Diana Wall, a Colorado State University professor in the Department of Biology and director of the School of Global Environmental Sustainability, was inducted into the California Academy of Sciences on Oct. 10.
The esteemed soil ecologist, also recognized as a University Distinguished Professor, will join more than 400 other distinguished scientists who have made scientific contributions to natural sciences. She was nominated by colleagues and then selected by the academy’s board of trustees. Wall joins 16 other scientists inducted this year, including Oregon State University’s Jane Lubchenco, one of the world’s most highly cited ecologists.
Her research in the field
Through her research, Wall aims to help scientists, the public and students understand how the living component of soil contributes to ecosystem and human well-being. “I want to show how humans impact soils and soil biodiversity from local to global scale,” she said.
Wall is a founding director of CSU’s School of Global Environmental Sustainability. Her research on soil nematodes, round worms, in harsh ecosystems explores how life copes with extreme environments. Her extensive collaborative work focuses on how the living component of soil contributes to nutrient cycling and human well-being at the local and global level. She is the recipient of the 2013 Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement and earlier this year, was recognized by the Ecological Society of America with its highest honor, the Eminent Ecologist Award.
“Diana Wall’s induction into the California Academy of Sciences is a testament to her outstanding career as an ecologist and Antarctic researcher,” said Rick Miranda, CSU provost and executive vice president. “Her long list of academic accomplishments is complemented by her contributions to fostering the careers of others, notably in being the founding director of our School of Global Environmental Sustainability.”
Her research has taken her to extreme environments, spending time in Antarctica and deserts to explore soil and its ability to cope. As an investigator on McMurdo Dry Valleys Long Term Ecological Research program, she investigates how the top animals, microscopic soil nematodes respond to climate change in one of the coldest, driest and windiest ecosystems on the planet.
The California Academy of Sciences, located in San Francisco, is a scientific and educational institution dedicated to discovering research that sustains life on Earth. It’s the only place in the world home to a world-class aquarium, planetarium, and natural history museum, all under one roof. The Academy works to be a leader in efforts to increase scientific and environmental literacy around the world.