President of the Oklahoma Numismatic Association (ONA)
My coin collecting began around the age of 8, and by the time I was 11 my collection was shaping up nicely. At that time, my collection consisted of several modern proof sets, a couple of Olympic commemorative silver dollars, and various loose coins like Indian Head Cents, Buffalo Nickels, Susan B. Anthony dollars, and the occasional 1964 silver Kennedy half dollar. One of my favorite activities at this age was looking for Wide-rimmed Susan B. Anthony dollars and searching my mother’s penny jars for wheat cents and silver dimes.
After high school, I attended Grinnell College in Iowa where I obtained a BA in Economics. To get a taste of law before I entered law school, I took a position with the largest law firm in Austin, Texas. Two years of that verified to myself that I was headed down the wrong path. I was on the wrong side of the window!
So, I joined AmeriCorps and spent 6 months building trails and trail structures across State Parks in Texas – just to get outside! That experience set me on a path of youth education and leadership with Northwest Youth Corps, based out of Eugene, OR. Subsequently, I spent a season as the Wilderness Crew Leader position with the Chelan Ranger District in Washington. After three consecutive years of living in the backcountry, I decided to come out to shower, shave, and get a master’s degree. To see a gallery of my travels, check this out!
Getting accepted to Oregon State University’s College of Forestry was a dream come true; and finishing my masters degree was even more rewarding! My research investigates the role of forests in Earth’s water and nutrient cycles, primarily within the Ouachita Mountains of SE Oklahoma and SW Arkansas. The dream gets better, though!
I’m now a PhD student at the University of Oklahoma where we use satellites to study ecosystems and land us on large scales. You can check out our Earth Observation and Modeling Facility, which is in the Department of Microbiology and Plant Biology.
My other hobbies include nature photography and bird watching.