Science Advisory Board


John H. Sohl, III
John H. Sohl, III, the Co-founder of COLUMBIA Technologies.  He brings to his roles of President and CEO 35 years of experience directing the development of innovative business solutions fusing science and technology to advance the state of environmental services. At COLUMBIA, John is responsible for the overall direction of corporate activities, the quality of the company’s field services and business development. John is also co-founder of the award-winning SmartData Solutions® real-time data services platform and has played an integral role in providing clients with real-time decision-making information. A former officer in the U.S. Navy nuclear submarine force, retiring with a rank of Commander, Mr. Sohl holds a B.S. in engineering from the United States Naval Academy and an M.B.A from Chaminade University.   John is a member of the Small Environmental Business Action Coalition, the Sustainable Remediation Forum, the Society of American Military Engineers, and the National Ground Water Association



Dr. W. Richard Laton
Dr. W. Richard Laton is a Professor of Geology at the California State University in Fullerton, CA.  He is an expert in the field of hydrology/hydrogeology, in a career that includes teaching, consulting, litigation support and management experience in water quality, environmental sampling, groundwater modeling, well hydraulics, G.I.S. /remote sensing and environmental geology.  Overall, he has a primary interest in integrating hydrogeology with a multi-faceted systems approach to solving applied field problems.  Richard is also a consultant for a variety of companies and agencies, through Earth Forensics, Inc., as its Founder and President.  Richard is a Professional Geologist (P.G.) in numerous States with an emphasis on CA, OR, WA, AZ, IN, MN, IL TX, FL and an AIPG Certified Geologist.  Among his many honors, he was the 2009 McEllihiney Lecturer for the National Groundwater Association (NGWA) and the Co-Chair of its  Groundwater Summit in 2006.  Dr. Laton received his Ph.D. Hydrogeology from Western Michigan University.

Dr. Charles (Chuck) J. Newell
Dr. Charles (Chuck) J. Newell is a Co-Founder and Principal Engineer with GSI Environmental Inc. with more than 30 years of experience as an environmental consultant. He is a member of the American Academy of Environmental Engineers, a NGWA Certified Groundwater Professional, and an Adjunct Professor at Rice University. He has served as a Principal or Co‐Principal Investigator for numerous environmental research and development projects for the DOD, DOE, USEPA, the American Petroleum Institute, and numerous industrial clients. Dr. Newell has been awarded the Hanson Excellence of Presentation Award by the American Association of Petroleum Geologists, the Outstanding Presentation Award by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, the 2001 Wesley W. Horner Award by the American Society of Civil Engineers, the 2008 Outstanding Alumni Award from Rice University, the Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) 2014 Project of the Year and the 2020 Lifetime Achievement Award by the Association for Environmental Health and Sciences.

John Simon
John Simon, is a Senior Vice President at Nathan, Inc., founded in 1946, and is a private international economic and analytics consulting firm that works with government and commercial clients internationally.  He has more than 30 years of broad-based experience in assessing, managing, and mitigating issues associated with hazardous sites. John is responsible for directing environmental projects throughout the U.S., with expertise in remediation, due diligence, environmental insurance, liability risk transfer, and environmental management.  He has evaluated and conducted thousands of remediation projects and serves as Editor-in-Chief of the Remediation Journal since 1996.  Mr. Simon previously served 22 years as Executive V.P. at WSP Environment & Energy. John is a leader in ASTM Greener Cleanup Standards and the President Emeritus of Sustainable Remediation Forum.  He received a B.S. in Civil Engineering from Vanderbilt University and a M.S. in Environmental Engineering from Stanford University.

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