Learn more about some of the department's biologists, information and education specialists, fish culturists, and support staff.
- Commissioner's Office
- Outreach Division
- Licensing, Business Office and Administration
- Fisheries Division
- Fish Culture
- Wildlife Division
Catherine Gjessing, General Counsel, Montpelier Office.
Catherine has been with the department since 2013. She has a juris doctorate's degree from the Vermont Law School. Catherine's primary role is to provide legal support to the Fish and Wildlife Board, the department and the staff. She provides legal and policy advice and support to the Commissioner and department staff, drafts and coordinates rulemaking and statutory initiatives, testifies before the legislature, assists with Act 250 and Public Service Board 248 proceedings, and provides legal review with depart positions on Agency and Department of Environmental Conservation permitting and rulemaking processes, and provides legal assistance to the secretary relation to threatened and endangered species permitting and rulemaking. Catherine enjoys hiking, cross country skiing, kayaking, gardening, cooking, reading, and watching movies.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-595-3331, firstname.lastname@example.org
Charlee Drury, Information and Outreach, Montpelier Office
Charlee is a true Vermonter, having lived in the state her whole life. She started working for the department while she was still a teenager and is the lifeblood of the department. She maintains the headquarters office, dealing with everything from legal issues to licensing and permitting, along with answering the phone and greeting visitors. She supports the outreach and administrative staff, coordinates information with the district offices and is a self-described "Jack of all trades, master of none!" Charlee loves spending time outdoors, snowshoeing in the winter, kayaking in the summer, and spending as much time on the ocean as she can.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-828-1000, email@example.com
Nicole Meier, Hunter Education and Outreach Specialist, Montpelier Office.
Nicole has been working with the department since 2013. She holds a bachelor's degree in biology from Stony Brook University. Nicole is responsible for facilitating the hunter education instructor certification process, developing and implementing teaching standards for Hunter Education classes, coordinating special events, connecting the public to the hunter education program and maintaining the department Twitter feed. When she's not working, Nicole enjoys fishing, hiking, kayaking, birding, and hunting.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-318-1347, firstname.lastname@example.org
Lilla Stutz-Lumbra, Outreach Coordinator, Montpelier Office
Lil joined the department in 1991, working in the fish culture section and assisting with department planning before moving to outreach. She holds a B.S. in wildlife biology from the University of Vermont. Her primary job responsibilities include communications and graphic design for the department, website development and maintenance, fund development, and marketing and media placement. Lil enjoys riding her horses, alpine skiing, working her hunting dogs and gardening.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-272-4139, email@example.com
Alison Thomas, Education Programs Coordinator, Montpelier Office.
Alison has been with the department since 2011. She holds a master's degree in natural resource management, with a concentration in environmental education, from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. As education programs coordinator, Alison is responsible for supervising the department's two Green Mountain Conservation Camps (Buck Lake and Kehoe). She is also responsible for managing the let's go fishing program, serving as the statewide coordinator for the Project WILD program, leading the wildlife management for educators course, providing assistance at department outreach events, and helping to develop and support environmental education initiatives within the Agency. During her time off, Alison enjoys running, and doing outdoor activities with her family.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-371-9975, firstname.lastname@example.org
Licensing, Business Office and Administration
Cheri Bessette-Waters, Licensing and P.O.S. Coordinator,
Cheri has been with the department since 2005. She holds an associate's degree in court reporting from Champlain College. Cheri is responsible for maintaining the point of sale functionality for state license sales and the harvest report electronic system. She serves as an agent liaison for point of sale and troubleshooting with system issues, processes and maintains an updated and accurate moose lottery database, serves as an online sales liaison for customers purchasing online licenses. During her personal time, Cheri enjoys spending time with her family and her dogs, watching her kids' sporting events, gardening, sewing, fishing, traveling and camping. Additionally she is fascinated by the tranquility, complexity, and beauty of the ocean.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-828-1190, email@example.com
Melissa Currier, Administrative Assistant, Springfield Office.
Melissa has been working with the Fish & Wildlife since 1985. She holds a diploma from Springfield High School. As an administrative assistant for the department, she helps the black bear program leader and furbearer program leader. She also provides customer service and sells licenses. During her down time, Melissa enjoys baking and reading.
Contact: Springfield Office, 802-289-0613, firstname.lastname@example.org
Steve Gomez, Financial Administrator, Montpelier Office
Steve started at the department in 2012. He received his B.S. in Environmental Science from Lyndon State College. Steve oversees the business office and is responsible for fiscal operations, federal grants, and accounts payable and receivable in addition to managing administrative policies, internal controls, and audits. He also develops and manages the department budget as well as coordinating administrative services related to contracting, sub-grants, and asset management. Steve also does research on hunting and fishing license sale trends and licensee demographics. When not in the office, he enjoys hiking, canoeing, hunting, skiing, and international travel.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-595-0797, email@example.com
Tammy Gratton, Secretary, Essex Junction Office.
Tammy has been working with the department since 1987. She holds a high school diploma from Colchester, Vermont. As the secretary for the Essex Junction Office, Tammy is in charge of serving the public, selling licenses, issuing permits for fishing tournaments, and providing data entry assistance for various fisheries and wildlife programs. On her spare time, Tammy enjoys going on camping trips with her husband, spending time with her three young grandchildren and going on motorcycle rides.
Contact: Essex Junction Office, 802-878-1564, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ryan Leamy, Federal Coordinator, Montpelier Office
Ryan has been working with the Department since 2014. He has a B.A. in History and English from University of Vermont and an M.S. from UVM in Community Development and Applied Economics. Ryan is responsible for federal grant management. He works with department staff and federal partners regarding the financial and programmatic aspects of federal grants. He also develops annual training plans for the Department related to these grants and implements federal training events. He oversees the audits of federal programs in addition to representing the Department at state and national meetings. During his time off, Ryan enjoys gardening, home brewing, beekeeping, hiking, traveling, hockey and music.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-498-8087, email@example.com
Fonda Papineau-Rowell, Financial Services Technician, Montpelier Office.
Fonda has been working with the department since 1992. As the department's financial services tech, Fonda is responsible for processing department grants and personal service contracts, working on assets and inventory, processing annual temporary staffing, processing invoices and conducting direct journal entry.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-498-7119, firstname.lastname@example.org
Christopher Saunders, Fish & Wildlife Project Coordinator, Montpelier Office.
Chris has been working with the department since 2004. He holds a Master's degree in Forest Science from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Chris works on the human dimensions of wildlife, gathering public opinion, examining demographic changes, and filing legislative reports. He also administers the Watershed Grant Program. He works across divisions on a number of projects. Chris enjoys fly-fishing and fly-tying, hunting with his sons, birding, and measuring the height of his New Yorker magazine backlog.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-343-5487, email@example.com
Elizabeth Stratton, Financial Manager, Montpelier Office.
Elizabeth has been working for the department since late 2014. She holds a B.A. in business management from Johnson State College. As the department's financial manager, Elizabeth is responsible for preparing monthly financial reports, providing general maintenance for the ledger, developing processes and procedures in accordance with state and federal rules and serving as the team leader for the licensing unit. Elizabeth enjoys spending time outdoors, and with her family.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-377-5602, firstname.lastname@example.org
Will Eldridge, Aquatic Habitat Biologist, Roxbury Lab
Will grew up exploring streams near Washington, DC and received an M.S. from the University of Minnesota and a PhD from the University of Washington. Prior to moving to Vermont, he worked at the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission in Olympia, WA and the Stroud Water Research Center near Philadelphia conducting field and laboratory studies to understand how land use and fish culture impact fish in the US and Costa Rica. He is in charge of improving habitat for fish and wildlife along lakes and streams throughout Vermont. He and his wife have two young boys, and in their spare time they hike, ski and catch up on sleep.
Contact: Roxbury Lab, 802-485-7566, email@example.com
Peter Emerson, Fisheries Biologist, St. Johnsbury Office.
Peter has been with the department since 2007. Pete received a B.S. in Aeronautical Science at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Florida, and a second B.S. in Environmental Science at Lyndon State College before attending grad school at the University of New Brunswick in Canada studying Atlantic salmon and habitat restoration. He was born and raised in Vergennes, the last of 9 kids. Pete is responsible for managing fisheries and fisheries habitat in the Northeast Kingdom. He has two boys, aged 9 and 11, who help out on his hobby farm where he says he fails to grow vegetables but does pretty well with pigs, chickens and fruit trees. For fun they do a little bit of a lot of things outdoors with their dog; skiing, hiking, fishing, biking and trying to keep up with firewood demands.
Contact: St. Johnsbury Office, 802-751-0485, firstname.lastname@example.org
Joel Flewelling, Fish and Wildlife Specialist, Rutland Office.
