9 years fieldwork experience | 7 + years experience with ArcGIS & R Statistical Software | 4 + years supervisory experience | 2 first-author peer-reviewed publications |2 co-author peer-reviewed publications 2020 Stoddard-Burleigh-Sutton Award recipient for Excellence in Wildlife Conservation
Assistant Scientist & Research Coordinator
National Great Rivers Research & Education Center (NGRREC) | East Alton, IL | October 2021 – Present
Data Collection & Research: CO-PI on the population demography of Bird-voiced treefrogs in southern Illinois project (SWG-T-129-R-1). Leads and trains Environmental Technician teams in the field to collect needed demographic data for project. Assists with animal collection and identification of other projects as needed. Organizes and coordinates meetings for collaborative microplastics project at NGRREC. Spearheads NGRREC’s Great Rivers Observatory Network (GREON) water quality monitoring program. Maintains GREON water quality monitoring stations located in local rivers and lakes and provides support to collaborating partners hosting remote stations. Provides technical support relating to mesocosm operation to in-house and visiting scientists. Performs independent research as time allows.
Data Analysis & Management: Assists with statistical analysis in R statistical software and ArcGIS as needed on various projects. Manages databases for population demography of Bird-voiced treefrogs in southern Illinois and GREON program databases.
Leadership & Facilitation: Oversees all aspects of research support for principal scientists including staff, equipment, and facilities. Supervises, trains, and coordinates schedules of Environmental Technician staff and research associates in a range of biological and physical sciences occurring both in the field and the laboratory. Supervises and trains Environmental Technicians and research associates in facility operations and use of NGRREC boats, ORVs, trucks, and trailers. Creates Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for all institutional processes, equipment, and training and instructs technical staff in the use of SOPs. Leads field safety operations and trainings. Establishes and maintains collaborative relationships with outside organizations to advance research related to NGRREC’s mission.
Outreach & Science Communication: Participates in outreach activities by leading tours, delivering presentations to groups and the public, and contributing to educational programs (e.g., event activity leader, managing an NGRREC booth/table at special events, advisor in NGRREC internship program, etc.).
Environmental Research Technician
National Great Rivers Research & Education Center | East Alton, IL | November 2020 – September 2021
Data Collection & Research: Assisted with research investigating the population demography of Bird-voiced Treefrogs in southern Illinois (SWG-T-129-R-1). Deployed PVC pipe traps in swamp habitat to collect Bird-voiced Treefrogs, Gray Treefrogs, and Green Treefrogs for morphometric measurements and demographic information. Completed all required animal care (IACUC) training for project research. Authored a literature review on Bird-voiced Treefrogs to be used by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Authored an accepted proposal to be a Principal Investigator on a summer 2021 undergraduate research internship. Provided additional research support to other senior scientists and staff member projects as needed, such as GREON water quality monitoring station retrieval.
Data Analysis & Management: Generated species distribution, abundance, and land cover maps in ArcGIS for grant reporting as needed. Reviewed Spatial Capture-Recapture and Occupancy Modeling analysis in R statistical software for future project analyses. Assisted with intern project statistical analysis and taught the use of R Statistical Software and ArcGIS to interns for project analysis. Managed databases for population demography of Bird-voiced treefrogs in southern Illinois.
Leadership & Facilitation: Formulated protocols and guides for clear communication and training on various field equipment, software, and institutional processes. Maintained inventory of all lab and field equipment. Managed lab and field operations to ensure the functionality of equipment and optimal work efficiency when conducting work in the field. Supervised and mentored undergraduate research interns.
Affiliate Research Scientist
University of Illinois, Illinois Natural History Survey | Champaign, IL | January 2021 – Present
Institute Affiliate with the Prairie Research Institute of the Illinois Natural History Survey. Zero-time formal appointment.
Consulting Conservation Research Specialist
Zoological Society of Milwaukee | Milwaukee, WI | May 2019 – February 2020
Data Collection & Research: Supported the transition of a core conservation program to another global conservation organization. Researched and reviewed the conservation and wildlife landscape within Wisconsin to determine a new direction for the conservation department. Researched local and regional invasive species, species of concern, and habitats to determine areas of management and research need. Reviewed 100+ conservation and water-related organizations in Wisconsin and the Midwest to determine potential partnerships and identify research gaps. Developed recommendations based on research and presented those recommendations to the organization’s senior leadership, including the Society’s CEO.
Data Analysis & Management: Assisted with data inventory, organization, and grant reporting for previous conservation program transfer. Generated maps in ArcGIS of professional organizations to aid in identifying potential partnerships and critical habitat maps to determine areas of conservation need. Developed scoring criteria and scales for quantifying work on 100+ conservation and water-related organizations to better determine where possible partnerships could be made. Performed statistical analyses on organizational scores to assess the work being conducted on the landscape and by what mechanisms the work was being done to identify research gaps.
