Where are you from, originally?
I was born in Morristown, NJ. My family moved to Baltimore when I was four years old.
Professional area of expertise:
I received my undergraduate degree in civil engineering with a focus on environmental engineering and water resources. My past professional work has including projects in the areas of sustainable development, ecosystem restoration and environmental outreach and education in vulnerable ecosystems in the Chesapeake Bay watershed and Caribbean region.
What drew you to Biohabitats?
I first was introduced to Biohabitats after I learned of the work they did to restore Stony Run, a creek that I frequented growing up. After graduating college, I knew I wanted to be a part of an organization that was truly committed to restoring ecosystems and protecting the environment. The mission and values of Biohabitats strongly resonate with my own personal values and I’m so excited to be a member of the team!
Any documentary about food, travel or the environment, bonus points if it touches on all three! “Wasted! The Story of Food Waste” is a particular favorite focused on the major challenges with food waste in the US and of course any David Attenborough film.
Go-to stress reliever:
Getting out into nature or working in my garden. I also enjoy sharpening my culinary skills in the kitchen using local produce and goods.
Something people may not know about you:
I am obsessed with my garden! A small project that I started a few years ago has slowly taken over my backyard. The satisfaction from watching a tiny seed grow into something that can continually provide nourishment is hard to beat! I love the summer, when I can just go out into the garden and pick vegetables to be cooked for dinner that evening or snack on peas and carrots as my dog and I check out what has sprouted that day!
Do you have a role model?
When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to save the coral reefs! I have always had a passion for the environment and more specifically the ocean. Going on a trip to the Caribbean and exploring the tropical reefs in the area and learning about human destruction of these systems (and the greater environment as a whole) ignited my passion for protecting the environment and working towards saving our planet.
Do you have a favorite ecosystem? If so, what is it and why?
Tropical coral reefs, more specifically the reef ecosystems in South Eleuthera in The Bahamas. I lived in the area for a few years and one of my favorite pastimes was diving and exploring the reefs. There is a whole world that we know so little about beneath the surface, and the ecosystem offers endless exploration!
Do you have a favorite critter or plant? If so, what is it and why?
One of my favorite plants is the
, particularly the ones that successfully grow in my backyard! Whale sharks (Rhincodon typus) are a favorite critter because of their grace and beauty.
Do you do volunteer work? If so, tell us about it.
I work with the Claire Marie Foundation, an organization that raises awareness and education about young adult melanoma and the importance of being proactive in your health. I also volunteer with The Chesapeake Bay Foundation and participate in their oyster cleaning and tree planting events across the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
What’s the craziest thing that has ever happened to you (that you’re comfortable sharing publicly)?
I haven’t had too many crazy things happen to me, but I have chosen to do a number of crazy things (many of which my parents weren’t too thrilled about…) This includes skydiving in Australia, bungee jumping in New Zealand and deep diving in the Caribbean! I’m a bit of an adrenaline junkie.
Do you have a pet? If so, would you like to share any details about him/her?
I have one dog, Riley, and two cats, Max and Oliver. However, my cats are more like “dog-cats” and have many dog-like qualities from being raised with a dog. They are all best friends!
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Meet Landscape Designer Emma Podietz
Get to Know Ecologist Caroline Hildebrand
Get to know Water Resources Engineer Nate Wadley
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