The EPH program brings together a highly qualified team of instructors with a broad range of professional experience in the environmental and public health sectors. Our goal is to create a dynamic learning experience, in which classroom lessons are linked to practical skills that will serve you well in your internship and beyond. We work to achieve this goal by selecting knowledgeable instructors and incorporating interactive learning experiences, such as field trips and demonstrations, into the course. Browse the profiles below to learn more about the faculty coordinators who lead our esteemed instructional team.
EPH Program Faculty Advisor
- Faculty Director, Rutgers Specialty Crop Research Station
- Department of Plant Biology, School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, Rutgers University
EPH Program Faculty Coordinators
Peter N. Tabbot, MPH – Overall Faculty Coordinator for EPH
- EPH Epidemiology Coordinator
- Health Officer, Rockaway Township Division of Health
- Adjunct Professor, Rutgers University
Peter Tabbot is Health Officer for the Rockaway Township Division of Health, which serves five municipalities in northern New Jersey, and also is Adjunct Instructor at Rutgers University, where for 23 years he has taught several courses in public health, environmental health, epidemiology, and administration. Mr. Tabbot obtained his bachelor’s degree from Rutgers University and his Master of Public Health degree from the Rutgers School of Public Health, and has 32 years’ experience in governmental public health. Mr. Tabbot is Past President of the NJ Association of County and City Health Officials and Past President of the NJ Environmental Health Association, and spent several years as Project Director of the NJ Collaborative for Excellence in Public Health and the Public Health Multi-State Learning Collaborative – national and statewide efforts that introduced continuous quality improvement and accreditation to New Jersey’s local health departments.
Mr. Tabbot serves on several statewide advisory and ad hoc committees, including the NJ Public Health Licensing and Exam Board, and for several years was an active member of the National Network of Public Health Institutes’ Community of Practice for Public Health Improvement. Nine years ago, Mr. Tabbot became Faculty Coordinator of the Rutgers Office of Continuing Professional Education’s Environment and Public Health course, the only state-sanctioned mandatory training for New Jersey’s future licensed Registered Environmental Health Specialists. Mr. Tabbot recently spent three years serving as Chair of the Morris Regional Public Health Partnership, and three years as Executive Committee member and County Chair of the North Jersey Health Collaborative, a public health partnership composed of over community health organizations in five counties in northern New Jersey.
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“Peter Tabbot was an excellent faculty coordinator. I believe that he is also an awesome instructor. His questions on the tests were fair. Also, I appreciate the fact that he took time out of his class to go over the exams.”
“He definitely taught me my entire college statistics class in a 3-hour lecture (which I am happy about), so now I actually comprehend what a chi square and rejecting a null hypothesis means. Well done, Peter.”
“Great, great professor! Knowledgeable, funny, and always willing to help students.”
- EPH Public Health Sanitation Co-Coordinator
- Acting Dairy Project Coordinator, NJDOH Public Health and Food Protection Program
Rob Iler has worked for the NJDOH Public Health and Food Protection Program (PHFPP) since 2008. Rob’s current role with PHFPP is the Acting Dairy Project Coordinator and Manufactured Foods Regulatory Program Standards Coordinator. Rob is a faculty adjunct in the Nutrition and Food Studies Department of Montclair State University. Rob completed the EPH course in 2007 and has been back every year since as an instructor.
“Rob is a great professor. He made things very clear. He talked about what we would really see in the field and how his topics related to the field. He was awesome and I would take a course from him again if something came up.”
“One of my favorite lectures; helpful for internships.”
“Energetic, inspiring, and very practical”
Karl R. Matthews, PhD
- EPH Microbiology Coordinator
- Professor and Chair, Department of Food Science, Rutgers University
Karl R. Matthews, Ph.D., is a Professor of Food Microbiology in the Department of Food Science at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. Matthews’ research addresses farm-to-fork food safety issues. His research covers elucidating at the molecular level the interaction of human enteric pathogens with plants to developing novel antimicrobials to improve the microbial safety of fresh fruits and vegetables from post-harvest processing to retail practices. He serves as Principle and Co-principle investigator on federal and foundation grants and commercial funded projects. He is actively engaged in teaching at the undergraduate and graduate level and served as the Food Science undergraduate program director.
