Class Year


Current Hometown:

Santa Fe, New Mexico

Job and Employer

Rio Grande Campaigner with WildEarth Guardians


With Guardians, I function as a campaign staffer in the Wild Rivers Program. We work to conserve water and protect the environment along the Rio Grande. Despite its name, the Great River often dries up due to overuse. Our goal is to keep the Rio Grande a living river. Unfortunately, the original laws around the river don’t include ecological protections. We work with many stakeholders in the area to keep water in the river for the environment, people, and endangered species, and to ensure a future in the region.

Community work & family

I’m outside all the time. To me, New Mexico is the most beautiful place in the world, and there are always new adventures to be shared with friends and family. I also like going to what are known as the Lannon Lectures – literary lectures in town. And, of course, I love to eat green chile. It’s a staple.

Graduate School

I decided to work before going to graduate school to gain experience, although I think grad school is in my future -- probably a law degree and some concurrent graduate degree.

Senior project:

I made a short documentary film about the Rio Chama, a tributary of the Rio Grande. That film focused on the cultural and environmental complications of using and managing water in New Mexico. Cultural, ecological and historical complexities abound in that watershed and there are loads of competing claims. I was trying to reconcile all these competing claims.


I worked at the Palace Press, a letterpress, as printer’s apprentice to Tom Leech and James Bourland. The Palace prints local and historical writing, and Tom is also a master papermaker. The Press is amazing — they work to create and promote New Mexican history through the craft of lead type printing. Not only did I get to learn an incredible skill, I also got to meet all these literary figures; those encounters were what inspired my senior project.

Human ecology in action:

The best way to answer this question is through an example: It was during my job interview for Guardians. The team asked me if I was a “bio-centric” or an “anthropo-centric” individual. I had the perfect answer in my experiences with human ecology – that those two things and perspectives are fully integrated. I cannot think of those two things separately anymore … because of my experiences with human ecology and COA, I am a “bioanthropocentric.”

A COA experience that was particularly significant or memorable:

In my first year, I met this guy Alan DeCheubell. He’s a woodworker in the town of Bar Harbor and he was suffering from degradation of his vision and needed hands. I started off helping him on various projects, and I wound up doing a credited independent study to build a baidarka, a traditional Aleutian kayak. We used lines from the UC Davis Anthropology library, and by the end of that process, we wanted to get more COA students engaged. I proposed to Darron, COA’s president, and to the college’s Academic Affairs Committee that we should do a course with Alan as the instructor. We structured a credited group study in Alan’s shop. We developed the curriculum, conducted safety checks to be insured, and all sorts of other things you might not think about on the first cut of an idea. We did it, and it was incredible.

Considerations for prospective students:

Going to COA is an adventure. You’re not always going to have a signpost, but YOU are empowered to forge ahead with your interests. You get opportunities to do unexpected and fascinating things, like incorporating boatbuilding into your studies. Because of the culture of the school, that empowerment is responsibly nourished. Students come away with an incredible education and they also become functional creative people. Such an experience in college is not at all common; it’s the dynamic, liberating, and challenging education that makes you capable of making an impact.