Mark E Brigham

Investigations Chief, Minnesota Water Science Center

Biography

I received a B.A. in Chemistry and an M.S. in Civil Engineering, both from the University of Minnesota.  My Master’s thesis research examined historical patterns of mercury deposition using lake sediment cores, and other aspects of aquatic mercury cycling.  I joined the U.S. Geological Survey in 1991, and worked for several years assessing water quality in the Red River of the North Basin.  I then shifted back to mercury, examining methylmercury occurrence in impoundments and other waters of the Red River Basin; small lakes in Voyageurs National Park; and streams in the St. Croix River Basin.  I recently coordinated mercury studies for the U.S. Geological Survey’s National Water-Quality Assessment Program. Memberships: American Chemical Society, Environmental Chemistry Division; American Geophysical Union; Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography; American Association for the Advancement of Science.

 

Work experience:

July 2016 – present: Supervisory Hydrologist and Section Chief, Investigations Section, U.S. Geological Survey, Minnesota Water Science Center. Direct water resources investigations program with a total budget of over $4 million. Review schedules, work plans, budgets, and priorities of staff within the section; meet with State and local agency officials; and supervise senior hydrologists and Team Leads within the section.

January 2016 – July 2016: acting Section Chief, Investigations Section, U.S. Geological Survey, Minnesota Water Science Center.

2013-2016: Hydrologist, U.S. Geological Survey, Minnesota Water Science Center. Working on variety of water-resources projects, including trend analysis of mercury in Voyageurs National Park.

2001-2013:  Hydrologist, U.S. Geological Survey, Minnesota Water Science Center, and coordinator for Mercury in Stream Ecosystems studies for the National Water-Quality Assessment program. Responsible for coordinating collaborative team of internal (USGS) and external scientists; development of study objectives; study design (including water-quality sampling design and quality assurance program); and communicating results through publication of interpretive reports and presentations to diverse audiences. 

1991-2001:  Environmental Engineer, U.S. Geological Survey, Minnesota Water Science Center.  Studied mercury and methylmercury levels in flood-control impoundments and natural waters; and sediment sources to a stream in an agricultural basin.  Both studies are in the Red River of the North Basin.  From 1999-2001 I was a member of National water-quality users group, reviewing implementation of the World Wide Web interface to the USGS water-quality data base.  From 1991-97, worked on Red River of the North National Water Quality Assessment project.  Water-quality specialist on a multidisciplinary team (surface-water, ground-water, and aquatic biology). Study focused on human effects on water quality, especially nutrients and pesticides in water; and trace contaminants in sediments and biologic tissues.  Involved with collection, management, analysis, and interpretation of water-quality data and publishing of interpretive reports and papers. 

1988-91:  Graduate Research Assistant, University of Minnesota.  Studied mercury speciation in lakes and mercury accumulation in lake-sediment cores.  Also conducted laboratory analyses of nitrate, nitrite, and total nitrogen.

 

Education:

Master of Science in Civil Engineering, University of Minnesota, 1992.  Coursework emphasized aquatic chemistry and water quality.

Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry, University of Minnesota 1988.

 

Additional training:

USGS Training: 

Supervisory Challenge, 01/2015

Statistical techniques for trend and load estimation, 10/2004

Geomorphic analysis of fluvial systems, 12/1996

Multivariate analysis for hydrological, biological, and chemical data, 4/1996

Watershed biogeochemistry, 10/1994

Probability and statistics for data analysis, 8/1992

Sampling and analysis of organic contaminants in surface and ground water, 11/1991

University of St. Thomas (Minneapolis) Center for Business Excellence, 2005 course “The New Leader.”

