Dan Breecker 

I am broadly interested in biogeochemical processes occurring near the Earth’s surface. I am fascinated by relationships between the various spheres of the Earth, which attracts me to soils where the atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere and lithosphere all meet. My research is not easily characterized within traditional disciplinary boundaries, but combines elements of hydrology, soil science, plant physiology, geochemistry and paleoclimatology. I teach Physical Geology, a basic introduction to processes shaping our planet, and Environmental Isotope Geochemistry, an upper level undergrad/grad course covering the theory and application of isotope ratios to the study of near surface environments.







Laboratory Manager

Jeff Cullen


Postdoctoral Researchers

Jiawei Da


Ph.D. students

Nicole Czwakiel

I am interested in paleoclimate reconstructions using a diverse range of proxies and have a particular interest in carbonates. Previously, I have worked on a project focusing on understanding the effect diagenesis has on stable isotopic data from stromatolites in the Turkana Basin, Kenya for my undergraduate senior thesis at Hamilton College. Now at UT,  I will be helping to develop a boron-centered soil CO2proxy for my graduate work. I have worked on other chemistry focused projects such as monitoring CO2 degassing along the North-South Rift Zone in Tenerife, Spain, so I have many interests using chemistry within geoscience.
When I’m not collecting samples or analyzing data, I spend my free time hiking and backpacking (although I’m always on the lookout for cool geological features when I’m outdoors!).



M.S. Students

none currently

Undergraduate Honors Students

Liz Collins 


Former Students

Laura Arnold (Undergrad Honors 2022)

Evan Ramos (PhD 2021)

Lily Serach (PhD 2021)

Natasha Sekhon (PhD 2021)

Carolyn Bland (Undergrad Honors 2020)

Peter Carlson (PhD 2018)

Sol Cooperdock (MS 2017)

John Warden (PhD 2016)

Tim Charlton (MS 2016)

Chris Cacciatore (MS 2016)

Emma Heitmann (Undergrad Honors 2016)

Michael Patson (MS 2015)

Brandon Okafor (MS 2014)

Marlo Gawey (MS 2013)

Kyle Meyer (MS 2012)

Nate Meyer (MS 2012)

Lacey Pyle (MS 2012)


Former Postdocs

Angelina Locker

Liz Cassel

Tim Gallagher