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Former Lab Members

Claire Harrigan

Dr. Claire Harrigan completed her dissertation in 2022, which was focused in the fields of isotope geochemistry and high-precision geochronology, particular for enhancing our understanding of orogenic processes. Her dissertation work includes foundational studies in the application of tandem in situ LA-ICPMS U-Pb and trace element analysis and high precision CA-TIMS U-Pb zircon geochronology, as well as innovative computational tools for integrating and interpreting petrochronological systems. Along the way she has also led studies of the thermal evolution of large meteorite impact structures and Devonian chronostratigraphy and time scale construction using Bayesian methods. Claire’s research was supported by the Geological Society of America and the National Science Foundation.

Dr. Harrigan is now a Visiting Assistant Professor of Geology at Whitman College.

Corey Wall

Corey Wall

Dr. Corey Wall (B.Sc. Honors  and Ph.D., Department of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences, University of British Columbia) joined the IGL research team in October 2016 as a postdoctoral fellow and subsequent National Science Foundation Laboratory Technical Support Scientist in the IGL, with responsibilities for training students and visiting scholars in all aspects of isotope geochemistry and mass spectrometry. During his time at Boise State Corey pursued studies of ion emitter chemistry and enhanced ionization efficiency, characterization of mineral standard materials for in situ U-Pb geochronology, the tectonomagmatism of the Early Cambrian Oklahoma Aulacogen large igneous province, and the integration of zircon geochemistry and rhyolite-MELTS modeling of silicic magma petrogenesis.

Dr. Wall is now at UBC as the Pacific Centre for Isotopic and Geochemical Research facility manager for U-Pb geochronology.

Vince Isakson

Vince Isakson

Dr. Vincent Isakson is a former Post-doctoral Research Associate and Ph.D. graduate of the Department of Geosciences at Boise State. His research has focused on high-resolution chronostratigraphic frameworks for Neoproterozoic to Cambrian sequences of the North American Cordillera, including Cryogenian glacial episodes. as well as precise radioisotopic age constraints on Cretaceous global ocean anoxia events.

Dr. Isakson is now a member of the faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math at North Arkansas College.

Tiffany Rivera

Tiffany Rivera

Dr. Tiffany Rivera completed her tenure as a Post-doctoral Research Associate in the IGL in August 2014. Dr. Rivera earned her B.A. in Geology from George Mason University, an M.S. in Geology from Boise State University, and the Ph.D. in Geochemistry from Roskilde University in Denmark, as a member of the GTSNext Marie Curie Initial Training Network of the 7th Research Framework Programme of the European Science Foundation. During her dissertation Tiffany studied the detailed timing of Quaternary geomagnetic field excursions and reversals via integrated 40Ar/39Ar geochronology and cyclostratigraphy of key Quaternary tephra and tektite horizons, as well as the fundamental integration and harmonization of the U-Pb, K-Ar and astronomical dating systems.

At Boise State, she completed an integrated U-Pb zircon and 40Ar/39Ar petrochronological study of the Mesa Falls Tuff of the Yellowstone Volcanic Province, and developed a successful proposal to NSF Petrology and Geochemistry to study the small-volume volcanism attendant to large super-eruptions.

Dr. Rivera is a member of the faculty at Westminster College in Salt Lake City, Utah, and continues her studies of the dynamics of magma storage and differentiation in bimodal volcanic provinces of the western U.S.

Amanda Laib

Amanda Laib

M.S. Geology, 2016: Amanda’s thesis explored the geochemistry, thermodynamics and evolution of high silica magmatic systems including the Miocene Rattlesnake Tuff and the Oligocene Picture Gorge Ignimbrite of central Oregon, via zircon chemistry and geochronology. She is currently a Surface Water Hydrologist with the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality.

Joshua Ekhoff

Joshua Ekhoff

M.S. Geology, 2016: Josh’s thesis presented a combination of field mapping, structural analysis, soil sampling, geophysics and geochronology to establish the character of ore mineralization in Cretaceous-Tertiary basement rocks near Horseshoe Bend, ID. He is currently a Geological Consultant with Brown & Caldwell in Boise, ID.