SAS Institute training (SAS, Statistical Analysis System)

Programming II: Manipulating data with the DATA Step, 9/2007

SAS Graph and SAS Macro Language, 9/1994

University of Minnesota, short course “Applied modeling of groundwater flow and pollution,” 10/1991

 

Professional conferences at which I have presented (partial listing; * = session chair or co-chair):

Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (2015)

International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant (2006*; 2011)

National Mercury Monitoring Workshop, Annapolis, MD (2008)

Integrating Multimedia Measurements of Mercury in the Great Lakes Region (2008, 2010)

International Mercury Expo (2010)

American Society of Limnology and Oceanography (2003, 2010)

National Monitoring Conference (2006*, 2010*, 2012*)

National Forum on Fish Contaminants (2009)

American Geophysical Union (1994, 1999, 2009)

National Atmospheric Deposition Program Scientific Symposium (2004)

Minnesota Water (1992, 1994, 1996, 2002, 2005)

North Dakota Water Quality Symposium (1994, 1996)

International Water Conference (Red River Basin, 2004)

Air & Waste Management Association (1999)

AWRA (1998)

Geological Association of Canada (1996)

North American Lake Management Society (1996)

Mercury Pollution in the Upper Great Lakes Region (1995)

 

Volunteer Experience:

2014-2015: Secretary, Long-range strategic planning committee, Hunt Hill Audubon Sanctuary (Sarona, Wisconsin)

2011-2012: Anoka High School Girls Hockey Booster Club (Vice President, 2011; President, 2012)

2000-2012: Assistant coach or head coach for youth hockey and fastpitch softball teams, ages five through fourteen.

1988-95:  Charter board member of the Friends of Hunt Hill Audubon Sanctuary.  This non-profit organization successfully re-opened Hunt Hill as a locally operated environmental education and nature center.  During my tenure on the Board, I held offices of Recording Secretary, Treasurer, Vice President, and President.

1983-4:  Volunteer interpreter at Science Museum of Minnesota’s “Wolves and Humans” exhibit.

Publications:

Elliott, S. M.; Brigham, M. E.; Lee, K. E.; Banda, J. A.; Choy, S. J.; Gefell, D. J.; Minarik, T. A.; Moore, J. N.; Jorgenson, Z. G., Contaminants of emerging concern in tributaries to the Laurentian Great Lakes: I. Patterns of occurrence. PLOS ONE 2017, 12 (9), e0182868.

Thomas, L. M.; Jorgenson, Z. G.; Brigham, M. E.; Choy, S. J.; Moore, J. N.; Banda, J. A.; Gefell, D. J.; Minarik, T. A.; Schoenfuss, H. L., Contaminants of emerging concern in tributaries to the Laurentian Great Lakes: II. Biological consequences of exposure. PLOS ONE 2017, 12 (9), e0184725.

Christensen, V.G., Larson, J.H., Maki, R.P., Sandheinrich, M.B., Brigham, M.E., Kissane, C., and LeDuc, J.F., 2017, Lake levels and water quality in comparison to fish mercury body burdens, Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota, 2013–15. U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2016-5175, 26 p.

Choy, S.J., Annis, M.L., Banda, J.A., Bowman, S.R., Brigham, M.E., Elliott, S.M., Gefell, D.J., Jankowski, M.D., Jorgenson, Z.G., Lee, K.E., Moore, J.N., and Tucker, W.A., 2017, Contaminants of Emerging Concern in the Great Lakes Basin: A Report on Sediment, Water, and Fish Tissue Chemistry Collected in 2010-2012 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Biological Technical Publication BTP-R3017-2013, 90 p.

Elliott, S.M., Lee, K.E., Brigham, M.E., Langer, S.K., McCool, M.M., Menheer, M.A., Furlong, E.T., Foreman, W.T., Jorgenson, Z.G., Choy, S.J., Moore, J.N., Banda, J.A., Gefell, D.J., and Schoenfuss, H.L., 2016, Chemicals of Emerging Concern in Water and Bottom Sediment in the Great Lakes Basin, 2014 - Analytical Methods, Collection Methods, Quality-Assurance Analyses, and Data: U.S. Geological Survey data release.

Bradley, P.M., Burns, D.A., Harvey, J.W., Journey, C.A., Brigham, M.E., and Riva-Murray, K., 2016, Hydraulic and biochemical gradients limit wetland mercury supply to an Adirondack stream: SOJ Aquatic Research, v. 1, no. 1, p. 1-9.

