Professor, Geography Department
Co-Director, Resource Management Graduate Program
Dean Hall 319
Phone: (509) 963-1184
Karl is a physical geographer who has been a faculty member at Central Washington University since Fall 1995. Prior to coming to CWU he was an assistant professor of geography at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa from 1993-95. This is a homecoming of sorts for Karl as he earned degrees in Geography and Geology as a student here in the mid-1980's.
Karl's first academic love is physical geography field study. His upbringing in Coulee City, WA probably played a big part in this love. "I grew up amidst the Channeled Scablands of eastern Washington. My parent's house was situated on a late Pleistocene flood scoured basalt surface, and I grew up recreating in this unique landscape. Also, I spent my summers picking rocks (i.e., glacial erratics) from wheat fields located behind the terminus of the Okanogan Lobe of the Cordilleran Icesheet". He teaches physical geography, geomorphology, soils, airphoto analysis, mountain environments, and arid lands. Karl's recent research has focused on geomorphic and stratigraphic evidence for environmental change in the western U.S. including mass wasting, glaciers, and arroyos. He has also researched the geography of Japanese American relocation centers in the western U.S.
Karl's spouse Nancy is also a Geography alumnus (1983) and they have two teenage sons–Erik and Jensen. In his spare time, Karl enjoys most human-powered outdoor activities (including hiking, backpacking, bicycling, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, and rock rolling), watching his boys’ athletic events, making compost for Nancy's garden, doing home improvement projects, and yard saling.
The geography department is hosting Dr. Issaka Kanton Osamuna, a visiting Fulbright Scholar from GhaCentral Washington Historical Aerial Photograph Project
The Geography Department's digital collection of historical aerial photographs is available online.