Geography and Environmental Studies

GeoMAIL Archive: #5-2002


George Schnell, the founder of the colleges Department of Geography and ID-PLUS, served a quarter century as the Departments first chair. At SUNY New Paltz, he initiated the Geography Internship Program, which most majors participated in over three decades, and taught Physical Geography, Problems of Population, and Geography for Teachers, among other courses. Although George retired in 1999, he continues to teach one graduate course each semesteralternating Problems of Population, and Geography for Teacherswhile writing and publishing about Pennsylvania. His major concern at the moment is staying out of the kitchenexcept during mealtimes. Email:

Jon Glasgow taught Economic Geography, Cities and Suburbs, Urban Geography, and the Geography of the United States, among other courses, between 1966 and 1996 at SUNY New Paltz, before retiring with his wife to a life of fishing and other enjoyable pursuits in various parts of the United States. He now lives comfortably in Cherokee Village, Arkansas no doubt near some good trout streams. He writes: I'm sorry we won't be attending the geography get-together. It would be fun to see so many of our former students. I have finally seen some of the things that I lectured about in my Geography of North America course. Much to my relief, the Sand Hills, the Salton Sea, the Tall Grass Prairie, the High Plains, etc. really do existand looked much as I had described them in class! Email: JJGLASGOW@POKYNET.COM

Parbati Sircar taught courses on Climatology, Physical Geography, Africa, and World Geography at SUNY New Paltz from 1966-1985. Before coming to SUNY New Paltz, he wasa lecturer in Geography at Calcutta University, then taught at the Universities of Delhi and Punjab before joining the newly established University of Nigeria, Nsukka, as the founder and head of its Department of Geography in 1961, where he also served as the Dean of the Faculty of Social Studies. Upon his retirement, he and his wife returned to India where he maintained a busy professional life until he died on December 19, 1996 in Calcutta. In retirement, he kept busy writing articles, editing journals, delivering lectures, teaching as a distinguished Honorary Professor of Geography at Calcutta University, and serving on the governing bodies of several learned societies. He was President of the Geographical Society of India. Additional information on his life and his obituary appear at

Margaret Peggy Kingman was the first full-time instructor of Cartography and Air Photo Interpretation at SUNY New Paltz, where she also taught Geography of Europe and Physical Geography between 1967 and 1977. Peggy died on February 21, 1998, in Hanover, New Hampshire, where she had resided since 1991. According to the Radcliffe College website, she was born in Richmond, Massachusetts, she graduated from Mt. Hermon School in Northfield, then went to Radcliffe, where she received her AB and AM degrees. She majored in geography and geology. Margaret studied aerial photography and cartography at the Harvard-MIT Institute of Geographical Exploration as well as at Clark University's Graduate School of Geography. She put her knowledge to good use teaching at Smith College and, later, in the US Government's intelligence and research departments. After retiring from the CIA, she taught geography at the State University of New York. In 1966, she converted her childhood home into the Peirson Place Inn, which she managed until 1996. She is survived by a son, Lucius Winston Kingman, of Denver, Colorado; and a half-sister, Phoebe Mace, of Westminster, Vermont.

Harold H. Channer taught Regional Geography, Cultural Geography, and Latin America at SUNY New Paltz from 1968 to 1971. Beginning in 1973, he created and served as interlocutor for a cable television series in New York City called "Conversations with Harold Hudson Channer." According to his website, he has carried out over 1,700 interviews with some of the most famous and controversial individuals from all over the world, many of whom are listed on his website. Email:

Ron Knapp joined the Department in 1968, teaching Geography of Asia, History & Philosophy of Geography, Historical Geography, USSR, World Geography through Film, PhysicalGeography, Contemporary China, and Understanding China, was Chair of the Department of Geography from 1995-2001, and was active in the Asian Studies Program before retiring in 2001. Now, he spends his time writing and lecturing about China as well as volunteering at the Mohonk Preserve. Website: Email:

Warren Fish, who taught Latin America, Cultural Geography, and the Geography of New York States, among other courses, when he was at New Paltz between 1970 and 1979, sent the following about his "lives" after New Paltz: After leaving New Paltz in June of 1979, I moved back to Los Angeles and began to work for Lemar Textile Company as a logistics manager. Over the next twelve years I also served as both general and sales managers. In my spare time, I managed my two daughter's softball teams until they started playing softball in high school. I also produced several audio travel tapes describing the geography, geology, history, and folklore of travel routes from Los Angeles to the Eastern Sierras. I also led a few Fulbright scholar trips for UCLA to Yosemite and Joshua State Park (Now National Park). I even taught Climatology one semester at Cal State Northridge.

Beginning in January 1992, I began my "third life" as a middle school teacher working for Los Angeles Unified School District. I earned a credential to teach both social studies and science, but have only taught science for the last 10 years. I currently teach astronomy full time to 8th graders. I also have taught night courses in astronomy to freshmen at Cal State Northridge and am currently teaching geography (Physical Geography and Cultural Geography) at night at Los Angeles Pierce Junior College.

