Ronald Tjeerdema

Ronald Tjeerdema

Associate Dean, Environmental Sciences

Office Phone: (530) 752-6730


Ron Tjeerdema completed B.S. degrees in both natural resource planning and interpretation, and wildlife management from Humboldt State University in 1980, and an M.A. in pharmacology from UC Santa Barbara in 1983. He then came to UC Davis, where he completed his Ph.D. in pharmacology and toxicology, with an emphasis in environmental toxicology, in 1987. He has been certified in General Toxicology by the American Board of Toxicology since 1994.

Upon graduation from UC Davis, Tjeerdema moved to UC Santa Cruz, where he was first appointed as a professional researcher and lecturer in the Institute of Marine Sciences, and later served as a professor of environmental toxicology in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. In 1999, Tjeerdema was invited to return to UC Davis as a professor in the Department of Environmental Toxicology, where for nearly a dozen years he also served as department chair. In 2014, he was named Associate Dean for Environmental Sciences in the College of Agricutural and Environmental Sciences, and also currently holds the Donald G. Crosby Endowed Chair in Environmental Chemistry.

With a focus on marine and freshwater systems, Tjeerdema’s areas of expertise range from chemical fate in the environment, sensitive lifestage bioassays and biochemical mechanisms of toxicity, and he has worked extensively with pesticides, petroleum hydrocarbons, dispersants and marine algal toxins. In nearly 30 years in the field of environmental toxicology, Tjeerdema has attracted over $30 million in extramural research support and published in excess of 225 refereed research articles and another 350 research abstracts. He has pioneered the new field of environmental metabolomics via the use of nuclear magnetic resonance, and his research on oil spills and dispersants resulted in the development of the widely-used standardized CROSERF methods for toxicity assessment.

Tjeerdema is an international member of the Centre for Marine Environmental Research and Innovative Technology (MERIT) at the University of Hong Kong, and is an external academic advisor for the City University of Hong Kong. He has also served on a number of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) panels advising on the response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and its aftermath, and has provided testimony to Congressional and legislative committees on dispersant use and toxicology. Tjeerdema currently serves as co editor-in-chief of of the flagship journal Aquatic Toxicology, and serves on the editorial boards of Reviews of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology, Marine Pollution Bulletin and Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology.

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