Richard L. Wallace is professor of environmental studies at Ursinus College and co-director of the college’s Robert and Shurley Knaefler Whittaker Environmental Research Station. He arrived at Ursinus in 2002 as founding chair of the Department of Environmental Studies, where he helped develop the undergraduate program on a foundation of reflective practice steeped in the theory and methods of integrative problem solving. He teaches courses on land stewardship, biodiversity conservation, food systems and agriculture, and the theory and practice of integrative problem solving.
Wallace received his B.A. from the University of Vermont and a master’s and Ph.D. from Yale University; all three degrees are in interdisciplinary environmental studies. His research is focused in two areas: integrative problem solving in the conservation of species and ecosystems and the history and prospects of interdisciplinary environmental studies in American higher education. His most recent professional endeavor is an amalgam of these two areas of interest: in association with the Northern Rockies Conservation Cooperative, Wallace has recently initiated a multi-year effort to assess educational programs in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (GYE) and develop broadly integrative, problem oriented curricula for multiple audiences in the GYE.
Wallace’s published work has appeared in numerous books and journals and he has been recognized with national and organizational awards for his teaching, research, and applied work. In 2014, he was named the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education’s Pennsylvania Professor of the Year. At Ursinus College, in 2012 he received the H. Lloyd Jones Jr. Award for Excellence in Mentoring and Advising and, in 2007, the Lindback Foundation Award for Distinguished Teaching. Wallace is a former staff member of the U.S. Marine Mammal Commission, where he analyzed species and habitat conservation programs and received both the Federal Service Award and Federal Performance Award. In 2003 he was the sole author of a paper on marine mammal conservation in the journal Conservation Biology that received the Society of Policy Scientists’ Harold Lasswell Award for best interdisciplinary analysis of the year. While a doctoral student at Yale, Wallace received two prestigious national awards, the Morris K. Udall Fellowship and the Teresa and H. John Heinz Scholarship.
Wallace currently sits on the executive boards of the Society of Policy Scientists and the Northern Rockies Conservation Cooperative; he also serves the latter organization as its Educator-in-Residence. He was a founding member of the editorial board of the Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences and is a former associate editor of the journal Policy Sciences.