Bios

A.J. Pratt is a fisheries management biologist in the Ozark Region. He’s worked for Fisheries Division for 14 years and was previously assigned to the Kansas City Region. A.J. enjoys fishing on Bull Shoals and Norfork lakes and spending time with his wife and two children.

A.J. HENDERSHOTT lives with his wife, Cheryl, and children, Cheyenne and Hunter, in rural Cape Girardeau County. When not hiking, hunting or sketching, he crafts wooden longbows. A.J. is an Outreach and Education supervisor with the Conservation Department and holds wetlands in high regard.

AARON HOLSAPPLE works in Linn as a resource forester. He and his wife, Lynne, enjoy camping with their two very curious daughters, ages 3 and 5. He also plays guitar and enjoys singing.

I have been employed with the Missouri Department of Conversation since May 2000. Over the years I have worked in various positions around the state. Currently I am the department's upland game coordinator and my main duty is to help Missourians bring back bobwhite to the state. We are making good progress in places where landowners have made an effort to restore habitat. Habitat is the Key!

Aimee works at the Runge Conservation Nature Center as a part-time Public Service Assistant and also at the MDC main office in Jefferson City as a part-time Media Assistant. When she isn't answering Facebook questions or selling permits, Aimee enjoys taking hikes and volunteering at Runge, where she helps with programs and animal care.

Alex Primm, a freelance oral historian, lives in Rolla. He presently is researching the history of the WWI destroyer U.S.S Schley, which had a crew of mainly Missouri naval reservists and the early settlement history of the Fort Leonard Wood area. He also is doing a series of talks on the Big Piney River for the State Humanities Council.

Originally from Monett, works part-time for the Conservation Department while earning an MBA from William Woods University, where she also helps coach the basketball team.

iamge of Amber Cox

Amy Anderson and Doug Jackson are naturalists at the Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center in St. Louis. Amy became interested in insects while spending time at the St. Louis Zoo. Doug's love of capturing insects goes back to his youth; his favorite insects are dragonflies and praying mantises.

Amy Salveter, the Conservation Department's endangered species coordinator, guides Missouri's recovery efforts-ranging from research to habitat management-of state and federally imperiled species. She helped plan this special issue and contributed greatly to its completion. She grew up on a farm near Ozark.

Andrea Putnam, formerly a naturalist at Runge Conservation Nature Center in Jefferson City, is now a naturalist at Dr. Edmund A. Babler State Park in Wildwood. Her specialty is insects. Andrea enjoys sharing her entomological experiences with everyone willing to learn about nature.

Andrew Raedeke lives with his wife, Nikki, and their three dogs in Columbia. As a resource scientist with the Conservation Department, he is often involved with waterfowl research and is noted to be particularly adept at counting birds from a bouncing airplane. Hunting and fishing occupy his remaining free time.

Andrew Forbes is an avian ecologist with the Missouri Department of Conservation. He enjoys fishing for smallmouth bass, camping and hiking, in addition to birding. He has been interested in birds since childhood.

Ann Koenig lives in Columbia with her husband and two young sons. She has worked as a Conservation Department forester for eight years. Granddaughter of a stave mill owner, great niece of a WWII-era MDC naturalist, and daughter-in-law to owners of a Century Farm, she has strong ties to conservation.

ANN KOENIG works as an urban forester in Columbia for the Department of Conservation. She and her husband enjoy getting their two young boys outside by walking to school, camping, visiting friends and family who own farms, and encouraging play in their yard.

Lives in Callaway County and operates Rock Post Wildflowers Nursery.

Anne Miller Devoy studied environmental issues and creative writing at Brown University, received a law degree from the University of Missouri in Columbia and has a masters of law in Marine Affairs from the University of Washington. She now practices law with her husband in Brookfield.

Annie Miller Devoy is a member of the Missouri Bar with an L.LM. in environmental law. She and her husband William, also an attorney, live in Brookfield.

April Dozier has worked in nature interpretation for the Conservation Department for 23 years. She worked in Branson and Springfield before coming to Cape Girardeau to manage the Department’s newest nature center. She and her husband, Steve, have three grown children and enjoy spending time outdoors.

B. Keith Wollard is a conservation agent in the Ozark Region and has had a 21-year career with the Conservation Department. Keith is actively involved in restoring dwindling quail populations. He enjoys hunting most game birds (especially behind good pointing dogs) and spending time with family on the lake.

Barbara Baird is a freelance writer who lives near Rolla, in Phelps County. She writes a weekly newspaper column called "The Accidental Ozarkian." She says her Ozark outings, in which she often drags along family or friends, quite often turn into escapades.

 

Barry Rabe has sampled camping areas at hundreds of conservation areas and river accesses. He is currently employed by the Department of Natural Resources. Barry spends most of his free time exploring the rivers and wilderness areas of the Ozarks in Missouri and Arkansas with his dog, Baloo.

Becky Wylie was one of a handful of lucky Neosho residents who got a glimpse of two whooping cranes that visited southwest Missouri on Nov. 21

Benny Pryor is a native of northwest Missouri. He began his career with the Conservation Department's Wildlife Division in 1987, and in 1989 he joined the Protection Division as a conservation agent. He has been district supervisor of agents covering Macon, Monroe, Randolph and Shelby counties since 1997.

Bernadette Dryden is a publications editor supervisor with the Conservation Department.

Bernie Rains is a retired environmental engineer with 40 years experience in controlling pollution of St. Louis waterways. He has written about wastewater and storm water issues. Since retiring, he has become a freelance writer of articles on wildlife, food security and other subjects.

Betty Grace lives on a farm outside Albany, Mo., with her husband, Jim, and their children, Jacob, 9, and Anna, 4. They are a family of campers, traveling anywhere they can set up their tent. Betty has drawn a monthly cartoon for the Conservationist since 1986 and sometimes illustrates articles.

Betty Swihart, a freelance writer and photographer, has lived near Lake of the Ozarks for the past 30 years. Now semi-retired, she and her husband Glen run their stock photography business, Attitude, Inc., from their Big Niangua River farm. They have spent the last several years improving the farm for wildlife, especially quail. Betty provides articles and photographs to several publications.

A native of Jefferson City, Beverly Letchworth is a freelance writer living in St. Louis, where she teaches creative writing at Meramec College. Her book, “Leafbird Days and Firefly Nights: Personal Renewal Through Nature Journaling,” was recently published by Pen Central Press.

Bill Anderson is a 33-year employee of MDC. He has worked in both fisheries research and fisheries management. He is currently the supervisor of warm-water hatcheries. Bill is an avid angler and spends most of his free time pursuing bass at Table Rock Lake.

Bill White is a private land programs supervisor for the Conservation Department in Jefferson City. He coordinates Department efforts to implement forest, fish and wildlife aspects of USDA Farm Bill Programs. His hobbies include quail hunting, camping and keeping up with four sons.

Bill White is a Private Land Services Chief and supervises Private Land staff in the southern half of the state. As a youth he spent considerable time hunting for quail, pheasant and waterfowl. His passion for quail has grown and he has helped guide Department of Conservation efforts in restoring quail habitat throughout the state. His hobbies include hunting, farming and camping.

Forestry Field Program Supervisor Bill Altman guides fire management for the Conservation Department. He is a 25-year Department employee. In his spare time, Bill enjoys a wide variety of outdoor activities, including hunting and fishing. He lives in Sullivan.

image of Bill Altman

Bill Campbell's career as a conservation agent began in 1978. He was first assigned to St. Clair County, then in 1985 he was transferred to Barton County. He was selected as Missouri Waterfowl Enforcement Officer for the 2001-2002 season. He says one of the best parts of his job of protecting our state's natural resources is the opportunity to work with Missouri's youth.

image of Bill Campbell

Bill Graham is the media specialist for the Kansas City and Northwest regions.

Recently retired after 34 years with the Protection Division, BILL KOHNE served as an agent and a supervisor in the former East Central region. His last position as protection programs coordinator included Share the Harvest. He is now enjoying the outdoors in the Sullivan area and quality time with his wife and daughter.

Kohne, Bill, Bill Kohn

Wildlife biologist Bill McGuire is a private land programs supervisor for the Conservation Department and is the key coordination link with the U.S. Department of Agriculture regarding conservation programs.Bill has been active in farm bill efforts since the early 1980s. He claims strong farm family roots and says he simply enjoys any time he can spend outdoors.

image of Bill McGuire

Bill Turner is a fisheries program coordinator who focuses on rivers and streams. He also serves as the administrator for the Sedalia Department of Conservation office. He enjoys spending time with his wife, Carol, and their two sons, Andy and Nick. Hunting and fishing are favorite pastimes.

Bill White is a private land programs supervisor for the Department of Conservation in Jefferson City. He coordinates Department efforts to implement fish, forest and wildlife aspects of USDA Farm Bill Programs. His interests include quail hunting, camping and keeping up with four sons and a grandson.

 

Bob Fluchel serves as education consultant for the Conservation Department in Kansas City and Independance. He enjoys creating real life experiences for city kids.

Bob Gillespie is the natural history biologist for the Southeast Region. He is experienced in a wide range of conservation work and manages some of our rarest natural communities and most-imperiled species. He lives in “Old Town” Cape Girardeau with his wife, Mylinh.

Bob Legler, a 28-year MDC veteran, has been stationed in Columbia, Poplar Bluff and West Plains. He is presently the fisheries regional supervisor for the Ozark Region. Bob enjoys fishing Ozark lakes and streams and hunting deer and turkey on his Howell County farm.

A resident of Springfield, Bob Ball is a volunteer naturalist at the Springfield Conservation Nature Center, where he often leads nature photography and natural history programs. His photos have been published in some of America's most prestigious magazines, including Life, Atlantic Naturalist and Popular Photography.

image of Bob Ball

Bob DeWitt has been a field forester with the Conservation Department for 14 years-11 of them as manager of the Poosey Conservation Area. He now works out of the University of Missouri's Horticultural and Agroforestry Research Center in New Franklin. He lives on the family farm in Cooper County, just outside of Boonville.

Bob Hrabik has been with the Department since 1986 and has seined streams in all major watersheds in Missouri. In fact, Bob has sampled fish with his seine from the Dakotas to Texas to the Atlantic coast and just about everywhere in-between. When not seining fish, Bob is after them with hook and line at his home along Apple Creek in northern Cape Girardeau County.

Author and photographer Bob Kitt lives in Mountain View.

Bob Staton was the Outreach & Education Division field chief for the past four years. Prior to that, he was the Missouri hunter education state coordinator. An avid quail and pheasant hunter, he enjoys teaching his six grandchildren to hunt and fish. He retires in March after 29 years with the Department.

Duck hunter Bob Todd lives in Wayne County and enjoys the history of southeast Missouri. He is editor of River Hills Traveler.

BONNIE CHASTEEN is an editor in the Department’s Outreach and Education Division. Aside from editing our Web content, she writes the Conservationist's "Places to Go" department and the occasional feature about native-plant landscaping and private land conservation.

Freelance writer Bonnie Stepenoff lives in Cape Girardeau and teaches history and historic preservation at Southeast Missouri State University. She currently is doing research for a book on the environmental history of the Bootheel Region.

Boyd Clemens was born and raised in Marshfield. After working 35 years in Chicago, he retired to a "flat hill farm" in Illinois.He recently passed away, but told his wife that he was proud that the story of his fishing trip, one of his many memorable outdoor adventures, was to be printed in the Conservationist.

image of Boyd Clemens

Brad Hadley, has served as a conservation agent in Shannon County for the past seven years. He and his wife, Diane, and their two children, Rhiannon and Seth, live in Birch Tree and enjoy the outdoor opportunities Shannon County has to offer.

Brad McCord is the agricultural programs coordinator for the Department. His responsibilities include working with agricultural groups and conservation organizations, and administering landowner cost share and incentive programs. Brad and his wife, Jennifer, live in California, Mo., with their two daughters.

Conservation Department wildlife biologist Brandon Turner works in Shannon County. He enjoys hunting and fishing and says he likes to explore the beautiful Jack's Fork and Current River from the comfort of a johnboat. He lives in Eminence with his wife, Michelle, and daughter, Merissa.

image of Brandon Turner

Invasive Species Coordinator BRIAN CANADAY works statewide on aquatic and terrestrial invasive species issues. he lives on a small farm in southern Boone County with his wife, Bridget, their two children, Joshua and Haley, and their dog, Scooby. They enjoy boating, fishing, hunting and camping in Missouri and beyond.

