Alaska Public Lands Office
Michelle grew up in the “Gateway to the Sierras” near Fresno, CA, where Yosemite, Kings Canyon, and Sequoia National Parks are all within a couple hours away. Her childhood of camping, hiking, and jumping into lakes led her to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Biology at Humboldt State University. Through this program and the seasonal fieldwork it granted her, Michelle has surveyed Willow Flycatchers along the Kern River, mist-netted Hoary Bats in Humboldt Redwoods State Park, monitored Island Scrub-Jays on Santa Cruz Island, and tracked Painted Buntings with geolocators in the Southeast. Michelle began to feel a pull towards education and outreach, leading her to work as a Naturalist for an outdoor science school and a conservation interpreter at the Fresno Chaffee Zoo. The CVA Program incorporates so many of her passions in outdoor advocacy, and Michelle is eager to explore the Alaskan wilds this year through trail running, rock climbing, open water swimming, and skate skiing.