Karen received her BSc in Environmental Toxicology from the University of Guelph (1991) and her PhD in Biology from the University of Alberta (1996). She is an ecotoxicologist, studying how the health of aquatic organisms and food webs are affected by human activities and the fate of pollutants in freshwater ecosystems.
Most of her research is multidisciplinary nature - a combination of ecology, biogeochemistry, chemistry and toxicology - and is mainly on lakes, rivers and wetlands in Atlantic Canada, northwestern Ontario and the Arctic.
- Premier-appointed Member of the Science Advisory Committee of the New Brunswick Energy Institute, 2013-2016.
National committees and boards:
Chair of Science Directors Board and Member of Executive, Canadian Rivers Institute, 2012-2015.
- Member of Experimental Lakes Area Research Advisory Board, 2015-present.
Member of NSERC’s Evolution and Ecology Grant Selection Committee, 2008 – 2011; Co-chair 2010-11.
Member of NSERC's Strategic Network Selection Committee, 2014-2017.
Member of NSERC's Vanier Scholarship Selection Committee, 2014-2017.
Co-chair of the Aquatic Toxicity Workshop, October 2007, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Apr 06 – Jan 08; Board member, Aquatic Toxicity Workshop, 2005 – 2008.
Editorial Assistant, Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences (3 terms), 2005-07, 2007-10, 2010-2013.
Treasurer, Executive Committee, and Management Board Member for the Canadian Rivers Institute, 2004 - 2010.
International committees and boards:
- Associate Editor, Frontiers in Environmental Science, specialty section on freshwater, 2015-present.
Member of an International Joint Commission expert panel to develop a monitoring program to assess ecosystem health in the Laurentian Great Lakes, 2011.
Member of the United Nations Environment Programme/World Health Organization committee reviewing the state of the science on environmental endocrine disruptors, 2010 - 2013.
Member of the Lakes Working Group for the Global Environment Facility project ‘Enhancing the use of Science of International Waters projects to improve project results’, United Nations Environment Programme, 2010–2011.
Member of Local Organizing Committee for the 10th International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant conference, Halifax, NS (24-29 Jul 2011), 2009 – 2011.
Science Communication Fellow, Environmental Health News, 2009.
Guest Editor, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2009, 2010 (2), 2011 (2), 2013, 2014, 2015.
U.S. EPA Science Advisory Board Ecological Processes and Effects Committee to review white paper on methodology for deriving aquatic life water quality criteria for emerging contaminants. 2008.
Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry:
- a. Elected member of the North American Board of Directors, 3 year term, 2006 – 2009.
- b. Executive Committee, 2008 and 2009.
- c. Endowment Fund Board of Trustees, 2010 – present.
- d. Organizing Committee for annual meeting in Montreal, 2006.
- e. World Council Science Committee, 2003 - 2006.
- f. Co-chair of Steering Committee for Global Advisory Group on Endocrine Disrupter Testing & Risk Assessment, 2012 - present.
- g. Co-chair of Global Publications Advisory Committee, 2014-present.
Guest co-editor of special issue of Environmental Pollution entitled “Mercury Cycling and Bioaccumulation in the Environment”, 2006 – 2008.
Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry journal, Editorial Board, 1999 – 2002.
Angella Mercer, PTech
Angella completed the Chemical Engineering Technologist Co-Op Program at the New Brunswick Community College in 2000, and is a Professional Engineering Technologist (PTech) through NBSCETT.
Angella has been an employee of the Canadian Rivers Institute since December 2007 and works in the Environmental Chemistry Lab on the Saint John campus of the University of New Brunswick. She is responsible for testing various samples for organochlorines (PCBs, DDT, other chlorinated pesticides), mercury and other metals, polyaromatic hydrocarbons, % moisture, and % lipids.
She also develops new analytical methods, troubleshoots and maintains all instrumentation in the lab, and trains students on how to analyze their samples.