On November 17th, UI senior science writer and archivist Connie Mutel and her husband, UI professor Robert Mutel, held a controlled burn of their oak woodlands near Iowa City. The fire lasted about three hours and was a success. Mrs. Mutel was kind enough to share photos of the event with the Iowa Environmental Focus.
Cornelia “Connie” Mutel is a senior science writer and archivist in Iowa’s Institute of Hydraulic Research. She has completed eight books, many of which focus on Iowa’s ecology. Connie and her husband, UI professor Robert Mutel, live on 18 acres of oak-hickory woodland near Iowa City. Within the next week they will perform a controlled burn on part of the oak woodland.
Connie spoke with Iowa Environmental Focus and discussed the history of Iowa’s ecology and the importance of controlled burns: Continue reading →
Along the way to Tuesday’s flood preparation seminar in Elkader, Sen. Joe Bolkcom, ecologist Connie Mutel, flood researcher Nathan Young, and Wayne Peterson of the Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship stopped by the former site of Lake Delhi to check out the destruction caused by this summer’s flooding.
IT’S EASY to sum up Connie Mutel’s complexity. Simply put, she’s a renaissance woman.
Tucked away in her office in the IIHR-Hydroscience & Engineering Institute’s archives, Mutel enjoys the hundreds of years of history and scientific research at her fingertips.
But she’s the antithesis of what one might expect from a historian and archivist. She does more than just preserve and organize documents in a stuffy room. Outside of her office, she engages with Iowa’s natural landscape and with her pen, campaigns vigorously, yet eloquently to help protect it.
An eternal liberal arts student, Mutel dons many figurative hats atop her shortly-cropped hair. Beyond her archival duties at the IIHR, she is also an ecologist and accomplished writer and editor.
Mutel has edited the soon to be released A Watershed Year: Anatomy of the Iowa Floods of 2008 – her twelfth book – a diverse collection of essays that scientifically dissect the Iowa floods of 2008. The compilation includes works from many of Mutel’s colleagues at IIHR.