Joel has been working for the department since 2008. He holds a bachelor's degree in environmental science from Unity College. Joel is responsible for management of all wildlife management areas in the Rutland District, and is active in environmental permit reviews. He also runs seasonal bat surveys, sea lamprey control on Lake Champlain and fishery surveys in his district. When he's not on the job, Joel enjoys running ultra-distance trail races, hunting and fishing. He is also nationally certified in Cave Rescue Operations and Management.
Contact: Rutland Office, 802-786-3879, email@example.com
Dave Gibson, Fish Specialist, Essex Junction Office.
Dave has been working for the department since 1992. He holds two B.S. degrees in wildlife biology and forestry management from the University of Vermont. Dave operates the department's 31 foot research vessel (the Dore' ) to carry out various fisheries management projects on Lake Champlain, conducts boat electrofishing surveys of salmonids, walleyes and other species on Lake Champlain and tributaries as well as inland lakes and streams, including assistance with fish aging, computer data entry and report preparation, assisting in planning and implementation of the Lake Champlain sea lamprey control program with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. Dave also represents the department in public outreach events including sportsmen shows and school programs and maintains all District fisheries' field equipment. During his time off, Dave enjoys fishing, hiking, biking and boating with family.
Contact: Essex Junction Office, 802-879-5695, firstname.lastname@example.org
Shawn Good, Fisheries Biologist, Rutland Office.
Shawn has been working for the department since 1997. He has an M.S. in fisheries science from Université Laval in Quebec City. Shawn leads the department's work on pike and muskellunge and on aquatic nuisance species. He also manages bass in southwestern Vermont and southern Lake Champlain. In addition to fisheries management responsibilities with the department, Shawn also enjoys outreach and education, such as speaking engagements, teaching kids at the Conservation Camps, and administering the Vermont Master Angler and Record Fish Programs. In his free time, he enjoys hiking, skiing, snowshoeing, deer hunting and fishing for bass, pike, muskie, steelhead, and many of Vermont's unusual fish species like gar, bowfin, and drum. Shawn also plays hockey in a local men's league and coaches his son's hockey team.
Contact: Rutland Office, 802-786-3863, email@example.com
Jud Kratzer, Fisheries Biologist, St. Johnsbury Office.
Jud has been working for the department since 2006. He holds a Doctorate of Philosophy in Fisheries Science from Michigan State University. Jud helps manage all Northeast Kingdom fisheries from brook trout to Northern pike. He is also responsible for organizing fisheries data storage and analysis, trout habitat restoration projects and public outreach on fisheries topics. During his down time, it's most likely that Jud will be fishing.
Contact: St. Johnsbury Office, 802-751-0486, firstname.lastname@example.org
Bret Ladago, Fisheries Biologist, Roxbury Lab
Bret's work is focused in Vermont's central fisheries district, which includes the White, Waits, Ompompanoosuc, and Ottauquechee River watersheds. In 2011, Tropical Storm Irene had a devastating effect on many surrounding river corridors and much of Bret's work focuses on the response and restoration of fish populations after extreme weather events. Bret also works to promote fish passage and flood resiliency through the replacement and proper construction of stream crossing structures. Lentic (non-flowing) waters such as Lake Fairlee, Waterbury Reservoir, Lake Morey, Berlin Pond, and Peacham Pond are also included in the central district providing an area of diverse fisheries and water resources. Bret works to evaluate these waters in addition to many others to help maintain sustainable and healthy fish populations for the people of Vermont.
Contact: Roxbury Lab, 802-485-7566, email@example.com
Bernie Pientka, Fisheries Biologist, Essex Junction Office.
Bernie has been with the department since 2004. He holds a master's degree in fisheries biology from the University of Vermont. As one of the fisheries biologists for the department, Bernie is responsible for monitoring fish communities in Lake Champlain, permitting statewide fishing tournaments, managing trout fisheries in the lower Winooski and Missisquoi River, conducting rainbow smelt and alewife assessments in Lake Champlain and monitoring walleye populations in Northern Lake Champlain. During his down time, Bernie enjoys fishing, waterfowl hunting and using welding and metal fabrication to build a variety of projects.
Contact: Essex Junction Office, 802-879-5698, firstname.lastname@example.org
Lee Simard, Fisheries Biologist, Essex Junction Office
Lee grew up in Swanton, Vermont and attended the University of Vermont where he earned a B.S. in Environmental Sciences with a minor in Wildlife Biology in 2012. He completed his Master’s degree in Natural Resources from UVM in December, 2016 after studying the spawning behavior of invasive lake trout in Yellowstone Lake, Yellowstone National Park. As a fisheries biologist, Lee assesses, manages and protects fish populations and their habitats in lakes and streams throughout southern Vermont. He works on coldwater and warmwater sportfish populations as well as rare, endangered and threatened fish species. Lee is also in charge of the management and enhancement of the Batten Kill, which supports one of Vermont’s longstanding premier wild trout fisheries. Outside of work, Lee enjoys hiking, fishing, and cross-country skiing and is excited to explore the new opportunities in southern Vermont.
Contact: Essex Junction Office, 802-879-5697, email@example.com
Dylan Smith, Access Area Coordinator, Montpelier Office
Dylan started working for the Department as a seasonal fisheries technician in 2011. He has a B.S. in wildlife and fisheries biology from UVM. Dylan oversees the Boating Infrastructure Grant (BIG) and the Clean Vessel Act (CVA) for the access area program. His job is to develop and implement a plan to increase ADA accessibility of Vermont’s access areas. He also works with crew leaders from the Vermont Department of Corrections on maintenance of access areas, in addition to working with individuals, recreation groups, and commercial stakeholders to enhance the functionality of access areas. In his free time, Dylan is always on the water or in the woods hunting and fishing, including ice fishing, open water fishing, and deer hunting.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-622-4331, firstname.lastname@example.org
Mike Wichrowski, Land and Facilities Manager, Montpelier Office.
Mike has been working for Fish & Wildlife since 2007. He holds a master's degree in wildlife management from the University of Kentucky. As land and facilities manager, Mike is responsible for managing all aspects of the department's fishing access area program, managing the clean vessel act and boating infrastructure grant programs and working on land acquisition projects for the department. Mike also works with individuals, recreation groups and commercial stakeholders who wish to conduction activities on department land (special use permits or leases). On his time off, Mike enjoys hiking, camping, kayaking, photography, hunting and fishing with his son, and coaching his son's baseball team.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-917-1347, email@example.com
Lael Will, Fisheries Biologist, Springfield District Office
Lael has been a fisheries biologist in Vermont since 2012 after working in fisheries in California, Arkansas, and Georgia. She has a B.S. in Marine Resource Development from University of Rhode Island and an M.S. in Fisheries Science from University of Arkansas. She works primarily on trout fisheries in rivers and streams and bass fisheries in lakes and ponds. Lael also works on improving habitat and fish passage for diadromous species such as American eel, sea lamprey and American shad. She also conducts environmental review of development project proposals for potential impacts to Vermont's fish populations. In her free time, Lael enjoys yoga, hiking, travelling and hanging out with her pooch Olivia.
Contact: Springfield Office, 802-777-0827, firstname.lastname@example.org
Michelle Ayer, Fish Culture Specialist, Ed Weed Fish Culture Station, Grand Isle
Michelle has been working with Fish & Wildlife since 2001. She has a B.S. in wildlife biology from Colorado State University. Her job duties include raising and stocking landlocked Atlantic salmon, brown trout, lake trout and steelhead. She also works with the Children's Fishing Program, assists with fish culture outreach, and provides tours of the facility to the public. During her free time, Michelle enjoys hiking and camping, along with coaching her son's soccer team and working as a PTO member at her son's school. She also spends her free time raising Dorper sheep, horseback riding and competing in team-penning events.
Contact: Ed Weed FCS, 802-372-3171, email@example.com
Brook Bicking, Assistant Manager, Bennington Fish Culture Station
Brook started with Fish & Wildlife in 1987. He graduated from Mansfield State. He is the assistant manager at the Bennington Fish Culture Station, working to maintain operations on the culture and distribution of salmonid fish. In his free time, he enjoys hunting, fishing and boating.
Contact: Bennington FCS, 802-447-2844, firstname.lastname@example.org
Gabe Cameron, Assistant Manager, Salisbury Fish Culture Station
Gabe started with Fish & Wildlife in 1994 after getting a B.S. in natural science and outdoor recreation with a minor in health from Plymouth State University. His primary job duties involve fish husbandry practices, resulting in above average living conditions for the fish at the hatchery. He works on the spawning of salmonids to support the future of trout fishing in Vermont and believes he has one of the best jobs ever, a notion supported frequently by members of the public! He schedules stocking runs for Vermont's waterbodies and for kid's events. When he's not at the hatchery, Gabe enjoys spending time with his kids, along with hunting, ice fishing, coaching everything from baseball to helping out with the field hockey and swim teams. He also enjoys hiking with his family and foraging for medicinal plants and wild mushrooms.
Contact: Salisbury FCS, 802 349-6882, email@example.com
Tom Jones, Fish Health Biologist, Montpelier Office.
Tom has been working with the department since 1988. He holds a bachelor's degree in environmental conservation from California University of Pennsylvania. In his position as fish health biologist, Tom is charged with preventing and managing fish diseases in Vermont's fish culture facilities, investigation of naturally occurring fish kills and teaching the public about fish disease. Tom also administers several types of fish and wildlife permits, including: fish importation, fish breeding licenses, commercial bait dealers, fee fishing businesses and scientific collection of fish. When he's not at the office, Tom enjoys hunting, fishing, trapping, and hiking around Vermont!
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-793-6781, firstname.lastname@example.org
Kevin Kelsey, Fish Culture Specialist, Ed Weed Fish Culture Station
Kevin has been with the department since 1997. He received his A.A.S in Natural Resources Conservation from SUNY Morrisville and his B.S. in Fisheries Management from Delaware State University. Kevin oversees all facility operations as well as broodstock and fish culture production activities at Ed Weed Fish Culture Station. He is passionate about outdoor activities and travel focused on fishing and hunting.
Contact: Ed Weed FCS, 802-372-3171, email@example.com
Todd Lincoln, Fish Culture Specialist, Bennington Fish Culture Station
Todd has been with Fish & Wildlife since 1988 and has an A.A.S. in fish culture from Mansfield University. He works to raise brook, brown, and rainbow trout and to stock the trout throughout Vermont. He also interacts with the public through hatchery visitation tours. When he's not working at the hatchery, Todd enjoys fishing for largemouth bass and whitetail deer hunting.
Contact: Bennington FCS, 802-447-2844, firstname.lastname@example.org
Alan Moorhouse, Fish Culture Specialist, Salisbury Fish Culture Station.
Alan has been working for the department since 1996. He holds a B.S. in aquaculture and fisheries technology from the University of Rhode Island. As fish culture specialist for the Salisbury Fish Culture Station, Alan is responsible for caring for all life stages of cultured trout, collecting eggs from trout brood stock, statewide trout stocking, giving hatchery tours to the public, organizing and analyzing fish culture data storage and report writing.
Contact: Salisbury FCS, 802-352-4371, email@example.com
Nathan Olson, Fish Culture Specialist, Roxbury Fish Culture Station
Nathan started working for Fish & Wildlife in 2011 after getting his B.S. in fisheries biology and aquaculture from Unity College. He works on rearing, spawning and stocking of coldwater fish. During his free time, he enjoys bass fishing and playing basketball.
Contact: Roxbury FCS, 802-485-7568, firstname.lastname@example.org
Mark Roche, Fish Culture Technician, Ed Weed Fish Culture Station, Grand Isle
Mark started working with Fish & Wildlife in 2003 after graduating from Unity College with a B.S. in environmental science with emphasis in wildlife. At the fish culture station he works to raise lake, brown and steelhead trout, as well as landlocked Atlantic salmon and walleye. He is responsible for working on all aspects of fish culture, from spawning through stocking. He also performs regular maintenance of hatchery equipment such as stocking trucks and water processing equipment. He also does a lot of public outreach, between tours of the hatchery and talking to public while he's out on the road in the stocking truck. When Mark's not raising fish or out trying to catch them, he's busy raising a family and working on his home and property to "heat and eat." He also enjoys listening to and playing music.
Contact: Ed Weed FCS, 802-372-3171, email@example.com
Ben Rooks, Fish Culture Engineer, Ed Weed Fish Culture Station, Grand Isle
Ben has been working for the department since 2009. He holds a bachelor's degree in general science from Grantham University. As fish culture engineer for the Ed Weed Fish Culture Station in Grand Isle, Ben is responsible for supervision of facility improvements, welding and fabricating, and maintaining hatchery equipment. During his personal time, Ben enjoys hunting, fishing, serving as a deputy game warden, and serving as a captain in the Army National Guard.
Contact: Ed Weed FCS, 802-372-3171, firstname.lastname@example.org
Cassidy Shaw, Fish Health Biologist, UVM Fish Health Lab
Dr. Shaw has a Ph.D. in fisheries from West Virginia University, following a bachelors and masters in biology from SUNY Oswego and Fredonia respectively. She oversees Vermont’s fish health laboratory, investigating naturally occurring fish kills and performing fish health testing on wild fish populations as well as fish raised in Vermont’s hatcheries. As part of her job, Cassidy helps develop molecular techniques to compliment current fish health protocols, along with teaching the public about fish diseases. When she’s not the laboratory, Cassidy enjoys gardening, hiking, camping, and of course fishing.
Contact: Hills Agricultural Science Building, University of Vermont, 802-959-5192, email@example.com
Monty Walker, Fish Culture Station Manager, Bennington Fish Culture Station
Monty has been with the Fish & Wildlife department since 1991. He manages the Bennington Fish Culture Station and is in charge of all aspects of producing, raising, and stocking fish out of the station. He as an A.S. in aquaculture. When he's not working at the station, he enjoys getting out hunting, fish and camping.
Contact: Bennington FCS, 802-447-2844, firstname.lastname@example.org
Jeremy Whalen, Hatchery Supervisor, Roxbury Fish Culture Station
Jeremy has been working with the department since 2000. He holds a B.S. in fisheries and aquaculture from SUNY Cobleskill. At the hatchery, Jeremy works to manage the daily operations of the fish culture station, including rearing trout species to meet the management requests for stocking, compiling and writing Federal Aid reports. He also works on the daily feeding and cleaning of fish on station and data collection for tracking growth, and on the spawning of fall brook trout. Jeremy is an avid golfer and also loves to fish, camp and snowboard. He's also a die-hard sports fan, following professional baseball, hockey, football and NASCAR.
Contact: Roxbury FCS, 802-485-7568, email@example.com
David Yasharian, Fish Culture Specialist, Bald Hill Fish Culture Station
David has been with Fish & Wildlife since 2006. He has a B.S. from State University of New York Cobleskill in fish and wildlife management and an M.S. from Kentucky State University in aquatic science. His duties include managing the annual stocking list, production inventory, and managing requests for cultured fish from the public. He also writes the fish distribution section of the Dingell-Johnson report in addition to authoring other station reports. He also handles contact with members of the public regarding stocking information. David enjoys fishing and hunting as well as golf, gardening, skiing and snowshoeing along with generally hanging out with his family.
Contact: Bald Hill FCS, 802-467-3660, firstname.lastname@example.org
Dave Adams, Habitat Specialist-Private Lands Habitat Management, Essex Junction Office.
Dave has been working with Fish & Wildlife since 2004. He holds a B.S. from the University of Vermont. As one of the department's habitat specialists, Dave works to help educate private landowners about how to manage their land for wildlife, assists the USDA and the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) with administration and technical assistance on their forestry and wildlife programs: WHIP and EQIP. Dave also provides on-site technical assistance to private landowners enrolled in NRCS habitat management programs and promotes private lands habitat management across Vermont. On his time off, Dave enjoys collecting vinyl records, playing and coaching lacrosse and celebrating life with good friends!
Contact: Essex Junction Office, 802-879-2330, email@example.com
Mary Beth Adler, Wildlife Habitat Technician, Springfield Office.
Mary Beth has been working the department since 2002. As a wildlife habitat technician for the department, Mary Beth is responsible for assisting the furbearer biologist with field work, data entry and responding to questions from the public. She also provides technical assistance to landowners enrolled in the USDA farm bill wildlife and forestry programs, works on Act 250 review and assists district biologists on various projects, including: biological check stations for moose and deer, Deerfield Wind project bear study and wildlife management (WMA) related tasks. During her personal time, Mary Beth enjoys kayaking, birding, turkey hunting, needlework and spending time with her grandkids.
Contact: Springfield Office, 802-289-0629, firstname.lastname@example.org
Amy Alfieri, Wildlife Biologist, Dead Creek Wildlife Management Area
Amy has been working with the department since 2005, when she started coordinating the bald eagle reintroduction project. She got her B.A. in ornithology and natural resources from Hampshire College and her M.S. in biology from Antioch University. Amy manages many of the wetland-based wildlife management areas in the Essex district, conducting water level control and controlled burns, as well as managing the Dead Creek Visitor Center. She works with farmers and conservation partners on habitat management. Amy also enjoys gardening, wood carving, birdwatching, muzzleloader season, and football.