Matthews has given presentations and lectures throughout the world. He has taught courses on Food Microbiology, Food Safety, Food Law, and Food Sustainability in China and India. He is involved in projects in the Philippines and Thailand to promote development of Food Science programs and microbial food safety. He has received awards recognizing both his teaching and research, most recently receiving a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program award in Food Science/Food Microbial Safety for the 2023-2024 academic year by the U.S. Department of State and the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board. He serves on both NIH and USDA panels and on the editorial boards for several journals. He is Associate Editor of Frontiers in Sustainable Food and Agriculture and was Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Food Safety. Matthews is senior-author of Food Microbiology – An Introduction, a leading textbook on Food Microbiology, editor of Microbiology of Fresh Produce, and senior-editor of The Produce Contamination Problem – Causes and Solutions. He has collectively published more than 275 abstracts, peer reviewed papers, and book chapters.
“Dr. Matthews is a wonderful lecturer. I love his speed of speaking; he makes sure to emphasize important points. He makes people appreciate his topics, even though the subject may be difficult.”
“Dr. Matthews is, by far, my favorite lecturer. He is thorough, he repeats important concepts, and speaks slowly and deliberately. I especially loved the section when he showed photos from around the world to emphasize how different cultures are and their eating practices.”
“Typically, micro has been hard for me to understand in the past but Dr. Matthews made everything easier.”
Joseph M. Mikulka, CPM
- EPH Environmental Enforcement Coordinator
- Senior Regulatory Specialist, CP Engineers
- Former Bureau Chief, NJ-DEP Water Compliance & Enforcement
Joseph M. Mikulka serves as the Faculty Coordinator and Professor for the Environmental Pollution Section of the Rutgers NJAES Environment & Public Health Course. Joe is a Senior Regulatory Specialist at CP Engineers of Sparta, New Jersey, a full service architecture, engineering, environmental, and life sciences consulting firm. He is a Certified Public Manager and holds a Mechanical Engineering degree from Fairleigh Dickinson University and an Environmental Management degree from the University of Southern California. Joe is also a Certified Instructor of Interest Based Negotiation, a registered Community Emergency Response Team member, and a certified Open Water Scuba Diver.
Prior to his current employment in the private sector, Joe worked for the N.J. Department of Environmental Protection’s Compliance and Enforcement Programs for over thirty six years, performing, supervising, and managing compliance inspections and the preparation of administrative enforcement documents in support of a wide range of environmental statutes and regulations. His most recent title was Chief of the Northern Bureau of Water Compliance & Enforcement, which enforces the N.J. Water Pollution Control Act, N.J. Safe Drinking Water Act, N.J. Water Supply Management Act, N.J. Water Quality Management Planning Act, and the N.J. Underground Storage Tanks Act, in a nine county area of northern New Jersey.
“Joe knows about so many different topics! Solid and hazardous waste was informative and interesting as this is a public health concern that affects us daily.”
“I love Joe. Such a nice guy, very respectable, and just wants everyone to learn.”
“Joe was awesome. You can tell he loves teaching.”
Susan A. Muhaw, REHS
- EPH Soil Science Coordinator
- West Milford Health Department
Susan Muhaw graduated from the Rutgers EPH Class in 1981. She trained at and then worked for Sussex County Health Department, where she gained most of her environmental and septic experience. She then went to Montville Township, where she became the Senior Registered Environmental Health Specialist and started the Septic Management Program in conjunction with the NJDEP. She currently works for West Milford Health Department, giving her approximately 35 years of environmental health experience.
She loves the outdoors and is an avid long distance runner.
