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Daniel J. Van Abs, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Practice

Cook Office Building, Room 205

Biography: Dan Van Abs was appointed an Associate Research Professor at the Department of Human Ecology, in 2012. He holds a B.S. in Environmental Studies from Rutgers University, Cook College, and a Ph.D. in Environmental Science from SUNY-College of Environmental Science and Forestry in association with Syracuse University. He is a licensed Professional Planner in New Jersey, and a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners.

Dan was Senior Director for Planning & Science with the New Jersey Highlands Council from 2007 to 2012 when he retired from State government. He managed Council staff efforts regarding implementation of the Highlands Regional Master Plan. Prior to joining the Council, Dan served as Director of Watershed Protection Programs for the New Jersey Water Supply Authority for more than eight years, creating and managing an extensive source water protection program for the Raritan and Manasquan River watersheds. He previously worked with the NJ Department of Environmental Protection for over 12 years. For six years, he was Assistant Administrator of the NJDEP Office of Environmental Planning, with responsibilities for statewide water resources planning along with administrative management. During that time he was responsible for the NJ Ground Water Quality Standards, the NJ Well Head Protection Program Plan, and the NJ Statewide Water Supply Plan. Dan was Technical Director of the Passaic River Coalition, a non-profit watershed association, for four years prior to joining NJDEP. He has published peer reviewed and conference papers in the watershed management field, and received the 2010 Peter Homack Award from the NJ Chapter of the American Water Resources Association for his achievements in water resources management. In 2004, he was a featured interview in the New Jersey Network’s documentary The Highlands Rediscovered.

Regarding community service, Dan was appointed by the Governor to the New Jersey Clean Water Council in 2005, and currently serves as Chair (2014-2015), having previously served as Vice Chair for four years. He is a member of the Boards of Trustees for both the Passaic River Coalition and the Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, and is a designated technical advisor to the NJ Water Supply Advisory Council, and serves on various committees advising non-profit organizations and foundations on watershed management.