Dr. John Jacob is the director of the Texas Coastal Watershed Program, and Professor and Extension Specialist with a joint appointment with the Texas A&M Sea Grant Program and the Texas AgriLife Extension Service through the Department of Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Science. His current project, Coastal CHARM (Community Health and Resource Management), focuses on enabling coastal communities in Texas to improve quality of life in cities and towns while preserving and enhancing the natural coastal environment.
Jacob holds B.S. and M.S. degrees from Texas Tech University, and a Ph.D. from Texas A&M University, all in soils and natural resources. He is registered as a Professional Geoscientist with the State of Texas and is a Professional Wetland Scientist.
Jacob is a recognized expert on Texas wetlands, having been active in consulting and research aspects of wetlands for more than 20 years. Jacob is co-author of the Texas Coastal Wetland guidebook, as well as the Texas Sea Grant Resilient Coast series on the built environment and wetlands.
The Texas Coastal Watershed Program provides education and outreach to local governments and citizens about the impact of land use on watershed health and water quality. The TCWP currently has 7 staff members with programs in sustainable urban planning, watershed management, habitat restoration, sustainable landscapes, and water quality issues.
Past projects include the development of the “Eco-Logic” Habitat map of the 8-county Houston region. Jacob was a lead participant in one of the first published research projects following the Supreme Court Rapanos decision addressing the issue of the hydrologic (and therefore regulatory) significance of a large class of wetlands on the Upper Gulf Coast of Texas. Most recently, he and his staff developed the CHARM model, a GIS-based user-friendly model that enables users to develop growth scenarios and to see in real time the effects of their choices in terms of ecosystem services, for example. Part of this project involved perfecting the “weTable”, an innovative high-tech, low-cost participatory GIS platform.