Dr. Gary Michelfelder


Schl of Earth Enviro and Sustain

Role: Faculty
Campus: Springfield

Postal mail

Missouri State University
Schl of Earth Enviro and Sustain
901 S. National Ave.
Springfield, MO 65897


Dr. Gary Michelfelder is a Roy Blunt Life Science Professor in the School of Earth, Environment and Sustainability with a specialty in Igneous Isotope Geochemist and Volcanology. He has been with Missouri State University since 2023. Michelfelder earned his Ph.D. in Earth Sciences in 2015 from Montana State University. His primary research focus centers on the behavior and accumulation of magma in and on the Earth's crust as deduced from field relationships and the chemical analysis of rocks and minerals. Him and his students seek to understand these systems in terms of the origin, evolution, and timescales of magmas in crustal reservoirs. Additionally, this allows for study of the behavior of the magma during volcanic eruptions, and implications for tectonic processes and volcanic hazards. He has published 17 articles in peer reviewed journals and presented over 90 professional conference presentations. He has received grant funding from Missouri State University, the National Science Foundation, NASA, and the Department of Energy. These projects have taken him all over the world studying volcanoes including Chile, Bolivia, Japan, the Azores Islands, and New Mexico and Alaska in the United States.



  • PhD, Earth Science, 2015, Montana State University- Bozeman
  • MS, Geology (Igneous Petrology), 2009, New Mexico State University- Las Cruces
  • BS, Geology, 2007, Eastern Michigan University- Ypsilanti


  • GLG 332 Mineralogy with Lab
  • GLG 333 Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology with lab
  • GLG 355 Volcanology
  • GLG 360 Directed Field Trips
  • GLG 597 Field Volcanology of the Central Andes, Chile
  • GLG 715 Isotope Geochemistry
  • GEO 700 Intro to Graduate Study
  • Graduate Student Thesis Mentoring

Professional experience

Professional Service

  • Associate Editor Bulletin of the Geologic Society of America (2024-2026)
  • American Geophyisical Union College of Fellows Mentor (2024)

Professional Experience

  • Commissioned Officer (Engineer), U.S Army and Army National Guard (2000-2021)
  • Environmental Geologist (2006-2008)

Professional Affiliations

  • International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth's Interior
  • American Geophysical Union
  • Geological Society of America
  • Mineralogical Society of America
  • New Mexico Geological Society
  • International Association of GeoAnalysts
  • Society of Economic Geologists
  • Tobacco Root Geological Society

Selected Publications

  • Aguilera, F.; Grosse, P.; Guzman, S.; Michelfelder, G.S.; and Taussi, M., 2023, Editorial: Volcanism in the Central Volcanic Zone of the Andes: Frontiers in Earth Science, v. 11, paper 1130976. doi: 10.3389/feart.2023.1130976
  • Michelfelder, G.S., 2021, Petrology and volcanology of the Mesoproterozoic igneous rocks of the Saint Francois Mountains Terrane, southeast Missouri, USA, in Florsheim, J., Koeberl, C., McKay, M.P., and Riggs, N., eds., Field Excursions from the 2021 GSA Section Meetings: Geological Society of America Field Guide 61, p. 253–289, https://doi.org/10.1130/2021.0061(11).
  • Michelfelder, G.S., Horkley, L.K., Reinier, C.* and Hudson, S.R*, 2021, Variation in Olivine Trace Element Contents Reveal the Signature of Deep Mantle Melting During the Eruption of the McCartys Flow, Zuni-Bandera Volcanic Field, New Mexico, in: Frey, B.A.; Kelley, S.A.; Zeigler, K.E.; McLemore, V.T.; Goff, F.; Ulmer-Scholle, D.S., eds., New Mexico Geological Society 72nd Annual Fall Field Conference Guidebook: Geology of the Mount Taylor area,, p. 141-152. https://doi.org/10.56577/FFC-71.141
  • Rentz, S.P., Michelfelder, G., Coble, M.A., and Salings, E., 2019, U-Pb zircon geochronology of calc-alkaline ash flow tuff units in the Mogollon Datil Volcanic Field, southern New Mexico: Geological Society of America Special Paper 528, p. 409–434. doi.org/10.1130/2018.2538(19)
  • Hoffman, M.* and Michelfelder, G.S., 2018, Andesite hybridization of the Mogollon Datil volcanic Field: Insights from oxygen isotope values from the Uvas Volcanic Field and the Rubio Peak Formation: New Mexico Geological Society Guidebook: Las Cruces Country III, vol. 69, Mack, G.H.; Hampton, B.A.; Ramos, F.C.; Witcher, J.C.; and Ulmer-Scholle, D.S. (eds.), p 189-196. https://doi.org/10.56577/FFC-69.189

Research and professional interests

  • Igneous trace element and isotope geochemistry
  • Volcanology
  • Mineral chemistry
  • Mass Spectrometry
  • Magma storage and accumulation processes
  • Magma timescales of large volcanic systems
  • Tectono-magmatic evolution of continental crust

Awards and honors

  • Roy Blunt Life Sciences Endowed Professorship, Missouri State University (2023-2026)
  • Faculty Excellence in Research Award, College of Natural and Applied Sciences, Missouri State University, April 2016
  • Faculty Excellence in Research Award, College of Natural and Applied Sciences, Missouri State University, April 2021

Additional resources