Outreach & Communication: Attended conferences and events on behalf of the Society to network and build relationships with potential partners and review the conservation landscape. Facilitated meetings with potential partners and the Society to aid in building an organizational network. Researched and summarized over 90 citizen science programs for education department use. Provided conservation and wildlife expertise to the education department when requested.
Graduate Research Assistant
University of Georgia | Athens, GA | August 2016 – March 2019
Data Collection & Research: Investigated the effects of rabbit hunting on Northern Bobwhite stress and movement behavior on a public wildlife management area (WMA) managed by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR). Deployed radio-transmitters, gathered morphometrics, and tracked individuals via VHF radio-telemetry independently, often performing fieldwork in adverse and harsh conditions and at all hours of day and night. Collaborated on the planning and execution of the project experimental design. Facilitated and designed a side study to validate the use of Northern Bobwhite fecal samples for stress hormone analysis. Implemented the field deployment of the method for stress sampling on wild populations of Northern Bobwhite. Supported additional graduate projects on site including assisting with Black Rat Snake and Timber Rattlesnake trapping and tracking and acoustic monitoring of Northern Bobwhite covey calls. Published research in peer-reviewed journals.
Data Analysis & Management: Performed movement and space use analysis in both Bayesian and frequentist statistical frameworks using R statistical software. Calculated space and habitat use metrics in Google Earth Engine and ArcGIS. Independently performed all steps of fecal stress hormone analysis via radioimmunoassay (RIA), including sample extractions and use of gamma counter.
Outreach & Communication: Created and designed user-friendly visual aids (e.g. maps, posters, brochures, and online announcements) for public use depicting rabbit hunting regulation changes to publicize and inform the community on the research being conducted. Generated research reports to inform stakeholders and the Georgia DNR of research findings. Wrote articles to media outlets, including research updates, to inform the community of research progress. Frequently presented findings via oral presentations and research posters to the public and stakeholders.
Leadership & Facilitation: Supervised, managed, and hired 10+ technicians. Formulated protocols and guides for clear communication and training of technicians. Developed and maintained databases in MAMP and Excel for which thousands of data entries for multiple projects were stored. Ordered and managed all vehicles and equipment for projects on the property, often made purchases valued over $5,000, and managed the project budget. Facilitated the communication and organization of a side study to investigate Northern Bobwhite stress hormones, which required the integration of several fields of study and collaboration among multiple organizations.
Mammals Research Assistant
The Field Museum | Chicago, IL | June 2015 – July 2016
Data Collection & Management: Provided research support to the “Bats of Kenya” project. Gathered morphometric measurements of all Kenyan bat specimens in the museum collection. Managed database in Access containing more than 20,000 specimens entries as well as literature databases in EndNote. Generated range maps of the specimens in ArcGIS and anatomical plates of the specimens using Photoshop. Curated all Kenyan bat specimens in the museum collection.
Aquatic Invertebrates Teaching Assistant
Northland College | Ashland, WI | April 2014 – May 2015
Student Teaching & Advising: Supported and supervised 30+ students with coursework, subject material, and aquatic sampling fieldwork. Organized labs and instructed study sessions. Performed outreach to local schools about the importance of aquatic invertebrates.
Biology Laboratory Technician
Northland College | Ashland, WI | Sep 2012 – May 2015
Specimen Collection Management: Organized and maintained aquatic invertebrate collection and biology labs. Created slides of specimens for collection and class use.
Written & Oral Communications: Updated and reviewed aquatic invertebrate and freshwater fish taxonomic keys for in-class use. Conducted educational outreach with local elementary schools about aquatic invertebrates.
First-Year Orientation Coordinator
Northland College | Ashland, WI | April 2014 – May 2015
Student Advising & Communication: Managed 12+ orientation leaders and 100+ incoming freshman students. Organized and promoted events to assist with acclimating incoming students to college. Fostered a safe and open environment for both orientation leaders and students.
Economic Botany Undergraduate Research Intern
The Field Museum | Chicago, IL | June 2014 – July 2014
Data Collection & Management: Identified plant specimens from anthropologic excavation sites in Oaxaca, Mexico with the use of the museum’s herbarium. Organized and cataloged specimen collection.
Communication: Created and edited a video in iMovie depicting research and internship for presentation to museum donors, staff, and public.
Science and Action Center Conservation Intern
The Field Museum | Chicago, IL | June 2013 – August 2013
Data Collection & Research: Assisted with migration surveys, bird monitoring, and rare plant monitoring within the Calumet region.
Written Communication: Created webpage content and composed site descriptions of Chicago-land natural areas. Researched invasive plant species in the Chicago-land area and generated accompanying fact sheets and management calendars for species.
