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Welcome Charles Marshall, new UCMP Director!

Charles Marshall

Charles Marshall on the Permian Wandrawandian Siltstone, Warden Head, Ulladulla, New South Wales, Australia. Photo: Swee Peck Quek.

Let’s give a great, big UCMP welcome to Charles Marshall — the new Director of the UCMP!  Charles recently joined the faculty of the Integrative Biology department after being on the faculty at Harvard as well as being the curator of invertebrate paleontology at Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology.

"Greetings to all members and friends of UCMP," says Charles. "I am very excited to be part of UCMP and look forward to meeting you all, and in joining you as we work to make UCMP an even stronger center for paleontological research, teaching and outreach."

"I am interested in how paleontology informs our understanding of the history of life, especially the processes that control it." Charles has broad research interests, including integrating both paleontological and molecular phylogenetic data to look at speciation and extinction rates at different times in the past. A confessed math-lover, he also develops quantitative methods to compensate for the incompleteness of the fossil record; his work looks at the rapidity and timing of mass extinctions, diversification, and the calibration of molecular clocks. His research also has a strong empirical component — he has published papers on the functional morphology of diverse taxa, including fossil plants, marine invertebrates, and the fish-amphibian transition. His current research examines the synergy of tectonic processes, climate change, and changes in diversity on geologic timescales, as well as the import of new genomic data on our understanding of the Cambrian explosion.

More Charles Marshall facts:

  • Charles did his undergraduate work at the Australian National University and his Masters and Ph.D. are from the University of Chicago.
  • Charles enjoys teaching students of all levels.
  • Favorite pastime: playing soccer.
  • Charles' wife, Swee Peck Quek, is also a biologist, and is a Berkeley alum, with a B.A. in Integrative Biology. She also holds a Ph.D. in Biology from Harvard and a M.Sc. in Epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health. Charles and Swee Peck are expecting their first child in February.

So join us in greeting Charles, and stay tuned for continuing coverage of his work at the UCMP.