Dr. Robert S. Whyte is an associate professor in the Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences.
Curator of the John F. Lewis Herbarium, housed in Frich Hall, he also oversees activities at the Arboretum
at California University, which is a member of the American Horticultural Society and the American
Public Gardens Association.
Prior to coming to Cal U in 2005, Dr. Whyte was executive director of the Glen Helen Ecology Institute at
Antioch College, Ohio, where he managed the university's 1,200-acre biological reserve and coordinated campus
collaborative environmental initiatives.
For almost 25 years, the main focus of Dr. Whyte's research has been our nation's wetlands and lakes. He has
provided Great Lakes coastal resource and wetlands managers with information necessary to maintain and
re-establish native flora and the natural integrity of these coastal wetlands. These areas often are affected by
In collaboration with Dr. David Klarer of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources and Dr. Joseph
Holomuzki of Ohio State University, Dr. Whyte investigates the impact of changing water levels on aquatic
macrophyte communities, in particular assessing the impacts of the invasive grass Phragmites australis.
He has expanded his research scope to examine the impact of Phragmites control measures on non-target
communities. This research began in 2004 in collaboration with Dr. Holomuzki, and it continues with Dr. Carol
Bocetti, assistant professor of biological and environmental sciences at Cal U.
Their work, which assesses the ecological integrity of these wetland systems in response to environmental
changes, will be critical in the examination of the impacts of global climate change.
Dr. Whyte has received funding for his research from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources; the U.S. Sea
Grant program of NOAA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency; and the Faculty Professional Development Committee at Cal U.
Dr. Whyte graduated from Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Science in fisheries and wildlife. He
received his Master of Environmental Science degree from the Institute of Environmental Sciences at Miami
University of Ohio, and his Ph.D. in botany, also from Miami University.