Campus News Georgia Impact

Mark Risse appointed director of Marine Outreach Programs at UGA

Mark Risse

Athens, Ga. – L. Mark Risse, the Georgia Power Professor of Water Resource Policy in the

University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, has been named director of UGA Marine Outreach Programs. The appointment is effective July 1.

Risse, who also holds adjunct appointments in the College of Engineering and the Carl Vinson Institute of Government, has served as interim director since Dec. 1.

“Dr. Risse’s leadership abilities combined with his strong administrative and managerial skills and his understanding of coastal Georgia-whether it’s marine industries or coastal ecosystems-will help ensure that UGA’s marine outreach programs engage the university’s resources to serve the state effectively,” said Jennifer Frum, vice president for public service and outreach, in announcing Risse’s appointment.

As director of Marine Outreach Programs, Risse will provide strategic direction and leadership for coastal outreach programs that include the UGA Marine Extension Service (MAREX) and the Georgia Sea Grant Program. He will continue to work to strengthen collaborative work on a number of marine programs.

Frum praised Risse for providing strategic direction and leadership to MAREX during a critical time of transition for the public service and outreach marine programs.

“Dr. Risse’s depth of knowledge about the unique qualities of our coastal environment and his ability to connect resources to help marine industries thrive in environmentally sustainable ways and coastal communities to protect their natural resources proved vital in this effort,” Frum said.

Throughout his career, Risse’s public service efforts have focused on environmental and water policy. He has created model programs that focus on delivering science and education to communities in need. He has worked with business and agricultural groups to enhance training programs and economic development partnerships.

“That’s part of my job, linking up what the communities out there need with what researchers at UGA can do,” Risse said.

Risse earned his doctorate in biological and agricultural engineering from Purdue University and his master’s and bachelor’s degrees in agricultural engineering from UGA. He is an expert in nonpoint source pollution management, soil and water conservation, stormwater management and erosion control, and animal waste and nutrient management. At the Institute of Government, Risse provides local and state leaders with technical assistance and consultation related to water resource management issues.

In 2009, Risse was elected a fellow in the International Soil and Water Conservation Society, and in 2011 he was awarded the Walter Barnard Hill Fellow Award, UGA’s highest award in public service and outreach.

The Marine Outreach Programs along with seven other units under UGA’s Office of the Vice President for Public Service and Outreach contribute to Georgia’s short- and long-term prosperity by creating jobs, developing leaders and bringing university resources to bear on the state’s most pressing economic, social and community needs: Archway Partnership, Carl Vinson Institute of Government, J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development, Georgia Center for Continuing Education, Office of Service-Learning, Small Business Development Center and the State Botanical Garden of Georgia. For more information, see