Herpetology Collection Intern
The Field Museum | Chicago, IL | June 2013 – August 2013
Specimen Collection Management: Aided in the preservation of organisms and the organization of collections. Georeferenced specimen sample collection locations. Created scientific illustrations of snake specimens for use in a taxonomic key.
Digital Archives: Photographed preserved specimens for digital archives using DSLR and microscope cameras.
First-Year Orientation Leader
Northland College | Ashland, WI | Sep 2012 – Nov 2012
Student Advising & Communication: Supervised and lead 12+ incoming freshman students on their transition to college
through scheduled events and workshops.
Alumni Board Member | Northland College | Ashland, WI | March 2020 – Present
Mentors current and prospective Northland College students. Provide insight to faculty and staff on how we can better utilize college alumni and board members to support students. Spear-headed social media initiatives to foster community during the COVID-19 crisis. Created and administered the alumni Twitter page and served on the social media committee from March 2020-April 2022.
UGA Bird Banding Cooperative | University of Georgia | Athens, GA | December 2016 – December 2018
Attended local bird banding events in Athens, GA. Assisted with setting up and taking down mist nets, bird extraction from mist nets, banding, and identification.
Field Molecular & Wildlife Techniques Course | Sarvanana River Ecology Lab | Aiken, SC | May 2017
Hands-on experience in live capture, handling and chemical immobilization of wildlife; live capture and non-invasive sampling of carnivores; wild pig capture and management; herpetology collection; DNA extraction from non-invasive samples (hair, feathers, scat), relatedness, paternity, and population genetics techniques; and disease diagnostics using PCR.
Biology Capstone | Northland College | Ashland, WI | September 2014 – May 2015
Investigated competition and evolutionary history of rodents Perognathus and Cupidinimus, which existed during the Miocene era in North America. Gathered morphometric measurements and generated range maps in ArcGIS of specimen locations to determine overlap over the prehistoric eras and evolutionary changes in dental morphology.
Natural Resources Capstone | Northland College | Ashland WI | September 2014 – May 2015
Examined avian responses to agriculture through point counts on organic and non-organic farms. Determined local avian diversity and abundance using R and Excel on farms throughout the Chequamegon Bay area in Northern Wisconsin and compared farm structures, characteristics, and practices. Identified local plant communities and habitats surrounding farms. Often performed point counts independently in sub-zero inclement weather.
Field Limnology Course | Northland College | Ashland. WI | September 2014 – December 2014
Performed limnological studies using techniques gained through field and lab experiences such as water quality testing, aquatic invertebrate surveys, and substrate sampling.
Fisheries and Wildlife Techniques Course | Northland College | Ashland, WI | May 2014
Intensive field course. Fisheries: Conducted electrofishing, fyke netting, gillnetting, trawling, and pit tagging. Wildlife: Small mammal trapping, bird monitoring, track, and scat identification. Tasks were performed often with the aid of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR).
Student Conservation Scientist | Round River Conservation Studies | Namibia, Africa | September 2013 – December 2013
Performed wildlife population monitoring in the Kunene region of Namibia, Africa, often performing fieldwork in conditions greater than 100°F. Trained in identifying native mammals by sight, sound, scat and track; birds by sight and sound; and plants and their accompanying indigenous uses. Bush-camped for the entirety of the program in harsh conditions with little access to electricity and plumbing. Created and distributed surveys to local communities and performed interviews to aid in a better understanding of conservation efforts and human-wildlife conflict issues. Developed content that was published within the research blog. Presented on experience to numerous local schools in Wisconsin and Illinois after completion of the program.
Field Ornithology Course | Northland College | Ashland, WI | May 2013
Learned to identify birds of Northern Wisconsin by sight and sound. Performed lekking ground surveys of Sharp-tailed Grouse.
Wildlife Ecology and Management Course | Northland College | Ashland, WI | January 2013 – May 2013
Field heavy course involving habitat restoration and management training, census techniques, and wildlife identification by tracks, scat, and sight.
Chronic Wasting Disease Testing Volunteer | Wisconsin DNR | Spooner, WI | November 2012
Gathered information from hunters at the check station and assisted with deer aging and sample collection for CWD testing.
Botany Volunteer | McHenry County Conservation District | McHenry, IL | June 2012 – July 2012
Assisted with rare plant monitoring and pollination in northern Illinois. Created seed mixes to be used within prairie restoration areas of McHenry County.
Field Aquatic Invertebrate Course | Northland College | Ashland, WI | May 2012
Collected freshwater aquatic invertebrates, prepared a specimen collection, and gained proficiency in identifying species by sight and keying. Performed water quality testing for local agencies via aquatic invertebrate sampling.