Janelle Long – Executive Director
Janelle Long began her career as the Executive Director at Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory in August 2007. She received her M.Ed. in Environmental Education at the University of Minnesota Duluth and a B.S. in Wildlife Management and Biology at the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point. Her interest in ornithology and conservation biology began by assisting several Ph.D. students with their field research studying neotropical migrants and grassland birds. She continued to share her passion for birds in the field of environmental education working at several Audubon Centers and for the Bureau of Land Management’s Yaquina Head Oustanding Natural Area in OR. She enjoys bridging the bird conservation research, education, and stewardship components through her career with Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory. Janelle resides in Duluth, MN with her husband and 3 children.
Margie Menzies – Education Director
One-part educator, two parts naturalist, and two parts bird nerd! After years in the formal classroom, this educator has abandoned the indoors for the great outdoor classroom. Margie joined the Hawk Ridge staff as a Naturalist in 2011 and is now the full-time Education Director for Hawk Ridge. She loves birds and sharing the natural world with people of all ages. She also helps lead the passerine (songbird) banding at Hawk Ridge during fall migration and with three MAPS stations studying summer breeding birds at Hawk Ridge, Wolf Ridge, and Sugarloaf Cove. She has a BA in Biology from Bethel University, and a MA in Education from University of St. Thomas.
Frank Nicoletti – Senior Research Associate
Frank Nicoletti grew up in New York State along the Hudson River where he started watching raptors at the age of 11. His passion for raptors and other birds fueled him to work at various locations including Cape May and Sandy Hook NJ, Braddock Bay NY and in Israel. From 1984 until 1996 he traveled throughout the country and conducted various raptor related projects which included nesting surveys, tracking winter raptors and migration work. He arrived in Duluth in 1991 to count raptors and to witness the invasion of the Northern Goshawk and he conducted the count at Hawk Ridge until 2005. After moving to Duluth permanently in the fall of 1996, he conducted the first spring count of raptors migrating north in Minnesota along the West Skyline Parkway of Duluth. Frank continues to study raptors and has been concentrating on boreal forest owls and managing raptor banding sites. He has published a number of papers on birds and has helped with many authors working on books and articles. Frank joined the Hawk Ridge staff in 2011 as the Banding Director and is now the Senior Research Associate to help lead research projects, as well as raptor banding and bird migration count research. He lives just north of Duluth with his wife, Kate, and their well-loved dogs.
FALL 2023 TEAM
We welcome our Fall 2023 team, which includes seasonal employees and volunteers. Hawk Ridge is also happy to continue to work in conjunction with UMD Graduate Students on their raptor research projects.
David Alexander – Volunteer Bander
David Alexander grew up living all over the world, and after finishing his medical training in Dallas, Madison, and Tucson finally decided it was time to settle down. Through some luck, he and his wife Christina landed in Duluth, MN of all places. David has been a passionate birder over the years and still manages to get overseas for a few nature trips a year. Starting in the Fall of 1995, he has been an annual visitor and later a volunteer at Hawk Ridge.
David served on the board of Hawk Ridge Nature Reserve in the early years and then returned on the board in 2010 for 10 years with Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory. David works full-time as a radiologist for Essentia Health in Duluth. In his time off, he spends long days at Hawk Ridge in the fall helping to lead the Hawk Ridge Passerine Banding Project, as well as one of the assistant Raptor Banders. In conjunction with Margie Menzies, he helps direct the summer MAPS breeding bird banding study.
Kara Beer, Bander
Kara has been migrating about for several years working as a technician on various avian research projects- from tracking Northern Bobwhites in Florida, to rappelling into Gyrfalcon nests in Alaska! She spends her time in between seasonal positions exploring and birding internationally. Throughout all of her fieldwork and travels, she always looks forward to fall migration! Kara first came to Hawk Ridge last year as a banding trainee and was amazed by the flight here. She is incredibly excited to return this fall as a bander at Hawk Ridge!
Jake Behrens, Naturalist
Jake is an educator and outdoor enthusiast living in Duluth, Minnesota. He loves running, hiking, canoeing, skiing and pretty much anything that gets him outdoors. A bachelors in Wildlife Ecology from UW-Madison has afforded him the chance to work with all sorts of wildlife, from mule deer to porcupines. Birds have always held a special place in his heart. He’s had the opportunity to work on projects studying bobwhite quail, northern goshawks, and prairie nesting passerine species. His real passion is sharing that love for the natural world. This led him to pursue a degree in education from UW- Stevens Point. He has, since, had the opportunity to work as a high school earth and environmental science teacher, a naturalist and host at Sax-Zim Bog, and summer camp educator at Great Lakes Aquarium. This is his second season as a naturalist at Hawk Ridge.
