Headshot of Dr.Todd  Lookingbill

Dr. Todd Lookingbill

Professor of Geography, Environment, & Sustainability
Professor of Biology
  • Profile

    Dr. Lookingbill is a landscape ecologist whose community-based research and teaching emphasizes inclusive approaches to promoting environmental awareness in urban landscapes. Current research projects examine how changes in climate are exacerbating the urban heat island effect in Richmond’s historically black neighborhoods and fundamentally altering old-growth forests of the Pacific Northwest. He recently co-edited a volume for Springer's Landscape Series on the conservation value of landscapes of war. He spends his spare time in and along the James River, teaches a class on the Geography of the James, and is active in watershed and land stewardship working groups and advisory committees for the Commonwealth of Virginia, City of Richmond, and University of Richmond. He has been a long-time faculty mentor of the Earth Lodge Living and Learning Community and has taught courses focused on sustaining thriving, equitable environments in the western United States, Australia, and South Africa.

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    • Grants and Fellowships

      Urban Heat Mapping in Richmond, VA. Virginia Foundation of Independent Colleges. 2021.

      Evaluating Potential National Natural Landmarks (NNL). National Park Service. 2014-2019.

      Assessment of Natural Resource Condition, Fort Monroe National Monument and Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Historical Park. 2016-2018. 

      Assessment of Natural Resource Condition, Petersburg National Battlefield and Booker T. Washington National Monument. National Park Service. 2011-2016

      Assessment of Natural Resource Condition, Shenandoah National Park. National Park Service. 2012-2014.

      Climate Change in Pacific Northwest Landscapes. Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. 2011-2013

    • Awards

      2021     State Council of Higher Education for Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award

      2019     University of Richmond International Education Award

      2019     International Association of Landscape Ecology North American Chapter - Distinguished Service

      2018     University of Richmond Distinguished Educator Award

      2018     University of Richmond Bonner Center Community-Engaged Scholarship Award

      2018     University of Richmond Sustainability Leadership Award

      2015     Best Article Award, Southeastern Division of the Association of American Geographers

      2014     University of Richmond Sustainability Award

      2013     Natural Resources Researcher of the Year, National Park Service, National Capital Region

    • Presentations

      Lookingbill, T. 2022. What’s Hot in the City? The past, present, and future of urban heat mapping in Richmond, VA. International Association of Landscape Ecology North America Annual Meeting. Virtual.

      Lookingbill, T. 2022. Am I my brother's (river)keeper? The ripple effects of a community-based stream restoration. Virginia Land Conservation and Greenways Conference, Richmond, VA.

      Mullis, C., T. Lookingbill, & T. Kostadinov. 2022 Plot-level quantification of snow melt for old-growth forest plots of the Pacific Northwest using low-cost temperature sensors. American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting. Virtual.

      Lookingbill, T., & P. Bradley. 2022. The Gambles Mill Eco-Corridor: A collaborative stream restoration project in Richmond, VA. Virginia Water Environment Association Workshop, Richmond, VA.

      Zizzamia, B., C. King, S. P. Steffens, H. Gomez, T. Lookingbill. 2022. Urban air quality and heat mapping in Richmond, VA: It takes a village. Virginia Association for Mapping and Land Information Systems, Richmond, VA.

      Lookingbill, T. 2022. Decadal Snow cover variability in the Hemlock-Fir Ecotone. Andrews Forest Climate Synthesis Seminar. Virtual.

      Lookingbill, T., R. Andrejewski, J. Hatchett, J. Nolt, & B. Siegfried. 2021. The Gambles Mill Eco-Corridor: A collaborative stream restoration project in Richmond, VA. River Management Society Symposium, From Mountain Creeks to Metro Canals, Richmond, VA.

      Lebeck, B. H. Gomez, K. Grage, S. Thomas & T. Lookingbill. 2021. A campus, trail, and stream restoration on the University of Richmond campus. River Management Society Symposium, From Mountain Creeks to Metro Canals, Richmond, VA.

      Saverino, K., E. Routman, T. Lookingbill, A. Eanes, J. Hoffman, & R. Bao. 2021. Thermal inequity in Richmond, VA: The effect of an unjust evolution of the urban landscape on urban heat islands. Collegiate Association of Inequality Research Conference on Inequality and Social Justice. Wake Forest, VA.