In the last several years we have spent our summers traveling. In 1995--a raft trip down the Colorado River and a few weeks in Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons; 1996--Mt. Rainier, and Olympic National Park; 1997-- Alaska (42 days); 1999--Great Britain (42 days); 2000--Norway and Iceland (26 days); 2001--British Colombia and Alberta (Vancouver Island and city and the National Parks); 2002--Germany (31 days). Next year we are hoping to do France in the summer (45 days) and Antarctica during the winter. Life as empty nesters is sweet. If you would like more information about any of these trips, I will be happy to oblige. There are other earlier trips.

I continue to be married to a wonderful woman (34 years). Both my daughters (both school teachers) are married to schoolteachers! I have one grandson and hopefully more grand children to come. Email:

Ken Johnson taught Cartography and Urban Planning at SUNY New Paltz in mid-1970s. Since leaving the college, he has been at SUNY Oneonta, where he teaches Urban Planning, Regional and Land UsePlanning, Transportation, and Europe. A special interest of his has been developing field courses that have taken him and his students to New York City, Brazil, Italy, Greece, among others. Email: JOHNSOKA@ONEONTA.EDU

Harley Scott, who taught Cartography and the Soviet Union at SUNY New Paltz in the late 1970s for a year, could not be located. It appears however that he is the author of Steamboats Today A Pictorial Directory and may be the Town Historian of Lancaster, NY.

Jo Margaret Mano, who has taught at SUNY New Paltz since 1980, continues to teach Cartography and Remote Sensing in addition to Physical Geography, Urban Planning, Geography for Teachers, Geography Internship & Seminar, among others, as well as a course she created, Maps & Graphics. She recently served two years as the Co-coordinator of the New York Geographic Alliance and organized three successful Summer Geography Institutes for Teachers (1996, 1998, 2001) at SUNY New Paltz serving as Geographer-in-Residence. Website, including principal achievements and scholarly interests: Email:

Linda Greenow, who began teaching at the college in 1985, was instrumental in the development of the Latin American Studies Program. She teaches World Geography, Environment & Culture, Understanding Latin America, and new courses on Brazil, among others. She recently was Project Co-Director for a U.S. Department of Education Title 6 Grant in which she worked on faculty and curriculum development to enhance the teaching of Brazil and International Business Spanish on campus. She has been serving as the Chair of the Department since the summer of 2001.Website: Email:

Bob Deitrich began teaching Geography courses as an adjunct professor for SUNY New Paltz in 198x, first graduate courses such as Geography for Teachers, Cities and Suburbs at the extension center at Orange County Community College in Middletown, and now one section of Physical Geography on campus each semester.

Bill Fall, after graduating with a Geography degree in 1969 from SUNY New Paltz, joined the Navy for 2 years and then worked for DEC in Fish and Wildlife before teaching in Laconia NH and in Newburgh. He has been teaching at New Paltz High School since 1976, where his courses include Earth Science and, more recently, GIS. He began to teach Physical Geography at SUNY New Paltz in 1988 in the evening and in the summer as a college adjunct professor. With nearly a decade and a half of successful college teaching under his belt, he now says he is "looking forward to retiring from my full time high school teaching job after teaching 30 years and continuing by association with the Geography Department." Email:

Mark Wiljanen, who taught the GIS sequence and other courses at SUNY New Paltz between 1996 and 2001, now teaches in a larger program at the Department of Geography and Planning at Eastern Kentucky University. Website: Email:

Mika Roinila joined the Geography faculty in the Fall of 2000 after leaving West Virginia University. He is teaching World Geography, Physical Geography, Environment and Culture, Geography of American Popular and innovated with a Field Excursion Course called "Experience Canada." For information on Mika when he came to SUNY New Paltz: Webpage, including information about his scholarly interests and family: Email:

John Sharp, who came to New Paltz in 2000 from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, is teaching World Geography, Physical Geography, Economic Geography, and Political Geography. For earlier information on John, visit Webpage, including his scholarly interests: Email:

Karen Nichols, who came to SUNY New Paltz from SUNY Geneseo, taught Physical Geography, World Geography, and Geography of New York State during the 2001-2002 Academic Year.  For earlier information on Karen, visit  She married in the summer of 2002. Currently she is working on food security issues in the Mid-Hudson Valley, and is vice-chair, soon to be chair, of the Poughkeepsie Farm Project. In Spring 2003, she will be teaching a course in the Department of Geography at Vassar College, her alma mater. Email:

Larry McGlinn came to New Paltz from Valdosta State University in Georgia in 2001, and is teaching Introduction to GIS, GIS Applications, Physical Geography, and Natural Resource Management. For earlier information on Larry: Website, including information about his scholarly interests and family: Email: