Financial Manager, P-CREW Assistant Coordinator, Youth Recreation Coordinator
For the past 30 years, Amy has led outdoor education and leadership training trips throughout the U.S., including the Rocky Mountains, Sierra Nevada, Southwest, Pacific Northwest, and Alaska. At the Sierra Institute, she co-coordinates the summer P-CREW internship program and was instrumental in the development of the Greenville Outdoor Adventure Learning and Friday Night for Teens programs. In addition to the diverse experience in outdoor leadership programming Amy brings to our youth programs, she has also served as the financial manager for the organization since 1998. In her spare time, you can find Amy hiking with her dogs, working diligently in her garden, and serving as the community mom to the youth of Indian Valley. Email Amy
Ashley manages the Plumas Conservation Restoration and Education in Watersheds (P-CREW) program at Sierra Institute, which is expanding to FOUR crews in summer 2018! She has a B.S. in Agronomy (Soil Science and Environmental Quality) and a minor in Geology from Iowa State University. She came to California in 2011 to join a conservation corps and immediately fell in love with the Sierra Nevada Mountains and the corps life. She’s thrilled to be in a position that helps youth from a variety of backgrounds have a positive experience living and working in the mountains while connecting with nature. Email Ashley.
Wood Utilization Program Lead
Camille leads the Sierra Institute’s wood utilization program—an effort to improve forest health and spur economic development in Plumas County through creation of outlets for woody biomass. Current work includes managing the Plumas Health and Human Services Center Biomass Project in Quincy, and the Crescent Mills brownfield cleanup and wood products business development effort. She joined the Sierra Institute team in 2014 after receiving a BS in Environmental Science and Resource Management from the University of Washington. Camille is delighted to be an Indian Valley resident and in her free time you can find her chasing local snow on skis in the winter or searching for the best secret swimming holes in the summer. Email Camille
Natural Resources and Sierra Fellows Programs
Courtney is an East Coast native who fell in love with California in 2009. She has a Master of Science in Ecology from Colorado State University, and spent number of field seasons in Northern California doing plant ecology research before joining the Sierra Institute team. She loves hiking, biking, gardening, and enjoying the outdoors with her dog, Ipa. And most of all, Courtney loves working to inspire the next generation of stewards. Courtney coordinates the Sierra Fellows Program, and enjoys connecting with the communities and watersheds of Plumas County in her project work. Courtney also coordinates the Natural Resource Program at Greenville High School, and develops natural resource-based education modules for use in local classrooms and field settings. Email Courtney
P-CREW Assistant Coordinator
Joining SI in May, Irshad is a proud Californian born and raised throughout the state. Primarily raised in the city life, Irshad’s admiration for the great outdoors came from spending his summers attending farm and wilderness camps. This was his release from the influences and pressures from the city, and helped shape his now diverse and ecocentric mindset. After spending sometime as a collegiate athlete, Irshad’s outdoor career began once he graduated from Feather River College in 2016. Since then he’s adventured through the Willamette National Forest(OR), Lassen National Forest(CA), and Yosemite National Park(CA) as a backpacking trip leader, and is exhilarated to have the opportunity to return to Plumas County and give back to mountains!
Jonathan founded the Sierra Institute in 1993 and has directed the organization ever since. He received a Ph.D. in Natural Resource Sociology and Policy from U.C. Berkeley, where he was an instructor before launching Sierra Institute. His dissertation focused on how rural northern Sierra communities changed following the departure of their wood products anchor businesses. This work, at the intersection of community and forest and watershed health formed the basis for the Sierra Institute’s mission and approach. He also holds a Masters in Forest Science from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Jonathan lives in Indian Valley with his wife, Amy, and two dogs, Dobby and Sadie. In the rare occasion that he’s not working to promote rural well-being or advance opportunities for his organization, you can find him hiking around the valley or coaching the varsity boys basketball team at Greenville High School. Email Jonathan
Natural Resource Social Science Assistant
Kaily assists various research initiatives with Sierra Institute’s social science team. Working primarily on the Department of Conservation Watershed Program Assessment, she helps conduct case study research that will lead to a better understanding of collaborative watershed management and watershed coordination efforts throughout the state. As she continues to develop great passion for water-related issues in the state of California, Kaily is excited to see how Sierra Institute’s research will inform future initiatives. A native of South Louisiana and with a B.A. in Sociology from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Kaily has previously spent time researching community impacts from the 2010 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill and helped map various state and federal coastal restoration sites with the USGS Wetland and Aquatic Research Center. In her free time, Kaily enjoys cooking, fly-fishing, and exploring the beautiful Sierra Nevada Mountains. Email Kaily.