Emerald Shirley

M.S. Geology, 2013: Emerald’s thesis explored LA-ICPMS U-Pb geochronology, trace elements and Hf isotopes in zircon to establish the origin and evolution of crustal xenoliths from the Eastern and Central Snake River Plain. Emerald is currently a geologist for the Oregon Department of Transportation, in the unstable slopes and material source programs.

Rimma Khodjanyazova

Ph.D. Geosciences, 2013: Rimma’s dissertation was on the fusulinid biostratigraphy and Sr isotope chemostratigraphy of Perm0-Carboniferous sections in the Donets basin of the Ukraine, and the Great Basin of the western U.S.A.  She used the Isotope Geology Laboratory to collect high-precision Sr isotope ratios on single conodont elements from these sections, as well as in the stratotype sections of the southern Urals, in order to construct an accurate seawater Sr isotope curve for the Late Pennsylvanian-Early Permian, and correlate these basins at high resolution. Rimma is working as an independent consultant.

Bryant Ware

M.S. Geology, 2012: Bryant’s thesis used a combination of structural analysis and both LA-ICPMS and CA-TIMS U-Pb geochronology to analyze the structure and evolution of the Weatherby basin between the Baker and Olds Ferry accreted terranes of the Blue Mountains Province of the northern U.S. Cordillera. Bryant recently completed his Ph.D. at the University of Western Australia in noble gas and radiogenic isotope geochemistry, and is currently a postdoctoral fellow at UWA.

Gene Kurz

Ph.D. Geosciences, 2010: Gene’s dissertation was on the application of Sr, Nd, and Pb tracer isotopes, as well as high precision U-Pb zircon geochronology, to understanding the tectonic, structural, and magmatic evolution of ancient island arc systems, with a particular emphasis on the Mesozoic accreted arcs of the northern U.S. Cordilla. Gene is now a project geologist with Barrick Gold Corporation.

Kyle Tumpane

M.S. Geology 2010: Chronostratigraphy and isotope geochemistry of late Triassic – Jurassic volcano-sedimentary deposits of the Huntington and Weatherby Formations of the Olds Ferry and Izee terranes of the Blue Mountains Province, northern U.S. Cordillera. Kyle used high precision U-Pb zircon geochronology and Sr-Nd isotopes to constrain the timing and tempo of volcanism, deposition, uplift and deformation in the Olds Ferry terrane and its relationship to onlapping sediments of the Izee basin.  He has worked as a geologist and rock analysis engineer, and is currently an environmental scientist at the New Mexico Environment Department-Air Quality Bureau.

Tiffany Rivera

M.S. Geology 2008: Western Snake River Plain basalt volcanism. Tiffany analyzed the major, trace and Sr-Nd-Pb isotope geochemistry of a suite of recent monogenetic basalt volcanoes to understand the petrological and tectonic drivers for a marked transition from tholeiitic to mildly akaline basalt eruptions approximately two million years ago. She went on to complete her Ph.D. in 2013 with the Earthtime-Europe GTSNext Initiative, working at the QUAD-lab, Roskilde University, Denmark on the timing of Quaternary geomagnetic polarity excursions and reversals. After a postdoctoral fellowship back at Boise State, she joined the faculty at Westminster College in Salt Lake City, UT.

Jeremy Alexander

M.S. Geology, 2007: Geochronology of the House Mountain Gneisses, southwestern Idaho. Now working with U.S. Forest Service, McCall, ID.

Lyndsey Needham

M.S. Geology, 2007: Lyndsey completed her M.S. Geology thesis on the strontium isotope chemostratigraphy of the Late Carboniferous – Early Permian, southern Uralian foredeep, Russia-Kazakhstan. She now works as a Project Geologist with Farallon Consulting in Bellingham, WA.

Benjamin Linhoff

B.S. Geology senior thesis, 2005: Petrology and geochemistry of a diamondiferous eclogite from the Roberts Victor kimberlite, South Africa. Ben completed his M.S. in Hydrology from the University of Texas at Austin in 2008, and a Ph.D. at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology – Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Joint Program in 2016, and is now a hydrologist at the United States Geological Survey New Mexico Water Science Center.

Cassie Anderson

B.S. Geology senior thesis, 2005: Infrared spectroscopy of nitrogen abundance and aggregation in diamonds from the Star kimberlite, South Africa. Now a high school teacher, Middleton, ID.

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