Meet our newest Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Partnership members!

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SYRCL is thrilled to announce the recent arrival of three brilliant additions to the SYRCL team.  Monday was the first day of service for our new Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Partnership members Karl, Svetlana and Suzanne.  They will be at the helm of our River Monitoring, Restoration and River Ambassador programs, respectively.

Karl Ronning, SYRCL’s 2014-2015 River Monitoring Coordinator.

Karl grew up in St. Louis, Missouri and spent much of his time on the lakes and rivers of Minnesota and Missouri.  In college, he focused on Atmospheric Science at the University of Missouri-Columbia.  His interest in atmospheric systems and processes led him to work alongside the National Weather Service where he studied fire weather and worked with La Grande Weather Service forecasting meteorological conditions for ski resorts in Oregon.  Prior to joining SYRCL and the Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Partnership, Karl spent the past year as an AmeriCorps member with the National Civilian Community Corps.  Over the past twelve months he travelled throughout California and Hawaii working on various environmental and water conservation projects.  The River Monitoring season is just wrapping up, but if you would like to be a part of next year’s team, please contact Karl at [email protected].  Training for the 2015 season will be held next March.

Svetlana Vasilchenko, SYRCL’s 2014-2015 Restoration Coordinator.

Svetlana joins SYRCL from Boise, Idaho where she grew up and attended university. She has always had an interest in nature and how things work, which is why she chose to study biology at Boise State University.  While in school Svetlana conducted an independent research project where she studied the effect of nutrient cycling in the Sagebrush Steppe on dietary choices of Pygmy Rabbits.  She has been inspired to work with endangered and at-risk species, which is what sparked her interest in joining SYRCL as the Restoration Coordinator.  If you are passionate about restoring the natural systems of the Sierra Nevada, join Svetlana this coming year in one of the numerous volunteer projects she will organize like Aspen regeneration, willow-surveying or invasive species removal.  You may get in touch with her at [email protected] to learn more.

Suzanne Calkins, SYRCL’s 2014-2015 Stewardship Coordinator.

Suzanne hales from Southern California, where she attended Scripps College and received a degree in Fine Arts.  Suzanne recently made the move from Bishop, CA where she taught watershed studies to Inyo County students with the Eastern Sierra Watershed Project.  She also spent time volunteering with the Eastern Sierra Land Trust, Bishop Paiute Tribe and the Department of Fish and Wildlife.  Prior to moving to Nevada City, she worked as a gardener cultivating native plants, removing invasive species and maintaining several ponds that serve as nurseries for the endangered mountain yellow-legged frog.  She has previous experience as a Communications Coordinator with The Colburn School in Los Angeles and High Desert Test Site in Joshua Tree.  We are ecstatic that she will be coordinating the River Ambassador program in 2015 and representing SYRCL at our outreach events throughout the community.  If you would like to promote stewardship on the river or share SYRCL’s work with the community, please contact Suzanne at [email protected] to volunteer.

They each bring joyful enthusiasm for their positions and we are glad to have them join the SYRCL team!  We hope you get the chance to meet them soon.

SYRCL would like to thank the Sierra Nevada Alliance for managing the Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Partnership which supports fantastic people who serve organizations working to protect and restore the Sierras.

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