Alumni Profile: Allen Tsao MEM ’97

Name: “Allen” C.L. Tsao
Duke Degree: M.E.M. in Environmental Chemistry, Toxicology, and Risk Assessment, 1997
Title/Org: Associate Toxicologist, California Department of Fish and Wildlife

Professional Bio:

“Allen” C.L. Tsao is an Associate Toxicologist for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. He provides technical review and support for contaminant issues pertaining to hazardous waste site investigation and cleanup at Department of Defense facilities in California. He is responsible for providing toxicological expertise and cleanup recommendations to the Department and other lead state agencies. He communicates Department positions and policies, and perform analyses on ecological receptors vulnerable to hazardous substances.

Before joining the State Fish and Wildlife in 2008, he lead risk assessment projects for both the federal government and industry at CH2M HILL (now Jacobs). He has conducted research to improve applications of methods for evaluating toxicity of chemicals to the environment.  As a federal scientist prior to CH2M HILL, he developed toxicological benchmarks for protection of aquatic organisms. These benchmarks are now widely accepted by the regulatory and the regulated communities as screening-level benchmarks.  In addition, he has conducted site-specific screening and baseline assessments of ecological risks, including interpreting results and providing recommendations for risk management decisions.


Master of Environmental Management, 1997.
Concentration: Environmental Chemistry, Toxicology, and Risk Assessment
Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University, Durham, NC.

Bachelor of Arts, 1994.
Major: Chemistry
Knox College, Galesburg, IL.


Associate Toxicologist, California Department of Fish & Wildlife, 2008 – Present

Project Scientist, CH2M HILL, Inc., Sacramento, CA 2005 – 2008

Associate Scientist, CH2M HILL, Inc., Sacramento, CA 2003 – 2005

Assistant Environmental Toxicologist, Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, IL 2000 – 2003

Pre-Doctoral Fellow, Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, IL 1999 – 2000

Environmental Scientist, Research Triangle Institute, RTP, NC. 1997 – 1998

Research Fellow, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN  1995 – 1996


Professional Memberships and Networks:

  • Northern California Regional Chapter of the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (NorCal SETAC) – Board Member Emeritus
  • Toastmasters International

Contact Me About:

  • Ecological Risk Assessment for Superfund
  • Superfund Investigation/Cleanup/Closeout Process


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