EPIC Intern Profiles – The Bureau of Land Management

Renee Barker

Renee Barker

ACE BLM Red Cliffs Recreation and Interpretation Ranger Intern

Renee graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2013 with a B.S. in Environmental Science, Policy and Management and minors in Spanish and Sustainability Studies. Much of her coursework focused on GIS applications in conservation resource management as well as sustainable tourism management. While in school, Renee worked in the Sustainability Office on campus where she helped to develop educational and outreach materials such as an online interactive map to highlight sustainability features on campus. Upon graduation, she interned with a local MN city, surveying trees and preparing a plan to manage and remove invasive species, specifically the Emerald Ask Borer. In her current ACE internship, Renee is working at the BLM Red Cliffs Natural Conservation Area. There she helps to direct visitors, provides information about nearby recreational and camping opportunities, helps to manage the campground and hiking areas, and works with park rangers on various projects. Renee, like most of our ACE interns, loves outdoor activities, especially if other people join her. Her favorites include biking, hiking, playing sports, climbing, camping, and photography. She also loves to travel and experience new places and things as much as possible. When stuck inside, she enjoys cooking, reading, and playing board games.

Brandon Foster

Brandon Foster

ACE BLM Archaeology and Range Management Fellow, Bakersfield Field Office

Brandon graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania in 2012 with a B.A. in History and B.A. in Anthropology, with a focus in Archaeology. He hopes to go back to school to attain a Master’s degree in Archaeology and continue working for the federal government, where he believes he has the best chance of protecting and conserving archaeological sites. Prior to joining ACE, Brandon completed two archaeology internships with the Student Conservation Association— one with Klamath National Forest in CA and one with the Tongass National Forest in AK. Currently, Brandon is an ACE Archaeology and Range Management Fellow with the BLM California at the Bakersfield Field Office. Through this fellowship, he conducts archaeological surveys for grazing allotments to assess any potential damages to archaeological sites from cattle grazing and proposes mitigation for any sites that are damaged. He has also conducted archaeological surveys for several other projects; monitored sites while creating site records and survey reports; and has worked with various Tribal members and contracting companies. Brandon loves to hike, explore, and travel in his off time, in addition to kayaking, taking photos, reading, watching movies, and playing guitar.

Angela “Angie” Lee

Angela “Angie” Lee

ACE AmeriCorps BLM Recreation/Restoration Technician Intern, Palm Springs Field Office

Angie graduated from Virginia Tech in 2013 with a BS in Environmental Resource Management. During her college career, Angie studied within the Department of Natural Resources and Environment focusing on natural resource management, forestry, and watershed management. She also studied abroad in New Zealand for a semester focusing on ecology and sustainable forestry. Post College, Angie worked with ACE in the Conservation Corps as an AmeriCorps member working on trail building, trail maintenance, campground maintenance, fencing, invasive species control, and revegetation/rehabilitation projects.

Angie is currently working for the Bureau of Land Management in the Palm Springs Field Office as the ACE AmeriCorps Recreation/Restoration Technician Intern. Here, she manages the in-field data collection, GIS points of old restoration and monitor sites, voluntary wilderness incursions, the monitoring of OHV use in areas of critical concern, the signing of OHV voluntary routes, the planting in the Dos Palmas oasis, seed collecting and inventory, and data collection of revegetation success.

When away from work, you can find Angie out camping, hiking, picnicking, watching movies, exploring downtown, and sipping espresso at a local coffee shop.

Chris Podesta

Chris Podesta

ACE BLM Recreation and Wilderness Intern, Bakersfield Field Office

Chris graduated from the University of Massachusetts- Amherst in the Fall of 2010. In his course of studies he acquired a Bachelor of Science in Natural Resource Studies along with minors in Plant and Soil Sciences and Anthropology. Since graduation Chris has lived in a variety of places including a stint teaching English as second language in Guatemala. More recently Chris has served with ACE Flagstaff on a variety of conservation related projects throughout Northern Arizona and Southern Utah; such as trimming down the density Ponderosa Pines in a fuels reduction project, trail construction and maintenance, and removal of invasive species, such as Tamarisk and Russian Olive. In June of 2013, Chris finished an internship as a Trails Technician for the Catalina Island Conservancy on Santa Catalina Island in California. He was responsible for the maintenance of trails, island wide, including the crown gem of the island, The Trans-Catalina Trail.

Currently, Chris is serving as a Recreation and Wilderness Intern with the Bureau of Land Management in Bakersfield, California. Responsibilities include beefing up BLM presence in wilderness areas, checking for and documenting motorized trespasses, collecting data on users and trails, and being part of the decision making process for areas district wide. Chris has always had an affinity for conservation and likes to look at systems as a whole. He enjoys traveling, both domestically and abroad, also kayaking, backpacking, camping, live music, and devoting spare time to the study and practice of permaculture.