Weiss-Penzias, P.S., Gay, D.A., Brigham, M.E., Parsons, M.T., Gustin, M.S., and ter Schure, A., 2016, Trends in mercury wet deposition and mercury air concentrations across the U.S. and Canada: Science of the Total Environment, v. 568, p. 546-556. 

Scudder Eikenberry, B.C., Riva-Murray, K., Knightes, C.D., Journey, C.A., Chasar, L.C., Brigham, M.E., and Bradley, P.M., 2015, Optimizing fish sampling for fish–mercury bioaccumulation factors: Chemosphere, vol. 135, pp. 467-473.

Elliott, S.M., Lee, K.E., Brigham, M.E., Langer, S.K., Trombley, M.M., Menheer, M.A., Furlong, E.T., Foreman, W.T., Jorgenson, Z.G., Choy, S.J., Moore, J.N., Banda, J.B., and Gefell, D.J., 2015, Chemicals of Emerging Concern in Water and Bottom Sediment in Great Lakes Areas of Concern, 2013—Analytical Methods, Collection Methods, Environmental Data, and Quality Assurance: U.S. Geological Survey Data Release.

Wentz, D.A., Brigham, M.E., Chasar, L.C., Lutz, M.A., and Krabbenhoft, D.P., 2014, Mercury in the Nation’s Streams—Levels, Trends, and Implications: U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1395, 90 pp. 

Brigham, M.E., Sandheinrich, M.B., Gay, D.A., Maki, R.P., Krabbenhoft, D.P., and Wiener, J.G., 2014, Lacustrine responses to decreasing wet mercury deposition rates—results from a case study in northern Minnesota, Environmental Science & Technology, v 48, no. 11, p. 6115-6123. 

Knightes, C.D., Golden, H.E., Journey, C.A., Davis, G.M., Conrads, P.A., Marvin-DiPasquale, M., Brigham, M.E., Bradley, P.M., 2014, Mercury and methylmercury stream concentrations in a Coastal Plain watershed: A multi-scale simulation analysis. Environmental Pollution 2014, v. 187, p. 182-192.

Riva-Murray, K., Bradley, P.M., Scudder Eikenberry, B.C., Knightes, C.D., Journey, C.A., Brigham, M.E., and Button, D.T., 2013, Optimizing stream water mercury sampling for calculation of fish bioaccumulation factors: Environmental Science & Technology, v. 47 (11), p. 5904-5912.

Cowdery, T.K. and Brigham, M.E., 2013, Mercury in wetlands at the Glacial Ridge National Wildlife Refuge, northwestern Minnesota, 2007-9, U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2013–5068, 17 p.

Riva Murray, K., Bradley, P.M., Chasar, L.C., Button, D.T., Brigham, M.E., Scudder Eikenberry, B.C., Journey, C.A., and Lutz, M.A., 2013, Influence of dietary carbon on mercury bioaccumulation in streams of the Adirondack Mountains of New York and the Coastal Plain of South Carolina, USA: Ecotoxicology, v. 22, no. 1, pp 60-71. 

Journey, C.A., Burns, D.A., Riva Murray, Karen, Brigham, M.E., Button, D.T., Feaster, T.D., Petkewich, M.D., and Bradley, P.M., 2012, Fluvial transport of mercury, organic carbon, suspended sediment, and selected major ions in contrasting stream basins in South Carolina and New York, October 2004 to September 2009: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2012–5173, 125 p. 

Bradley, P.M., Journey, C.A., Brigham, M.E., Burns, D.A., Button, D.T., Riva-Murray, K., 2013, Intra- and inter-basin mercury comparisons--importance of basin scale and time-weighted methylmercury estimates: Environmental Pollution, v. 172, p. 42-52. 

Bradley, P.M., Journey, C.A., Lowery, M.A., Brigham, M.E., Burns, D.A., Button, D.T., Chapelle, F.H., Lutz, M.A., Marvin-DiPasquale, M.C., Riva-Murray, K., 2012, Shallow groundwater mercury supply in a Coastal Plain stream: Environmental Science & Technology, v. 46, no. 14, p. 7503-7511. 