Brian Loges is a wildlife management biologist in the St. Louis Region. He enjoys the challenge of restoring habitats that attract a wide variety of wildlife and diverse public use to Conservation Areas. When not busy chasing down three young conservationists, he enjoys hunting anything with feathers.

Conservation Department Resource Forester Brian Schweiss works in Macon. He’s always enjoyed working in the woods and helping people manage their forest land. He likes to hunt and fi sh and improve wildlife habitat on his own land. His current project is teaching his wife and two children how to fish.

Bruce Palmer is a fire training coordinator at the Conservation Department's headquarters in Jefferson City. He became interested in the trees along the Lewis and Clark trail after a 2003 fire assignment at Lolo Pass, the place where Lewis and Clark crossed the Bitterroot Mountains.

Bryan Hendricks is managing editor of the Conservationist. A smallmouth bass fanatic, his passion for bronzebacks has taken him to lakes and streams across the nation. He says Missouri's smallmouth waters are the best and spends his time trying to unlock their secrets. He lives in California with his wife, Laura, and their four-soon to be five-children.

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Bryan Ross lives in Walnut Ridge, Ark., with his wife and son. He has turkey hunted for 18 years and hunts numerous states each spring. He enjoys competing regularly on the turkey calling circuit and guiding kids, as well as novice and experienced turkey hunters.

Author Byron Bellville of Kirkwood died June 25, 1996. He was a retired radio and advertising manager, wrote a weekly column for a local newspaper and had penned articles for various outdoor publications.

Candice Davis is the Media Specialist for the Missouri Department of Conservation's Southeast and Ozark regions. Though raised to appreciate the Missouri outdoors, Candice is discovering nature on a new and exciting level as she gets up close and personal with snakes, insects, and Southeast Missouri's diverse landscape.

Photo of Candice Davis, MDC Southeast Region media specialist

Carl Hauser is forestry field program supervisor with the Conservation Department. He lives in Jefferson City.

Carol Davit is a naturalist, writer and editor. She is the communications specialist for the Missouri Conservation Heritage Foundation, which administers the Stream Stewardship Trust Fund, and is the editor of the Missouri Prairie Journal. She lives in Jefferson City with her husband, Mike Leahy, and son, Jamie. Together, they are Stream Team #3631.

Carol Davit photo

CAROL MAHAN is the conservation education consultant for Truman Elementary in Rolla and other schools in the northern Ozarks region. A former teacher from Illinois, Carol appreciates the wealth and diversity of natural resources in Missouri. She spends her free time running, hiking and reading.

CATHERINE L. ALEY is co-owner and biologist for the Ozark Underground Laboratory. She is an accomplished naturalist, conservationist, carpenter, gardener and chef.

Catherine Downen is a freelance writer living in St. Charles with her husband, Phil, and three children. She is the third of five children born to Marilyn and Warren Wiedemann. Her father served as conservation agent for Franklin County for 31 years before retiring recently. She enjoys hiking, canoeing and camping and likes to collect campfire stories.

Charlotte Overby was a writer and assistant editor for the Conservationist for five years. She left the Department in 1999 and is a fulltime freelance writer. Her writing has appeared in a variety of publications, including Wildlife Conservation, The New York Times on the Web and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. She likes to hike and canoe, and she teaches backpacking with the Becoming an Outsdoors-woman (BOW) program.

image of Charlotte Overby

Chris Riggert is the volunteer water quality monitoring assistant for the Stream Team program. He completed a research project on Big Creek crayfish and St. Francis River crayfish, and has a strong interest in crayfish and introduced species. He is an avid angler, enjoying a quiet evening on a small pond in his belly boat. He lives in Boonville with his wife, Jeanine, and two dogs.

Chris Vitello has been with MDC’s Fisheries Division for 19 years. He has worked in Cape Girardeau, Camdenton, Lebanon and Springfield and is currently Fisheries’ Southwest Region supervisor. Chris enjoys fishing and hiking with his wife and family.

Chris Barnhart is Professor of Biology at Southwest Missouri State University. He studies ecology and physiology and has collaborated in research with the Conservation Department for more than 10 years. His interest in freshwater mussels dates back to childhood experiences along the Little Blue River in Kansas City.

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Chris Bove says his labor of love is conservation, and he's found ways to earn his living at it. Sometimes his job entails snorkeling with salmon, designing wildlife habitat and wading through paperwork. He lives with his wife and two daughters in Naches, Washington.

image of Chris Bove

Chris Dietrich and Dee Colombini are native Missourians who now live in Ft. Collins, Colo. Dietrich is a database programmer at an analytical laboratory. Colombini is a juvenile drug court coordinator for Larimer County, Colorado.

Chris Eubanks is the director of communications for the Whitetail Institute of North America, based in Alabama, and a freelance outdoor writer and photographer. Born, raised and educated in north Arkansas, he often returns to the Ozark Mountains to fish the area's beautiful lakes and streams.

image of Chris Eubanks

CHRISTINE TEW was a Protection Division intern with the Northeast Region. She enjoys being outdoors with friends. Christine is a senior studying agricultural journalism and natural resources management at the University of Missouri-Columbia.

Christopher J. Kennedy is a fifteen year veteran with the Missouri Department of Conservation. He began his career as a Fisheries Management Specialist and is now a Fisheries Regional Supervisor in the SE Region. Christopher grew up in the St. Louis area , but now resides in Jackson, Missouri. In his spare time, he enjoys fishing, boating, camping, and hiking with his wife Nekea and two daughters.

Cindy Borgwordt is a fisheries information specialist with the Conservation Department.

Cindy Garner grew up in St. Charles County and is now an urban forester in southwest Missouri. Cindy has a teenage son, Sam, and lives in Nixa, where she tries to practice what she preaches for urban tree care.

Claudine Walker works for the Conservation Department as a naturalist in the Kansas City area.

Clint Dalbom began working for the Conservation Department in 1982 at the Elkhorn Lookout Tower near Pineville. He is now a private lands conservationist serving Shannon, Texas and Wright counties. He also raises Limousin cattle in Texas County with his wife and two daughters.

image of Clint Dalbom

naturalist program supervisor, began her career with the Department in 1993 as a volunteer naturalist. Facilitating kids' enjoyment of the outdoors is one of her most worthwhile endeavors, second only to fishing with her husband, Kent Ripperda, and playing fetch with their dog, Satchmo.

Connie Hjelmeng-Johnson lives on a tree farm in Stone County with her husband, John. They have received many awards for their forestry efforts including twice being named Missouri Tree Farmers of the Year. Connie describes herself as an amateur naturalist who is fascinated by everything in the nearby woods and rivers.

Craig Anderson is the northeast regional biologist for the Conservation Department. He lives in Kirksville with his wife, Jean, and likes to fish, hike, tie flies and get outdoors whenever he can. His least favorite sticky seed comes from cheat grass, Bromus tectorum.

Fisheries biologist Craig Gemming has worked for the Conservation Department since 1981. He manages public lakes and streams in the central part of the state. He works on Missouri River issues and coordinates the Department's long term, statewide Sturgeon Monitoring Project.

image of Craig Gemming

Craig Lingle works in St. Louis as an environmental engineer. His job involves stormwater management and streambank stabilization. He grew up around muddy streams in Illinois, so he appreciates and enjoys Missouri's clear streams. Free time finds him with his Stream Team, or just hanging out along an Ozark stream with his children.

image of Craig Lingle

Craig Ten Brink worked for the Missouri Department of Conservation from 1997 to 1998 as the interim Endangered Species Specialist. He currently lives in Savannah, Ga., and works for the U. S. Department of Defense as an endangered species biologist at Fort Stewart.

image of Craig Ten Brink

Nearing retirement as a counseling psychologist, Cynthia Andre is studying the environment and botany as a graduate student at Southwest Missouri State University in Springfield. In her spare time she enjoys gardening and hiking near her home on Bull Creek, next to the Mark Twain National Forest. She says she is dusting off old recipes for pawpaws in anticipation of this year's harvest.

image of Cynthia Andrae

Dale Humburg is a native of Iowa who loves waterfowl hunting. He has been a wildlife research biologist with the Conservation Department since 1977, specializing in waterfowl and wetlands. He represents Missouri on the Mississippi Flyway Technical Section and recommends annual hunting regulations for ducks and geese.

Dale Cornelius is the Conservation Department's fisheries management biologist for Pomme De Terre Reservoir. He has been working for the Department since 1980 with various responsibilities and in various locations around the state. Dale Lives in Lebanon with his wife, Pam, and son, Derek.

Wildlife Management Biologist Dan Drees and his wife, Susan, love exploring and “botanizing” natural areas. Shannon County, which contains both the largest number and the greatest acreage of natural areas in Missouri, captivated their hearts, and they recently moved near Eminence.

Dan Dey is a USDA Forest Service research forester with 19 years experience in forest management and research.

Dan Zekor is a planning supervisor with the Conservation Department.

Danny Brown is a fisheries management biologist with the Conservation Department in the St. Louis Region. He enjoys playing bluegrass guitar, riding his Harley, duck hunting on the Missouri River and reading. He lives on a farm in Union with his wife, Joyce, four chickens and a cat named Sammie.

Daryl Damron is a wildlife damage biologist with the Conservation Department. He is an avid turkey hunter and trapper and bowhunts with an Osage bow that he built. He says he looks forward to spending many days afield with his two young daughters, Hunter and Reagan.

Image of Daryl Damron

Dave Erickson has been the Department's wildlife division chief since 2002. He participates on the MoBCI Steering Committee for the Department, and he believes birds are a wonderful vehicle for conservation because they excite the passions of our citizens and live in all the habitats of our diverse state.

Dave Hamilton is a resource scientist with the Conservation Department in Columbia. He studies a variety of wildlife, some of which have made tremendous comebacks, including river otters, bobcats and black bears. He enjoys hunting with his wife, Sue, and family at their cabin in northern Missouri.

Wildlife Regional Supervisor Dave Young has worked for the Conservation Department for 25 years and currently oversees land management in the 13-county West-Central Region, which includes Four Rivers Conservation Area and Wah-Kon-Tah Prairie. He lives in Windsor with his wife, Judith, and likes to hunt, fish and play softball.

David Catlin was the first manager of the Springfield Conservation Nature Center and served in that post for 10 years. He now labors as a freelance writer, is a consultant on the development of environmental education facilities and helps coordinate fund-raising efforts for organizations like Ozark Greenways. He and his wife, Ann, live in Springfield

David Fiedler remembers the magic of finding arrow heads in fields and creek beds as a kid growing up on a farm near Concordia. When not fishing or writing, he works for the headquarters of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. He, his wife and young son live in Ballwin. This is his first article for the Conservationist.

David Graber has wanted to be a waterfowl biologist since he was a kid. Much of his work has involved Canada geese, including annual banding operations since the mid 70s. When not at work, you may find him at his hobby farm in Monroe County, boating the Missouri River, or enjoying other outdoor sports.

David Guntli has been a conservation agent since 1979. He started his career in St. Francois County but has been stationed in St. Charles County since 1987. He is a graduate of the University of Missouri-Columbia. He and his wife, Jane, and their two children, Mary and Anna, enjoy spending time outdoors together.

Private Land Conservationist David Hoover has worked for the Conservation Department since 1998. He lives in Queen City and enjoys working on his small farm and hunting and fishing with his wife and two daughters. His professional interests include helping landowners improve habitat for upland wildlife and promoting the use of native forages in grazing systems.

image of David Hoover

David C. Ashley is a professor of biology at Missouri Western State College. A parasitologist, he studies prairie fringed orchids and the moths that feed on them. He also is an accomplished cave biologist and a member of the National Speleological Society, the Missouri Speleological Survey and the Missouri Cave and Karst Conservancy. He and his wife, Sharon, live in St. Joseph and enjoy camping with their three children.

