My area of expertise is in conservation social sciences, where I focus on park and protected area management, recreation management, visitor use and experience, human-wildlife relationships, environmental communication, and other human dimensions of natural resources. I have collaborated on numerous projects with local, state, federal, and international agencies and partners at the highest level of science. My goal is to provide authentic resolution to contemporary natural resource issues through science-based learning and decision making in planning and governance
I grew up in Northern California where I spent the early years of my life roaming around the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Before entering the academic world, I taught environmental education for a variety of audiences, led backpacking and kayaking trips, and worked as a resource manager on ecological reserves. I have lived and studied in a wide-range of environments in the U.S., including rural Northern California, the Rocky Mountain west, and the Appalachian Mountains. Embedding myself in a variety of social and ecological settings gives me a “lived” sense of the diversity of human-nature relationships around the country.
Away from my professional life, I enjoy hiking, backpacking, birding, and fly fishing.