Hometown: Northport, WA. Nestled in the craggy mountains of the Pacific Northwest, Northport is located in eastern Washington and home to right around 500 lucky souls. Growing up in the country is responsible for the best parts of me, that and a fun-lovin’ family! Rural living has a way of cultivating creativity, connectivity, and a deep love for wide-open spaces.
Favorite part of ag or natural resources: I love being part of something that is central to life everywhere — water, food, the ecosystem. This niche is a bridge to me, a way to connect people with the natural world. I am mostly interested in water quality and quantity issues, but my curiosities run far and wide (and mostly take me outside).
Expected degree/graduation date: Master of Science in agriculture/natural resource communication, August 2012.
Completed degree: Bachelor of Arts in public relations/journalism, Carroll College (Helena, MT), 2005.
Time with the PIE Center: Two years.
PIE Center projects: 1) Florida Nursery, Landscape, and Growers Association (FNGLA) branding focus groups, 2) Suwannee River Partnership survey of producers in the Suwannee and Santa Fe River Basins. This project explores producers’ level of awareness of local water quality and quantity issues and assesses their level of adoption of Best Management Practices for agriculture. The survey will inform SRP of focus areas needed for enhanced communication and outreach with producers.
Goals after graduation: Save the world, one water body at a time! I would love to work on environmental outreach and education projects, particularly on water issues. I am also very interested in natural resource conflict resolution, outdoor/environmental writing, and public policy evaluation.
Hidden talent(s): Mountain biking. Here, we call it “trail riding” for obvious reasons. Oh, and talking to strangers. And I kind of love public speaking.
Favorite food: Fresh garden vegetables. Popcorn cake. My mom’s homemade stroganoff.
Best superpower: Humor.
Favorite animal: My rasta dogs, Bamba Yaye and Marley “Duke.” Also very fond of owls—I bet we could learn a lot from them if we listen (vs. just hear).