David Fiedler lives near the Meramec River in Fenton. He and his wife have two children. He has written several articles for the Conservationist, including a piece on trap and skeet shooting for the July 2001 issue. He is currently working on a book about enemy prisoner -of-war camps in Missouri during WWII.

image of David Fiedler

David Megahan and his wife, Candy, live in Columbia. Their son, James, is a student at Truman State University. David established Columbia Taxidermy Studio in 1977 and co-founded the Missouri Taxidermy Association in 1981. David’s mounts have won awards at state, national and world competitions.

image of David Megahan

David E. Pitts was born and raised on a dairy farm east of Ada. He has authored several publications during his 31 years with the Conservation Department and currently manages the Bois D'Arc Conservation Area. He lives in Rogersville with his wife, Sue. His hobbies include woodworking, floating and entertaining seven grandchildren.

Nature photographer DAVID STONNER lives in Jefferson City with his wife, Angela, daughter, Maggie, and son, Sam. Since joining the Department of Conservation in 2007, he has made his favorite photographs while on the beautiful trails of southern Missouri, where he backpacks every chance he can get.

Prior to his recent retirement, DAVID URICH was the Wildlife Division's Ozark unit chief. He was a 30-year employee with the Department. David lives on a 40-acre farm in Moniteau County where he and his wife, Jennifer, raised three sons. Rabbit hunting and fishing are among his many hobbies.

Debbie Leach is a naturalist at Powder Valley Nature Center in Kirkwood.

Debra Burns is the urban wildlife biologist for the Kansas City Region. She lives in Jackson County with her husband, Bob, and their two dogs, two horses and one cat. Debra enjoys gardening, horseback riding and hunting.

Describes herself as a "wife, mother of two, writer, wildflower artist and professor at Park College."

Image of Debra J. Sheffer

Dennis Figg is a natural history programs supervisor for the Conservation Department. He and his two sons fish and hunt and grow plants on a small farm outside Jefferson City. Dennis writes frequently about wildlife. Currently he is studying the decline of grassland creatures, such as the greater prairie-chicken.

Dennis Figg is the Endangered Species Coordinator for the Missouri Department of Conservation. Bernard Sietman is a malacologist in St. Peters, Missouri.

Devona Weirich is a student in the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Missouri in Columbia. She worked for the Conservation Department as a fisheries biologist from 1986 to 1997 and directed several beautification projects involving the planting of aquatic and terrestrial plants and trees for Columbia area public lakes.

Diane Calabrese is an entomologist and writer who lives in Columbia.

Dick Stauffer is the Conservationist's art editor. He enjoys boating, fishing, gardening and target shooting. He says he fills the rest of his time writing, painting, cooking, restoring furniture and taking pictures. Dick, his wife, Meg, their two children, two dogs and a few chickens live on Rooster Ridge Farm outside of Columbia, where, he says, they mostly raise ticks and grow poison ivy.

image of Dick Stauffer

Donna lives in Columbia and works as a freelance photographer specializing in insect photographs. She has had exhibits at several MDC nature centers. Find more of her work and an insect checklist for Runge Nature Center atdonnabrunet.com. She and her husband enjoy birding, camping and biking the Katy Trail.

Doris Thatcher lives on a 20-acre farm near Lincoln with her husband. She recently retired from the family archery shop. "Now," she said," I have more time to hunt and fish." She also likes to garden."In fact," she said," I like all things country."

DOROTHY BUTLER has been the Conservation Department’s natural heritage coordinator since 1993. She lives on 15 acres in Cole County and is working to establish native prairie on 2.5 of those acres. She enjoys reading, weaving and hiking with her dogs.

Doug Clemons is a fisheries management assistant with the Conservation Department. To call him an avid catfish angler is perhaps not a strong enough description. He enjoys promoting the sport of catfishing and recently traveled to South America to fish for exotic catfish. He, his wife, Penny, and their two children, Megan and Dalton, live in Cameron.

Private Lands Conservationist Doug Rainey works out of the Natural Resources Conservation Services office in Edina. During his 30-year career with the Conservation Department,he has worked in the Fisheries,Wildlife and Private Land Services divisions. He enjoys hunting and fishing and describes himself as having been passionate about ice fishing for more than 10 years.

image of Doug Rainey

Lives with his wife and daughter in Webster Groves. He says family vacations often revolve around lichen or botany projects. Doug has been the director of science for the Missouri Chapter of the Nature Conservancy for 13 years. His most recent book is Tallgrass Prairie Wildflowers.

Doug Newman is a natural history regional biologist working out of the Conservation Department's West Plains' office. His favorite hobby is vegetable gardening, but he often spends his weekends fishing, hunting or trapping.

Author, angler and clinically trained psychotherapist, Dr. David Edens is in private practice in psychology and family therapy in Columbia. His comments on this same subject appeared in the editorial of the June 1995 Missouri Conservationist.

Dr. Lon Wilkens, a resident of St. Charles, is a biologist at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. In addition to our native Missouri paddlefish, or "antennaefish," he has studied animals as diverse as bioluminescent Bermuda fireworms and giant clams from the Australian Great Barrier Reef. With his wife and family, he enjoys vacationing in Florida, where he "surveys" any fish willing to take a baited hook.

image of Dr. Lon Wilkens

Research Fisheries Biologist Duane Chapman is employed by the U.S. Geological Survey. He has been working in fisheries since 1980. Duane lives in Columbia with his family of five. He is an avid fisherman, with a life-list of 216 species caught by hook and line.

image of Duane Chapman

Duane Parker is the Department's southwest region forestry supervisor. In his 27 years with the Department, he's worked at Poplar Bluff, Sullivan, New Madrid, Neosho and Springfield, where he now lives with his wife, Marita. He enjoys fishing, hunting and restoring vintage military rifles.

image of Duane E. Parker

Dudley McCarter, an attorney in St. Louis, admits to being a fair smallmouth bass fisherman, but a terrible marksman. He is a past president of the Missouri Bar.

An attorney in St. Louis, admits to being a fair smallmouth bass fisherman, but a terrible marksman. He is a past president of the Missouri Bar.

Dwight Weaver is the public information officer for the Department of Natural Resource's Division of Geology and Land Survey. He has been a Missouri cave enthusiast for more than 40 years and is noted for his research in the area of Missouri cave history. He most recent book, Wilderness Underground: Caves of the Ozark Plateau, was published by the University of Missouri Press.

Missouri State Water Patrol Corporal Elizabeth Ratliff is originally from Columbia. She now primarily works on Table Rock, Taneycomo and Bull Shoals reservoirs. She enjoys SCUBA diving, hiking, duck hunting and bird hunting with her vizsla, Splash.

Missouri State Water Patrol Corporal Elizabeth Ratliff is originally from Columbia. She now primarily works on Table Rock, Taneycomo and Bull Shoals reservoirs. She enjoys SCUBA diving, hiking, duck hunting and bird hunting with her vizsla, Splash.

Elsa Gallagher, the new Quail Forever regional biologist for Missouri, is an avid quail enthusiast. In her free time, she enjoys training her four bird dogs and building quail habitat. Youth and women’s hunts are among her favorite activities.

ERIC KURZEJESKI has worked on regulations issues for most of his 30 years with MDC, but come fall, you’ll find him in a tree stand. His wife, Lori, suggested changing his name to “Sits-in-Tree.”

Eric R. Eaton is a freelance natural history writer residing in Tucson, Arizona. He is co-author of the forthcoming Kaufman Focus Guide to the Insects of North America. He says he finds the world of insects and spiders to be a limitless source of fascination and wonder.

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Erin Shank is the Department’s urban wildlife biologist for St. Louis. Between deer seasons, she enjoys running, biking, cooking, Cardinals games, and spending time outdoors with her husband, Brett, son, Calum, and two dogs.

Frances Dilsaver has worked for the Conservation Department since 1990. She is now a resource forester working out of the Southwest Regional Office in Springfield. She's married to a high school teacher, and they have recently begun raising free-ranging chickens. Frances enjoys hiking and floating and describes herself as a "huge John Wayne fan."

Originally from Texas, Frances Main began her career with the Department in 1990. She spends much of her free time working on her own tree farm. She is a John Wayne “fan” in the true sense of the word, and she enjoys her motorcycle, her dog and her church when not in the woods.

Francis Skalicky is a metro media specialist for the Department of Conservation. He has been with the Department for 14 years. He and his wife, Michele, live in Springfield with their two daughters, Anna, 10, and Kate, 9. Also vying for attention in the Skalicky household are two dogs, four cats, two fish and three hermit crabs.

Francis Skalicky has been the media specialist for the Missouri Department of Conservation’s Southwest Region for 10 years. He lives in Springfield with his wife, Michele, and their daughters, Anna and Kate, where they try to get out and explore the Ozarks as much as possible.

Frank Nelson is a wetland ecologist for Missouri Department of Conservation. Frank works closely with wetland and waterfowl biologists across the state. His focus is utilizing research and technology to enhance wetland management and wetland restoration. Although from Ozark originally, he has been working closely with the Duck Creek staff for the last 6 years, right next door at Gaylord Memorial Laboratory. Frank enjoys the great outdoors through waterfowl hunting in the fall, chasing turkeys in the spring, canoeing Ozark streams in the summer, and hiking and taking photos all year round.

Gary is a forester and manager of the MDC Rocky Creek Conservation Area located in Shannon County, Missouri. Covering almost 40,000 acres, including forests, woodlands, and glades, his goal is to restore and improve wildlife habitat through natural community management activities that invites public use. As a land manager, Gary has also been involved in extensive restoration projects on his farm. Projects completed include thinning invading cedars and undesirable hardwoods from glades and woodlands, as well as timber stand improvement in forests. Nearly two miles of permanent fire lines have been constructed in conjunction with a rotational prescribed fire program. At home, Gary likes being outside, close to nature and our Creator, spending time with family and friends, and riding his KTM motorcycles.

Gene Gardner is a wildlife programs supervisor with the Conservation Department. Hailing from the Arkansas Ozarks, his work includes restoring wetlands and other habitats to support a variety of fish and wildlife. He enjoys fishing, hunting and other outdoor activities with his wife, Liz, and daughter, Rachel.

Gene Fox is a metro media specialist with the Conservation Department.

Gene Hornbeck of Lampe is a retired writer and photographer who still enjoys indulging in those professions. He and Laura, his wife of 57 years, and their children and grandchildren have enjoyed Table Rock Lake for 14 years. Gene also enjoys fishing and boating, as well as hunting turkey and deer.

Gene Kelly administers the Conservation Department's donation program and serves as liaison for the newly created Missouri Conservation Heritage Foundation. He has been with the Conservation Department for 32 years and enjoys many outdoor pursuits, but catching trout on dry flies is his favorite.

image of Gene Kelly

George Yatskievych, a botanist with the Conservation Department for over 12 years, is stationed at the Missouri Botanical Garden, where he directs the jointly sponsored Flora of Missouri Project. A frustrated outdoorsman doomed to computer work, he enjoys travel, hiking and nature photography on weekends. He is working on a book about Missouri ferns.

George Hartman, author of several articles for the Conservationist, is the Conservation Department's fire ecologist. He studies the role of fire in land management programs. George describes himself as a "baby boomer"and an "empty nester." He and his wife, Linda, live on a small horse farm in Cooper County. He enjoys hunting and trail riding.

image of George Hartman

Ginny Wallace is the Department’s Master Naturalist coordinator and a 27-year employee with MDC. She and Bob Pierce created Missouri’s Master Naturalist Program in 2004. Ginny lives on a 47-acre farm in Cole County with her husband, Mervin. She enjoys helping others discover natural places in Missouri.

Glen Snyder of Blue Springs has worked as a carpenter and cabinet maker; he also has taught those skills to secondary and college students. Before retiring, he coordinated and supervised construction of 30 libraries in and around metropolitan Kansas City. His hobbies include fishing, woodworking, nature study and writing. He and his wife have three grown children.

Greg Gremaud supervised and worked as a biologist on the Natural Features Inventory Program.

Greg Hanzlick lives in Springfield with his wife, Kathryn, whom he describes as his favorite hunting partner. He learned to hunt and fish and to respect wild game and game laws from his father. He has been deer hunting for more than 30 years. He says he learned never to kill any creature he did not intend to eat.

Greg has been employed with the Conservation Department as a fisheries management biologist since 1990, and he has been the fisheries management biologist at Lake of the Ozarks since 1991. Greg, his wife, Sherri, his son, Alex, and daughter, Katie, live on the Niangua Arm of Lake of the Ozarks outside Camdenton.

