Born and raised in Central Illinois I spent my off time, like most of my friends, at the local creek. Though I didn’t know it at the time, this is where my love for the water, and the organisms within, began.
My University of Illinois career began as an undergraduate in Civil & Environmental Engineering, until I was informed that there was a Fish & Wildlife Conservation Degree. The rest, as they say, is history. As an undergraduate, I had the privilege to work as a technician for the Illinois Natural History Survey splitting my time between the Research Pond Site, the Mollusk Collection, and performing fish and mussel surveys throughout the state. After a 2 year stent at WIU to obtain my master’s degree with Dr. Tim Spier (now at Murray St.), I began working full time at the INHS in 2011.
My research focuses on the conservation of native, non-game freshwater species. Specifically I research historical and current species distributions, best sampling techniques, life history, and temporal landscape changes.