      Kim, S., K. Thompson, T. Lookingbill, & J. Hoffman. 2021. Mapping air quality throughout the greater Richmond area. American Association of Geographers, Seattle, WA

      Saverino, K., T. Lookingbill, & J. Hoffman. 2021. Thermal inequity in Richmond, VA: Analyzing urban heat associations with socioeconomic and land use factors. American Association of Geographers, Seattle, WA.

      Bao, R. & T. Lookingbill. 2021. Exposure to air pollution and vulnerability to COVID-19: A case study of spatial disparity and community resilience of Richmond. American Association of Geographers, Seattle, WA.

      Lookingbill, T., & C. Wu. 2021. Invasive Plants and the James River Park System. Osher Livelong Learning Institute, Richmond, VA.

      Saverino, K., T. Lookingbill, R. Bao, & J. Hoffman. 2020. Urban heat islands of Richmond, VA. American Association of Geographers, Denver, CO.

      Eanes, A., T. Lookingbill, K. Saverino, & J. Hoffman. 2020. Accessible environmental justice: using low-cost equipment to map disparities in urban air quality. American Association of Geographers, Denver, CO.

      Lookingbil, T. 2020. Goats, Dams, and a Living Lab: Stream Restoration in the Gambles Mill Eco-Corridor. Falls of the James Chapter of the Sierra Club, Richmond, VA.

    • Community Service

      Virginia Invasive Species Working Group (VaISWG) Advisory Committee (2011-2017)

      Envision the James Advisory Committee (2013-2017)

      City of Richmond Watershed Management/Integrated Planning (RVAH2O) Technical Stakeholder Group (2015-2019) 

      City of Richmond Master Plan (Richmond 300) Environmental Working Group (2019-2020)

      City of Richmond Sustainability Office Climate Action Plan (RVAgreen 2050) Environmental Working Group (2021-2022)

      James River Park System Invasive Plant Task Force (2020-present)

  • Selected Publications

    Lookingbill, T. & P. Smallwood (eds). 2019. Collateral Values: The Natural Capital Created by Landscapes of War. Springer Landscape Series, New York. 274 pp.

    Longstaff, B., T. Carruthers, W. Dennison, T. Lookingbill, J. Hawkey, J. Thomas, E. Wicks, & J. Woerner (eds). 2010. Integrating and Applying Science: A Handbook for Effective Coastal Ecosystem Assessment. IAN Press, Cambridge, Maryland. 236 pp.

    Journal Articles

    Lookingbill, T., J. DuPuy, D. Jacobs, M. Gonzalez, & T. Kostadinov. 2024. A 20-year ecotone study of Pacific Northwest mountain forest vulnerability to changing snow conditions. Land 13, 424. doi.org/10.3390/land1304042.

    Lookingbill, T., E.S. Minor, C.S. Mullis, G.C. Nunez-Mir, P. Johnson. 2022. Connectivity in the urban landscape (2015–2020): who? where? what? when? why? and how? Current Landscape Ecology Reports 7, 1-14. doi.org/10.1007/s40823-021-00068-x.

    Lookingbill, T., & T. Dolson. 2022. Am I my brother’s (river)keeper? The ripple effects of a community-based stream restoration. Public: A Journal of Imagining America 7(1)

    Saverino, K, E. Routman, T. Lookingbill, A. Eanes, J. Hoffman & R. Bao. 2021. Thermal inequity in Richmond, VA: The effect of an unjust evolution of the urban landscape on urban heat islands. Sustainability 13, 1511. doi.org/10.3390/su13031511.

    Eanes, A., T. Lookingbill, J. Hoffman, K. Saverino, and S. Fong. 2020. Assessing inequitable urban heat islands and air pollution disparities with low-cost sensors in Richmond, Virginia. Sustainability 12, 10089. doi.org/10.3390/su122310089.

    Lookingbill, T. & Smallwood, P., 2020. Landscapes of war permanently altered topography is one of the casualties of war, but battlefields can also be of “collateral value.” Natural History, 128(2): 22-27.

    Suarez-Rubio, M. & T. Lookingbill. 2016. "Forest birds respond to the spatial pattern of exurban development in the Mid-Atlantic region, USA." PeerJ 4:e2039 doi.org/10.7717/peerj.2039.

    Kostadinov, T. S. & T. Lookingbill. 2015. Snow cover variability in a forest ecotone of the Oregon Cascades via MODIS Terra products. Remote Sensing of Environment. 164: 155-169.

    Jawarneh, R., J. Julian, & T. Lookingbill. 2015. The influence of physiography on historical and future land development changes: A case study of central Arkansas (USA), 1857-2030. Landscape and Urban Planning 143:76-89.