Burns, D.A., Riva-Murray, K, Bradley, P.M., Aiken, G.R. and Brigham, M.E., 2012, Landscape controls on total and methyl Hg in the upper Hudson River basin, New York, USA: Journal of Geophysical Research-Biogeosciences, v. 117, G01034, 15 pp. 

Golden, H.E., Knightes, C.D., Conrads, P.A., Davis, G.M., Feaster, T.D., Journey, C.A., Benedict, S.T., Brigham, M.E., and Bradley, P.M., 2012, Characterizing mercury concentrations and fluxes in a Coastal Plain watershed: Insights from dynamic modeling and data. Journal of Geophysical Research-Biogeosciences, v. 117, G01006, 17 pp. 

Riva-Murray, K., Chasar, L.C., Bradley, P.M., Burns, D.A., Brigham, M.E., Smith, M.J., and Abrahamsen, T.A., 2011, Spatial patterns of mercury in macroinvertebrates and fishes from streams of two contrasting forested landscapes in the eastern United States: Ecotoxicology, v. 20, p. 1530-1542. 

Bradley, P.M., Burns, D.A., Riva-Murray, K., Brigham, M.E., Button, D.T., Chasar, L.C., Marvin-DiPasquale, M., Lowery, M.A., and Journey, C.A., 2011, Spatial and seasonal variability of dissolved methylmercury in two stream basins in the eastern United States: Environmental Science & Technology, v. 46, p. 2048-2055. 

Woodruff, L.G., Cannon, W.F., Knightes, C.D., Chapelle, F.H., Bradley, P.M., Burns, D.A., Brigham, M.E., and Lowery, M.A., 2010, Total mercury, methylmercury, and selected elements in soils of the Fishing Brook watershed, Hamilton County, New York, and the McTier Creek watershed, Aiken County, South Carolina, 2008: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 516, 10 pp. 

Chalmers, A.T., Argue, D.M., Gay, D.A., Brigham, M.E., Schmitt, C.J., and Lorenz, D.L., 2011, Mercury trends in fish from rivers and lakes in the United States, 1969–2005: Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, v. 175, p. 175-191. 

Bauch, N.J., Chasar, L.C., Scudder, B.C., Moran, P.W., Hitt, K.J., Brigham, M.E., Lutz, M.A., and Wentz, D.A., 2009, Data on mercury in water, streambed sediment, and fish tissue from selected streams across the United States, 1998–2005: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 307, 32 pp. (http://pubs.usgs.gov/ds/307/)

Brigham, M.E., Wentz, D.A., Aiken, G.R., and Krabbenhoft, D.P., 2009, Mercury cycling in stream ecosystems. 1. Water column chemistry and transport: Environmental Science and Technology, v. 43, no. 8, p. 2720-2725. 

Marvin-DiPasquale, M., Lutz, M.A., Brigham, M.E., Krabbenhoft, D.P., Aiken, G.R., Orem, W.H., and Hall, B.D., 2009, Mercury cycling in stream ecosystems. 2. Benthic methylmercury production and bed sediment-pore water partitioning: Environmental Science and Technology, v. 43, no. 8, p. 2726–2732 

Scudder, B.C., Chasar, L.C., Wentz, D.A., Bauch, N.J., Brigham, M.E., Moran, P.W., and Krabbenhoft, D.P., 2009, Mercury in fish, bed sediment, and water from streams across the United States, 1998-2005: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2009-5109, 74 pp. 

Woodruff, L.G., Sandheinrich, M., Brigham, M.E., and Cannon, W.F., 2009, Impact of wildfire on levels of mercury in forested watershed systems–Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2009-5151, 19 pp. 

Brigham, M.E., Duris, J.W., Wentz, D.A., Button, D.T., and Chasar, L.C., 2008, Total mercury, methylmercury, and ancillary water-quality and streamflow data for selected streams in Oregon, Wisconsin, and Florida, 2002–06: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 341, 11 pp. 

