In memoriam: Colleen Carlson, forestry research associate, College of Natural Resources and Environment
July 2, 2013
Colleen Carlson, a research associate in the College of Natural Resources and Environment, died Sunday, June 30, at LewisGale Hospital Montgomery in Blacksburg, Va.
She suffered a severe asthma attack on June 22, and collapsed into a coma, according to her family. Carlson lived in Christiansburg with her husband Ross Allan and son Daniel. Their roots are in South Africa, where her mother and sister live.
Carlson, who worked in the field of forestry and biometry for more than 22 years in the United States, New Zealand, and South Africa, was most recently on the Forest Productivity Cooperative team in the Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation. The multidisciplinary cooperative also includes teams from North Carolina State University and the Universidad de Concepcion in Chile.
Janaki Alavalapati, head of the Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation, said she will be sadly missed by her colleagues.
Carlson received bachelor of science degrees from South Africa’s University of the Witwatersrand in 1988 and 1990, a master of science from that university in 1992, and a diploma in datametrics from the University of South Africa in 1998. Her research interests included the manipulation and optimization of growth and time quality in tree plantation systems, with emphasis on nutritional influences.
She studied the manipulation of cuttings to improve their rooting and was an expert in the methodologies of trial-based research and data analysis. She was the lead author of 13 journal articles and a co-author of eight, and contributed to numerous other research articles.
“Her laughter could always be heard before she entered the room,” her husband said. “She was generous with her time, knowledge, and especially her love. Rest in peace, Col, you are loved.”