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Leah Gibbons

Leah Gibbons

PhD Student, Sustainability, School of Sustainability

School of Sustainability
Arizona State University
PO Box 875502
Tempe, AZ 85287-5502


  • PhD Student, Sustainability, School of Sustainability


Leah has worked in the fields of sustainability consulting, green and natural building, restoration ecology, invasion biology, and holistic health coaching. She has started, developed, and run several businesses. She is currently a board member of EcoHeal, whose mission is to make natural, sustainable building cost competitive with conventional building and to show that it is healing for the environment and for people. She is also in the process of developing an ecological, sustainable community in Chapel Hill, NC.

Leah's research involves examining how socio-ecological systems can be designed, planned, and developed to be sustainable and what techniques and processes work best on which scales. She is especially interested in quantifying sustainability, ecological functioning, and ecosystem and human health in human settlements intentionally designed and built using explicitly socio-ecological principles and techniques.

Teaching Assistant Experience

  • Biology
  • Ecology

Research Assistant Experience

  • Molecular Biology - DNA isolation and sequencing
  • Community Ecology - nutrient cycling and food web relationships
  • Conservation Biology - habitat conservation plan creation


  • MS, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Tennessee, 2002
  • BS, Biology and Anthropology, Vanderbilt University, 1998
  • Prescribed Burn Certificate
  • Certified Holistic Health Coach, Institute for Integrative Nutrition
  • Wetland Delineation Certificate


External Links

Journal Articles


Gibbons, L. V. and D. Simberloff. 2005. Interaction of hybrid imported fire ants (Solenopsis invicta X S. richteri with native ants at baits in southeastern Tennessee. Southwestern Naturalist 4(2):303-320. (link )


Simberloff, D. and L. V. Gibbons. 2004. Now you see them, now you don't! Population crashes of established introduced species. Biological Invasions 6(2):161-172. DOI: 10.1023/B:BINV.0000022133.49752.46. (link )



Gibbons, L. V. 1997. Fluctuating asymmetry in scorpions on desert islands as an indicator of environmental stress. Poster presented at the Undergraduate Research Presentations, September 1997, Vanderbilt University.

Conference Papers


Gibbons, L. V. 2001. Quantitative assessment of interference and exploitative competition between native ants and invasive fire ants. Pp. 38-49 Proceedings of the 2001 Annual Imported Fire Ant Research Conference. 2001 Annual Imported Fire Ant Research Conference. San Antonio, Texas.

Thesis (Masters)


Gibbons, L. V. 2002. Assessment of competition between hybrid imported fire ants, Solenopsis invicta X S. richteri, and native ants in southeastern Tennessee. MS. University of Tennessee.

Graduate Fellowship, Arizona State University

Graduate Research Grant, University of Tennessee

Undergraduate Research Grant, Vanderbilt University