Gus Raeker is a Resource Forester in Warrenton. He manages three conservation areas and works with private landowners in Warren and Lincoln counties. He and his wife, Shanna, enjoy doing just about anything that keeps them outside--gardening, camping, hunting and fishing. They are expecting their first little conservationist in December.

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Gwen Waller is a reforestation specialist with the Conservation Department.

HAROLD KERNS is an Eagle Scout (1971) and a fisheries regional supervisor in Northwest Missouri. He has worked for the Department for more than 25 years. He is an assistant Scoutmaster with troop 60 in Savannah, where he resides with his wife, Laura, and two sons, Zach and Austin. Zach earned the eagle Scout rank in 2006, and Austin is nearing completion.

Heidi Stallman is a native of Columbia. She has an Masters degree in animal ecology. Her former jobs include searching for spotted owls on the Olympic Peninsula, teaching camping and bird watching skills and collecting high-altitude plant specimens in the Rocky Mountains. She now splits her time between freelance writing and teaching algebra. She enjoys hiking and is learning to play bluegrass guitar.

HELENE MILLER has worked for the Department for nearly 30 years. She has worked in Kansas City as an urban forester for the past 10 years, advising city governments, volunteer groups and homeowners on tree-related issues. She has also worked in Kirksville, Springfield, Rolla and New Madrid. She can be found kayaking and bicycling when not at work.

Holly Atkinson is a freelance writer who lives on the Little Piney River near Rolla. She writes for a number of outdoor publications and is compiling a book of her nature essays, as well as working on a series of children's books about growing up on an Ozark farm. This is the third article she has written for the Conservationist.

Holly Berthold is a metro media specialist for the Conservation Department in the St. Louis Region. She has always been happiest outside, whether hiking, boating, fishing or getting muddy in the garden. Holly lives with her husband, Bob, and several fuzzy, un-trainable but good-natured animals in Eureka.

Jack McLaughlin is a freelance writer who lives on a small farm near Mountain View with his wife, Jane. He trains bird dogs and enjoys wade and float fishing on Ozark streams for trout and bass. He has been fly tying and fly fishing for over 50 years. His articles have appeared in Field & Stream, Sports Afield, Fly Fisherman and Gun Dog.

Wildlife Staff Biologist Jackie DeSanty-Combes has worked for the Conservation Department for two years. Her professional interests include surveying and researching rare and endangered mammals. Jackie lives in Boonville with her husband, Matt. She enjoys drawing, trapping canoeing and camping.

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James Dixon has been a naturalist at the Springfield Conservation Nature Center for seven years. He has an affinity for insects, spiders, snakes and other underappreciated forms of wildlife. James and his wife live in Springfield with their two young sons.

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Author James F. Barrett loses sleep at his home near Kimberling City.

James P. Jackson is a lifelong naturalist and outdoors writer who has written three books, the most recent of which is Passages of a Stream - A Chronicle of the Meramec

James D. Wilson is an ornithologist with the Conservation Department. In addition to peregrine falcons, he has worked with bald eagles, ospreys and trumpeter swans. Jim and his wife, Marsha, and their two sons live just outside of Jefferson City and enjoy camping, canoeing and traveling.

Jan Syrigos is a naturalist at Runge Conservation Nature Center in Jefferson City. Also a singer and songwriter, Jan recently released "Critter Rock," an album of conservation tunes for kids. She and her husband, George, are making preparations for their annual deer hunt together on their Osage County farm.

Jane Fitzgerald has served as Midwest Regional Coordinator for Partners in Flight for over five years. She also is the founder and director of the Ozark Center for Wildlife Research, whose work includes monitoring native bird communities in the Branson area. A Missouri native, Jane formerly was mayor of Reeds Spring. She now resides in St. Louis.

Janet Sternburg is a wildlife ecologist in the Conservation Department's Natural History Section. She is responsible for gathering information about rare and endangered animals in Missouri for the Natural Heritage Database. She loves being near and in water, preferably warm coastal waters, and enjoys scuba diving, traveling, volleyball, biking and reading.

Jason Dickey worked as a protection agent in Dallas County from 1996 until recently, when he was promoted to Southwest Region Protection District Supervisor for the Bolivar District. He enjoys hunting, fishing, archery,reloading,camping and canoeing. He and his wife, Teresa, live in the Bolivar area with their two children, Ryan and Reagan.

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Jason Jensen is a resource forester and has been with the Department since 1992. He and his wife, Cindy, and son, Clay, live in Wayne County. His hobbies include hunting, reloading ammunition, target shooting and getting youth involved in the outdoors.

Jason Persinger is a resource scientist working out of the Department’s Grassland Field Station in Clinton. He truly enjoys working on streams, which he sees as some of our most valuable resources. He enjoys hunting, especially waterfowl, fishing and generally being outdoors as much as possible.

Jason Sumners grew up in Benton County. He joined the Conservation Department as a deer biologist in December 2008. Prior to that, he studied the mating behavior of white-tailed deer on the King Ranch in south Texas. When not chasing whitetails or longbeards, he can be found fishing for crappie.

Outdoor Skills Education Specialist Jean Mayer spent her childhood summers at a cabin on Huzzah Creek. She has volunteered as a research biologist with Grand Canyon environmental studies and works as a volunteer with several Missouri conservation groups. Jean, her husband, Ric, and daughter, Terra, enjoy camping, hiking and canoeing.

Biologist Jeff Finley is in charge of the Show-Me Missouri Fish mobile aquarium. He is an avid angler and loves hunting small game and frogging. Jeff, his wife, Anna, and their three children live in a log home they built in Hartsburg. When not traveling with the mobile aquarium, Jeff can be found with his kids on the Missouri River in search of the next state-record flathead catfish.

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Jeff Beringer is a resource scientist with the Conservation Department. He works in Columbia. His responsibilities include deer, turkey and grouse management. He enjoys taking his two sons hunting and fi shing.

Jeff Briggler has been the herpetologist for the Missouri Department of Conservation since 2000. His work on amphibians and reptiles has taken him from deep underground caves to mountaintop glades throughout the Ozarks. When not searching for amphibians and reptiles, he enjoys basketball, biking and smallmouth bass fishing.

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Jeff Cockerham is the Central and Northeast Region outreach and education supervisor and has worked for the Department for 10 years. He is a former middle school science teacher and elementary school principal and enjoys waterfowl hunting, smallmouth bass fishing and carving cork body duck decoys.

Jeff M. Finley formerly operated the Conservation Department's Mobile Aquarium. He is currently a fi shery biologist with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service in Columbia. Jeff, his wife, Anna, and their three children live near Hartsburg, where they enjoy the natural wonders of the Missouri River.

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JEFF KITCHEN is an agricultural education instructor at the Lake Career and Technical Center in Camdenton. He, his wife, Jennifer, and their three children live on beautiful Lake of the Ozarks. Jeff has taught school for 17 years. He is also an FFA advisor, certified arborist, horticulturist and amateur botanist.

Jeff Nichols is a detective specializing in forensics for the Columbia Police Department. He lives east of Columbia with his wife, Diana, son, Gable, and daughter, Aubrianna. He said working to improve wildlife habitat on the acreage surrounding the family home is very therapeutic.

Jennifer Bove, a biologist from Columbia, has worked in the wilds of Missouri, Montana and Washington. She and her husband, Chris, enjoy raising Rita, their kid conservationist, wherever they find clean air and clear water. Currently, Jennifer spends her spare time finishing a book of short stories based on her experiences in the field.

 

image of Jennifer Bove

Jennifer Myatt was a range officer at Andy Dalton Shooting Range and Training Center at Bois D'Arc before moving to the August A. Busch Memorial Shooting Range. She likes to camp, fish and hunt, especially for deer and turkey. Her family owns a campground and acreage in Wentzville, where she keeps dogs, birds, horses, ducks and fish.

Jeremy Jackson grew up in mid-Missouri but currently teaches writing at Vassar College in upstate New York. Jeremy hikes and fly fishes in the Catskill Mountains where, he says, the hiking is tough and the trout are smart. He plans to return to the Midwest in search of gentler hiking trails and not-so-hard-to-catch bluegill. Jeremy's article, "Moon Lore," appeared in the November 1998 Conservationist.

JEREMY KOLAKS lives in Jefferson City with his wife, Sandy, and is a senior research specialist working in a cooperative position between the Department and the University of Missouri. During work, and even free time, Jeremy wanders through the woods of Missouri pondering if conditions are right for a prescribed burn.

JERRY DEAN began his career with MDC in 1986. For the past 19 years he has had the good fortune of having the job of Roaring River Hatchery manager. Jerry most enjoys interacting with the staff at the hatchery and the wonderful folks who come to the park. He feels that he has made some great friends at Roaring River.

Jim Loveless, when not building canoes, enjoys fishing and bird hunting. He is a wildlife management biologist with the Conservation Department and has been the manager of the Eagle Bluffs Conservation Area since it was purchased. He and his wife, Connie, live in Columbia, where Loveless is active in local politics.

Jim Wilson has been an orthinologist with the Conservation Department for 23 years. Originally from Iowa, he now lives in Jefferson City with his wife, Marsha. They have two sons. Jim enjoys camping, hiking and traveling. His December 1979 Conservationist article, "Winter Birds," includes a watercolor picture he painted.

Before retiring in 2000, Jim Auckley worked 29 years for the Conservation Department as a writer and as managing editor of the Conservationist. He now spends his days reading and taking advantage of Missouri's many fly fishing opportunities. He lives in Jefferson City with his wife, Carolyn.

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Conservationist Managing Editor Jim Auckley can best be described as a casual turkey hunter. He says he always seems to be on the wrong side of the tree or facing the wrong direction when the turkeys show up. April is more likely to find him pursuing fish in an Ozark stream. He and his wife, Carolyn, have two grown children and live in Jefferson City.

Jim Harlan is Senior Research Specialist and Assistant Program Director for the University of Missouri-Columbia's Geographic Resources Center. He was the project director for the Lewis and Clark Historic Landscape Project and co-author of Atlas of Lewis and Clark in Missouri. Harlan's Missouri River research findings were featured in the April 2002 National Geographic magazine.

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Jim Jackson lives near the Missouri River, outside Marthasville, with his wife, Charlene. He was a Conservation Department education advisor from 1951 to 1961 and has written three books: "Biography of a Tree," "Pulse of the Forest" and "Passages of a Stream: A Chronicle of the Meramec." He continues to write, garden, canoe and hike.

Jim Low is the Conservation Department's Print News Coordinator and staff writer for Missouri Conservationist magazine. He is a past president of the Missouri Outdoor Communicators and the Outdoor Writers Association of America (OWAA). He has received the Conservation Federation of Missouri's Communicator of the Year Award, and is an 11-time winner of the Izaak Walton League of America's Outdoor Ethics Award. He is a member of OWAA's conservation advisory council, the Circle of Chiefs. His work has appeared in magazines ranging from  Rifle and Shotgun and Outdoor Life to Australian Birding and Reptile & Amphibian. Waterfowl hunting, smallmouth bass fishing and nature photography are his favorite outdoor pursuits. He believes that no outdoor education is complete without reading Aldo Leopold's A Sand County Almanac.

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News Services Coordinator Jim Low writes press releases and magazine articles for the Conservation Department. He is president of the Outdoor Writers Association of America and past president of the Missouri Outdoor Communicators.

Jim Low learned to fish on the gravel-bottomed creeks of the Ozark Border. He prefers catching smallmouth bass and green sunfish with ultra-light spinning gear to any other type of fishing. Busying his feet with wading and his hands with casting sets his mind free to wander among life’s most enchanting mysteries.

Jim Low, the Conservation Department news services coordinator, spends as much time as possible on the Missouri River, hunting, fishing, birdwatching, combing sand bars for arrowheads and fossils and just soaking in the grandeur of North America's greatest river.

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Jim Rathert, the Conservationist Department's wildlife photographer since 1984, is interested in every facet of nature in Missouri, though he readily admits to a strong bias toward birds. He resides in Jefferson City with his wife and two teen-aged children. He enjoys southwestern and other styles of cooking.