Elizabeth Dalley

Elizabeth Dalley

ACE BLM Youth Program Coordinator Intern, Phoenix District Office

Elizabeth graduated from Oberlin College with a degree in Geology. During her college career Elizabeth took classes in the environmental studies department, was an active member of the Oberlin Student Cooperative Association and studied abroad at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand. As a National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) alum, life-long camp attendee and counselor, Elizabeth has a strong passion for the outdoors and conservation work. She loves teaching youth about those passions and encouraging them to explore career opportunities in resource management. Elizabeth got started with ACE working out of the BLM Bakersfield Office, where she was the Recreation and Geology Intern, monitoring recreation and mining use in the Keysville Special Recreation Area. She also spent eight months as a farm apprentice at Radical Roots Farm in Virginia, is an avid hiker and backpacker and completed a month long NOLS project in Alaska. Currently, she is serving as the Youth Program Coordinator for the BLM Phoenix District Office coordinating and planning youth programs such as the Conservation and Resource Management Field Certification Program and River Pathways in partnership with Audubon Arizona. Elizabeth enjoys most things that get her outside, especially hiking and backpacking, gardening and playing Frisbee.

Alison Foster

Alison Foster

ACE BLM Range and Natural Resource Fellow, St. George Field Office

Alison Foster received her Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science with a minor in Spanish from the University of Vermont in 2011. As an undergraduate Alison studied abroad in Ecuador where she completed field work comparing the vegetative ecology of the Amazon, Galapagos, Páramo highlands, and Intag cloud forest. She is passionate about landscape scale resource management and the challenges resulting from a multiple use mission for public lands. Alison has pursued this passion in a variety of government settings, from working in a Congressional Office in Washington to coordinating educational events with the National Park Service and the National Geographic Society. Prior to her service with ACE, Alison worked for the National Park Service in several capacities: concurrently at Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park and the National Park Service Conservation Study Institute (CSI) as a Unilever National Parks Congressional Intern through the Student Conservation Association; as an organizer of BioBlitz at Rocky Mountain National Park; and as a contract researcher for both CSI and Rocky Mountain. Alison plans to attend Colorado State University in the Graduate Degree Program in Ecology to study spruce, Douglas-fir, and western bark beetle kill in Rocky Mountain National Park and Arapaho-Roosevelt National Forest. Currently, Alison is serving as the ACE Range and Natural Resource Fellow with the BLM at the St. George Field Office in St George, Utah. There she gathers and analyzes data from trend monitoring plots, riparian monitoring transects, and utilization plots. She is also involved in land health assessments and wildlife/vegetation projects. Ultimately, she hopes to work for a federal agency as an ecologist or resource manager working on a landscape scale. In her spare time Alison enjoys mountain biking, backcountry skiing, Ultimate Frisbee, hiking, and eating ice cream.

Thomas Lilly

Thomas Lilly

ACE BLM GIS Technician Fellow, St. George Field Office

Tom graduated from Northern Michigan University in 2012 with a BS in Geographic Information Science. At college he worked for the geography department as a student assistant and mapped outdoor recreation projects. After college, he worked for The Nature Conservancy as a Preserve Management Intern. There he helped manage and maintain some of the most beautiful places in Northern Michigan. He has always been fascinated with cartography, exploring this place called Earth, and the ability to map all that is out there. Currently, Tom works for the Bureau of Land Management in St. George, Utah as a GIS Technician. At the St. George BLM he manages databases, runs GIS analysis, and creates maps for field office and public use. When away from work, you can find Tom riding a mountain bike, skiing, fly fishing, camping, reading, and generally exploring everything.

Jazmine Lakey

Jazmine Lakey

ACE BLM Environmental Education Intern, Phoenix District Office

Jazmine recently graduated from Phoenix College with a degree in Environmental Science. Currently, Jazmine serves as the ACE Environmental Education Intern with the BLM Phoenix District Office in Phoenix, Arizona. Passionate about conservation and environment stewardship, Jazmine hopes to continue to cultivate her career in environmental education or in conservation crew leadership. In her ACE internship with the Bureau of Land Management, Jazmine works directly with assisting with the coordination of the BLM Arizona Conservation and Resource Management Field Certification Program (Field School). As a Winter 2013 graduate of Field School herself, Jazmine brings her own hands-on conservation experience to the new youth participating in the environmental stewardship education and training program. Additionally, Jazmine assists with teaching local high school students about desert riparian areas in the Audubon and BLM River Pathways program. Jazmine loves reading, gardening, camping, hiking, traveling, and working with youth of all ages.

