| Areas of Expertise
| Favorite Quote
“Let it be.”
– The Beatles
| Job Title
Supervisor of Outreach and Cheetah Programs
Bachelor of Science from Michigan State in Zoology, with a concentration of Zoo and Aquarium Science
| Everyone deserves an opportunity to meet wildlife, and it’s our privilege to reach as many as possible
In kindergarten we had an art fair where we had to design a project relating to the theme of “Exploring New Horizons.” I drew a picture of myself “Exploring New Horizons with My Animal Friends” and I drew a bunch of geographically inaccurate animals going for a walk with me as I rode a horse. This moment served as proof that I would probably pursue a career working with animals, and definitely would never be an artist. My first internship at the Pittsburgh Zoo taught me that I needed to be in an environment where I could always be learning while at the same time educating the public about the wildlife around them and how to best protect it. Now, as Supervisor of Outreach and Cheetah Programs, I work in a dynamic environment where I’m allowed opportunities every day to work with the public and help inspire a passion for nature.
| Trees are always the answer.
My biggest challenges are always the ones that require me to have patience. I live my life at a fast pace and always have a million thoughts running through my mind. Remaining patient while awaiting resolution or accomplishments and having patience for others who are more thoughtful with their decisions has always been the most difficult thing for me. As I get older I realize that good things come with time, but it’s the gap in between that is the most difficult for me.
| Emotional Story
As a teenager I worked at a summer camp where I taught young girls to ride horses. One of my bosses saw my potential and put her trust in me, allowing me to train a lot of horses that weren’t the most solid with their temperaments and including me in on any medical treatments or emergencies. She’s the one who taught me to have confidence in myself and remain calm under stress, and I probably wouldn’t have come as far as I have without having her in my life. She was a brave role model who hardly ever lost her cool, even in the most desperate situations. She taught me how to work around animals safely and instilled a huge work ethic into me. Most importantly, she stressed how much she appreciated me as a human and accepted me for all of my weird quirks and habits and never judged me as a person. I wish that every girl could be as lucky to have someone in their life who motivates and encourages them the way that she did for me.
| Conservation Tip
Even small changes make a huge difference.
Be the mouse in the maze. If one method doesn’t work, keep going until you find a solution. You’ll appreciate the reward at the end even more. If you could be any animal, what would it be: A butterfly, so then I could have all the time in the world to stop and enjoy the flowers.
| If You Could Be Any Animal, What Would You Be?
Ha, off the cuff answer – a giant squid. We have a more detailed map of the surface of Mars than we do our own oceans! I’m so curious what are they doing down there!