Chasar, L.C., Scudder, B.C., Bell, A.H., Wentz, D.A., and Brigham, M.E., 2008, Total mercury, methylmercury, and carbon and nitrogen isotope data for biota from selected streams in Oregon, Wisconsin, and Florida, 2002-04: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 349, 10 pp. 

Lutz, M.A., Marvin-DiPasquale, M., and Brigham, M.E., 2008, Procedures for collecting and processing streambed sediment and pore water for analysis of mercury as part of the National Water-Quality Assessment Program: U.S. Geological Survey Survey Open-File Report 2008-1279, 68 pp. 

Marvin-DiPasquale, M., Lutz, M.A., Krabbenhoft, D.P., Aiken, G.R., Orem, W.R., Hall, B.D., DeWild, J.F., and Brigham, M.E., 2008, Total mercury, methylmercury, methylmercury production potential, and ancillary streambed-sediment and pore-water data for selected streams in Oregon, Wisconsin, and Florida, 2003–04: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 375, 24 pp. 

Scudder, B.C., Chasar, L.C., DeWeese, L.R., Brigham, M.E., Wentz, D.A., and Brumbaugh, W.G., 2008, Procedures for collecting and processing aquatic invertebrates and fish for analysis of mercury as part of the National Water-Quality Assessment Program: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2008-1208, 34 pp. 

Christensen, V.G., Wente, S.P., Sandheinrich, M.B., and Brigham, M.E., 2006, Spatial variations in fish-tissue mercury concentrations in the St. Croix River Basin, Minnesota and Wisconsin, 2004: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2006-5063, 26 pp. 

Wiener, J.G., Knights, B.C., Sandheinrich, M.B., Jeremiason, J.D., Brigham, M.E., Engstrom, D.R., Woodruff, L.G., Cannon, W.F., and Balogh, S.J., 2006, Mercury in soils, lakes, and fish in Voyageurs National Park (Minnesota)—Importance of atmospheric deposition and ecosystem factors: Environmental Science and Technology, v. 40, p. 6261-6268. 

Lewis, M.E., and Brigham, M.E., 2004, National field manual for the collection of water-quality data, Chapter A5, Section 5.6.4.B, Low-level mercury U.S. Geological Survey Techniques of Water-Resources Investigations Report Book 9. 

Brigham, M.E., Krabbenhoft, D.P., and Hamilton, P.A., 2003, Mercury in stream ecosystems - New studies initiated by the U.S. Geological Survey: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 016-03, 4 pp. 

Goldstein, R.M., Brigham, M.E., Stuewe, L., and Menheer, M.A., 2003, Mercury data from small lakes in Voyageurs National Park, northern Minnesota, 2000-02: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 03-480, 18 pp. 

Brigham, M.E., 2002, Elemental chemistry of streambed sediments of the St. Croix River Basin, 2000: U.S. Geological Survey Water-Resources Investigations Report 02-4087, 19 pp. 

Brigham, M.E., Krabbenhoft, D.P., Olson, M.L., and DeWild, J.F., 2002, Methylmercury in flood-control impoundments and natural waters of Northwestern Minnesota, 1997-99: Water, Air, and Soil Pollution, v. 138, no. 1/4, p. 61-78 

Brigham, M.E., Payne, G.A., Andrews, W.J., and Abbott, M.M., 2002b, Statistical analysis of stream water-quality data and sampling network design near Oklahoma City, Central Oklahoma, 1977-99: U.S. Geological Survey Water-Resources Investigations Report 02-4111, 125 pp.

Brigham, M.E., McCullough, C.J., and Wilkinson, P., 2001, Analysis of suspended-sediment concentrations and radioisotope levels in the Wild Rice River Basin, northwestern Minnesota, 1973-98: U.S. Geological Survey Water-Resources Investigations Report 01-4192, 21 p. 

Brigham, M.E., Olson, M.L., and DeWild, J.F., 2000, Mercury, methylmercury, and other water-quality data from flood-control impoundments and natural waters of the Red River of the North Basin, Minnesota, 1997-99: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 99-273A, 34 pp.

Brigham, M.E., and Payne, G.A., 1999, Stream water-quality characteristics and trends, James River Basin, North Dakota, 1949-95: U.S. Geological Survey Water-Resources Investigations Report 99-4187, 129 pp.

