As Senior Scientist at BRS, Gerard McKenna provides technical assistance to communities. This includes organizing and facilitating group meetings aimed at improving environmental health and economic development. He has been involved in more than 100 such workshops during the course of his career in addition to authoring numerous publications and providing technical expert testimony.
Mr. McKenna has nearly 50 years of experience in the environmental and health fields. Mr. McKenna began his career as an agricultural chemist with the US Food and Drug Administration. He next joined the US Department of Interior Water Quality Administration, which was later integrated into the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), working in environmental chemistry and as a technical instructor. While at USEPA, he eventually managed Region 2’s laboratory and quality assurance activities until his retirement in 1993. Mr. McKenna then joined the Northeast Hazardous Substance Research Center, a seven-university consortium based at New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT), as co-director in the area of technology training and community outreach. In this role, he assisted with the development of the USEPA’s Brownfields Program. He concurrently led the Site Assessment and Remediation Division of the Industry/ National Science Foundation Research Center at NJIT and co-directed the Sediment Dredged Material Research Center based at Stevens Institute of Technology. Mr. McKenna has been the recipient of several noteworthy awards, including USEPA Quality Manager of the Year and the federal Points of Light Award for Community Volunteerism.
Mr. McKenna holds a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from St. John’s University in Queens, New York and also attended a graduate program in teaching at Long Island University. Apart from his professional career, Mr. McKenna spends considerable time in community activities, including serving on several area Science Advisory Boards and working extensively with organic farming and food distribution.