Alan Bright is a full professor in the Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources. His teaching responsibilities include on-campus and distance coursework for the M.T.M. program and courses in the natural resource tourism program. Alan's primary research interests center around theoretical applications of social psychological constructs toward the management of natural resources, including values, attitudes, behavior, and the complexity with which people think about issues. These constructs are also considered in the context of attitude and behavior change. Alan's teaching interests focus on development and administration of coursework in the tourism undergraduate and graduate programs.
Stuart Cottrell is an associate professor in the Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources and teaches courses in ecotourism, sustainable tourism development, protected area management, and research in human dimensions of natural resources. Stuart's research focus includes sustainable tourism, travel and tourism behavior, visitor impact management, and public perceptions of landscape disturbance issues. Present projects involve a National Science Foundation grant to examine land management agency and water provider perception of pine beetle impacts on water quality. As a former resident fellow with the School for Global and Environmental Sustainability, Stuart conducted a preliminary study of the impacts of mountain pine beetle infestation on recreation and tourism, which led to the present NSF project. One of the highlights of Stuart's teaching involves the monitoring of diseased corals and volunteer based conservation projects for an NGO in the Bahamas.
Maureen Donnelly is an associate professor in the Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources. Her research efforts have contributed to the advancement of theory and practice in the conceptual areas of norms, values, outdoor recreation conflict, specialization, and substitutability. In addition, her research projects have provided managers with information that has assisted them in monitoring the quality of visitor experiences, and setting carrying capacities for visitor use of natural resource areas – including a wide variety of protected areas. She also has worked over the years with students on the concept of sense of place and how that can add to (or detract from) tourism opportunities. Maureen teaches the capstone undergraduate courses in tourism planning and tourism impacts, and is one of the lead faculty liaisons between the HDNR department and the Colorado ski industry.
Mark Gasta is an associate professor in the Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources and director of the adventure tourism graduate certificate program. At CSU, he teaches courses in adventure tourism, ski area management, and sustainable tourism. Mark's research interests include developing leaders with the capacity to build sustainable organizations that create profit for shareholders while protecting the environment and improving the lives of those with whom they interact. Prior to coming to CSU in 2017, Mark served as executive vice president and chief people officer/chief sustainability officer for Vail Resorts Management Company. Before working for Vail Resorts, Mark held various organizational development and human resources management positions with AT&T Broadband, Lexis-Nexis, and Target Corporation. He also served in the United States Army as a commissioned officer and aviator. Mark has volunteered on many non-profit boards, including the Colorado Outward Bound School, Leave No Trace, and the Urban League. Mark holds a Bachelor of Science in Environmental and Systematic Biology from California Polytechnic State University, an M.B.A. from the University of Denver, and a Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.) in Organizational Change from Pepperdine University.
David W. Knight is a Center for Collaborative Conservation Fellow and an assistant professor at Colorado State University. Some of David's interests include community development, community-based conservation, conflict management in natural resources, environmental governance, outdoor recreation, social ecological systems, and sustainable tourism.
Sam Martin has more than 25 years of industry experience, having owned and operated several tourism-oriented businesses. He has also held senior marketing and management positions in upscale resort and lodging properties, and in institutional fundraising. Sam is currently a Ph.D. candidate in Heritage Tourism in the department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources, with a focus on heritage values, learning theory, and their relationship to visitor motivation.
Christina Minihan has a great passion for teaching and building relationships with the community and her students. She has instructed a variety of tourism, hospitality, and recreation courses. More recently, she developed and taught a culinary tourism course in the Master of Management program. In addition to instructing, Christina Minihan is an author, collaborator, and culinary entrepreneur. Her business, Chefs on the Go, is centered on community development and introduces children to the joys of cooking by working with local chefs. She received her master's degree in management and a Ph.D. focusing on culinary tourism at CSU. Her current research in culinary tourism is focused on commercial service experience applied to both breweries and restaurants. Minihan's latest publication is Cooking with Beer in Colorado, which unites various local chef and brewer talents. She is also currently getting ready to set sail as a Semester at Sea professor representing the HDNR department.
