Robert M. Sullivan
Section of Paleontology and Geology
The State Museum of Pennsylvania
300 North Street
Harrisburg, PA 17102-0024

Robert Sullivan received his B.A. in Geology from the University of New Mexico in 1973, followed by a year of post-baccalaureate study at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1974, received a M.S. in Vertebrate Paleontology from San Diego State University in 1978, and a Ph.D. in Geology from Michigan State University in 1980. His research interests are in the broad field of paleoherpetology, focusing on the lower vertebrates (turtles, lizards and crocodylians) and dinosaurs, Late Cretaceous vertebrate biochronology, as well as the controversial topic of dinosaur extinction.

Since 1979 Robert has been actively pursuing fieldwork in San Juan Basin, New Mexico, collecting non-mammalian vertebrates from the Fruitland, Kirtland and Nacimiento formations. He received a NSF grant (BSR-8407342) for his project "Revision of the Puerco Fauna. Part 1: The Lower Vertebrate Microfauna" in August 1984. In 1995, he turned his attention to the Kirtland and Ojo Alamo formations, to actively resample the dinosaurs and other fossil vertebrates of the De-na-zin and Naashoibito members, respectively. Some of his more noteworthy discoveries include a new specimen of the rare lambeosaurine dinosaur Parasaurolophus tubicen (the second and most complete specimen known of the genus) and a new ankylosaurid dinosaur Nodocephalosaurus kirtlandensis, which he named in 1999. In 2003, he and colleague Spencer G. Lucas, defined the “Kirtlandian” a new land-vertebrate age for the Late Cretaceous of western North America. In recent years he has become the leading authority on pachycephalosaurids dinosaurs and has published a number of papers on these enigmatic ornithischians.

He has taught numerous college level geology and paleontology courses and has extensive museum experience. Presently, he is in his 17th year as Senior Curator of Paleontology and Geology at The State Museum of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg.

Photo: Robert M. Sullivan with a partially exposed femur of the Late Cretaceous sauropod Alamosaurus sanjuanensis in the Naashoibito Member (Ojo Alamo Formation) near Barrel Springs, San Juan Basin, New Mexico.