Donal is a climber, cook, friend, dog-uncle, NSF graduate research fellow, and PhD student at the University of Maryland - College Park. His research interests include remote sensing of natural resources, computer automation of geoprocessing tasks, and modeling of ecosystem dynamics and carbon cycling. When he isn't working on his dissertation he is probably thinking about his dissertation, or maybe playing in the woods.

More information about Donal can be found on his website:


G. Hurtt, M. Zhao, R. Sahajpal, A. Armstrong, R. Birdsey, E. Campbell, K. Dolan, R. Dubayah, J. Fisk, S. Flanagan, C. Huang, W. Huang, K. Johnson, R. Lamb, L. Ma, R. Marks, D. O’Leary III, J. O’Neil-Dunne, A. Swatantran, H. Tang. 2018 “Beyond MRV: High-resolution forest carbon modeling for climate mitigation planning over MD, USA” Environmental Research Letters

Notaro, M., Emmett, K., and O’Leary, D. (2019). Spatio-Temporal Variability in Remotely Sensed Vegetation Greenness Across Yellowstone National Park. Remote Sensing 11, 798. https://doi:10.3390/rs11070798

O’Leary, Donal III; Hall, Dorothy; Medler, Michael; Flower, Aquila. 2018. “Investigating The Early Snowmelt Event of 2015 in the Cascade Mountains Using The MODIS-Based Snowmelt Timing Product.” Frontiers of Earth Science

O’Leary, D., Bloom, T., Smith, J., Zempf, C. and Medler, M. J.: A new method comparing snowmelt timing with annual area burned, Fire Ecol., 12(1), 41–51, doi:10.4996/fireecology.1201041, 2016.

O’Leary, D. S., Kellermann, J. L. and Wayne, C.: Snowmelt timing, phenology, and growing season length in conifer forests of Crater Lake National Park, USA, Int. J. Biometeorol., 1–13, doi:10.1007/s00484-017-1449-3, 2017a.

O’Leary, D. S., Hall, D. K., Medler, M. J., Matthews, R. A. and Flower, A.: Snowmelt Timing Maps Derived from MODIS for North America, 2001-2015, Oak Ridge Natl. Lab., doi:, 2017b.

Areas of Interest

  • Remote Sensing
  • GIS
  • Snow
  • Snowmelt Timing
  • Wildfire
  • Modeling
  • Computer Languages
  • Mountain Ecosystems
  • Latin America


  • Degree Type
    Degree Details
    Geography - Western Washington University
  • Degree Type
    Degree Details
    Watershed Science (Minor in Geospatial Information Management) - Colorado State University


  • Graduate Research Fellowship - National Science Foundation
  • Microsoft AI for Earth grant
  • 2019-03-10
    Wylie Dissertation Fellowship - UMD Graduate School
  • Outstanding Student Paper Award - AGU Fall 2017
  • Outstanding Graduate, Geography Department - Western Washington University
  • Young Leaders in Climate Change Fellow - National Park Service
  • Magna Cum Laude - Colorado State Univeristy
  • Outstanding Staff Member in Support of the Volunteer Office - Rocky Mountain National Park
  • Dave Cole Scholarship - Big Thompson Watershed Forum
  • Physics All American - American Physical Society
  • Michigan Math Prize - Mathematical Association of America


  • American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting
  • George Wright Society
  • Association for Fire Ecology Congress
  • Mountain Climate (MtnClim) Conference, Gothic Colorado


  • Ecological Dynamics
  • Carbon
  • Computer Modeling
  • Snow
Geekin' out over the aspen leaves (Populus tremuloides)
donal [at]