Matthew A Thomas


I am an early career quantitative geoscientist excited to work on societally relevant earth science and engineering problems. My undergraduate work at UCLA (geology) and consulting experience in the San Francisco Bay Area (soils engineering) initially piqued my interest in geotechnics. Following this work, I enrolled as a MS and PhD candidate at Stanford, with a coursework focus in environmental fluid mechanics and research focus in hydrologically driven landsliding. My graduate work facilitated skillsets in numerical modeling, scientific programming, and geospatial analyses. After graduate school, I served as a hydrology team lead at Sandia National Laboratories where I maintained physics-based subsurface flow and solute transport codes to inform environmental regulation and led research to elucidate the impact of unconventional hydrocarbon exploration on groundwater resources in the vicinity of a radioactive waste facility. I have also pursued applied geomorphology problems, using ground survey methods, remotely-sensed observations, and continuum mechanics simulation to evaluate coastal hazards in temperate and arctic climate zones. Presently, I combine my expertise in hydrology and geology as a Mendenhall Fellow at the U.S. Geological Survey. My research contributes to rainfall-induced landslide and post-wildfire debris flow hazard warning products designed to reduce loss of life and property.



2017 - Present    Research Hydrologist (Mendenhall), U.S. Geological Survey, Golden, CO

2015 - 2017         R&D Geosciences Engineer, Sandia National Laboratories, Carlsbad, NM

2014 - 2015         Postdoctoral Researcher, Stanford University, Stanford, CA   

2014                    Fluvial Geomorphology Intern, U.S. National Park Service, Ashford, WA

2009 - 2014         Graduate Student Researcher, Stanford University, Stanford, CA

2008 - 2009         Staff Geologist, Cornerstone Earth Group, Sunnyvale, CA

2006 - 2007         Soils Laboratory Intern, Ralph Stone & Company, Inc., Los Angeles, CA

2006                    Soils Field Intern, Lowney Associates, Mountain View, CA

2005                    Soils Laboratory Intern, Lowney Associates, Mountain View, CA



2009 - 2014        PhD in Hydrogeology, Stanford University

2013 - 2014        MS in Civil and Environmental Engineering, Stanford University

2004 - 2008        BS in Geology, University of California Los Angeles