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Who Is Dr. Wade Lehmann?

Wade Lehmann is an avid aquarist who began rearing fish as a hobby 30
years ago. His initial forays into maintaining simple glass tanks
with air stones eventually evolved into designing and maintaining
fully developed coral reef systems. Wade was instrumental in
developing the first significant website related to reef aquaria,, as well as in the development of Advanced Aquarist
e-magazine ( where he acted as a member of
the board for years. His interest in coral reef ecosystems led Wade
to become SCUBA certified in order to photograph and learn about whole
ecosystem function. Along the way, he bred seahorses and clownfish,
and initiated a state-wide group in North Carolina for trading coral

Wade’s education began with a bachelor’s degree from Clemson
University in microbiology with a minor in environmental science. He
then took a position with Texas A&M University’s Oceanography
Department as a technician where he studied oceanic free-living algal
population dynamics. Wade then went on to earn his PhD from NC State
University in Environmental Toxicology. He studied fish lesion risk
factors, specifically looking at algal interactions and hypoxic injury
and the toxicological response of freshwater bivalves to legacy

In his current position in the US Environmental Protection Agency’s
Office of Water, Wade is responsible for reviewing the science related
to toxic chemicals in our surface waters and designating levels that
are safe for aquatic life survival, growth, and reproduction. His
primary foci are endangered species protection and conducting
ecological risk assessments.
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