Harrison Friedman

Harrison Friedman

ACE BLM CA Wilderness and Recreation Fellow

Harrison graduated from Duke University in 2012 with a Bachelor of Science in Biology with a concentration in Ecology. Since graduation, Harrison has spent two seasons as a Biological Technician at Cedar Breaks National Monument, a small NPS unit in Southern Utah, working amongst other things, on initiating a wilderness character monitoring program for the wilderness resources in the monument, collecting baseline wilderness character data, controlling exotic species, and working on various revegetation projects. Prior to this work with the NPS, Harrison worked as a wilderness monitoring intern for the US Forest Service in the wildernesses of the San Juan National Forest, as well as a vegetation monitoring intern with SOLV, an Oregon non-profit dedicated to wetland restoration and remediation. When he is not working, Harrison enjoys exploring little-visited sections of public lands, mountain biking, and long-distance, ultra-light backpacking. Starting fall of 2013, Harrison will be serving as the Wilderness and Recreation Fellow for the Bureau of Land Management Bakersfield Field Office in Bakersfield, California. In this position, Harrison will be responsible for working closely with the BLM Resource Specialists to implement inventory and monitoring strategies for tracking wilderness character and recreation activities in the numerous wilderness areas, including segments of the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail of the BLM Bakersfield Field Office. Long term, Harrison plans to continue to pursue a career in public land management and wilderness conservation and management.

Rebecca “Becca” Conner

Rebecca “Becca” Conner

ACE BLM Utah Education and Outreach Intern, Cleveland Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry National Natural Landmark

Becca recently graduated from Connecticut College with a Bachelor of Arts in Biology- with a focus in Ecology- and Anthropology. As a scholar in the Goodwin-Niering Center for the Environment, she became interested in hands-on sustainability education. During college, Becca participated the School for Field Studies In Kenya and Tanzania, where she studied wildlife management and sustainability issues associated with national parks and the modern Maasai. She gained experience in the field of education and outreach when she worked for the Barrow Arctic Science Consortium in Barrow, Alaska, bringing local children into the field to learn about current scientific studies in their environment. Becca is currently serving as the ACE Education and Outreach Intern with the Cleveland-Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry in Price, Utah with the Bureau of Land Management. When she’s not giving tours at the CLDQ, she is bringing the quarry and its amazing paleontological resources to eager fourth grade student classrooms in Carbon and Emery County. She is also working on integrating educational activities into exhibits in USU Eastern’s Prehistoric Museum. When she is not educating communities and visitors about Utah’s paleontology, Becca’s interests include hiking, exploring, sketching, and listening to live music.

James Lynn

James Lynn

ACE AmeriCorps BLM California El Mirage OHV Trail Technician Intern

James is serving as the ACE El Mirage OHV Trail Technician AmeriCorps Intern with the Bureau of Land Management with the Barstow Field Office in California. James studies Computer Science and hopes to continue with environmental sciences and ultimately pursue a career that combines both computer technology and environmental conservation in relation to land and nature resource management. He is an avid camper and nature lover and has been a longtime BLM Trail Steward volunteer for the El Mirage, Barstow, Johnson Valley, and Dumont Dunes recreation areas for six years. In his current ACE Internship, James is responsible for developing and implementing a trail and lakebed maintenance plan for the Off-Road Vehicle (OHV) trails within the BLM El Mirage OHV Area. James regularly collects and analyzes ecological and recreational use field data and compiles soil reports that support the multi-use management of the OHV recreation area.

Jenna Allred

Jenna Allred

ACE BLM Utah Rangeland Invasive Plant Management Technician Fellow

Jenna recently graduated from the University of California, Davis, with a Bachelor or Science in Evolution, Ecology, and Biodiversity. During her time in college, Jenna worked in a research lab investigating invasive march grass in the California Bay Area. Upon graduation, Jenna worked with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in the Northern San Francisco Bay conducting restoration projects, butterfly surveys, and greenhouse operations. Jenna first came to ACE in January 2013 when she began a six-month internship on Catalina Island as a member of the Invasive Species Management Team for the Catalina Island Conservancy’s Catalina Habitat Improvement & Restoration Program (CHIRP). In this position, Jenna treated and removed the invasive species of the island on roadsides and remote backcountry areas. Currently, Jenna is serving as the ACE Rangeland Invasive Plant Management Technician Fellow with the BLM Moab Field Office in southeast Utah. In this dynamic field position, Jenna is responsible for varied desert invasive species monitoring and treatment, including river- rafting treatments along the Colorado River. When Jenna is not defending the take over of invasive plants, she enjoys going hiking, road biking, and watching baseball and one day hopes to serve on the California Invasive Plant Council.