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Jim W. Grace is a resource technician with the Conservation Department. He lives near Albany.

Freelance writer Joan Banks watches blackbirds at her home southeast of Joplin. She has written three articles for Outside In, the children's section of the Conservationist.

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Joan McKee of Columbia is a publications editor at the Conservation Department's Jefferson City headquarters, where she is responsible for dozens of publications, including the annual hunting and fishing summaries of regulations. She likes to canoe, hike and fish and enjoys watching wildlife at her parents' farm in Hickory County.

Joe Bachant recently retired from the Conservation Department. During his 30 year tour of duty,he worked on numerous water resource and land use issues, and was one of several founders of the Missouri Stream Team Program.Joe still works part-time at the Department, but he and his wife, Fran, also travel to the east and west coasts to visit their children.

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JOE BONNEAU has worked for the Department for nearly 10 years, first as a fisheries biologist and now as a fisheries regional supervisor. His hobbies include hunting and fishing, especially with his wife, Lisa, and their three children, Donnie, Grant and Kaylynne. They live in Odessa.

Joe is the News Services Coordinator for MDC.

Joel Vance is the author of Down Home Missouri (When Girls Were Scary and Basketball Was King) and six other books. He retired in 1990 after 21 years with the Conservation Department. He and his wife of 50 years live near Russellville with six Brittanies, four Labs, and peace and quiet.

John George is a natural history biologist in Columbia, where he resides with his wife, Shellie, and two children. He enjoys helping restore prairies and other natural communities, as well as managing deer populations.

John Miller resides in St. Louis where he is a public relations consultant and lifelong purple martin hobbyist. He is working with the St. Louis Department of Parks to attract martins to Forest Park. A member of the Purple Martin Conservation Association, Miller practices hands-on techniques to help colonies thrive.

John Smith is an Assistant Director supervising the resource divisions of the Department and has been with MDC since 1980. He also chairs the Department’s Regulations Committee. John and his wife Liz live in Moniteau County. He enjoys hunting, fishing, backpacking and horseback riding.

John Tuttle became forest products program supervisor for the Department a year ago. Previously, he spent seven years as a resource forester and 18 as a professional logger. He lives in New Bloomfield with his wife, Regina, and children, Dustin, Brittany and Brooke.

John Vogel is a wildlife management biologist with the Conservation Department in the St. Louis Region. He enjoys hunting and fishing, as well as mountain biking, kayaking, hiking and orienteering with his wife, Yvonne. They are looking forward to introducing their new son, Beck, to the great outdoors.

John A. Johnson lives in Sikeston with his wife, Myrna. He works in Charleston for Hurley and Associates, where he assists agricultural producers in marketing their crops and products. He tries to spend as much time as possible actively pursing all outdoor activities. He says "It's great to live in a state that puts so much emphasis on wildlife and nature."

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John H. Schulz is a wildlife research biologist and works on a wide variety of farmland ecology issues. He is currently involved with regional and national mourning dove management issues and is a member of numerous mourning dove technical advisory committees. John and his family enjoy year-round outdoor fun on their 4-acre "farm" just north of Columbia

John Lewis worked for the Conservation Department from 1952 to 1989 as a wildlife research biologist and a wildlife research supervisor. He spent 31 years as project leader for the Department's wild turkey and grouse programs. Now retired, he lives in Columbia.

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John McPherson has been with the Conservation Department for 25 years. Since 1989, he has been working to acquire lake and stream areas and to develop boat accesses. He enjoys country living with his wife, Jeanne, and their two children, Jordan and Jayna, on a small farm near California, Mo.

Biologist John Meyer coordinated the Conservation Department's turkey, pheasant, grouse, river otter, osprey, Canada goose, collared lizard and peregrine falcon restoration programs from 1985 until 1997. He and his wife, Sherry, live in Boone County and enjoy hunting, canoeing, photography, fishing and reading.

John Wick was raised on a Pennsylvania farm but has resided in Missouri since 1976.He has a cow/calf beef cattle operation in Montgomery City, and he founded a company that designs and manufactures apparel and products for people who hunt with dogs. A nationally-known coonhound breeder, trainer and writer, he also enjoys hunting deer. was raised on a Pennsylvania farm but has resided in Missouri since 1976.He has a cow/calf beef cattle operation in Montgomery City, and he founded a company that designs and manufactures apparel and products for people who hunt with dogs. A nationally-known coonhound breeder, trainer and writer, he also enjoys hunting deer.

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Jonathan Beard of Springfield has explored and mapped many caves in Missouri, Kansas, and Arkansas. He is a member of the Ozark Highlands Grotto of the National Speleological Society and is Vice President and Editor of the Missouri Caves and Karst Conservancy. He has developed techniques for repairing and restoring speleothems.

Josh Shroyer is a resource forester based in Clinton. He's been with the Department for six years, but he has 10 years experience fighting wildflowers, including some famous ones in Montana, Oregon and Washington. He enjoys spending time outdoors with his wife, Tami, and his son, Nate.

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Judy Allmon has coordinated the Missouri Department of Conservation's Grow Native! program more than two years. She and her husband, Arlen, are native plant enthusiasts who enjoy native landscaping on their 20-acre property near Russellville.

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Justine Gartner is a Conservation Department field program supervisor. She coordinates the state's community forestry program, promoting sound tree care, and encouraging volunteer activities related to tree care and planting.

 

Karen Kramer has been with the Conservation Department for eight years and now works as natural areas coordinator. Karen lives near Hartsburg and lists her three dogs, her horse and her collection of Wizard of Oz paraphernalia as her favorite things in the world. She says she works for fun; she also plays volleyball, hikes and rides her bicycle.

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Kathryn Buckstaff has been Branson Bureau Chief for the Springfield News-Leader for 12 years. Raised in the pine woods of northern Wisconsin, she now lives in a grove of oaks near Lake Taneycomo. She writes for a variety of magazines and is the author of murder mysteries including "No One Dies In Branson."

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Writer Kathryn Sergeant Brown lives in Columbia.

St. Louis freelance writer Kathy Etling often writes for the Conservationist. She and her husband own property in Ste. Genevieve, where they go to hunt, fish, farm and watch wildlife.

Kathy Cavender is a naturalist at the Runge Conservation Nature Center in Jefferson City.

Lives in St. Louis and has a farm in Ste. Genevieve County that she manages for wildlife. She enjoys fishing, hunting and watching wildlife.

Kathy Love writes about people and places that encourage good stewardship of Missouri resources. Her outdoor pursuits include fly fishing, canoeing and hiking in the Ozarks and central Missouri.

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Conservation Department silviculturist Keith Moser works in forestry research. He has been with the Department since the fall of 2000. Before that, he was the forestry research scientist for Tall Timbers Research Station in Tallahassee, Fla. Keith lives outside of Rocheport with his wife, Cynthia, and their sons, Gray and Lane.

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Keith Sutton is editor of Arkansas Wildlife, and a freelance writer, photographer and lecturer specializing in hunting, fishing, nature and conservation issues. He has authored or co authored 22 books, including his latest, "Hunting Arkansas."

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Kelly discovered her love for nature when she moved to the country after growing up in the city. She finds great happiness in her 4-acre backyard, filling feeders and keeping the birdbath clean for the 80 species that stop by. Kelly shares her passion for the outdoors as an educator, teaching about conservation.

Ken Babcock is an assistant director and chairs the Conservation Department's Regulations Committee.

Ken Drenon is an information services supervisor with the Conservation Department.

Kenneth L. Kieser writes regularly for newspapers and outdoor magazines. He is an active member of the Southeastern Outdoor Press Association and the Missouri Outdoor Communicators. He says he spent his first 50 years in Missouri. He now lives near Kansas City, Kansas.

Kenneth L. Kieser writes regularly for newspapers and outdoor magazines.He is an active member of the Outdoor Writers Association of America and the Missouri Outdoor Communicators. He says he spent his first 50 years in Missouri. He now lives near Kansas City.

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Kevin Richards, the Department’s fisheries field operations chief, is dedicated to helping folks understand catch-and-release methodology. His wife, Donna, also works for MDC. Their kids were teenagers before they realized some families go on vacations that don’t include fishing.

Kevin Dacey has worked on wetlands for the Department for the past 23 years. Most recently, he has assisted the NRCS as a technical and biological coordinator for the Wetlands Reserve Program. He enjoys turkey, squirrel, deer and waterfowl hunting.

Kevin Lohraff grew up outdoors with a bow, gun or fishing rod in his hands at all times. “There are few things more rewarding than seeing someone get excited about a new outdoor skill you have helped them learn,” he says. Kevin works in Jefferson City as the Department’s Outdoor Skills Education Coordinator.

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Fisheries Management Biologist Kevin Meneau has worked for the Conservation Department since 1986. He developed St. Louis' lake renovation program and guided its Urban Fishing Program for 15 years. Kevin enjoys hiking and fishing with his wife, Susie, and their children, Tamara and Jacob.

 

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Resource Scientist Kevin Sullivan has worked for the Conservation Department for 25 years. He currently works out Clinton and is involved in several statewide catfish projects. He enjoys photography, fishing, bible teaching and traveling with his family to his oldest daughter's fiddle contests.

Kyle Carroll has been a Conservation Agent since 1980. A lifelong Missourian, he lives in Maysville with his wife, Sharon, and daughters, Kali and Kelsey. He enjoys hunting with flintlocks and bow and arrow. He said that while patrolling the 400 square miles in his district, he has often thought about the connection of today's hunters and anglers to their predecessors.

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Kyle Reno's 12-year tenure with the Conservation Department included 10 years as a fisheries biologist in northwest Missouri. Kyle is currently the Regional Private Land Services Supervisor in St. Joseph. His outdoor interests include hunting, fishing, trapping, gardening, and sharing Boy Scout activities with his two sons.

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Larry Rizzo is a natural history biologist with the Conservation Department and a former naturalist at the Springfield Conservation Nature Center. He enjoys hunting, bird watching, floating and camping. A native Kansas Citian, Larry lives in the metro area with his wife, Kathleen, and loves K.C. barbeque and Chiefs football.

Larry Vangilder of Columbia has been the Conservation Department's wild turkey expert for many years. From 1985 to 1998 he was a wildlife research biologist with responsibilities for wild turkey research and population management. His recommendations helped set hunting season dates and limits. He now works as a wildlife research supervisor.

Leanna K. Potts is the author of two culinary herb books and teaches cooking at the Ozark Folk Center and at home in Joplin.

Lee Price grew up roaming around Rock Bridge Memorial State Park. Now she hikes and camps in Missouri's state parks with her children, Peri and Dylan. In her spare time, she writes, edits the Mid-Missouri Business Weekly and teaches adult education in Moberly.

Linda Chorice has worked 13 years as an interpreter of nature and is assistant manager at the Conservation Department's Springfield Nature Center.

Linden Trial is employed in the Fisheries Research Section of the Conservation Department. She has worked primarily with aquatic invertebrates that are used to monitor the water quality of streams in the state. Over the last four years, Linden started collecting adult dragonflies to determine how many species live in Missouri.

A field program supervisor for urban and community forestry with the Conservation Department.

Lisa DeBruyckere is an assistant division chief in the Conservation Department's education division.

Liz Lyons taught communication arts and science to middle school students for four years. After receiving her master's degree in environmental science from Oklahoma State University, she came to the Missouri Department of Conservation as an education consultant. Lyons now works as a conservation education supervisor in the St.Louis Region.

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Lloyd Rome is a Forestry Resource Tech out of the Eminence District. Lloyd is well known for his sense of humor and willingness to help out where ever needed. He lives in nearby Summersville and enjoys working and living in the Ozarks.

Lloyd Rome demonstrating hacking cross ties at the Heritage Day Festival

LONNIE HANSEN, a resource scientist with the Department, has studied deer and been involved in their management for more than 25 years. He enjoys fishing and hunting with family and friends and managing the flora and fauna on his property north of Columbia.

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LORING BULLARD has served as executive director of the Watershed Committee of the Ozarks since 1989. The Committee is a not-for-profit, citizen-based organization whose mission is to protect sources of drinking water for the city of Springfield and Greene County. Loring enjoys canoeing, camping, fishing, biking and writing.

