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Ron Counts

Title: Geomorphologist, Geologic Mapping Sectionron count picture

Kentucky Geological Survey
Western Kentucky Office
1401 Corporate Court
Henderson, KY 42420

Office 270.827.3414 ext. 27,
Sediment Lab 270.827.3414 ext. 57
Fax: 270.827.1117


Conduct externally funded research
Director of the KGS Sediment and Core Analysis Lab in Henderson, KY
Direct operations of the KGS Giddings Soil Probe and Drill
Oversight of the KGS Statemap program in western Kentucky

Primary Research Interests

My current research is focused on understanding landscape responses to neotectonic deformation and Quaternary climate change. This requires geologic and geomorphic field mapping of glacial and proglacial landscapes, the study of loess-paleosol successions, GIS analyses and remote sensing of drainage basins, developing river terraces chronologies using OSL dating methods, and the comprehensive analyses of sediment cores. I direct the KGS sediment coring program and the KGS Sediment and Core Analysis Lab.

Professional Preparation

University of Cincinnati      2007-present, PhD (ABD) in Geology, Advisor: Dr. Lewis Owen
Completion: August 2012
Utah State University  2005, M.S. in Geology, Advisor: Dr. Joel Pederson
Logan, UT  84322     
Indiana University   1999, Geologic Field Camp, Cardwell, MT
Bloomington, IN 47405  
University of Southern Indiana    1999, B.S. in Geology, Environmental Science minor
Evansville, IN  47712  

Appointments and Professional Experience

2003-present Geomorphologist, Kentucky Geological Survey (University of Kentucky)
2007-present Adjunct Faculty, University of Southern Indiana
Courses Earth System Science (GEOG 112) and Environmental Geology (GEOL 131)
2001-2002 Teaching/Research Assistant, Utah State University
1999-2001 Geologic Technician (hydrogeology), Kentucky Geological Survey

Grants and Awards

2010-2011 USGS NEHRP G11AP20012   “Determining the Deformation History of a Newly Discovered Holocene Fault in the Wabash Valley Seismic Zone, Western Kentucky: Collaborative Research between the Kentucky Geological Survey and the University of Cincinnati. PI: Ron Counts. Total $90,669
$57,623 to KGS
2012-2013 U.S.G.S. NEHRP 2011-0061  

Paleoseismic Investigation of the Meadow Bank Lineament in the Wabash Valley Seismic Zone: Collaborative research between the University of Illinois and the University of Kentucky. PI: Ron Counts

total $75,965
$69,965 to KGS
2011-2014 Nuclear Regulatory Commission: NRC-HQ-11-G-04-0085  

Collaborative research project to address large earthquake seismology in the East Tennessee seismic zone. PI: Robert D Hatcher, Jr; Co-PIs: Stephen Obermeier, James Vaughn, Randy Cox, Richard Harrison, and Ron Counts

Total $454,706
$46,504 to Counts

NSF Proposal EAR-1226229- Collaborative Research: Late Pleistocene chronostratigraphy and paleoenvironment of Big Bone Lick, Kentucky: Implications for megafauna extinctions. PI Kenneth Tankersley, co-PIs Ronald Counts, Brooke Crowley, Aaron Diefendorf, Warren Huff, Barry Maynard, Lewis Owen, and Glenn Storrs total $253,672 ($48,560 to KGS).

2007-2009 University of Cincinnati   University Graduate Scholarship $56,554
2009-2011 University of Cincinnati   Graduate Research Assistantship $12,782
2002-2003 Geological Society of America   Graduate research grant $2,800


Recent Publications (past 2 years):

in prep


technical reports



Professional Organizations