The Drainage Research Forum includes presentations from a wide variety of dynamic speakers. Below you will find information regarding the speakers at this year’s forum.

Bill Crumpton

Water Quality Monitoring of Redesigned Drainage Systems

William Crumpton is University Professor in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Organismal Biology and chair of the undergraduate Environmental Science program at Iowa State University where he teaches courses on analysis and modeling of environmental systems. Dr. Crumpton’s research focuses on wetland processes and functions, including the dynamics of energy flow and nutrient transformation in wetlands, the fate and effects of agricultural contaminants in wetlands, and the role of restored and constructed wetlands in watershed hydrology and water quality. He has built one of the country’s most comprehensive datasets on the performance of wetlands in agricultural landscapes and has shown that wetlands can significantly reduce agricultural nitrogen loads if those wetlands are strategically sited and correctly designed. Dr. Crumpton is an authority on the functions of wetlands in agricultural landscapes and his research provided the scientific and technical foundation for development and implementation of the Iowa Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program, a $100 million program using targeted wetland restorations to reduce nitrate loads from agricultural watersheds.

Gary Feyereisen

Eating the metaphorical elephant: Meeting nitrogen reduction goals in Upper Mississippi River Basin states

Dr. Gary Feyereisen is a Research Agricultural Engineer at the USDA-ARS Soil and Water Management Research Unit, St. Paul, MN, having received Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Minnesota. Dr. Feyereisen is currently working in the areas of edge-of-field tile drainage conservation practices and stacking of nutrient reduction strategies to minimize agricultural impacts on water quality while optimizing production. He has over 20 years of soil and water research experience with 70 peer-reviewed articles published. He was a key researcher to push the envelope of denitrifying bioreactor performance in cold climates and the first to demonstrate use of carbon dosing in woodchip denitrifying bioreactors. Gary has held numerous society leadership positions and currently serves on the American Society of Agronomy’s Board of Directors. Additionally, Dr. Feyereisen has shared his skills in the developing world. Prior to entering graduate school as a non-traditional student, Gary spent 20 years in industry, leading a cross-disciplinary team that developed the nation’s most innovative window and door product for the world’s largest residential window manufacturer.

Jane Frankenberger

Overview of the Transforming Drainage Mini-Symposium

Jane Frankenberger is a Professor of Agricultural and Biological Engineering at Purdue University. As a researcher and Extension specialist she works to advance conservation drainage design and management while delivering tools and strategies to stakeholders who can use them to inform decision making. She led the Transforming Drainage project that has increased understanding and implementation of conservation drainage strategies across the Midwest. She has been a visiting scientist at USDA and USEPA, and spent eight years working on small-scale irrigation in Africa. She earned a B.A. from St. Olaf College, an M.S. in Agricultural Engineering from the University of Minnesota, and a Ph.D. in Agricultural and Biological Engineering from Cornell University.

Chris Hay

The Frontier of Drainage Water Recycling

Chris Hay is a Senior Research Scientist at the Iowa Soybean Association, where he is responsible for leading scientific research efforts, providing technical assistance to field services operations, and outreach programs on conservation drainage. Chris has more than 25 years of experience in agricultural water management and water quality in industry, academia, consulting, and government. He holds BS and MS degrees in Agricultural and Bioresource Engineering from Colorado State University and a PhD in Agricultural and Biological Systems Engineering from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He is a licensed Professional Agricultural Engineer in the State of Nebraska.

Matt Helmers

CD WQ Synthesis

Matt Helmers is the Director of the Iowa Nutrient Research Center, the Dean’s Professor in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, and a Professor in the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering at Iowa State University, where he has been on the faculty since 2003. Matt received his Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2003, a M.S. from Virginia Tech in 1997, and B.S. from Iowa State in 1995. Dr. Helmers’ research areas include studies on the impact of nutrient management, cropping practices, drainage design and management, and strategic placement of buffer systems on nutrient export from agricultural landscapes. He has a regional Extension program working to increase adoption of practices that have the potential to reduce downstream nutrient export. He served as the nitrogen science team lead on the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy Science Assessment.