Joseph (Joe) O'Leary
As a former dean of CSU's Warner College of Natural Resources, a professor and department head in the Department of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Sciences at Texas A&M University, and an emeritus professor at Purdue University, Joe has a prolific and distinguished publishing record in the tourism and recreation research field with more than 250 publications. He currently teaches and conducts research in the HDNR department at CSU. His personal interests and passions include enjoying the outdoors, gardening, working with students and others to enable success, and "data" — having the opportunity to explore, understand and use the wide range of international travel and recreation data — "…so much data, so little time!"
Natalie Ooi is an assistant professor and program coordinator of the ski area management program within the Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources. She bridges the academic and ski industry worlds, having worked as a rental technician at Steamboat Springs Ski and Resort, before returning to do her dissertation on mountain resort tourism development. Her area of research focus was examining the socio-cultural sustainability of mountain resort development within the community of Steamboat Springs, Colorado. An avid skier and hiker, Natalie is an Australian citizen who relocated to the U.S. in 2013 to further follow her passion of skiing and the outdoor lifestyle. Her research interests center on sustainable ski area management and development, with particular interest in the complexities of tourism-community and other stakeholder relationships within mountain resort communities. She earned her Ph.D. from Monash University, Australia, where she was a Donald Cochrane Scholar and recipient of the Dean's Postgraduate Research Excellence Award for the Faculty of Business and Economics.
Jerry J. Vaske
Jerry Vaske is a professor in the Human Dimensions of Natural Resources department and founding co-editor of the international journal: Human Dimensions of Wildlife. He received his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees from the University of Wisconsin, and his Ph.D. from the University of Maryland. For the last 35 years, his research has focused on the application of social science theory and methodology to the concerns of natural resource managers and policy makers. Recent projects have examined topics such as: local resident and visitor attitudes and norms regarding a range of impact management issues at U.S. and Canadian National Parks; visitors' reactions to fee increases at 19 different National Wildlife Refuges across the United States; hunters' responses to chronic wasting disease in Arizona, Illinois, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Wisconsin, and Wyoming; human-wildlife conflict in Alaska, California, Colorado, Illinois, Wyoming, and Nova Scotia; and human dimensions of wildfire management in California, Colorado, and Washington. Vaske has published more than 170 articles in scientific journals and authored or co-authored 21 book chapters and 12 books. His primary teaching responsibilities at Colorado State University focus on research methodology and statistics. Specific topics range from survey design to applied multivariate analysis.
James (Jim) Wurz
Jim Wurz holds a Master of Science in the management of protected areas, is a co- founder and affiliate of the Center for Protected Area Management at Colorado State University, and instructs a variety of courses in CSU's Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources. He has provided, and continues to provide, training and technical support to numerous protected area officials, government institutions, and NGOs in the U.S., Latin America, and other parts of the world. His main areas of expertise include planning in protected areas and surrounding lands, tourism management and public use, conservation at the community level, project evaluation, and field management skills.
Lina Xiong is an assistant professor in the Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources. She is also called "Dr. Bear," because her last name in Chinese means bear. Dr. Bear came to the U.S. in 2006 from mainland China. Lina completed her Ph.D. in Business Administration from Temple University in Philadelphia. Before coming to CSU, Dr. Bear had taught many business courses in the College of Business at Marshall University. Her teaching assignment at CSU includes tourism strategic management, tourism marketing, and advanced lodging in the Master of Tourism Management program. She is also responsible for developing several M.T.M. courses in mandarin. Dr. Bear's research interests include service management, internal branding, employee brand motivation, and customer loyalty. She has published several articles in hospitality management journals. Recently, Dr. Bear's dissertation, titled, "Employee Brand Internalization: The Central Route to a Brand Aligned Workforce," has received a Highly Commended Award of the 2014 Emerald/EFMD Outstanding Doctoral Research Awards in the Hospitality Management category. This is a prestigious international annual award presented by Emerald and the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD). She has worked in hospitality and tourism businesses in both China and the U.S.