Commissioner Bob Martin of the State of New Jersey's Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has appointed members of a Science Advisory Board to help guide the department, providing an independent and highly qualified voice to ensure accurate science is the guiding principal in making decisions on key environmental issues.

This 16-member board is filled with some of the best and brightest scientists from New Jersey and elsewhere, who have been chosen from a large group of highly qualified candidates who have volunteered their services and expertise to the state.

Dr. David Vaccari of the Department of Civil, Environmental and Ocean Engineering at Stevens Institute of Technology was among those selected to the board. "I'm looking forward to working with the commissioner and his staff, as well as the other members of the board and the committee. Most of all, I recognize that I will be playing a contributing role in serving the public's interest in protecting our natural waters and providing safe and adequate drinking water. I expect to find it fascinating to face the challenges we have in these tasks," said Dr. Vaccari.

In addition to his appointment on the Science Advisory Board, Dr. Vaccari was also named as a chair of one of the board's standing committees: The Water Quality and Quantity Committee.

These scientific committees will supplement the work of the Science Advisory Board and according to Commissioner Martin are, "a critical component to Gov. Chris Christie's vision that decisions at the DEP will be driven by science, data and facts." "The people chosen for this board are some of the top minds in the state, experts who can take a thorough look at specific environmental issues and offer solid advice to guide me and the department."

The Science Advisory Board and four standing committees will be made up of science experts, with a high percentage coming from the academic community. Other institutes included are Rutgers University, Seton Hall University, Clarkson University, Drexel University, Kean University, Montclair State University, Monmouth University, New Jersey Institute of Technology, Rider University, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and William Paterson University.

A total of 109 applications for the Science Advisory Board were received by an Aug. 7, 2009 deadline. From that group, all of the persons appointed to the board have advanced degrees and extensive training, expertise and experience in scientific and technological fields related to all aspects of environmental protection.
To learn more about the Science Advisory Board, please visit the N.J. DEP!

For more information on Dr. Vaccari and his research, please visit the Department of Civil, Environmental and Ocean Engineering as well as his research profile.