Erik Bruhnke, Guide & Volunteer Count Interpreter
Erik Bruhnke has loved birds since he was a child looking at chickadees. He graduated from Northland College in Wisconsin with a Natural Resources degree in 2008 and taught field ornithology at Northland College for three semesters. Throughout college and shortly after, he spent his summers conducting field research focused on breeding bird transects in Upper Michigan, point counts for a breeding bird atlas in Minnesota and Wisconsin’s Northwoods, vegetation and breeding bird surveys throughout wind farms in North Dakota’s prairie potholes, and cavity-nesting surveys in the Cascade Mountains of Oregon. He educated visitors about raptor identification throughout six fall seasons at Hawk Ridge, where he caught the lifelong hawkwatching bug.
Following Hawk Ridge, he counted migrating raptors at the Corpus Christi HawkWatch in Texas in 2015; and was the 2016, 2017, and 2018 hawk counter at the Cape May Hawkwatch in New Jersey. Erik’s wildlife photography has won national awards, and he’s written for the American Birding Association’s Birder’s Guide, BirdWatching magazine, and Bird Watcher’s Digest. Erik is a birding tour guide for Victor Emanuel Nature Tours as well as his own business, Naturally Avian. He enjoys hiking, kayaking, ice skating, and being out in the snow. In his free time he loves to cook and bake, often following the recipes of his Omas and Opas. Erik is looking forward to helping people connect to the magic of migration at Hawk Ridge this fall!
Marie Chappell, Trainee
Originally from Florida, Marie became obsessed with all things birds after her mother gifted her a hummingbird feeder at age 12 to attempt to dissuade her from her love of big cats. Clearly, this attempt was at least partially successful, as she soon discovered eBird, and the rest is history. Marie majored in Environment & Sustainability at Cornell University, where she had the opportunity to do a research project on Yellow-breasted Chats and travel to Australia, China, and Costa Rica to record birds for the Macaulay Library. Marie is looking forward to spending the fall on the north shore of Lake Superior, where she will finally be able to witness the amazing spectacles of migration in Minnesota.
Cam Citrowske, Intern
Cam Citrowske comes from Eden Prairie, Minnesota and is currently studying Environmental Science at the University of Minnesota Duluth. Their passion for birds started after their first few trips to Hawk Ridge in 2019, and grew after taking an Ornithology class through the university. This will be Cam’s first year with Hawk Ridge and they are super excited to be working here and the new experiences it will bring.
Jess Cosentino, Lead Counter
Jess Cosentino grew up in New Hampshire; however, over a decade of itinerant field work has taken him to many beautiful places in the world to study migratory birds. This fall marks his tenth count season at a North American hawkwatch site (third fall at Hawk Ridge), with some other count seasons spent at the Bridger Mountains in Montana witnessing incredible Golden Eagle migration along the northern Rockies and the Veracruz River of Raptors project in Mexico, documenting millions of migrant raptors. Most recently, he spent this past spring and summer counting migrant raptors and banding owls, respectively, at Whitefish Point Bird Observatory on the upper peninsula of Michigan; however, he’s most looking forward to returning to the north shore to witness the spectacle of fall migration along the Ridge. Jess recently completed his MSc. at the University of Saskatchewan where his thesis focused on using stable isotopes in feathers to study migratory connectivity in Arctic-breeding shorebirds between their staging areas in the Canadian prairies and wintering grounds throughout the Gulf coast and Latin America. He currently sits on two committees (Marketing and Tours) with the Hawk Migration Association of North America (HMANA). One of his favorite parts of fall migration at Hawk Ridge are the big Red-tailed Hawk days in October once the chilly winds begin to blow.
Sara DePew, Lead Naturalist
Growing up by exploring the creek and woods in her back yard, it seemed inevitable that Sara would gravitate towards a career in natural science. She received her B.A. in Zoology and Environmental Science from Miami University, in her hometown of Oxford, Ohio, and moved to Michigan in 2006 after working with birds in both Hawaii and Alaska. Sara has spent over two decades in the animal care and environmental education field, sharing her love of conservation with others.
