Robert Bode

Assistant Professor, Biology

Fields: Evolution, Botany, and Terrestrial Ecology
B.S., Hope College; Ph.D., Cornell University

Old Main 405
5000 Abbey Way SE
Lacey, WA 98503


"Professors cannot teach what students will not learn, and students will not learn what they do not enjoy. Thus, it is my goal to teach you to enjoy biology, then you will learn it."

My family moved to the Pacific Northwest from New York in 1997. In complete disregard of the natural beauty around me, I headed back east for my education. I got my B.S. in biology from Hope College in Holland, Michigan, then traveled to Ithaca, New York to get a Ph.D. at Cornell University. I then took a job as a teaching post-doc at Canisius College in Buffalo, New York. I finished two years of teaching and research and took a one-year sabbatical replacement position at Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington. Having thoroughly explored the east and mid-west, I then, in 2014, accepted a position here at Saint Martin's, once again surrounded by natural beauty and biology.

Select publications:

  • Bode, RF. and Tong, R. Pollinators Exert Positive Selection on Flower Size on Urban, but not Rural Scotch broom (Cytisus scoparius L. Link). In Review
  • Porter, RS. And Bode, RF. Anti-Influenza Properties of Black Elder (Sambucus nigra L.). In Review
  • Bode, R.F. and Kessler, A. (2012) Herbivore Pressure on Goldenrod (Solidago altissima): its Effects on Herbivore Resistance and Plant Vigor. Journal of Ecology, 100:795-801.
  • Bode, R.F., Halitschke, R. and Kessler, A. (2013) Herbivore Damage-induced Production and Specific Anti-digestive Function of Serine and Cysteine Protease Inhibitors in Tall Goldenrod, Solidago altissima L. (Asteraceae). Planta, 237(5): 1287-1296.
  • Bode, R.F. and Maciejewski, A. (2014) Herbivore Biodiversity Varies with Patch Size in an Urban Archipelago. International Journal of Insect Science, 2014:6
  • Bode, R.F., Tripi, J. and Heath, J. Goldenrod Guidebook. Self-published and distributed within ecological community.
  • Bode, R.F. and Gilbert, A. B. 2016. Seed Predators, not Herbivores, exert Natural Selection on Solidago spp. in an Urban Archipelago. Environ Entomol. 45(1): 150-154
  • Bode, RF. and Tong, R. In Prep. Pollinators Exert Positive Selection on Flower Size on Urban, but not Rural Scotch broom (Cytisus scoparius L. Link)


I am currently raising two healthy, energetic boys. One is five years old, the other is two-and-a-half. Besides that, various teaching and cooking awards and race medals pale in comparison.

Areas of interest:

Hiking (for science and pleasure), fishing, cooking, reading, running, and spending time with my children.