M. Robinson Cecil

Department of Geological Sciences

18111 Nordhoff St.

Northridge, CA 91330-8266

(818) 677 – 7009




Ph.D., University of Arizona, Tucson AZ, 2009

M.S., University of Arizona, Tucson AZ, 2004

B.A., Vanderbilt University, Nashville TN, 2000



2017 - present  Associate Professor, California State University Northridge. Northridge, CA

2011 - 2017       Assistant Professor, California State University Northridge. Northridge, CA

2010 – 2011       Postdoctoral Scholar, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena CA

2009 – 2010       Postdoctoral Scholar, University of Arizona, Tucson AZ

2002 – 2009       Teaching Assistant, Dept. of Geosciences

2006                   Earth Science Intern (3 months) at Chevron, Houston TX

2005                   Earth Science Intern (3 months) at Chevron, Bakersfield CA

2000 – 2001       Instructor, Outdoor Environmental Education and Leadership School

                            George Williams College, Williams Bay WI



2017 - 2020       NSF-EAR Instrumentation and Facilities. Acquisition of a new laser ablation system for a high resolution ICPMS

                            facility. Co-PI: Joshua Schwartz (CSUN).

2014 - 2017       NSF-EAR Tectonics. RUI:Collaborative Research: Evaluating the influence of crustal deformation on episodic                                   magmatism: southern Coast Mountains batholith, British Columbia. Co-PIs: Margaret Rusmore (Occidental                                         College), George Gehrels (University of Arizona), and Harold Stowell (University of Alabama).

2013 - 2016       NSF-EAR Tectonics. Collaborative Research: Elucidating the geologic record of Late Paleozoic subduction                                         initiation along the southwestern margin of Laurentia, southern California and Sonora, Mexico. Co-PIs: Kathie                                   Marsaglia (CSUN) and Nancy Riggs (Northern Arizona University).

2013                   CSUN Research, Scholarship, and Creative Awards: The importance of Jurassic high-flux magmatism in the                                     northern Sierra Nevada, California

2012                   CSUN Research, Scholarship, and Creative Awards: Initiation of subduction along the SW North American                                       margin, as recorded in volcanic and sedimentary rocks of the El Paso Mountains, CA



·       Cecil, M.R., Rusmore, M.E., Gehrels, G.E., Woodsworth, G.J., Stowell, H.H., Yokelson, I.N., Chisom, C., Trautman, M., Homan, E., 2018,  Along-strike variation in the magmatic tempo of the Coast Mountains Batholith, British Columbia, and implications for processes controlling the episodicity of arcs: Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, v.19. https://doi.org/10.1029/2018GC007874.


·       Riggs, N.R., Oberling, Z.A., Howell, E.R., Parker, W.G., Barth, A.P., Cecil, M.R., Walker, J.D., 2016, Sources of volcanic detritus in the basal Chinle Formation, southwestern North America, and implications for the Early Mesozoic magmatic arc: Geosphere.


·       Cecil, M.R., Saleeby, Z., Saleeby, J.B., Farley, K.A., 2014, Pliocene – Quaternary subsidence and exhumation of the southeastern San Joaquin Basin, California, in response to mantle lithosphere removal: Geosphere, v.10, p. 129-147.


·       Cecil, M.R., Rotberg, G.L., Ducea, M.N., Saleeby, J.B., and Gehrels, G.E., 2012, Magmatic growth and batholithic root development in the northern Sierra Nevada, California: Geosphere, v. 8, p. 592 - 606.


·       Lackey, J.S., Cecil, M.R., Windham, C.J., Frazer, R.E., Bindeman, I.N., and Gehrels, G.E., 2012, Fine Gold Intrusive Suite: The roles of basement terranes and magma source development in the Early Cretaceous Sierra Nevada batholith: Geosphere, v. 8, p. 292 - 313.


·       Girardi, J.D., Patchett, P.J., Ducea, M.N., Gehrels, G.E., Cecil, M.R., Rusmore, M.E., Woodsworth, G., Pearson, D.M., and Manthei, C., 2012, Elemental and isotopic evidence for granitoid genesis from deep-seated sources in the Coast Mountains Batholith, British Columbia: Journal of Petrology, v. 53, p. 1505-1536.


·       Cecil, M.R., Gehrels, G.E., Ducea, M.N., and Patchett, P.J., 2011, U-Pb-Hf characterization of the central Coast Mountains batholith: Implications for petrogenesis and crustal architecture: Lithosphere, v. 3, p. 247 - 260.


·       Cecil, M.R., and Ducea, M.N., 2010, K-Ca ages of authigenic sediments: Examples from Paleozoic glauconite and applications to low-temperature thermochronometry: International Journal of Earth Sciences, v. 100, p. 1783 - 1790.


·       Cecil, M.R., Ducea, M.N., Reiners, P.R., Gehrels, G.E., Mulch, A., Allen, C., and Campbell, I., 2010, Provenance of Eocene fluvial deposits from the central-northern Sierra Nevada and implications for paleotopography: Tectonics, v. 29, 13 p.


·       Cecil, M.R., Chase, C.G., and Wolfe, J.A., 2007, Geologic and stratigraphic context of paleoflora from Eocene river systems, Northern Sierra Nevada, California: Courier Forschungsinstitut Senckenberg, v. 258, p. 119-128. (Special paleobotany volume honoring Wolfe and Dilcher)


·       Cecil, M.R., Ducea, M.N., Reiners, P.W., and Chase, C.G., 2006, Cenozoic exhumation of the northern Sierra Nevada, California, from (U-Th)/He thermochronology: Geological Society of America Bulletin, v. 118, p. 1481-1488.




GSA Fall Meeting (Seattle, 2017)

USC - Lithospheric Dynamics group (2017)

CSU - Fresno (2016)

Cal Poly Pomona (2016)

CSU – Bakersfield (2014)

CSU – Fullerton (2012)

UCLA “geocheminar” (2012)

USC (2011)

CSU-Northridge (2010)

Caltech Tectonics Observatory (2010)



·       American Geophysical Union

·       Geological Society of America

·       Mineralogical Society of America

·       Association of Women Geologists

·       Women in Science and Engineering