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Southeast USA Chapter

Southeast USA Chapter

President/Chair - Carla Atkinson (

Dr. Carla L. Atkinson is an associate professor in aquatic ecology in the Department of Biological Sciences at University of Alabama. Dr. Atkinson’s research in the field of aquatic ecology is strongly oriented towards the advancement of both basic scientific understanding as well as better conservation prioritization of biodiversity and ecosystems with a major focus in the southeast USA. Dr. Atkinson’s research encompasses a broad set of long-standing questions in ecology such as the linkages between community structure and ecosystem function, food web structure and dynamics, landscape scale patterns dictating community assembly, and the importance of interactions between ecology and evolution for community and ecosystem processes. To address these questions, her lab employs a combination of observational approaches, field experiments, mesocosm, and laboratory studies. The fundamental theme linking these diverse topics in both basic and applied ecology is her deep interest in the role biodiversity plays in ecological function. She has been a member of the Society for Freshwater Science since 2006. 

Secretary/Treasurer - Krista Capps (

Krista is an aquatic community and ecosystem ecologist. She works in both temperate and tropical freshwater systems and she is obsessed with wastewater. Krista is an associate professor and holds a joint position through the Odum School of Ecology and the Savannah River Ecology Laboratory at the University of Georgia (UGA). At UGA, she is an affiliated faculty member with the Center for Integrative Conservation Research, the River Basin Center, the Institute for Resilient Infrastructure Systems, and the Latin American and Caribbean Studies Institute. Research in the Capps Lab  is dedicated to understanding how anthropogenic activities alter community structure and ecosystem processes (e.g., productivity, decomposition, and biogeochemical cycling) in freshwater ecosystems. Much of our  team’s research has focused on the impacts of consumers on basal food resources, community structure, and nutrient dynamics in streams and wetlands. We attempt to view our work through a social-ecological lens, acknowledging the powerful impacts that public policy and economic considerations can have on the quality and quantity of freshwater resources, the abundance and diversity of aquatic organisms, and the function of freshwater ecosystems. 

Vice President/Chair - A.J. Reisinger (

AJ is an assistant professor and state extension specialist for urban water quality in the Department of Soil, Water, and Ecosystem Sciences at the University of Florida. He is an urban ecosystem ecologist and biogeochemist focused on how human activities on the landscape affect the export of pollutants to aquatic ecosystems, and how these aquatic ecosystems respond to pollutants. In particular, AJ focused on nitrogen, phosphorus, and carbon cycling, as well as the effects of pharmaceuticals and personal care products in aquatic ecosystems. AJ is affiliate faculty with the UF Center for Land Use Efficiency and the UF School for Natural Resources and Environment. As a state extension specialist, much of AJ’s work centers around identifying impacts of urbanization on freshwater resources, while developing and testing potential solutions to those problems. Overall, AJ’s work looks to understand how the things we do on the landscape affect what flows downstream. AJ has been a member of the Society for Freshwater Science since 2008.

Social Media Chair - Laura Naslund (

Laura is a PhD candidate in the Odum School of Ecology at the University of Georgia. Her dissertation research examines the contribution of small dams and their reservoirs to greenhouse gas emissions from freshwaters. The ultimate aim of her research is to help develop tools to manage aging dam infrastructure which account for the wide range of services and disservices that these structures provide. Her love of southeastern waters can be traced to summer afternoons mucking around Lower Barton Creek, a tributary of the Neuse River, NC. She is excited to connect with fellow southeastern freshwater folks through the chapter. Laura has been a member of the Society of Freshwater Science since 2017.

Chapter’s Goal

The Southeast USA Chapter is open to all those interested in freshwater science in the southeast USA. The southeastern USA is rich in freshwater resources and contains a disproportionate diversity of freshwater animals relative to the rest of the USA, with more than a quarter of the region’s species found nowhere else in the world. Unfortunately, the southeastern USA is also a hotspot for imperilment, in part because of intensive agricultural and urban development coupled with insufficient investment conservation. The Chapter aims to foster exchange of scientific information among the membership, and with other professional societies, resource managers, policy makers, educators, and the public in the Southeast USA. 

Specific goals of the southeastern USA chapter include:

  • Increase engagement of southeastern Minority-Serving (MSI) and Undergraduate-Focused (UFI) institutions with SFS.
  • Increase undergraduate engagement in freshwater science.
  • Organize funded workshops and training experiences among labs 
  • Enhance regional collaborations 
  • Promote research and conservation of freshwater ecosystems in the southeast USA
  • Develop a regional network of field sites and contacts for education and research
  • Increase engagement of southeastern researchers with the larger SFS organization

Mission Statement

The Southeast USA chapter seeks to support and facilitate communication among SFS members working in Southeast ecosystems. We also aim to provide a bridge for non-SFS members to interact with the society at regional meetings to enhance engagement with other groups. 

Southeast Chapter Social Media

If you have content to share on the chapter's social media channels (Twitter and Instagram), please send it via email to Ideas for content include chapter members, future members and current freshwater research!