Manager, D17: Pacific Southwest
Jessica grew up exploring the hills and creeks of the midwestern US, spent a year in France, and then returned to attend the University of Arizona and earn a B.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences. Upon graduation, she set off to roam the globe for the next 10 years conducting wildlife research across the US and internationally on a variety of projects, including trapping black bears in the Appalachians, tracking lynx and wolves in the Carpathians, and searching for wolverines on the Idaho-Montana border. She settled briefly in California, managing the field and data aspects of a large non-invasive field program monitoring Pacific fisher and American marten. In 2010 moved to Seattle to earn her M.S. in Environmental and Forest Sciences from the University of Washington, collaborating with the North Cascades Wolverine Project to determine the effect of landscape features in the North Cascades on satellite telemetry locations. Upon graduation, she worked with the Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute to develop a wilderness monitoring program to track changes in federally-designated Forest Service wilderness areas over time. While working on the wilderness monitoring protocols, she was often frustrated by the lack of standardized, nation-wide, ecological data sets, and so was instantly attracted to NEON’s mission of providing such data. She moved back to California to work with NEON, and plans to take advantage of the location to explore the California coast, Baja peninsula, and Sierra wilderness with her husband and dog.