The RAF is proud to announce that Dr. Ric Hauer, chair of its Environmental Science Advisory Committee is being lauded for securing the largest research award in the history of the University of Montana, his main employer. Dr. Hauer is Professor of Ecology at the Missoula university, and also directs UM’s Institute on Ecosystems. 

He successfully obtained a $45 million commitment from the Army Corps of Engineers that will engage over a five-year period. The Army Corps of Engineers oversees America’s wetlands and navigable waters, as directed in the Clean Water Act of 1972. Ric explains that this “cooperative agreement” isn’t exactly the same as winning a grant. The Corps provides the funds throughout the multi-year project. He considers that the Corps is now a “client” of UM’s, and will expect substantial contributions to add to its bank of science knowledge for its investment.

But Ric still finds time to serve the RAF’s ESAC committee, having assembled a cadre of experts to advise the RAF board. A recent accomplishment of Ric’s for the RAF was the establishment of the Small Aircraft Noise Study, that is now underway. Ric framed and outlined the purpose and methodology of the study, and delegated qualified UM students to carry out the field work. The study was funded in part by Montana Dep’t of Transportation and AOPA Foundation. Samples are now in the analysis stage, and results will be peer reviewed prior to formal release. 

Submitted on September 30, 2014.

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