|Mary Ann Madej grew up in Chicago, and majored in geology at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois. She combined two of her interests, foreign language and geology, by studying geology for a year at the University of Besancon, at the foot hills of the French Alps. Her summer job of guiding canoe trips in the Canadian Boundary Waters sparked her interest in water, both flat and flowing. After she graduated from Knox , she went to the University of Washington in Seattle to study under Dr. Tom Dunne. The topic of her master's thesis was the response of a stream channel to increases in sediment load. Her field area was on the Kitsap Peninsula, in a watershed underlain primarily by glacial till. The erosion problems she observed there didn't quite prepare her for the magnitude of erosional processes she found when she moved to Humboldt County in north coastal California. |
Mary Ann first started with Redwood National Park, California, in 1978 as part of the newly established watershed restoration program. She has conducted erosion inventories and studies in sediment production, transport and storage in this region for many years. She went back to school to pursue a Ph.D. at Oregon State University under Dr. Gordon Grant, exploring how channel structure and organization develop following watershed disturbances.
Mary Ann is presently based at the Redwood Field Station, part of the U.S. Geological Survey Western Ecological Research Center. The Redwood Field Station is conducting studies on a range of issues: the geomorphic effects of large floods; carbon geomorphology, the persistence of in-channel sediment storage, flume experiments to model sediment transport and storage relationships, redwood regeneration and exotic vegetation in disturbed riparian zones; slope stability analyses; stream temperature monitoring and modeling; and the effectiveness of road restoration techniques, as well as continuing work on sediment transport and channel monitoring. Mary Ann is also an Adjunct Professor at Humboldt State University.
Mary Ann Madej has published more than 50 papers and has presented study results at meetings in New Zealand, England, Italy, Canada, Brazil, and Japan as well as around the U.S. Mary Ann is also an Adjunct Professor at Humboldt State University, where she has served as advisor for many student projects and theses. She works cooperatively with several other agencies, organizations and landowners in north coastal California.