Keegan Kult

Lessons Learned from the Polk County Saturated Buffer Project

Keegan Kult is the Executive Director of the Agricultural Drainage Management Coalition, where he coordinates efforts to speed the implementation of water management practice delivery throughout the United States. ADMC is an industry led organization and is recognized as a leader in the development and deployment of conservation drainage practices. Keegan has been working with agricultural water management for more than 15 years and has contributed to 80+ edge of field practice installations, development of conservation practice standards, and to the scientific literature documenting practice performance and cost effectiveness. He holds a M.S. degree from Iowa State University in Environmental Science emphasizing on water resources and an B.S. degree also from Iowa State University in Forestry.

Kelly Nelson

Drainage Water Recycling Synthesis

Kelly Nelson is a research agronomist based at the Greenley Research Center, Novelty, MO. His research is focused on increased agronomic production needs specific to Northeast Missouri. Nelson conducts applied research in forage production systems, alternative crops, pest management and tile drainage. He also collaborates with campus-based faculty, growers and industry representatives. His research emphasizes the integration of crop production systems with the economic realities of farm management.

Will Osterholz

Edge-of-Field Monitoring in Ohio

Will Osterholz is Research Soil Scientist at the USDA-ARS Soil Drainage Research Unit in Columbus, OH. Dr. Osterholz is currently investigating relationships between in-field soil health and edge-of-field water quality, as well as the contributions of legacy soil phosphorus sources to phosphorus losses from agricultural landscapes. His research interests broadly include understanding how agricultural practices influence soil nutrient and carbon dynamics, and consequences for the economic viability and environmental impact of agricultural systems. Dr. Osterholz has 10 years of experience in studying nutrient cycling and soil organic matter dynamics in diversified cropping systems. He completed a PhD in Soil Science at Iowa State University investigating nitrogen cycling in diversified cropping system, and also previously held a post-doctoral position at the University of Wisconsin examining the economic and environmental outcomes of novel forage cropping systems.

Gary Sands

20 Year Retrospective of the Drainage Research Forum

Gary Sands is a Professor and Extension Engineer, and department head in Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering at the University of Minnesota. Gary's research and Extension programs focus on addressing both agricultural production and water quality objectives for Minnesota and the upper Midwest.

Keith Schilling

Multi-purpose oxbow restorations for nitrate reduction in the Agricultural Midwest

Dr. Keith Schilling is the State Geologist of Iowa and Director of the Iowa Geological Survey at the University of Iowa. Dr, Schilling is also a research engineer at IIHR-Hydroscience and Engineering at the University of Iowa and an adjunct assistant professor at the University of Iowa Department of Earth and Environmental Science and at Iowa State University Department of Natural Resources Ecology and Management. He received an M.S. degree in Water Resources from Iowa State University and a Ph.D. degree in Geology from the University of Iowa. His research has focused on a variety of water-related issues in Iowa, including groundwater flow and quality, surface and groundwater interaction, nonpoint source pollution and watershed and floodplain processes.

Jeff Strock

CD Yield Synthesis

Dr. Jeff Strock is a Soil Scientist and Professor in the Department of Soil, Water, and Climate at the University of Minnesota. He is located at the Southwest Research and Outreach Center near Lamberton, MN. Dr. Strock’s research and outreach activities focus on ways to create farming systems that are productive, profitable, resilient, and environmentally sound. Specific interests include integrated strategies for on-farm and beyond-the-farm water quantity and quality management to temporarily store water on the landscape and reduce nitrogen and phosphorus mobility; and diversified cropping systems that maintain/improve crop yield, conserve soil, water, and carbon, encourage biodiversity, are more stable, withstand disturbances, and recover better than less diverse systems.