing effectiveness of current treatment systems, or 3) developing novel uses for AMD.
T22. Marcellus and Utica Shales: Geology, Natural Gas Production, and Water Resources Issues.
Eastern Section of SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geology)
Dru Germanoski, Lafayette College,
Description: The oil and natural gas-bearing Utica and natural gas-bearing Marcellus shales underlie large parts of Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York and West Virginia. Hydraulic fracturing and directional drilling technologies have opened up access to natural gas and oil reserves in these naturally low permeability rocks. We wish to develop a session that addresses a wide-range of topics associated with the geology, petroleum, engineering, water resource issues, and other aspects of the development of these resources. We welcome papers that focus on the geologic context of these hydrocarbons, their geochemistry, structural geology and reserve estimates, as well as petroleum engineering, development of water resources for fracking, gas and water migration, groundwater and surface water contamination, geochemical fingerprinting of gas and formational fluids, wastewater handling etc. This is a complex subject. We wish to develop a session incorporating varied kinds of evidence and interpretation.
T23. Dr. Allan M. Thompson: Honoring His Legacy as a Geologist and Educator.
John A. Conrad, Conrad Geoscience Corp.,;
Ralph R. Leon, Exxon Mobil Corp.,
Description: This session will honor Dr. Allan M. Thompson for his contributions as a geologist and his profound influence as an educator during his 38 years at the University of Delaware. His teaching and research interests were diverse, including petrology, structural geology, sedimentology, field geology, evolution of sedimentary basins, and tectonics. His legacy is well represented by the ongoing professional work of geoscientists and educators who benefitted from his teaching and guidance. We invite all whose teaching, research, and work in private industry reflect Dr. Thompson’s influence to present results of recent work, which we expect will offer a wide range of new insights.
T24. Geology and Historical Exploitation of Mineral and Other Earth Resources of the Northeastern United States.
Elizabeth A. Graybill, Magnesita Refractories,;
G. Robert Ganis, consulting geologist,
Description: Mineral resources and mining are essential to our society. This session will focus on the geology of the rich mineral and metallic resources of Northeastern North America and their history of exploitation. Abstracts may focus on topics such as the geology of current or historical mining operations, new opportunities that are available for development and old prospects that have potential for revival, genesis of mineral deposits, and mineral resource mapping.
T25. Microbe Mineral Interactions: Observations, Experiments, and Modeling.  Dawn Cardace, University of Rhode Island.
Dawn Cardace, University of Rhode Island,
Description: Geosphere-biosphere interactions have driven immense change in the Earth System, evolving compositions that vary across broad spatial and temporal scales. New discoveries in geobiology leverage expertise in mineralogy, petrology, geochemistry, thermodynamics, environmental microbiology, and diverse modeling strategies. This session invites contributions that detail environmental observations and surveys, lab-based experiments, and modeling results that enhance our understanding of biologically mediated transformations of Earth materials.



To GSA Home page Meeting Home page