Before joining Hawk Ridge, Sara was an animal care supervisor and placed rehabilitated trumpeter swans into breeding programs to increase wild population numbers. Proud to be part of this conservation success story, she is a supporter of the “Get the Lead Out” campaign to reduce lead poisoning in waterfowl and bald eagles. Her paper, “Still Threatened: Trumpeter Swans and the Lead Crisis” was published in the American Association of Zookeepers. Sara joined Hawk Ridge in spring 2022 and continues to be in awe of the amazing bird migration through Duluth. Sara’s other interests include spending time with her animals at home, cooking, gardening, reading, and all things J.R.R. Tolkien; she dreams of one day visiting Middle Earth (a.k.a. New Zealand), where she can also see Kea parrots in the wild.
Miranda Durbin – Volunteer Bander
Miranda Durbin has lived in Duluth most of her life, growing up right below Hawk Ridge. She got her BS in Fisheries and Wildlife, with a specialization in Wildlife at the University of Minnesota. Her love of birds didn’t begin in earnest until an ornithology class and an internship at the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Roseville helping in the avian nursery.After some traveling and time away from Duluth, she moved back in 2011 and began volunteering at Hawk Ridge during the 2012 fall season. She started volunteering in the banding station in 2013 and this will be her twelfth year helping as one of the Banders at Hawk Ridge.
Olivia Fortuna, Banding Apprentice
Olivia (Liv) Fortuna grew up in Long Island, NY and graduated with a BS in Wildlife & Conservation Biology and a minor in Animal Behavior from the University of New Hampshire in 2019. Throughout her time in New Hampshire she fell in love with the north woods and became fascinated by its biodiversity. Liv’s passion for avian research began in 2020 when she worked with the Loon Preservation Committee studying Common Loons in New Hampshire. She found herself increasingly interested in the Eagles and Ospreys and after two years of Loon work decided to step into the world of raptors. In 2022 she conducted occupancy and reproduction surveys for California Spotted Owls in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. In 2023 she worked with Great Gray Owls in Yosemite National Park, conducting radio telemetry on tagged owls and vegetation surveys on utilized habitat. She is very excited to be working at HRBO this fall and is looking forward to expanding her knowledge of bird banding.
Kevin Garcia Lopez, Owl Bander
Kevin was born in Mexico City, Mexico and grew up in Los Angeles, CA. He graduated from Humboldt State University with a B.S. in Wildlife Management and Conservation. After graduating he worked a couple of seasons as an educational intern, field ranger and teacher for Point Reyes National Seashore, Audubon California and Environment for the Americas. During the last three years he has spent his Spring and Summer seasons conducting reproductive and occupancy surveys for California Spotted Owls in the Sierras. He has also banded songbirds, woodpeckers and small forest owls with Point Blue Conservation Science and the Intermountain Bird Observatory.
Kevin loves the thrill of searching for Spotted Owl nests, but he enjoys banding just as much. Bird banding is a dream job for Kevin because it combines two of his biggest passions. It allows him to learn about different species of birds and because it gives him an opportunity to share everything he learns with the public. Inspiring others to care about wildlife and conservation is one of his lifetime goals! Kevin is thrilled to contribute to HRBO’s research efforts this Fall and he looks forward to expanding his knowledge about his favorite birds—los búhos (the owls)
Megan Hanson, Trainee
Megan is from Libertyville, IL and graduated from St Olaf College in 2023. She majored in Environmental Studies and Studio Art. She discovered her love of birds very young by watching her grandparents’ bird feeder, and she found an interest in bird identification after a childhood encounter with a Cooper’s Hawk. Megan has worked as an environmental restoration technician in Lake Bluff, IL and on her college campus; she has a passion for ecology and habitat restoration. She spent this summer as a naturalist at Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center in Finland, MN, sharing her love of the outdoors with folks of all ages. In her free time, she enjoys drawing, painting, looking at bugs, taking photos to share on iNaturalist, and exploring the outdoors.
Steve Kolbe – Volunteer Counter
Steve Kolbe has counted migrating birds at Bradbury Mountain, the Avalon Seawatch, Tussey Mountain, Holiday Beach, Kiptopeke, Derby Hill, and Hawk Ridge (fall 2014 & spring 2018). He completed his Master’s degree at the University of Minnesota Duluth studying the migration of Common Nighthawks and is currently working for the Natural Resources Research Institute. Steve will be returning for his 6th season as a volunteer to help with the fall bird migration count at Hawk Ridge. Steve loves watching and taking photographs of migrating birds.