    Lookingbill, T., J. Schmit, S. Tessel, M. Suarez-Rubio, & R. Hilderbrand. 2014. Assessing national park resource condition along an urban-rural gradient in and around Washington, D.C., USA. Ecological Indicators 42:147-159 doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolind.2013.12.025.

    Lookingbill, T., E. Minor, N. Bukach, J. Ferrari, & L. Wainger. 2014. Incorporating risk of reinvasion to prioritize sites for invasive species management. Natural Areas Journal 34:268-281.

    Courtenay, C., & T. Lookingbill. 2014. Designing a regional trail network of high conservation value using principles of green infrastructure. Southeastern Geographer 54:270-290.

    Brickle, M., T. Lookingbill, & K. Engelhardt. 2013. Proposing new barrens National Natural Landmarks. George Wright Forum 30:253–260.

    Suarez-Rubio, M., S. Wilson, P. Leimgruber, & T. Lookingbill. 2013. Threshold responses of forest birds to landscape changes around exurban development. Plos One 8(6): e67593.

    Suarez-Rubio, M., T. Lookingbill, & A. Elmore. 2012. Exurban development derived from Landsat from 1986 to 2009 surrounding the District of Columbia, USA. Remote Sensing Environment. 124:360-370.

    Suarez-Rubio, M., T. Lookingbill, & L. Wainger. 2012. Modeling exurban development near Washington, DC, USA: Comparison of a pattern-based model and a spatially-explicit econometric model. Landscape Ecology. 27: 1045-1061 doi:10.1007/s10980-012-9760-1.

    Minor, E.S. and T.R. Lookingbill. 2010. Multiscale network analysis of protected-area connectivity for mammals in the United States. Conservation Biology  24:1549-1558.

    Lookingbill, T.R., A.J. Elmore, K.A.M. Engelhardt, J.B. Churchill, J.E. Gates, & J.B. Johnson. 2010. Influence of wetland networks on bat activity in mixed-use landscapes. Biological Conservation 143:974-983.

    Lookingbill, T.R., R.H. Gardner, J.R. Ferrari & C. Keller. 2010. Combining a dispersal model with network theory to assess habitat connectivity. Ecological Applications 22:427-441.

    Minor, E.S., S.M. Tessel, K.A.M. Engelhardt & T.R. Lookingbill. 2009. The role of landscape connectivity in assembling exotic plant communities: a network analysis. Ecology 90:1802-1809.

    Townsend, P.A., T.R. Lookingbill, C.C. Kingdon, & R.H. Gardner. 2009. Spatial pattern analysis for monitoring protected areas. Remote Sensing Environment 113:1410-1420.

    Ferrari, J.R., & T.R. Lookingbill. 2009. Initial conditions and their effect on invasion velocity across heterogeneous landscapes. Biological Invasions 11:1247-1258.

    Ferrari J., T. Lookingbill, B. McCormick, P. Townsend & K. Eshleman. 2009. Surface mining and reclamation efforts on flood response of watersheds in the Central Appalachian Plateau region. Water Resources Research 45, W00407.

    Lookingbill, T.R., S.S. Kaushal, A.J. Elmore, R.H. Gardner, K.N. Eshleman, R.H. Hilderbrand, R.P. Morgan, W.R. Boynton, M.A. Palmer & W.C. Dennison. 2009. Altered ecological flows blur boundaries in urbanizing watersheds. Ecology and Society 14: 10. Full Article.

    Book Chapters

    Lookingbill, T., K. Meitzen, K. & J. Julian. 2021. Riverscapes. Chapter 21 in R. Francis, J. Millington, G. Perry & E. Minor, eds. The Routledge Handbook of Landscape Ecology. Routledge, New York.

    Lookingbill, T. & K. Browne. 2016. Biodiversity and carbon content of trees on a university campus. Chapter 14 in D. Cowen, ed. STEM and GIS in Higher Education, ESRI Press, Redlands, California. ISBN: 9781589484481.

    Lookingbill, T. & E. Minor. 2016. Assessing multi-scale landscape connectivity using network analysis. Chapter 12 in S. Gergel & M. Turner, eds. Learning Landscape Ecology: A Practical Guide to Concepts and Techniques. Springer-Verlag, ISBN: 9781493963720.

