WAUKESHA, WIS.— Dr. Joseph J. Piatt is an associate professor of chemistry and environmental science, and chair of the Department of Life Sciences at Carroll University. Recently, he was recognized by the Milwaukee Section of the American Chemical Society with its 2012 Award, which honors members for outstanding contributions or service to the industry, the profession or the Milwaukee Section.
At the December dinner meeting, Piatt presented “Small College, Big Rewards.” This talk chronicled the “diverse portfolio of interests and activities focused in one way or another on science and chemical education” he developed in the past 15 years at Carroll. “The small college environment engendered these diverse interests and activities: ranging from chemical to environmental, lab-based to field-based, scientific to cultural, and technical to formative. The only common thread in these initiatives was feeling joy when my students learned and feeling a sense of belonging when my profession, colleagues, and community were served,” Piatt said.
A resident of Waukesha, he joined the Carroll faculty in 1998 after completing post-doctoral and doctoral appointments at The University of Arizona in the Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science. Piatt received a master’s degree in civil engineering-environmental engineering sciences from the University of Minnesota and bachelor’s degrees in chemistry and mathematics from Marquette University.
He teaches courses in analytical and environmental chemistry, instrumentation, environmental science, and soil and water resources. His main research interests are in soil and water quality as related to the fate and transport of contaminants in the environment. He has investigated the occurrence of human pharmaceuticals in ground water and surface water systems. Piatt has been active in the leadership and activities of the Milwaukee Section of ACS, is active in several community-based organizations with science outreach initiatives, and serves as a Waukesha Water Utility commissioner.