Halle Lambeau, Research Graduate Student
Halle grew up surrounded by the beautiful lakes and forests of Wisconsin but has spent field seasons living in California, Washington, New Mexico, Illinois, and Nebraska. She is extremely passionate about avian conservation and has been grateful to experience the joy of working on projects related to threatened and endangered species management with various federal agencies and nonprofit partnerships. Halle’s specific interest in and love for raptors grew during her banding internship with Hawk Ridge in 2020, and she is thrilled to be in Duluth for a third year to continue her Master’s degree studying the breeding productivity of American Kestrels. If she has any free time during the coming year, you’ll probably find Halle hiking the beautiful trails of the Northwoods with her trusty binoculars.
Julia Luger, Naturalist
Julia was HRBO’s first Environmental Education Trainee in 2014 – and is very excited to be back for another season on the Ridge as the Sunday Lead Naturalist. After her season at Hawk Ridge, Julia spent time at Wolf Ridge ELC, in Homer, AK and in Yosemite National Park working as an Environmental Educator. She is happy to be back in Duluth and is looking forward to another sharing the magic of the migration. When she is not on the ridge, you can find Julia biking, hiking, paddling, gardening, reading, and hanging out with her cat and tortoise.
Sean McLaughlin, Counter
Sean is from the ridge and valley province of Central Pennsylvania in the heart of hawk watching country. After years of birding the valleys, he discovered the wondrous migratory world in the air above. He has been a volunteer counter at Stone Mountain hawk watch, Bald Eagle hawk watch, and official counter at Tussey Mountain and West Skyline hawk watches. Sean has spent time in the north woods at Northland College, and is thrilled to spend the fall in Duluth.
Peter Mundale, Naturalist
Peter is from Blaine, Minnesota and has been fascinated by the outdoors since he was a little kid. As a little 8 year old reading Peterson Field guides, Peter would come to Hawk Ridge every fall with his family to observe the migration! Over a decade later and still obsessed with Birds, he has returned to Duluth and Hawk Ridge! As a Freshman at UMD, last year Peter volunteered with Hawk Ridge at the Overlook with visitors and at the banding station learning about owl banding. He is currently studying at the University of Minnesota Duluth, majoring in Biology: Ecology, Evolution, and Behavioral Sciences, and is a member of the UMD Marching Band & UMD Pep Band, Vice President of the UMD Bird Club, and an Undergraduate Research Assistant in a study involving Common Redpolls. When he’s not birding (which is rare), Peter enjoys Fly Fishing, Hiking, Snowshoeing, Canoeing, Climbing, and Photography.
Sarah Needles, Trainee
Sarah grew up in Davis, CA and graduated from UC Santa Cruz with a degree in Environmental Studies. An ornithology class sparked her passion for bird conservation and research, which prompted her to intern at two nearby songbird banding stations. In addition to banding, Sarah has participated in Mono Lake’s Intermountain West Shorebird Surveys and has monitored a breeding colony of Double-crested Cormorants in the Bay Area. For her senior thesis, she used tracking and land cover data from South America to study the movement and habitat use of Orinoco Geese and Black Skimmers. In her free time, you can find her hiking, crocheting, and reading. Sarah is super excited to experience fall migration in Minnesota!
Lisa Oakland – Lead Visitor Services Specialist
This is Lisa’s fifth year working at Hawk Ridge. For many years before she was hired she could be found up at the Ridge every fall to watch the migration and reconnect with staff, volunteers, and friends. She was raised in Duluth, not far from Hawk Ridge, in a family that spent a lot of time outdoors, especially enjoying frequent camping trips every summer. She came to love birding as an adult through the influence of her wife and her father, who was a Hawk Ridge board member and avid birder. Lisa has many years of retail/customer service experience. Her love of birding, customer experiences and love of interacting with people makes the merchandise trailer a perfect place for her to be in the fall. She lives in Cloquet, MN with her wife Barb and a fiesta cat. They enjoy spending free time camping with the cat, birding, and time outdoors in general-usually with binoculars. When not pursuing these activities, she can be found with a good book in hand.