Brigham, M.E., Goldstein, R.M., and Tornes, L.H., 1998, Trace elements and organic chemicals in stream-bottom sediments and fish tissues, Red River of the North Basin, Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota 1992-95: U.S. Geological Survey Water-Resources Investigations Report 97-4043, 32 pp. 

Currie, R.S., Williamson, D.A., and Brigham, M.E., 1998, A preliminary assessment of environmental impacts associated with the 1997 Red River flood, with focus on water quality: Prepared for the International Red River Basin Task Force jointly by the Explorations and Research Services, Manitoba Environment, and United States Geological Survey, 47 pp. 

Stoner, J.D., Lorenz, D.L., Goldstein, R.M., Brigham, M.E., and Cowdery, T.K., 1998, Water quality in the Red River of the North Basin Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota, 1992-95: U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1169, 33 pp.

Menheer, M.A., and Brigham, M.E., 1997, Ground-water sampling methods and quality-control data for the Red River of the North Basin, Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota 1993-95: U.S. Geological Survey Water-Resources Investigations Report 96-4317, 34 pp.

Tornes, L.H., Brigham, M.E., and Lorenz, D.L., 1997, Nutrients, suspended sediment, and pesticides in streams in the Red River of the North Basin, Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota, 1993-95: U.S. Geological Survey Water-Resources Investigations Report 97-4053, 70 pp.

Goldstein, R.M., Brigham, M.E., and Stauffer, J.C., 1996, Comparison of mercury concentrations in liver, muscle, whole bodies, and composites of fish from the Red River of the North: Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, v. 53, no. 2, p. 244-252.

Tornes, L.H., and Brigham, M.E., 1995, Pesticide amounts are small in streams in the Red River of the North Basin, 1993-94: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 95-283, 2 pp.

Brigham, M.E., 1994, Pesticides detected in surface waters and fish of the Red River of the North drainage basinin North Dakota Water Quality Symposium Proceedings, p. 256-269.

Engstrom, D.R., Swain, E.B., Henning, T.A., Brigham, M.E., and Brezonik, P.L., 1994, Atmospheric mercury deposition to lakes and watersheds—a quantitative reconstruction from multiple sediment cores, Environmental Chemistry of Lakes and Reservoirs: ACS Advances in Chemistry Series No. 237: Washington, D.C., American Chemical Society, p. 33-66.

Noland, W.E., Wahlstrom, M.J., Konkel, M.J., Brigham, M.E., Trowbridge, A.G., Konkel, L.M.C., Gourneau, R.P., Scholten, C.A., Lee, N.H., J.J., C., Gac, T.S., Pour, M.M., and Radford, P.M., 1993, In Situ vinylindole synthesis. Diels-Alder reactions with maleimides to give tetrahydrocarbazoles [1]: Journal of Heterocyclic Chemistry, v. 30, no. Jan-Feb, p. 81-91.

Glass, G.E., Sorensen, J.A., Schmidt, K.W., Huber, J.K., Rapp, G.R.J., Brigham, M.E., and Brezonik, P.L., 1992, Mercury in the St.Louis River, Mississippi River, Crane Lake, and Sand Point Lake—cycling, distribution, and sources: Water Quality Division, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency

Swain, E.B., Engstrom, D.R., Brigham, M.E., Henning, T.A., and Brezonik, P.L., 1992, Increasing rates of atmospheric mercury deposition in midcontinental North America: Science, v. 257, p. 784-787.

Brezonik, P.L., Mach, C.E., Downing, G., Richardson, N., and Brigham, M., 1990, Effects of acidification on minor and trace metal chemistry in Little Rock Lake, Wisconsin: Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, v. 9, p. 871-855

 

I have peer reviewed for the following journals:

Applied Geochemistry

Ecotoxicology

Environmental Pollution

Environmental Science & Technology

Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta

Geophysical Research Letters

Hydrobiologia

Journal of Environmental Management

Journal of Paleolimnology

Science of the Total Environment

Water, Air, and Soil Pollution