    Lookingbill, T., J. Schmit, & S. Carter. 2012. GRTS and graphs: Monitoring natural resources in urban landscapes. Pages 361-380 in R. Gitzen, J. Millspaugh, A. Cooper and D. Licht, eds. Design and Analysis of Long-term Ecological Monitoring Studies. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.

    Lookingbill, T., Rocca, M. & D. Urban. 2011. Focused assessment of scale-dependent vegetation pattern. Pages 111-138 in A. Drew, Y. Wiersma, and F. Huettmann, eds. Predictive Species and Habitat Modeling in Landscape Ecology. Springer Press, New York.

    Additional Publications

    Technical Reports

    Engelhardt, K., T. Lookingbill, N. Bukach, M. Latimer, K. Ratliff, R. Gifford, J. Baek, M. O. Hubert, A. Rizzo, & B. Walsh. 2019. Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Historical Park Natural Resource Condition Assessment. Natural Resource Report NPS/HATU/NRR—2019/1897. National Park Service, Fort Collins, Colorado.

    Lookingbill, T., K. Engelhardt, C. Geraghty, N. Hatchel, & D. Kitchen. 2018. Fort Monroe National Monument Natural Resource Condition Assessment. Natural Resource Report NPS/FOMR/NRR—2018/1604. National Park Service, Fort Collins, Colorado.

    Lookingbill, T., H. Courtenay, J. Finn, R. Gifford, N. Hatchel, M. Mulroy, A. Pericak & M. Rouch. 2017. Booker T. Washington National Monument Natural Resource Condition Assessment. Natural Resource Report NPS/BOWA/NRR—2017/1558. National Park Service, Fort Collins, Colorado.

    Lookingbill, T., N. Somerville, C. Sibilia, D. Kitchen & K. Engelhardt. 2017. Evaluation of Bear Rocks, WV Plateau for its Merit in Meeting National Significance Criteria as a National Natural Landmark. Prepared for National Natural Landmark Program, National Park Service, Gettysburg, PA.

    Lookingbill,  M. Brickle, & K. Engelhardt. 2013. Evaluation of Albany Pine Bush for its Merit in Meeting National Significance Criteria as a National Natural Landmark. Prepared for National Natural Landmark Program, NPS. National Park Service, Boston, MA.

    Lookingbill, T., B. Miller, J. Madron, J. Finn, & A. Valenski. 2013. Petersburg National Battlefield Natural Resource Condition Assessment: Virginia. Prepared for Natural Resources Condition Assessment Program, NPS. Natural Resource Report. NPS/PETE/NRR—2013/704. National Park Service, Fort Collins, CO.

  • In the News

    This is why certain parts of Richmond are hotter than others, CBS 6 News
    Fri., Jul. 22, 2022

    Richmond's urban heat islands -- Scott's Addition, Jackson Ward, Manchester -- put communities in danger, Richmond Times-Dispatch
    Mon., Jul. 4, 2022

    Landscapes of War, With Good Reason
    Fri., Apr. 15, 2022

    Heat-mapping study found major temperature swings within Virginia localities, Virginia Mercury and NBC 12 News
    Tue., Mar. 29, 2022

    Citizen Scientists Map Extreme Heat In Richmond, Virginia Cities, VPM NPR News
    Fri., Jul. 16, 2021

    'Heat Risk' initiative to find areas most at risk for extreme heat, CBS 6 and VPM News
    Thu., Jul. 15, 2021

    Richmond to participate in nation's largest heat-mapping effort, Richmond Times-Dispatch
    Sun., Jul. 11, 2021

    An Unjust Evolution, Science Museum of Virginia
    Thu., Mar. 4, 2021

    A path forward for conservation: The country's 600th national landmark, Richmond Times-Dispatch
    Sat., Feb. 6, 2021

    Harriet Tubman and a National Legacy of Midnight Skies and Silent Stars, History News Network
    Sat., Feb. 6, 2021

    Trump's Attempt to Rewrite NEPA Likely to Face Legal Challenges, Earth Island Journal
    Thu., Jan. 21, 2021

    Historic battlefields are finding new life as parks and wildlife refuges, Quartz, Salon, the Business Journal, National Parks Traveler and others
    Mon., Nov. 11, 2019

    Battlefields around the world are finding new purpose as parks and refuges, The Conversation, Chicago Tribune, and others
    Wed., Nov. 6, 2019

    Good Stewards: UR's Gambles Mill Eco-Corridor aims to improve James River water quality, Richmond Magazine
    Thu., Jul. 11, 2019

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