Emily Pavlovic, Research Volunteer
Emily grew up in Northwest Indiana and got a BA in Biochemistry from Earlham College. Since then she has taught environmental education at various nature centers across the country. While working for the Audubon Society her love for birds and specifically raptors grew. Emily completed her master’s degree in Integrated Biosciences at UMD in 2022. She conducted her thesis research at Hawk Ridge which was focused on determining natal origins and migratory patterns for raptors using stable isotope analysis. She loves spending time at Hawk Ridge and is excited to continue helping with research in the fall! Emily lives with her husband, Sean, and their bluetick coonhound, Ezra. They enjoy hiking, cooking (and eating), and learning new skills! Emily is really grateful for all of the support from the HRBO Crew!
Allie Pesano, Research Volunteer
Allie grew up in Syracuse, NY, obtained a B.S. in Wildlife Biology from Unity College, and has traveled the country working on various avian ecology projects. She first joined Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory (HRBO) as a banding trainee in 2016. With this experience she discovered a passion for raptor migration and a home-away-from-home in Duluth and the HRBO community. This then led her to working with HawkWatch International in 2017, where she trapped, banded, and counted migrating raptors at the Goshute Mountains migration site in Nevada. She was excited to join HRBO again in 2018 as a bander, primarily running the Moose Valley station. Most recently, Allie graduated this with her Master’s of Science in Integrated Biosciences at the University of Minnesota Duluth. In collaboration with Hawk Ridge, Allie’s research utilized microsatellites and satellite transmitters to elucidate the probabilistic origins of Minnesota’s migratory Red-tailed Hawks, with a special focus on individuals with B.j. abieticola and dark-morph phenotypes.
Sophie Richardson, Naturalist
Sophie grew up in northern Minnesota and currently studies English, Biology, and Sustainability at the College of St. Scholastica in Duluth. Her love for both wildlife and the outdoors has been present her entire life. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, running, camping, birding, biking (pretty much anything outdoors). She has worked at both Hawk Ridge as a naturalist and Wildwoods Wildlife Rehabilitation in the nursery. Sophie is not entirely sure what she’ll do in the future, but she is sure it will be in the environmental realm. She is excited to return to Hawk Ridge this fall and continue educating people from all over the world on the importance of this special place.
Doris Rodriguez, Banding Apprentice
Doris is from Long Beach, California and spent the majority of her adult life in Dallas, Texas where she graduated with a B.S. in Ecology for Environmental Science from the University of North Texas. After graduating, she interned at a Raptor Rehabilitation Center in Northern Texas, where she quickly found her passion for birds and the importance of their preservation. Despite the significance of helping birds in a clinical setting she sought out making a change by approaching these challenges with additional scientific fundamentals. This led her to banding songbirds, woodpeckers, and an occasional small raptor with Point Blue Conservation Science out in the Point Reyes National Seashore. Her interests then led her to combine both passions for wildlife rehab and banding out in Kauai as a Seabird Technician with Save Our Shearwaters – working with critically endangered native Hawaiian bird species. Doris then moved onto the Sierras where she helped conduct occupancy and reproductive surveys for both California Spotted Owls and Northern Goshawks. Now she is experiencing the exciting possibilities of Northern Minnesota and the wonderful world of raptor banding!
Gracie Sangmeister, Count Interpreter/Relief Counter
Gracie grew up just outside of Philadelphia, PA, and graduated from Juniata College in 2021. After studying for two semesters at her school’s field station, where she spent 24/7 in the woods of central Pennsylvania, she truly developed a love for the natural world. She started hawk watching as the official counter at Bake Oven Knob in the Lehigh Valley region of PA in the Fall of ’21, then spent the last two springs counting with the Mackinac Straits Raptor Watch, helping to develop their recently established site on Mackinac Island (a site that she considers to be “her hawk watch”).
She started at Hawk Ridge as a migration counter last year and has lived in Duluth ever since. This summer, she has helped out with MAPS banding at Hawk Ridge and has dipped her toes into the education side of things by working at the Sugarloaf Cove Nature Center on the North Shore. She is excited to dive into count interpretation and spend the fall doing one thing she loves: yelling about raptors. When not talking your ear off about birds, she can be found hiking, paddleboarding, crocheting, or reading cheesy romance novels on the beach.
