Lake George
Darrin Fresh Water Institute,
5060 Lake Shore Drive
Bolton Landing, NY 12814

PH: (518) 644-3541
Fax:(518) 644-3640

Faculty and Staff

charles boylenDr. Charles W. Boylen

Professor of Biology-RPI

Formerly the Associate Director of DFWI, Dr. Boylen now serves as Professor of Biology at RPI. Dr. Boylen is internationally known for his New York State limnology research, particularly in the Adirondacks and Lake George.  Dr. Boylen’s research has been federally funded by National Science Foundation, Environmental Protection Agency, and the National Institute of Health, as well as state and local agencies.  He is the author and co-author of more than 100 articles published chuck boylenin highly ranked academic journals and has supervised more than 40 graduate student theses. 

Dr. Boylen received a B.A. in Microbiology from Indiana University and a Ph.D. in Microbiology from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and was a National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellow at the NASA-Ames Research Center. He has been at RPI since 1972, Director of the DFWI 1983-1993 and Associate Director 1993-2014.

Dr. Boylen is actively involved with a number of environmentally focused organizations which include the Hudson River Environmental Society, Fund for Lake George, and the Lake George Watershed Coalition. Since the 1970’s he has maintained an active limnological research program on Lake George and numerous freshwater systems in NY and the Adirondacks. His research results have been applied to community and policy issues relating the impact of human activities on water quality, particularly how watershed practices negatively impact stormwater runoff. Dr. Boylen served as a Co-PI for the Adirondack Effects Assessment Program (EPA funded 1994-2006), and currently serves on the New York State Invasive Species Advisory Committee, a NYSERDA funded program of which he also serves as a Co-PI.

Research Interests:

Basic and applied studies of invasive aquatic species (Eurasian watermilfoil). Numerous aquatic plant species are invasive to lakes and ponds in NYS. The most pervasive is the Eurasian watermilfoil which has significant economic and ecological impacts within the state. Dr. Boylen began an extensive research program on aquatic vegetation in Adirondack lakes in 1973 and became involved in exotic, non-native aquatic vegetation in the Adirondacks in 1987 when Eurasian watermilfoil was discovered in Lake George. Much of his research efforts have been two pronged, conduct sound scientific research with research scientists while teaching graduate students and expanding the knowledge of postdoctoral associates at the DFWI.

chuck boylenWater resource management and environmental remote sensing. In collaboration with Dr. Nierzwicki-Bauer, we are using a combination of traditional and advanced techniques to study human impacts on water resources. Among the approaches that we are utilizing include automated water chemistry profiling systems, side-scan sonar, satellite remote sensing, and hydroacoustics.

Recovery of Adirondack lakes from acidification. Lakes in the Adirondack Mountains of New York are among the most affected by anthropogenic acid deposition in the US. Dr. Boylen has studied Adirondack lake systems since the early 1970s. In recent studies, Dr. Boylen, Dr. Nierzwicki-Bauer and their collaborators have reported initial chemical recovery of acidified lakes as evidenced by decreased sulfate concentration and increased pH and acid neutralizing capacity.  Since 1994 our studies have comprehensively characterized food web community structure (bacteria, phytoplankton, zooplankton, macrophytes and fish) in individual acid impacted lakes; therefore, assessing biological community structure in chemically diverse Adirondack Lakes in a region impacted by acidification. 


Contact Information

Dr. Charles W. Boylen

Darrin Fresh Water Institute
MRC 201
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
110 8th Street
Troy, NY 12180
Ph: (518) 276-8430
Fax: (518) 276-2696

Lake George:
Darrin Fresh Water Institute
5060 Lake Shore Drive
Bolton Landing, NY 12814
Ph: (518) 644-3541              

Fax: (518) 644-3640
Email Dr. Boylen


Back to Faculty and Staff




DFWI Home | Research | Facilities | Outreach & Education | Publications

Copyright ©2011 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)  110 Eighth Street, Troy, NY USA 12180  (518) 276-6000