LUANN CADDEN worked eight years as a naturalist and conservation education supervisor for the Conservation Department in St. Joseph. She now works as a writer and freelance editor. When not tapping computer keys, she enjoys exploring the outdoors year-round with husband, Mike, and daughters, Rose and Lillian.

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Luann Cadden is a naturalist at the Conservation Department's Northwest Regional Office in St. Joseph. She enjoys taking walks with her family, gardening, camping, cooking and curling up with a good book under a shade tree.

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Lucie Lawrence currently resides in Washington, D.C., where she is associate editor of a monthly magazine for physical therapists. She worked for the Conservation Department when she wrote her article for this month's magazine. The hectic pace of the nation's capital makes her long for hiking, camping and biking in Missouri.

Lynn Barnickol is a forest products specialist with the Conservation Department.

Lynn Youngblood has been a nature center manager for over 18 years; over 16 of these have been at Burr Oak Woods. She started the Volunteer Naturalist program there in 1990. Lynn enjoys working with volunteers and is currently starting a new Missouri Master Naturalist chapter.

Margot McMillen is a freelance writer living on a farm near Millersburg among Salers cattle, horses and chickens. She teaches English at Westminster and has published two books on Missouri place names and one on Missouri traditional artists.

Mariah Hughes is the Conservation Department's outdoor skills coordinator and directs Missouri's "Becoming an Outdoors-Woman" program. Before coming to work in Missouri, she taught outdoor education programs in Illinois and Maine and at Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico. She lives in Jefferson City and enjoys the outdoors with her husband and two sons.

Mark Goodman is an avid hunter and fisherman who delights in cooking and eating wild game. He especially enjoys fishing small streams. Mark lives on a 10-acre patch of woods outside Jackson with his wife, Lisa, and their children, Mike, Jennifer and Stacy. Look for a future article by Mark about preparing and cooking squirrels.

Author Mark Jackson is a wildlife management biologist who works out of the Conservation Department's St. Joseph office.

Mark McGimsey served as a biologist with the Conservation Department for over three years. Since leaving the Conservation Department, he has been conducting an endangered bat survey throughout the Midwest. He and his wife, Joanne Grady, live in Columbia. Mark has logged a lot of time in the underground. He enjoys flying-disc golf in his spare time.

Mark Goodwin is a life-long Missouri resident who lives in Jackson. Recently retired from teaching high-school biology, Mark now has time to travel and hunt in other states. Last fall Mark enjoyed hunting elk in Colorado and pheasants in Kansas. His favorite hunting, however, remains Missouri’s turkeys.

Mark Goodwin, turkey hunter and teacher, has hunted turkeys across Missouri for 20 years. All three of his children enjoy hunting and have bagged wild turkeys. His youngest child, Stacy, 11, killed her first turkey last fall with one shot. Mark is an enthusiastic outdoorsman and a frequent contributor to the Conservationist.

A 1985 graduate of the University of Missouri-Columbia, Mark Grueber is the Conservation Department's urban forester for St. Charles County. Along with his passion for playing and coaching volleyball, he's also a huge professional hockey fan. He also enjoys spending time outdoors with his wife, Lorri.

Mark Nikolaisen lives in Chesterfield with his wife, Laura, daughter, Tori, and son, Lucas. He said his respect and appreciation for wildlife and the outdoors comes from family members and friends who have shared their knowledge over the years.

Mark

Marta K. Nelson has been a naturalist at the Conservation Department's Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center in Blue Springs for 5 years. She says the best part of being a naturalist is getting the chance to be a kid again and see the natural world through kid's eyes.

Martha Bowden lives and cooks in Lafayette, Colorado. She teaches 6th grade language arts.

An information specialist with the Conservation Department.

MARVIN BOYER is a fisheries management biologist from the St. Louis Region. He grew up fishing and hunting in rural Jefferson County. He left home and studied in Wisconsin, Florida and Utah. Happily back in Missouri with friends and family, Marvin enjoys spending time outdoors with his wife, Jennifer, and their three children.

When not writing and editing for the Department, Matt Seek tries to spend every spare moment outside with his kids. His daughter, Maya, enjoys duck boat rides, catching bluegill and hunting butterflies. Gabe, his 3-year-old, is a champion squirrel stalker, rock thrower and dirt digger. Matt couldn’t be prouder of them.

Maureen McHale lives in Kirksville and works as a natural features inventory biologist for The Nature Conservancy and the Conservation Department. Lillian Sell (pictured) is a resource forester assistant in the Conservation Department's Mississippi River Unit. She and her husband are building a home in Unionville and have recently planted their own 14-acre "forest for the future."

Mavis Dey is a freelance writer and home-school mother of four children.

Max Alleger coordinates MDC’s quail and grassland bird conservation programs. His experience in upland wildlife management and agriculture fuels an interest in conservation that benefits both people and native species.

photo of MDC quail and grassland bird program coordinator Max Alleger

Melanie manages the Twin Pines Conservation Education Center in Winona, Shannon County Missouri.  In her spare time she loves fishing with her Dad, Clyde, camping and rock collecting with her family.  She is a volunteer Hunter Ed instructor, involved in Boy Scouts, Public Information Officer for Shannon County, Red Cross Instructor and on the DESE Committee for the State Math and Science teacher conference.  She lives in Eminence, Missouri with her husband of 15 years, Mike and her pet rabbit, T-shirt. 

Melanie, shown here with her grandson Nicholas, enjoys teaching archery.

Michele Baumer is a naturalist at the Runge Conservation Nature Center in Jefferson City. She has been with the Conservation Department for 11 years. Michele's story was inspired by her dad, Harvey Henricks. She enjoys creating outdoor memories with her husband, Clif, and her sons, Joshua and Samuel. They enjoy canoeing, camping and bicycling.

Michelle Motley lives with her husband, Bill, and her son, Jonathan, on a farm near Rocheport. She is a program specialist in conservation with the Missouri Farm Service Agency. In her free time, she enjoys bicycling, riding horses and spending time with her family and friends.

Mike Schroer is a wildlife regional supervisor with the Conservation Department in the St. Louis region. He and his wife, Holly, and two sons, Ryan and Hunter, live in St. Charles County. Mike is an avid angler and hunter, and he especially enjoys fishing the Mississippi and Missouri rivers. He has a strong interest in the long-term viability of wildlife population in urban areas.

image of MIke Schroer

A forester in the southeast region, Mike Anderson has been with the Conservation Department for 24 years. He says he started hunting morels as a child with his father, and over the years he's amassed an impressive collection of mushroom recipes. His favorite is fried morels.

image of Mike Anderson

An 11-year veteran of the Conservation Department, Mike Arduser is the regional natural history biologist at the August A. Busch Memorial Conservation Area. He says one of the most enjoyable aspects of his job is teaching people the importance of conservation in urban areas. He enjoys canoeing, hiking and fishing with his wife, Jane, and their three children.

Mike Bayless stays busy with his daughter and three sons, who are all involved in sports. He also stays busy chasing ducks, turkeys, and fi sh. He says he most enjoys introducing his children to the wonders of Missouri’s woods and waters.

Mike Colvin is a fisheries research biologist with the Conservation Department. He specializes in impoundment research and works out of the Columbia Fish and Wildlife Research Center.

Worked for the Conservation Department as a fisheries management biologist in the St. Louis area, where he become intimately familiar with urbanization and its effects on streams. He recently moved to Little Rock, Ark., with his wife, Heather. He now works for the Arkansas Field Office of The Nature Conservancy.

image of Mike Fuhr

Fisheries Programs Coordinator Mike Kruse worked with a large number of Department employees to develop “A Plan for Missouri Trout Fishing.” He now serves as the Department’s Trout Plan Coordinator and liaisons with trout angling groups. He’s an avid angler and enjoys fly fishing.

MIKE LEAHY is the natural areas coordinator for the Conservation Department. He and his wife, Carol Davit, and their son, Jamie, live in Jefferson City. They enjoy hiking, birding, botanizing, gardening and playing in streams.

Mike Roux grew up in St. Francois County. He is an outdoor writer, videographer and a regional editor for an outdoor magazine published in St. Louis. He lives in Quincy, Ill., with his wife, Nancy, and their five children. Mike is a childhood friend of Conservation Department artist David Besenger, who illustrated Mike's article

Humorist Mitch Jayne is a prolific author who often shares his memories of Ozark folklore with Conservationist readers. He lives in Columbia.

Lives in Campbell, Mo.

Nichole LeClair holds degrees in journalism and conservation biology. She is thrilled to finally indulge both interests as managing editor for the Conservationist. Ever looking for an excuse to play outside, she most enjoys camping, hiking, canoeing, fishing and hunting. Canids have always fascinated her.

While NICHOLE LECLAIR was impressed by the accomplishments of FFA members, she was inspired by their positive outlook and love of learning. When not pestering teenage dynamos for interviews, she enjoys playing outside, spoiling her animals, and experimenting in her kitchen. She’s the managing editor of the Conservationist.

LeClair, Nicole, Nicole LeClair

Kids and fall activities seem a magic combination to Nichole LeClair Terrill. She has fond memories of her own childhood trips to nature centers and harvest festivals, and remains enchanted by the autumn woods at night. Nichole lives in Gasconade County with her husband, Travis. She is the managing editor of the Conservationist.

 NOPPADOL PAOTHONG discovered his passion for wildlife photography in college in 1995. Born in Thailand, he came to the U.S. in 1993 to study graphic arts before switching to journalism. When not traveling and photographing, he enjoys time at home cooking. He, his wife, and their two golden retrievers live in Columbia.

Norman Murray is a natural history regional biologist in the Conservation Department's west central region. He formerly was biodiversity coordinator for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation. His special interest is prairies and prairie restoration. Norman, his wife, Sheila, and their two young sons are restoring a small glade and savannah near their house.

Staff of the Missouri Conservation Department working in the Ozark Region.

Pat Smith has been writing stories and riding horses in Missouri for nearly 20 years. A freelance journalist, she also teaches a class at the University of Missouri School of Journalism and remains close to rural Missouri from the Boone County farm where she lives with her family and an assortment of animals.

Writer Paul Lamble lives in the Kansas City area.

Paul Calvert has been with the Department for 12 years and currently supervises the Stream Unit. He has a deep appreciation for Missouri’s unique and diverse communities. When he is not at work, he stays busy collecting insects and spiders, woodworking and spending time with his wife and two sons.

Paul Lamble and his wife "nest" near Kansas City and are raising a brood of their own, looking forward to their first flights. They also maintain what he describes as a "40-acre tick farm" in Benton County. Paul has written for the Conservationist on such subjects as crows, hiking trails, mistletoe and urban deer.

Community Outreach Specialist Phil Helfrich ran a greenway and a youth corps non-profit in Colorado before moving back to Missouri five years ago to work for Conservation Department in the Cape Girardeau office. He was formerly a guitar player for Steely Dan, and a tour guide.

Phil Covington is a wildlife biologist with the Conservation Department. He specializes in the diverse plants and animals native to wetlands.

Conservation Department private land conservationist Phil Rockers works with landowners in Cole, Moniteau and Cooper counties.When he is not assisting landowners with their forest, fish and wildlife management goals, he enjoys hunting, fishing, backpacking, camping and canoeing.

image of Phil Rockers

A graduate of Purdue University, Phil Sneed is a resource forester based in Chillicothe. He has worked for the Department for six years in both the Ozarks and north Missouri. He enjoys mountain biking and fishing.

image of Phil Sneed

Is a private consulting forester. He and his wife, Ginny, live in Columbia. Brundage likes to hunt and fish when he is not managing several tree farms he owns, including one that produces Christmas trees. He has been president of the Consulting Foresters organization and president of the Show-Me Big Bucks Club.

image of R. Scott Brundage

Served in Air Force security, earned a bachelor's degree in criminology and has been a security supervisor for a St. Louis company for 19 years. He lives in Bonne Terre.

Randee Wahlgren lives in O'Fallon with her husband, Rob, and two sons, Alex and Sam. She works part-time as a certified fitness instructor and personal trainer. Randee and her family enjoy many outdoor activities and make health and fitness a priority.

image of Randee Wahlgren

Randy Doman is the conservation agent for Dade County. He enjoys a good old-fashioned hunting story, and he feels blessed to enjoy the natural resources handed down from the previous generation of conservationists. He's also grateful for the privilege to protect them for the next generation.