Hannah Cowan

Hannah Cowan

ACE BLM Utah State Office Paleontology Permitting Fellow

Hannah graduated from St. Lawrence University in 2011 with majors in Geology and Biology and a thesis in Paleontology. Throughout her college career, Hannah travelled to Ohio for paleontological and sedimentary research, the Bahamas to study coral reef ecology, Massachusetts for a mammalogy lab, and Alaska for glacial studies. Post College, Hannah worked in the White Mountain National Forest as a Naturalist Guide, teaching outdoor education on multi-day backpacking trips for the Appalachian Mountain Club, and shared her love of skiing working as a PSIA certified Ski Instructor at Snowbird Ski Resort. In her free time, Hannah can be found backpacking, trail running, backcountry skiing, mountain biking and reading. Hannah now works with the Bureau of Land Management in the Utah State Office as the ACE Paleontology Permitting Fellow where she manages the databases, issues permits, creates GIS survey maps, develops outreach programs, and works closely with the cultural resources team.

Mason Peebles

Mason Peebles

ACE BLM Range and Natural Resource Fellow, St. George Field Office

Mason recently graduated with the designation of Cum Laude from Oregon State University. He earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Rangeland Ecology and Management as well as a Minor in Soil Science. Mason has a desire to manage lands so that they can provide for the public while being sustainable. Currently, Mason is serving as the ACE Range and Natural Resource Fellow with the BLM at the St. George Field Office in St George, Utah. Some of his current duties include gathering and analyzing data from trend monitoring plots, riparian monitoring transects, and utilization plots. He is also involved in land health assessments, and a wildlife/vegetation project in the field office. In the past, Mason has had many jobs in the land management field. While he was in college, Mason worked for a private firefighting contractor before getting a job doing wildland firefighting with the U.S. Forest Service. He very much enjoyed the hard physical work and adrenaline rush of being near large forest fires. After graduating from college, Mason worked at a private land management consulting firm based in Gillette, Wyoming. This job consisted of doing baseline plant studies as well as endangered species studies, and mine reclamation monitoring. Mason also worked on a cattle ranch in Eastern Oregon. While at the Bear Creek Ranch, Mason got to help with calving, haying, feeding, fencing, and all of the random jobs that need to be done on a working ranch. As you can probably guess, Mason likes being outdoors. He enjoys hunting, fishing, camping, and spending time with friends.

Kristen Doyle

Kristen Doyle

ACE BLM Arizona Wildlife and Natural Resource Management Intern

Kristen is the ACE Wildlife and Natural Resource Management Intern for the Bureau of Land Management Hassayampa Field Office located in Phoenix, Arizona. She is a recent graduate from Colorado State University with a Bachelor of Science in Fish, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology. As a student, Kristen worked for the US Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station on a variety of biodiversity, fire ecology, forestry, restoration, and entomology research projects both in the lab and the field. Since graduating, Kristen has worked leading place-based environmental education at the Clemson University’s Youth Learning Institute in South Carolina, as well as working as a Biological Technician for the US Forest Service Huron Shores Ranger Station in Michigan. She is experienced in an array of ecological monitoring and surveying for threatened and endangered bird, reptile, insect, and mussel species, as well as conducting a variety of habitat restoration projects. In her free time, Kristen enjoys hiking, bicycling, traveling, collecting and mounting insects, and spending way too much time making the perfect Halloween costume. She is very excited to be serving as the Wildlife and Natural Resource Management Intern for the BLM Arizona with the monitoring of desert riparian areas and assisting with the River Pathways environmental education program with BLM and Audubon Arizona.

Kevin Farrands

Kevin Farrands

ACE AmeriCorps BLM Arizona Sonoran Desert Monument Ranger Intern

Kevin is the ACE BLM Arizona Ranger Intern for the Sonoran Desert Monument in southern Arizona. Upon entering his college career at Eastern Connecticut State University, Kevin’s initial career goal was to work as a Game Warden and conservation law enforcement. However, due to a lack of environmental and conservation law enforcement courses, he pursued general law enforcement and received a Bachelor of Science in Sociology and Criminology. Throughout his undergraduate, Kevin worked for the State Parks Division of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protections, first as a Ranger, Crew Leader, and eventually as Seasonal Park Manager for a district covering over 15,000 acres. During college, Kevin interned with the Connecticut State Police. This position patrolling with Highway Troopers was very beneficial and encouraged Kevin to continue to build his professional experience and apply it to natural resource and conservation protection. In spring of 2013, Kevin served as ACE Ranger Intern for the BLM St. George Field Office at the Red Cliffs Recreation Area in southwest Utah. Kevin is currently serving as the ACE BLM Arizona Ranger – AmeriCorps Intern for the Sonoran Desert Monument in southern Arizona working directly with the BLM with Reclaiming Our Arizona Monuments (Project ROAM). In this ranger position, Kevin will be responsible for providing services for public land users as well as identifying and restoring illegal roads and cleaning up trash that are a direct result of the illegal drug and human smuggling activity across federal land. Kevin is very excited and motivated to continue to build his career in conservation law enforcement on America’s public lands and protect the wildlife and natural resources that cannot protect themselves!

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