“I am amazed at how much knowledge Sue has regarding the codes. She needs to write a book before she retires so that her knowledge is not lost. I feel she is a great resource for all future REHS staff.”
“Susan is very helpful and also a great professional you want to learn from.”
“Wealth of knowledge and such a nice instructor. I could listen to her speak for hours.”
Robert M. Noel
- EPH Water / Wastewater Coordinator
- Wastewater Superintendent / Safety Coordinator, Township of Monroe Utility Department
Robert M. Noel is the Wastewater Superintendent and Safety Coordinator for the Monroe Township Utility Department in Monroe Township, NJ. He has also served as Collection System Superintendent and GIS Manager for the Western Monmouth Utilities Authority and the East Brunswick Sewerage Authority, managing the operations and maintenance of NJDEP classified C-4 Public Wastewater collection systems. As a New Jersey Wastewater Licensed Operator for over 25 years, he has worked at facilities throughout New Jersey, including at the Somerset Raritan Valley Sewerage Authority, the Township of Jefferson, and Middlesex Water Company (Pinelands Division). Mr. Noel has been a sub-contractor for the USACE (United States Army Corp of Engineers) since 2013 as Licensed Operator and Site Safety Professional for multiple superfund site groundwater remediation treatment systems. In 2021, he was granted professional status as a Registered Environmental Professional by the National Registry of Environmental Professionals.
Since 2003, Mr. Noel has been an Adjunct Professor at the Rutgers University Office of Continuing Professional Education and has helped to develop and deliver training on Industrial Wastewater Treatment Operations and related topics. Mr. Noel also holds numerous industry licenses and certifications including NJDEP C-4 (Public Collection System Operations), S-3 (Public Wastewater Treatment Operations), N-3 (Industrial Wastewater Treatment Operations), T-2 (Public Water Treatment Operations) and W-2 (Public Water Distribution Operations), HazWoper 40-Hour (Hazardous Waste and Emergency Operations), HazWoper 8-Hour Supervisor, Confined Space Entry Rescue, and Hazardous Material Technician – Level 2 / Instructor. He is a certified NJ Emergency Medical Technician and a Special Police Officer (SLEO1) in East Brunswick Township.
“Loved Professor Noel. Extremely knowledgeable within the science of water chemistry and water and wastewater treatment.”
“He was able to simplify the topic for me and pique my interest in water definitely.”
“Amazing lectures and a great personality!”
“Excellent! Always give us a good lecture full of great info.”
Virginia Wheatley, MS, MPH
- EPH Public Health Sanitation Co-Coordinator
- Environmental Scientist 4, Public Health, and Food Protection Program, NJDOH
Virginia Wheatley is an Environmental Scientist 4 in the Public Health and Food Protection Program at the New Jersey Department of Health. As the program’s Shellfish Project Coordinator, she coordinates shellfish illness investigations and oversees HACCP compliance inspections for 130 NJ shellfish firms. She routinely delivers training to local health departments and industry representatives at seminars and conferences. She holds dual licenses as a Registered Environmental Health Specialist and a Health Officer. She is the Secretary and a Past President of the NJ Association for Food Protection and the President of the NJ Environmental Health Association. She also teaches Environmental and Occupational Health at The College of New Jersey.
Ms. Wheatley first entered the field of public health during a collective 6 years of military service in the U.S. Air Force and the NJ Air National Guard. Her education includes a Master of Public Health from Rutgers University and a Master of Science in Food Safety from Michigan State University. On a personal note, she is an experienced world traveler, a lifelong animal lover, and a die-hard vegetarian/foodie.
“She was an amazing professor. She made the class engaging and fun. She made everything relatable and really explained everything we needed to know clearly and effectively.”
“She’s the best!! WOW, what a great way to teach … She made the class more fun and it was great listening and learning from her.”
“I really enjoyed her presentations and how she made them interactive. She is an excellent presenter and made the topics very interesting.”