Randy Jensen works for the Conservation Department as a research forester and field coordinator on the MOFEP project.

Audrain County Conservation Agent Randy Kriegel has been with the Conservation Department 20 years. He lives in Mexico with his wife, Melanie, who is a stained glass artist, and two children still at home. His hobby is collecting game warden badges from around the country. He currently has them from over half of the states.

Author Ray McDaniel, 56, lives on a farm adjacent to Caney Mountain Conservation Area near Gainesville. He is a retired broadcaster and an ardent turkey and deer hunter

Reneé Jean is a reporter in Park Hills for The Daily Journal. She has been stomping around the outdoors since childhood, beginning with long walks in the woods with her father to collect material for his biology students. She enjoys fishing, as well as searching for wild edibles, including morel mushrooms and persimmons

Reta Barkley is a naturalist for The Missouri Department of Conservation at the Twin Pines Conservation Education Center in Winona. She enjoys spending time with her grandsons and family. In her free time, Reta can be found outdoors indulging her hobbies including photography, hiking, biking, fishing and camping.

MDC Naturalist Reta Barkley with her grandsons prestyn, Harper and Cyrus

Rex Martensen is a 15-year MDC employee who worked in Fisheries and Protection Divisions before filling his current role as field program supervisor for the Private Land Services Division. Rex resides in Moniteau County with his wife, Cindy, and five children. He enjoys fishing and all types of hunting.

REX MARTENSEN is a 16-year Department employee who worked in Fisheries and Protection divisions before filling his current role as field program supervisor for the Private Land Services Division. Rex and his family reside in Moniteau County. He enjoys fishing and all types of hunting.

rex, martensen

Rich Cook is an assistant hatchery manager at Lost Valley Fish Hatchery in Warsaw. He enjoys trapping, rabbit hunting and spending time outdoors with his wife, Johanna, and two children, Dayhna and Sean.

Rich Wehnes is a fisheries administrative services supervisor with responsibility for Conservation Department stream programs.

Richard Guyette is a research associate professor in forestry at the University of Missouri's School of Natural Resources. He studies tree rings to learn about forests, the environment, ecology and history. He lives with his wife and children in central Missouri. His hobbies are drawing and boiling maple sap into syrup.

Richard Blatz, a resource forester with the Conservation Department, is stationed in Lebanon.

Richard P. Bowles is a family physician in West Plains. He, his wife and their four children enjoy fishing and canoeing in the Ozarks. They also love to snow ski. "Fishing With Father," is his first published story. His father, now 70 years old, is a family doctor in Liberty and continues to be an avid angler and sportsman.

A fisheries supervisor with the Conservation Department.

Research biologist Rick Clawson has worked for the Conservation Department since 1977. He has focused his research on forest songbirds and endangered bats.He enjoys hunting and fishing and likes watching wildlife around his Callaway County home. He plants food plots for deer and turkey and sets out seeds, suet, and nectar for birds and hummingbirds.

includes Rick Clawson

Rick Thom began working for the Conservation Department in 1978 as its first natural areas coordinator. He currently serves as administrator of the Natural History Division and vice-chair of the interagency Missouri Natural Areas Committee. Rick enjoys just about all outdoor activities, especially exploring the plants, animals and geology of Missouri's diverse natural communities.

image of Rick Thom

Rob Lawrence has been the forest entomologist for the Department since 1996, monitoring forest health and providing information on maintaining healthy trees. He and his wife, Martha, enjoy gardening and studying the fascinating behavior of insects that also “enjoy” their garden.

Fisheries management biologist Rob Pulliam works with private landowners in the Conservation Department's east-central region. He says the most rewarding part of his job is developing plans that meet the needs of both landowners and the natural resources under their stewardship. Rob, his wife, Dawn, and their baby daughter, Brooke, live in Sullivan.

Robert N. Chapman is a wildlife management biologist in the Ozark Region. His professional interests include researching the response of plant communities and wildlife populations to fire. Rob enjoys hunting, fishing, canoeing and spending time with family and friends.

Robert Flanders, a Springfield-area writer, was with the Ozarks Studies Center at Southwest Missouri State University before retirement.

Robert Crewse. Husband, Father. Been with the Missouri Dept. of Conservation for almost 6 years. Resource Assisstant Forestry. Graduated from Drury University with an B.S. in Biology. Love spending time with family, Hunting (Bow hunting), fishing and golf with friends and family.

Robert Crewse enjoys a successful turkey hunt in the Ozarks.

Robert Vaughn grew up on a farm in west-central Missouri and has lived in Adrian since 1968. After retiring from his work in the heavy construction industry in 2000, he now has more time to fish, boat and camp,as well write articles that share with others his personal experiences.

image of Robert Vaughn

Robert W. Fluchel, Discovery Center manager, has been involved with the development of the Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center in Kansas City since its inception. He understands city kids because he once was one. He grew up in St. Louis in the 1950s. Bob is a 20-year veteran of the Department.

Conservation Department wildlife biologist Rochelle Renken is investigating amphibian and turtle use of wetlands created by the 1993 Missouri River flood and logging's effects on amphibian and reptile communities in the Ozarks. She and her husband live in Clinton with three sons. She enjoys canoeing, fishing and hiking.

Wetland Services Biologist Rod Doolen is employed by the Conservation Department in southeast Missouri. He works with the Wetland Reserve Program, assisting with restoration of wetland habitat. He lives in the eastern Ozarks with his family. He says he likes to hunt, fish, hike and canoe.

Ron Reitz is a resource scientist and the survey coordinator for the Department of Conservation. He and his wife, Kim, live in Columbia. He enjoys spending time at work, but in his free time he likes to hunt, fish, read and spend time outdoors with their dog, Satchmo.

Was a biologist with the Conservation Department at the time of her successful deer hunt. She now lives and works in the state of California.

Conservation Department wildlife biologist Ryan Kelly specializes in wetland management. His hobbies include waterfowl hunting, bluegill fishing and spending time with family and friends. Ryan said his father taught him to love the outdoors and be a good conservationist.

image of Ryan Kelly

Sara Firman-Pitt was born in the United Kingdom and grew up in Kenya, Fiji and Brazil. She said Ozark spring storms remind her of her tropical childhood. She and her husband, Ralph, have created a small retreat center on Spring Creek in Douglas County specializing in a unique form of water therapy.

Sara Parker is chief of staff for Missouri House Speaker Steve Gaw.

Sarah Thompson is a student pursuing a dual major in atmospheric sciences and mathematics from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She hails from Sibley and lists her favorite pastimes as stormchasing, horseback riding and karate. She says she enjoys spending time with her fiance and their two pet snakes.

Scott Sudkamp is a Private Land Conservationist serving Bates and Vernon Counties in west-central Missouri. He is an avid bird hunter, having hunted 11 species of upland gamebirds in 9 different states. Besides quail management, Scott's professional interests include quality deer management, savanna/woodland management, wetland development and management, and utilizing fire and grazing effects to manage and manipulate wildlife habitat.

Scott Sudkamp

Shannon Cave has been with the Conservation Department since 1988, serving in a variety of roles including public information officer, ombudsman, division chief, unit chief and now public involvement coordinator. His favorite task is working with other agencies, communities and interested citizens to build interest in the Lewis and Clark bicentennial, and in Missouri's two big rivers.

image of Shannon Cave

Biologist Sharron Gough works for the Conservation Department. She also serves as coordinator for the Grasslands Coalition. Sharron enjoys gardening, writing, cooking, yoga, being in a boat, and taking long strolls with her dog. Sharron lives near Stockton with her husband.

image of Sharron Gough

Shawn Banks is a fisheries management biologist in Chillicothe. He's been with the Department for nearly two years.

image of Shawn Banks

Missouri Dept. of Conservation, Protection Program Coordinator Shawn.Gruber@mdc.mo.gov (573) 751-4115 ext. 3261

Shelby Jones is a forestry staff supervisor with the Conservation Department. He processes some wood in his spare time as a decoy carver.

Sheri Medlock is a naturalist at Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center, but she conducts programs for the deaf and hard of hearing throughout the state. Sheri lives in Lee’s Summit and enjoys backpacking, photography and kayaking.

Stream Team biologist Sherry Fischer has worked for MDC for 14 years. She lives in Jefferson City with her husband and two children. One of the things she enjoys most about her job is passing on her passion for the natural environment, especially streams.

Skyler bockman and familySkyler is a Naturalist at the Twin Pines Conservation Education Center. He resides in Birch Tree, MO with his wife Michelle and their son Harper Glen (Ott) who is the 7th generation of Bockman to live in the area. When not gigging, Skyler enjoys running his rabbit beagles and teaching Ott the finer points of eating fried fish.

Spence Turner is a retired fisheries research biologist for the Conservation Department. His specialty was trout and smallmouth bass, which he now loves to pursue for fun. He lives in Columbia with his wife, Joan, and seven English setters. Spence writes for several magazines and is president of Missouri Outdoor Communicators.

Now lives in Manassas, Virginia.

Stan Michaelson has worked for the Conservation Department for 30 years. He currently is a fisheries field operations chief . He lives with his wife, Nancy, and three children on a small acreage near Jefferson City. When not remodeling or repairing their house, he enjoys fishing, waterfowl hunting, gardening and reading.

Stephen Pool of Hayti has lived in southeast Missouri most of his 88 years, working at various jobs, including farmer, school teacher and salesman. When he was young, his father took him on many hunting and fishing outings. The Pemiscot Historical Society has honored him for a composition on his family heritage.

image of Stephen Pool

Steve Barnes became a fisheries research assistant in 1997 after four years with the Conservation Department. He says he is proud of being a life-long Missouri resident. The exotic species he writes about in this issue may become more of an issue as global transportation becomes more common. In his spare time he enjoys camping, fishing and canoeing with sons Julian and Levi.

Steve McCombs, a route supervisor for a House Springs donut company, grew up in Jefferson County, south of St. Louis. He loves to fish for smallmouth bass in small streams. A former musician, he also enjoys camping, watching St. Louis sports teams play and spending quality time with his son, Brandon.

Steve Shifley works at the USDA Forest Service’s North Central Research Station in Columbia. He has inventoried remnant old-growth forests in Missouri to learn how they compare with mature second-growth forests. His current study–how large forest landscapes change over time–is part of the Missouri Ozark Forest Ecosystem Project.

Program Supervisor STEVE WESTIN is in his 20th year as an employee of the Conservation Department. He oversees Forestry Division’s private landowner assistance efforts and is focused on helping private landowners receive maximum benefits from their woodlands. Steve lives in the Jefferson City area with his wife and daughters.

Steve Zap came to Missouri from Texas in 1973. He attended the School of the Ozarks, graduating in 1977, and has served as the conservation agent in Phelps County since 1979. Steve and his wife, Joanne, reside outside of Rolla. They are the proud parents of a recent college grad, their daughter, Kristen.

Steve Eder is a fisheries field operations chief for the Conservation Department. While working in northwest Missouri on small public and private lakes, he developed an interest in pursuing big bluegills. Now located in Jefferson City, he enjoys fishing with his family and friends for bluegill in small lakes, catfish in the Missouri River and smallmouth bass in Ozark streams.

image of Steve Eder

Sue Bruenderman is the state malacologist and a fisheries research biologist with the Conservation Department. She specializes in the biology and conservation of freshwater mussels and fishes, although she takes an interest in the natural history of most living things. When she is not in the water, Sue enjoys digging in her garden, running, biking, hiking and birding.

Sue Burks is a forest pathologist with the Conservation Department.

Sue Nickler is with Forest ReLeaf of Missouri and produces a quarterly publication for the organization. She wrote a handbook on conservation projects for youth.

Sue Hubbell is a writer who splits her time between Missouri and Washington D.C. See the story about her on page 4 of this issue. Hubbell's most recent book is Far Flung Hubbell (Random House).

Susan Farrington works for MDC as the Natural History Biologist for the Ozark Region. Prior to starting her current position a year ago, Susan worked as a Resource Scientist with MDC, studying the effects of timber management and prescribed burning on the plant community. She earned a master’s degree in Forest Ecology from the University of Missouri-Columbia. Susan and her husband live in Shannon County, where they spend their spare time working to restore the glades and woodlands on their personal property.

