Meet the Faculty & Staff

Dr. Jean LavigneDr. Jean Lavigne

Environmental Studies Department Chair
Associate Professor of Environmental Studies
Office: New Science Center 114, Saint John's University
Phone: (320) 363-3994


  • CORE 100 and 395
  • ENVR 150: Intro to Environmental Studies
  • ENVR 310: Environmental Geography
  • ENVR 311: Intro to Geographic Information Systems
  • ENVR 395: Senior Research Seminar

Degrees and Post Graduate Research/Study:

  • Ph.D. in Geography, University of Kentucky
  •  M.S. in Geography, Pennsylvania State University
  • B.A. in Geography, Macalester College

Jean Lavigne started teaching at CSB/SJU in the fall of 2006. She has traveled extensively (especially in Asia), and as a geographer she is interested in the entire world. She spent fall semester of 2008 leading the CSB/SJU semester abroad in France. Her academic interests include the policy dimensions of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), the politics of food, water resources, and environmental issues in Asia. She has two children who sometimes show up on campus, and a cat who stays at home. She is very happy to be here at CSB/SJU, where she finds her colleagues truly collegial and her students truly studious.


Dr. Derek Larson  Sabbatical Spring 2014

Dr. Derek LarsonAssociate Professor of Environmental Studies and History
Office: New Science Center 118, Saint John’s University
Phone: (320) 363-3247


  •  ENVR 150: Intro to Environmental Studies
  •  ENVR 215: Campus Sustainability Workshop
  •  ENVR 320: Research Colloquium
  •  ENVR 395: Research Seminar

Degrees and Post Graduate Research/Study:

  • Ph.D. in History, Indiana University
  •  M.A. in History, Indiana University
  • M.A. in Religion, Yale University
  • B.A. in History and Religious Studies, Lewis and Clark College

Dr. Derek Larson began teaching at the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University in 1998. Dr. Larson has served as Chair of the Environmental Studies Department since 2001 and holds a joint appointment with the CSB/SJU Department of History. His current research is focused on Environmental Politics in Oregon in the 1960s and 1970s. Every month he writes an Op-Ed article for the St. Cloud Times and in his spare time he enjoys fishing, playing guitar, camping and woodworking.

Dr. Troy KnightProfessor Troy Knight

Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies
Office: New Science Center 116, Saint John's University
Phone: (320) 363-2007


  • ENVR 150: Intro to Environmental Studies
  • ENVR 175: Integrated Environmental Science I
  • ENVR 215: Sustainability Workshop
  • ENVR 275: Integrated Environmental Science II
  • ENVR 300G: Science of Global Climate Change

Degrees and Post Graduate Research/Study:

  • Ph.D. in Geography, University of Arizona
  •  M.S. in Geography, Georgia State University
  • B.A. in Anthropology and History, University of Georgia

Troy Knight began teaching at CSB/SJU in the fall of 2009.  His initial academic training was in archaeology where an interest in how past societies impacted their environments, and were in turn impacted by environmental change, was ignited.  His current research efforts are focused on the role of climate in past (late Holocene) vegetation change in the American West.  He specializes in dendrochronology, the study of tree-rings, to learn about our planet's recent natural history. 


Diane Veale-JonesProfessor Diane Veale Jones

Professor of Environmental Studies
Office: New Science Center 112, Saint John’s University
Phone: (320) 363-2844


  • ENVR 150: Introduction to Environmental Studies
  • ENVR 225: Food, Gender and the Environment 
  • ENVR 321: Sustainable Agriculture
  • ETHS 390: Poverty, Hunger and Ethical Issues

Degrees and Post Graduate Research/Study:

  • M.S. in Human Nutrition, Cornell University
    Emphasis in international nutrition and community nutrition
    Minor in Rural Sociology, emphasis on food and agriculture
  • B.A. in Dietetics, San Jose State University
    Honors in Dietetics

Diane Veale Jones began teaching in the Nutrition Department in 1985. She transferred to the Environmental Studies Department in 2007. She is a Registered Dietitian (RD) and a Licensed Dietitian. Diane has a wide variety of interests and hobbies that include gardening, baking bread, cooking (especially ethnic foods), traveling (especially to food museums), and spending time with her children and grandchildren. Her academic interests include ethnic foodways, locally grown foods, food issues related to gender, farm to school initiatives, world hunger, and innovative environmental studies pedagogy.


Richard Bohannon

Adjunct Instructor
Office: Quad 357A, Saint John's University
Phone: (320) 363-3971


  • ENVR 150: Intro to Environmental Studies
  • ENVR 215: Sustainability Workshop
  • ENVR 300: God and Nature: Religions and Environments in the West
  • ENVR 300: Environmental Justice
  • THEO 111: The Biblical Tradition

Degrees and Post Graduate Research/Study:

  • Ph.D in Religion and Society, Drew University
  • M. Phil in Religion and Society
  • M.A in Theological studies, Andover Newton Theological School  

Richard Bohannon has taught at CSB/SJU since 2007, in both the environmental studies and theology departments. His academic interests include how religions influence the ways we perceive nature, green urban planning, utopian communities, and environmental politics. He has written on how nature and the city were perceived in the 1997 flood in Grand Forks, ND, and is currently researching utopian attempts to address social inequality and solve environmental problems through large-scale urban planning projects. Richard helped found the Minnesota Street Market, a cooperatively-owned local food and local art store in St. Joseph, and sits on the planning commission in Cold Spring, MN.


Jennifer KutterJennifer Kutter

Department Coordinator
Assistant to the Chair
Office: New Science 104, Saint John's University
Phone: (320) 363-3163


  • B.A. in Chemistry and Environmental Studies,  College of Saint Benedict


Contributing Faculty:

Jeff Anderson, Peace Studies (Ph.D., The American University)
Richard Bresnahan, Art (B.A., Saint John’s University)
Gordon Brown, Biology (Ph.D., University of Minnesota)
Matt Callahan, English (M.F.A., University of Alaska Anchorage)
Terry Check, Communications (Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh)
Bernadette Elhard, Nutrition (M.B.A., Saint Cloud State University)
Bernard Evans, Theology (Ph.D., The Catholic University of America)
William Lamberts, Biology (Ph.D., University of Minnesota)
Matthew Lindstrom, Political Science (Ph.D. Northern Arizona University)
Rachel Melis, Art (M.F.A., University of Wisconsin)
Scott Murphy, Art (M.F.A.,  Arizona State University)
Jessica O'Reilly, Anthropology (Ph.D., University of California-Santa Cruz)
Kristina Timmerman, Biology
Richard Wielkiewicz, Psychology (Ph.D., University of Hawaii)
Charles Wright, Philosophy (Ph.D., State University of New York—Stony Brook)