Paleontology Division

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Gretchen Gürtler, M. S. student

Director, Mesalands Dinosaur Museum, Tucumcari, NM, 2011-present.

Master of Science student (Center for Advanced Studies), 2006-present, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas.

National Science Foundation Fellow, 2009-2011, Chemistry Department, Texas Tech University.

Master of Public Administration (Minor: Museum Science), 2002, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas. Membership Secretary, MOTTU Association, 1999-2002.




Gretchen Gürtler was involved with the Museum of Texas Tech working with Linda Mires and the Museum Association from 1998 until she graduated from Texas Tech in 2002. Then in 2003, her association with Bill Mueller introduced her to vertebrate paleontology and brought her back into the Museum. Since then she has been regularly doing fieldwork, specimen preparation, and now research. Working in the Paleontology Division lead to her being the Volunteer of the Year for the Museum in 2004 and 2008. She became so interested in vertebrate paleontology through her work that in the fall of 2006 she began working on a Masters degree in Museum Science by taking Dr. Sankar Chatterjee's Vertebrate Paleontology course. Gretchen not only enjoys fieldwork, she has an excellent eye for finding specimens. One of her recent discoveries was the skull and jaw of a phytosaur (Paleorhinhus). Gretchen is branching out on her own research as she is working on the phytosaur taxon, Paleorhinus (Parasuchus). Gretchen is now the Director of the Mesalands Dinosaur Museum in Tucumcari, New Mexico. She is currently still working on her thesis for her CFAS MS degree.




Gretchen Gürtler examining a fossil in the Sonsela member of the Chinle Formation at the type locality of Trilophosaurus dornorum in the Petrified Forest National Park. Gretchen Gürtler prospecting for fossils in the Niobrara Chalk in Kansas during the Second Mosasaur Conference field trip. Gretchen Gürtler with Bill Mueller at the opening of the new "Changing World" paleontology exhibit at the Museum of Texas Tech. Gretchen Gürtler with a Paleorhinus (phytosaur) skull she discovered at MOTT VPL 3869.



Publications

Mueller, Bill D., Sankar Chatterjee, William Cornell, David Watkins, and Gretchen Gürtler. 2008.  The first mosasaur (Reptilia: Squamata) from the Llano Estacado of Northwest Texas; pp. 115-122 in M. J. Everhart (ed.), Proceedings of the Second Mosasaur Meeting, Sternberg Museum of Natural History Special Issue 3, Fort Hays State University Sternberg, Museum of Natural History, Hays.

Presentations

Gretchen Gürtler and Bill Mueller. 2009. Primitive Phytosaurs from the Dockum Group of Garza County, Texas. Western Association of Vertebrate Paleontologists Annual Meeting, Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona. Poster.

Gretchen Gürtler and Bill Mueller. 2009. New Specimens of Parasuchids Discovered in Graza County, TX. 25th Annual All-University Conference on the Advancement of Women in Higher Education: "Innovation, Migration and Transference: Voices, Gender, and Expression in the Changing World", hosted by Department of Women's Studies, Texas Tech University.

Gretchen Gürtler and Bill Mueller. 2009. Primitive Phytosaurs from the Dockum Group of Garza County, Texas. Texas Tech University Graduate Student Poster Competition. Poster. (3rd)

Gretchen Gürtler and Bill Mueller. 2009. Basal Phytosaur Specimens from the Dockum Group of Garza County, Texas. Southeastern Association of Vertebrate Paleontologists Annual Meeting, Virginia Museum of Natural History, Martinsville, Virginia. Poster.

Awards

National Science Foundation. 2009-2011. Research Fellow.

MOTTU 2008 Volunteer of the Year (for her work in the Paleontology Division).

MOTTU 2004 Volunteer of the Year (for her work in the Paleontology Division).



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