Susan Flader is a professor of history at the University of Missouri-Columbia. She has published books and articles on the career and thought of Aldo Leopold and on Missouri parks and forests, including the recently released Toward Sustainability for Missouri Forests.

Freelance author Suzanne Wilson has written three other articles about photography and photographers for the Missouri Conservationist: "Photographing Wildflowers" (March 1995), "Perfect Light" (December 1995) and "A Heritage on Film" (November 1996). Her article about nature artist S. Fred Prince appeared in the December 1998 issue. Suzanne and her husband live near Joplin.

TAMIE YEGGE manages Powder Valley CNC. She has always loved nature and grew up camping, hiking, canoeing and fishing with family, traditions she now shares with her own children.

TED BARE is a retired cartographic technician who worked with the U.S.G.S. Topographic Division in Rolla for 37 years. He is an avid waterfowl hunter, angler and outdoorsman. He and his wife, Nancy, now live in the Branson area where they enjoy fishing, boating and other activities with their children and grandchildren.

Ted, Bare

Forester Terence Hanley worked in Ellington and at Rockwoods Reservation near St. Louis for the Conservation Department, before recently taking another employment opportunity. He is an Indiana native and a graduate of Purdue University. This is his first article for the Conservationist.

image of Terence Hanley

Thomas V. Dailey has served as a resource scientist for the Department since 1987. He and his wife, Sandy, and their five dogs live in Boone County. When not bird hunting, he gets out the kayak, mountain bike, turkey call and cross-country skis for recreation, and a chain saw and drip torch for savanna restoration.

Thomas Dailey photo

Thomas W. Blackburn, P.E.,was raised in St. Louis but says he spent many memorable days on Granny and Grandpa's Steelville farm, where he hunted, fished, swam, fixed fence, cut wood, pulled weeds and raced sticks down the creek.He is now a civil engineer in the state of California and enjoys outdoor adventures with his own kids,Donald,Amy and Isaac.

image of Thomas W. Blackburn, P.E.

Tim Frevert is urban/community forestry specialist in the Conservation Department's Forestry Division in Jefferson City. He has been with the Conservation Department since 1970. He travels to all parts of the state to help devise plans for tree management on public property. He said he enjoys doing just about anything outdoors.

Tim Stanton has been working for the Conservation Department since 1980 and is currently a forestry district supervisor for the Ozark region. He has been associated with wildfire control in Missouri and the western states throughout his entire career. Tim and his son, Aaron, live in Ava, where they both enjoy team sports, hunting and fishing

Became a Conservation Agent in 1977 and is now Northwest Regional Supervisor, based in St. Joseph.

image of Tim Ripperger

I joined the Conservation Department 25 years ago as a botanist. Although plant conservation was my focus, I’ve always communicated with Missourians about conservation through magazines, newsletters and journals. I also answered a lot of botany related questions that came to our former ombudsman. So when he retired, I was happy to take on this job and answer all sorts of questions Missourians have about everything from hunting regulations to hummingbird migrations to habitat restoration. In my spare time, I enjoy exploring the Missouri countryside, using various excuses such as upland bird hunting, fishing and running my dog.

TODD GEMEINHARDT is a fisheries management biologist in the Kansas City region and has been with the Missouri Department of Conservation since 1999. In his free time, he enjoys hunting and fishing as well as spending time with his wife, Nicole, and his 15-month- old daughter, Madelyn.

Conservation Agent Todd Houf has patrolled Callaway County for 10 years. An agent's duties include enforcing Missouri's hunting, fishing and trapping regulations and ensuring compliance with Wildlife Code regulations. When not patrolling, he enjoys spending time with his wife and teaching his two sons about the great outdoors.

Photo of agent Todd Houf

Todd R. Pridemore became hooked on hunting and fishing while growing up near Mtn. Grove. A minister, he resides in Columbia with his wife, Carolyn, and sons, Josh and Drew. He looks forward to the day his boys will be old enough to call in turkeys for him!

Tom Aley is a hydrologist and forester who has studied karst groundwater throughout the United States for 35 years. He is the founder and director of the Ozark Underground Laboratory near Protem, where he hosts many schools groups learning about caves. He and his wife, Cathy, live on a hillside overlooking Bear Cave Hollow.

Tom Meister has worked for the Conservation Department for 18 years, as a volunteer naturalist, naturalist, interpretive programs supervisor and now a wildlife damage biologist, helping Missourians solve conflicts with wildlife. He lives on the Bourbeuse River and enjoys fishing, canoeing and exploring our state’s resources.

image of Tom Meister

Tom Skinner has been a conservation agent since 1985. Assigned to Macon County, he has worked the Lolli Bros. Exotic and Alternative Wildlife Sales for the past 21 years. He has also worked captive wildlife cases throughout Missouri and other states and taught captive wildlife issues to agent trainees.

Tom Strothers was a conservation agent for 10 years and now supervises other agents. He lists his hobbies as hunting, fishing and collecting conservation department shoulder patches. He says his wife, Sandi, believes the outdoors begins where the city limits of Chicago end. They have two children, Tommy, 11, and daughter Jessie, 7.

Tom Treiman has been a natural resource economist with the Conservation Department since 1997. When’s he’s not wondering about tree values, he can be found watching birds or weeding his garden.

TOM CWYNAR is a writer/editor for the Conservationist who often writes about fishing Missouri waters. Tom said he has a variety of interests, but that he generally likes the outdoors more than the indoors and activity more than passivity. He is currently trying to teach his new little white boat to catch fish.

photo of Tom Cwynar

Tom Cwynar is a writer/editor for the Conservationist who often writes about fishing Missouri waters. Tom said he has a variety of interests, but that he generally likes the outdoors more than the indoors and activity more than passivity. He is currently trying to teach his new little white boat to catch fish.is a writer/editor for the Conservationist who often writes about fishing Missouri waters. Tom said he has a variety of interests, but that he generally likes the outdoors more than the indoors and activity more than passivity. He is currently trying to teach his new little white boat to catch fish.

 

Tom Cwynar is editor of the Conservationist. He came to the Conservation Department after working as a newspaper journalist and as a commercial magazine editor and writer. An acknowledged "outdoorophile," he frequently writes about fishing and hunting. He says walleye will always be his favorite fish.

Tom Dailey has served as a resource scientist for the Department since 1987. He and his wife, Sandy, and their five dogs live in Boone County. When not bird hunting, he gets out the kayak, mountain bike, turkey call and cross-country skiis for recreation, and a chain saw and drip torch for savanna restoration.

After 28 years with the Conservation Department, Tom Hutton now works as a wildlife disease biologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. He enjoys photography, bird dogs, hunting, bird watching, and hiking and biking with Anne, his wife, and his two daughters, Erin and Meghan.

image of Tom Hutton

Herpetologist Tom R. Johnson has worked for the Conservation Department since 1977. He is the author of the book, The Amphibians and Reptiles of Missouri, which was recently revised. He retired last November but continues to work for the Conservation Department part time. Tom enjoys fly fishing for trout in western states in his spare time.

Tom Nagel is a natural history biologist with the Conservation Department. His enjoyment of the outdoors began on hunting and fishing trips with his father and brothers. Other outdoor interests include canoeing, hiking, and birding. He lives in St. Joseph.

image of Tom Nagel

Tom R. Johnson retired as the Department’s state herpetologist in 2000. He is the author and illustrator of The Amphibians and Reptiles of Missouri, published in 1987 and revised in 2000. He lives on a small Ozark farm in Wright County. He claims to have a “prize-winning crop of rocks and weeds.”

Tom Wekenborg is a landowner in Callaway County. He recently retired from the USDA Farm Service Agency after 30 years as a farm loan supervisor and appraiser. He runs a row crop and cow/calf operation that emphasizes wildlife management. He also enjoys Native American history and all forms of outdoor recreation.

image of Tom Wekenborg

TONY LEGG grew up in the woods, streams and lakes around Phelps County and became an avid hunter and angler. An Air Force competitive shooter/coach, instructor and range specialist for 24 years, he now enjoys teaching outdoor and shooting skills around the state and spending time shooting with family and friends.

Tony Weiss is a veterinarian in Florissant. He is a member of a Stream Team and has adopted a stretch of Coldwater Creek. He also manages the family property in Clark County for the benefit of wildlife. He says he plays soccer whenever possible

image of Tony Weiss

TORY MASON is a fisheries management biologist for Holt, Atchison and Nodaway counties. He began working for the Department of Conservation in August 2003. Tory grew up in northern Illinois. He enjoys fishing for walleye and panfish, bow hunting and waterfowl hunting with his two 2 labs and his layout boat.

Taney County Conservation Agent Tracy Crede has been with the Conservation Department since 1996. She formerly worked with the Ozark Cavefish Public Outreach program and, following completion of law enforcement training, served as a conservation agent in Willow Springs.

Travis Moore is a fisheries management biologist in Hannibal. He works on a variety of big-river issues, including shovelnose and lake sturgeon, freshwater mussels and fish habitat management. He spends his free time fishing and chasing game with his wife, Kathi, and two sons, Chance and Jacob.

 

Tricia Radford is the area biologist for southwest Missouri. She enjoys hiking, identifying wildflowers and hunting with her husband, Scott, and their Lab, Gaddy, on their farm in Christian County.

Fisheries Management Biologist Trish Yasger is from Wisconsin but has worked for the Conservation Department for 15 years. She manages the fi sheries of Truman Lake and other lakes around Sedalia and serves as the Paddlefi sh Plan Coordinator. She enjoys fishing, gardening and bicycling.

Troy Peterson lives near Nashville, close to Joplin. He's had the turkey hunting bug since 1985 and has managed to harvest 23 turkeys in Missouri. He also hunts turkeys in Kansas and Colorado, competes in turkey calling contests and guides other turkey hunters.

Veronica Feilner has over 20 years of experience in education, including four years at the Department of Conservation, where she is currently serving as an outreach & education coordinator. She loves gardening with her husband, Ron, in rural Boone County and deer hunting and fishing with family.

Vince Magers is a natural science writer in Kansas City. His work has appeared in many publications. He is an avid gardener and a member of the Kansas City chapter of the Missouri Native Plant Society.

 

image of Vince Magers

Vince Travnichek learned about catfish while fishing for bullheads in Kansas farm ponds as a youngster. He is now a Conservation Department resource scientist in Columbia and helps manage flathead catfish in the Missouri River. Hes still enjoys fishing for bullhead with his wife and two daughters.

Vince Travnichek learned about catfish by catching bullheads in Kansas farm ponds as a youngster. He is now a resource scientist with the Conservation Department in Columbia. He still enjoys catching horned pouts, greasers, polliwogs, and stingers with his wife and two daughters.

image of Vince Travnichek

WARREN ROSE is the Outreach and Education regional supervisor in SW Missouri. He lives in Springfield with his wife, Sherri, and their son, Nicholas. Warren has worked for the Department for five years and is a life long avid outdoorsman. He enjoys hunting and sharing outdoor traditions with family and friends.

William Poe is a St. Louis-based writer and advertising executive whose outdoor hobbies include hiking and biking. He has recently taken up fishing (with what he describes as less than stellar results) and backyard birdwatching.

image of William Poe

William Anderson, a 27-year veteran of the Conservation Department, has worked as a fisheries biologist since 1986. Part of his job includes managing the fish populations of Table Rock Lake, Lake Taneycomo and southwest Missouri streams. He is an avid bass angler and enjoys fishing on local reservoirs.

William Mabee lives in Columbia and particularly cherishes opportunities to enjoy the outdoors with family and friends. He is a fisheries research assistant with the Conservation Department. He has studied aquatic invertebrates, water quality and fisheries of Missouri for 17 years.

Willoughby Johnson grew up in Columbia and now lives in Kansas City with his wife and two daughters. In the fall he spends as much time as possible roaming the countryside in search of pheasants and quail with his dog, Basie.

Wyatt Layman works in Outreach and Education at Twin Pines Nature Center in Winona. He also holds a position as a research assistant with the elk restoration project, in Shannon County. When Wyatt is not working, he attends classes at Missouri State University full time, where he is majoring in Technical Writing and minoring in Biology. In his spare time he enjoys hunting, hiking, and spending time with his wife, Audrey.