Lawrence (Larry) Curtis earned a B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Biology at the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Alabama. In 1980, he received a Ph.D. in Pharmacology from the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, Mississippi.
In 1980, Larry joined Oregon State University (OSU) as an assistant professor in the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife. There he led a research group focused on environmental toxicology at the Oak Creek Laboratory of Biology until 1995. Larry received multiple grants from National Institutes of Health (NIH), United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), and industry during those years. He mentored 16 graduate students and two post-doctoral fellows over that time. Much of his research focused on transport, fate, and effects of persistent organic pollutants in aquatic ecosystems. Larry participated in the first class of the State Agricultural Experiment Station Leadership Development course during 1991-1992.
Larry moved to East Tennessee State University in 1995 and chaired the Department of Environmental Health. He was also an Adjunct Professor of Pharmacology in the Quillen College of Medicine where he continued his NIH-funded research on persistent organic pollutants and mentored five graduate students. He also participated as a co-investigator on a major grant from the Kellogg Foundation. The goal of that project was facilitation of team building between physicians, nurse practitioners and environmental health professionals.
In 1999, Larry returned to OSU as a professor and department head in the Department of Environmental and Molecular Toxicology. He continued his research, classroom teaching, and mentoring of graduate students. Larry led a major water quality study on the Willamette River from 2002-2004 that received the 2005 OSU Oldfield/Jackman Team Award.
Larry served as the Associate Dean in the OSU College of Agricultural Sciences (CAS) from 2006-2016. His primary responsibility was to be liaison between CAS administration and its department heads and branch station superintendents.
After two years in retirement he returned to EMT to serve as Interim Department Head during 2019.
Larry enjoys fishing, golf and travel with his wife Shelley. He and Shelley especially enjoy time with their son Aaron, his wife Cara, and their grandchildren Ella and Ben who reside in Lake Oswego. Larry and Shelley winter in their second home in Banning, California, just west of Palm Springs.