CNCC Chapter Leadership
Our chapter needs you! We are always looking for volunteer board and committee members - please email us at email@example.com to find out how you can get more involved in our chapter!
President: Erin Phillips
Green Diamond Resource Company
Erin is currently working for Green Diamond Resource Company as an Aquatic Biologist, specializing in fisheries. She is dedicated to monitoring, restoring and enhancing anadromous watersheds and has a passion for studying freshwater ecosystems. In the past, she has worked with state agencies, federal agencies, private companies and consulting firms as a Biologist supporting research studies on birds, fish, ungulates, mammals, plants and hydrology. She also has years of experience in the veterinary field. She is passionate about wildlife tracking, bird banding, spending time in the rivers and sea, gardening and running. Erin has a B.S. in Wildlife Conservation from Humboldt State University, and is a past treasurer for Conservation Unlimited, a student chapter of The Wildlife Society. Through her position as President, she strives to promote the collaboration of fellow scientists and to support a diverse approach to conservation. One of her life long goals is to bridge the gap between the scientific community and the general public through citizen science and land stewardship.
Past President: Jen Olson
Senior Environmental Scientist
California Department of Fish and Wildlife
Jen is a Senior Environmental Scientist serving as the Statewide Restoration Permitting Coordinator for CDFW's Cutting the Green Tape Program. Her work focuses on implementing permitting efficiencies to increase the pace and scale of restoration in California. Prior to working for CDFW, Jen worked as a Research Associate for the Montana Cooperative Wildlife Research Unit, where she worked as a field and lab supervisor in northern Arizona and Borneo. Her background is primarily in field ornithology (nest searching, mist-netting and banding) but she has experience with a variety of terrestrial and aquatic species and generally loves learning about anything natural history related. In her free time, Jen enjoys birding, running, and backpacking with her dog, Dipper.
Treasurer: Frank Fogarty
Humboldt State University
Frank Fogarty is an avian ecologist and Assistant Professor in the Wildlife Department at Humboldt State University. His is interested in songbird communities and their responses to potential disturbances including fire, climate change, cattle grazing, and habitat loss. He has primarily worked with bird communities in the mountains of the Great Basin and Sierra Nevada. He received his B.S. from University of Florida, and his M.S. and M.P.P. from University of Maryland, College Park. His doctoral thesis at University of California, Davis focused on the use of point count data to understand bird communities in the Great Basin, including their relation with fragmentation and loss of riparian habitat. Frank is committed to fostering an inclusive community for local wildlife professionals. He looks forward to using his position to help grow this community by providing opportunities for recent graduates and BIPOC biologists.
Secretary: Rebeca Becdach
Cal Poly Humboldt
Rebeca is a wildlife graduate student in the Spatial Ecology and Conservation Science Lab at Cal Poly Humboldt. Her thesis focuses on biological corridors and predator-prey interaction in Panama. She is broadly interested in mammalian carnivore habitat use and responses to human disturbance. In addition to her thesis work, she spends time researching gender equity and women in STEM issues in wildlife-related fields. Her B.S. is from Tufts University in Biology and Environmental Studies. Before starting her master’s, she worked with the USFWS inventory and monitoring program on vegetation surveys for important food species for waterfowl. When she is not in the lab, she enjoys hiking, embroidering, and tending to her many houseplants. Reach out to her if you’re a student wanting to get involved with CNCC or have any questions!
President Elect: Janelle Chojnacki
Janelle is a wildlife graduate student at HSU (Clucas lab), researching raven movement around snowy plover breeding areas. Janelle has also worked on CA State Parks’ wildlife team, and has 8+ years experience in field work in Costa Rica, Saipan, Mexico, Alabama, the Channel Islands, and Point Reyes, banding, tracking, and observing songbirds, with some small mammal and environmental work as well (reach out for advice on getting these jobs!)
Janelle has a B.S. in Conservation and Resource Studies (Environmental Justice) from UC Berkeley. In her spare time, she loves birding, hiking, whitewater kayaking, am getting into wildlife tracking, and playing soccer.
Membership Chair: Sara Moriarty-Graves
Cal Poly Humboldt
Sara is a wildlife graduate student in the Gunther Lab at Cal Poly Humboldt. Her thesis research is on how burned areas influence a mammalian community (mountain lion, black bear, elk, and deer) in the Klamath Mountain bioregion of northern California. She also works for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife on the Elk Project. Her B.S. is from Cal Poly Humboldt in Wildlife Management and Conservation. She has spent time on various projects- from collecting Louisiana black bear hair, weighing bat guano, processing barn owl photos, collecting elk scat, and conducting research on the temporal co-occurrence of fishers and foxes. In her spare time, she enjoys ax throwing, gardening, and backpacking with her favorite canid. Reach out to her if you’re a student wanting to get involved with CNCC or have any questions!
Section Representative: Elizabeth Meisman
Lizzi is a Wildlife Biologist working on a wide variety of environmental consulting projects. Areas of focus include birds, amphibians, and terrestrial mammals. Lizzi's wildlife biology experience draws on her time working with wildlife species at research institutions, bird observatories, and on private timberlands. She completed a B.S. in Wildlife Conservation Biology, with a minor in German Studies, from Humboldt State University in 2016. She has done research on habitat use of mesocarnivores, impacts of anthropogenic landscape change on osprey nesting success and nest site selection, and blood parasites in osprey nestlings. She is extremely active in her local community, and contributes to long-term monitoring in the area through volunteering at the Humboldt Bay Bird Observatory. In what little free time she has, she can be found in the woods hunting for birds with her partner and two dogs.
Being a big sister is deeply ingrained in her and she strives to help students and early-career professionals whenever possible. She serves on the Western Section Professional Development, Student Affairs (as Co-Chair), Diversity, Conservation Affairs, and the Annual Meeting Planning Committees, as well as the Quiz Bowl at the intergalactic TWS level. She is also in the current TWS Leadership Institute. She is always eager to share resources and information, so feel free to reach out at any point if you would like to learn more about these committees or other opportunities within the Chapter and Western Section!
Student Representative: Joseph Meihak
Social Media Chair: Sydney McCluskey
Cal Poly Humboldt
Sydney is a graduate student in the Clucas lab at Cal Poly Humboldt, where she focuses on small mammals in redwood forest ecosystems for her thesis research. She also works as a Biological Science Technician (Fish & Wildlife) for the U.S. Forest Service. Sydney has worked on projects examining habitat selection and movement of fishers (Pekania pennanti) and small mammal species in fragmented forests in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. In addition to her scientific pursuits, Sydney is an artist who enjoys painting and drawing and appreciates connecting science with art. During her free time, she likes to hike, swim, cook, and spend time with her daughter, dog, cat, chickens, and rabbit
Women of Wildlife & Diversity Chair: Madilyne Von Rotz
Conservation Committee Chair: Ho-Yi Wan