Chris Schnurbusch, Naturalist
Chris Schnurbusch grew up in St. Louis, MO and graduated from the University of Central Missouri in 2022 with her B.S. in Conservation Biology. This is her second year on the Hawk Ridge Education staff. She’s always had a passion for birds from a young age, always listening for Barred Owl calls late at night and watching Starlings at the feeders in her backyard. Her passion truly ignited when she found an injured Brown-Headed Cowbird and took it to a sanctuary; she released him back into the wild about a month and a half later. Now they’re among her favorite birds, along with Common Nighthawks and Ruddy Ducks. This past spring, she helped the WBS in St. Louis with songbird banding, working as both a scribe and extracter. When she’s not birding, she enjoys hiking, reading, writing, and drawing
Valerie Slocum, Volunteer Coordinator
Valerie grew up in Battle Creek, MI (aka the cereal capital of the world) with a love of the outdoors and the living world. She received her B.A.A. in Earth Science and Outdoor and Environmental Recreation from Central Michigan University. Valerie has spend the majority of her career both teaching educational programs as well as working with educational raptors at facilities such as Kalamazoo Nature Center, Eagle Bluff Environmental Learning Center, the Lake Superior Zoo, where she also served as the Volunteer Manager, and currently at Wildwoods Wildlife Rehabilitation. Volunteering has always played a big role in her life and began holding regular volunteer jobs when she was 15. She believes that volunteering is one of the most fulfilling activities that people can participate in. Valerie began volunteering with Hawk Ridge in 2013 and is very excited to work with all of the amazing volunteers this year! Her favorite bird is the Turkey Vulture, and if there’s anything you want to know, please ask her because she loves to tell anyone she can about these amazing creatures!
Jamie Tigges, Naturalist
Jamie comes from Iowa and is a University of Iowa alumni with a BS in Environmental Sciences and Biology and current graduate student at the University of Minnesota-Duluth in the Masters of Environmental Outdoor Education program. He’s been banding and helping lead ornithologically focused events since 2018 at Iowa Lakeside Laboratory. He’s excited for the upcoming year and being able to help out again at Hawk Ridge. After a summer of hanging out with Hartley Nature Center kiddos Jamie is excited for the fall migration season!
Caroline Urban, Naturalist
Caroline grew up in Plymouth, MN and wishes she had discovered her love of birds sooner. In college she had the epiphany that she was a bird nerd, and ever since she regrets every time she walks out the door without binoculars. Caroline worked as a naturalist at Wolf Ridge ELC in Finland, MN for two years where she was able to combine her two passions: birds and teaching. While not leading kids on bird hikes she learned how to band birds, and continued the momentum as a bird banding intern in northern New Mexico. She currently works at North Shore Community School in Duluth as the Environmental Educator and hopes all her students will become birders like her. Along with banding birds Caroline enjoys knitting, photography, reading, and writing letters to friends.
Abbie Valine, Lead Bander
Abbie Valine first discovered birds in her second-grade science class and never looked back. Since graduating from the University of Northwestern—St. Paul with a B.S. in biology, Abbie has spent field seasons across the country working with species such as cerulean warblers, Henslow’s sparrows, and Florida scrub-jays. After completing the Hawk Ridge banding traineeship in 2019, Abbie returned to trap at the Moose Valley station for two seasons, then spent a season running Intermountain Bird Observatory’s Lucky Peak station in the mountains of Idaho. She is now thrilled to return to Hawk Ridge in a new position of lead raptor bander! When not birding, Abbie enjoys reading, knitting, playing the flute, and thinking about shrikes.
Tania Womack, Visitor Services Specialist
Former United States Marine that is from Hawaii. I love everything outdoors – animals, plants, activities including hiking, fishing, and kayaking. I’m probably the only US Marine you will ever meet that still can hula dance.
Sarah Wood, Naturalist
Originally from Louisiana, Sarah has migrated often in search of adventure. After obtaining a BA in history from LSU, she volunteered in the Marshall Islands as an English teacher, traveled to
all fifty states, worked in the fishing industry in Alaska, worked with horses and children in Appalachia, earned her SCUBA certification in Honduras, road-tripped around the Great Lakes and eastern Canada, lived in Mexico City to improve her Spanish, and worked with non-releasable raptors at a nature center in Kansas. Last summer she moved up to Duluth to work at Hawk Ridge and loved it so much she decided to stick around, working at the Sax-Zim Bog and the Lake Superior Zoo. She enjoys observing all birds in their natural habitats, but raptors are her favorite, and she’s thrilled to be back on the ridge this fall. In her free time, she enjoys running, reading, writing, hiking, camping in her hammock, making buttermilk biscuits, and playing her guitar and singing at various bluegrass jams around town.