Social Science Research Associate
At Sierra Institute, Kyle manages our work with a growing network of collaborative groups working on forest management issues across California, and rural development efforts focused on rebuilding capacity in forest communities across California. Kyle brings a diverse background to this work that includes surveying hemlock trees and monitoring bog turtles on the Blue Ridge Parkway, studying human dimensions of endangered species conservation planning across the Southeast, and prior work at the Sierra Institute on a range of projects from watershed coordination to youth programming. When he isn’t at the office, you might find him coaching youth soccer or hiking with his wife and dog. Kyle holds a BS in Conservation Biology from Clemson University and a MS in Wildlife and Fisheries Science from the University of Tennessee. Email Kyle.
Natural Resource Social Science Assistant
Lauren is from Fort Collins, Colorado and received her MS in Conservation Leadership from Colorado State University. Her thesis research focused on Traditional Ecological Knowledge and local forest product use among farmers in Western Uganda. She also served as an agroforestry volunteer in the Peace Corps in Senegal and has a background in environmental education. At the Sierra Institute, Lauren works with Sierra to California All Lands Enhancement (SCALE), Disadvantaged Community Involvement, and the Rural and Community Development Initiative. In her free time, she volunteers with the local high school and is trying to find the best backcountry campsite in the Northern Sierras. Lauren always has a book and never turns down a trip to the coast. Email Lauren.
Social Science Research Associate
Lauren manages the Department of Conservation Watershed Program Assessment, a retroactive study examining the effectiveness of watershed grants across California, as well as the Department of Water Resources Disadvantaged Communities Involvement Program, a program that assesses water-related needs in underserved and underrepresented communities across the eastern Sierra. Most of her free time is spent outdoors – climbing, hiking, biking, and exploring new regions. Lauren has earned undergraduate degrees in International Studies and Environmental Studies, with a minor in Spanish, at the University of North Carolina. She moved to Bellingham, Washington in 2009 to attend the Huxley College of the Environment, receiving an MS in Geography, Natural Resource Management, and Conservation. For her thesis research, she studied rural community involvement in the management of the bi-national La Amistad International Park in Costa Rica and Panama. Currently, Lauren is a PhD candidate at the University of New Brunswick studying the social dimensions of public land management in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Email Lauren.
Leana works to advance the Sierra Institute’s forest management efforts, including facilitation of the South Lassen Watersheds Group and upcoming projects aimed at reducing fuels and fire risk within Lassen Volcanic National Park. She recently graduated from the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies with a Master’s of Environmental Science, focusing on physical watershed processes and forest management. In her free time, you’ll find her outside enjoying the beauty of Plumas County – climbing, biking, or trying to keep up with her dog in the woods. Email Leana.
Ramsey is an outdoor educator and pragmatic mystic. As the office administrator, she supports all operations including staff, programs, communications and development. Ramsey is excited to help share Sierra Institute’s stories of success and lessons learned while increasing interest of locals and tourists alike in SI’s current projects. After receiving a BA in Holistic and Ecological Wellness through Recreation from San Francisco State University and traveling the Pacific, Ramsey came home to the Lost Sierra. She enjoys using her hands, working with earth, using experiential education to develop courage and plans on continuing a career in wellness, community accountability and ecological stewardship.When she is not behind screens, she is tending young ones named Calliope and Guy with her partner Brad. Email Ramsey.
Check back soon!
Visit the Sierra Fellows page to meet our Fellows!