Contact: Dead Creek WMA, 802-759-2398, email@example.com
Tim Appleton, Wildlife Biologist, Barre Office.
Tim has been with the department since 1996. He got his A.S. and a A.A.S. in Natural Resource Conservation at Finger Lakes Community College and his B.S. in Environmental Forest Biology at SUNY College of Environmental Science & Forestry. Tim works on project review and habitat impact assessment involving Act 250 & PSB Section 248 applications, wetland permits and chip harvest notifications. Tim is responsible for the management of Wildlife Management Area lands including maintenance of fields, boundaries, roads, trails, signage, and waterfowl nesting structures. He coordinates and manages the department’s winter severity index, checks wood duck nest boxes, and conducts waterfowl surveys. Tim enjoys hunting, fishing, trapping, backpacking the Long Trail with his son, paddling, gardening, maple sugaring, beekeeping, making homemade beer and wine and striving to live sustainably in every way.
Contact: Barre Office, 802-476-0198, firstname.lastname@example.org
John Austin, Lands and Habitat Program Manager, Barre District Office
John has been with fish and wildlife since 1994. He has a B.S. in wildlife biology from University of Vermont and an M.S.L. in natural resource law and policy from Vermont Law School. John oversees the management and administration of lands and habitat projects in Vermont, including land acquisition, management, and stewardship as well as private lands technical assistance, and land use planning and regulation. He also works cooperatively to establish a division budget, operational plans, and to address policy issues, and provides technical support to land conservation programs. When he's not conserving Vermont's lands, he's out enjoying them, engaging in hunting and fishing, in addition to fly tying, woodworking, running, writing and spending time with his family.
Contact: Barre Office, 802-476-0197, email@example.com
Alyssa Bennett, Small Mammals Biologist, Rutland Office.
Alyssa has been working for the department since 2011. She holds a master's degree in behavioral neuroendocrinology from Smith College. As a small mammal biologist, Alyssa is in charge of the conservation and recovery of small mammal species, researching and conducting surveillance on white-nose syndrome, public outreach and education about Vermont's bat species, and working on habitat conservation and regulatory review. During her personal time, Alyssa enjoys playing outside and studying local natural and cultural history.
Contact: Rutland Office, 802-353-4818, firstname.lastname@example.org
Noel Dodge, Wildlife Biologist/Regulatory Review Biologist, Barre Office
Noel joined the department in 2015. He graduated from University of Vermont with a B.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Biology and a minor in forestry. Noel is the lead biologist on timber harvest notification reviews for Franklin, Lamoille, Washington, and Orange Counties. He is responsible for project reviews and habitat impact assessments for Act 250 in three districts as well as permit reviews for wildlife impacts on general and individual wetlands permits in four counties. He reviews fish and wildlife habitat impacts associated with new Renewable energy and telecommunication tower projects statewide. He has many interests including hunting, fishing, photography, skiing, camping, canoeing, birding, lacrosse, and database design.
Contact: Barre Office, 802-689-0000, email@example.com
Mark Ferguson, Zoologist, Montpelier Office.
Mark has been working with the department since 1996. He holds a master's degree in aquatic biology from the University of Alabama. As the department's zoologist, Mark is responsible for the protection and management of rare vertebrates and invertebrates, conducting inventory and monitoring studies for rare invertebrates, amphibians and fishes, running environmental reviews for wildlife impacts, and providing technical assistance to state agencies, the public and others. During his personal time, Mark enjoys hiking, wildlife watching, attending his kids' sporting events and gardening.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-279-3422, firstname.lastname@example.org
Nick Fortin, Deer Project Leader, Rutland Office.
Nick has been working with the department since 2015. He has a B.S. in wildlife ecology from University of Maine and an M.S. in Natural Resources/Wildlife from University of New Hampshire. Nick is the department's head deer biologist, and is responsible for all aspects of deer management in the state of Vermont. He is a member of the Big Game Team, providing input on the management of other hunted species. He also works on state lands, managing habitat for a wide variety of species. When he's not managing deer, he's out chasing them in the woods during hunting season, in addition to fishing and hiking.
Contact: Rutland Office, 802-786-3860, email@example.com
Katy Gieder, Biometrician, Rutland Office.
Katy has a PhD in Fish and Wildlife Conservation from Virginia Tech and a MS in Environmental and Life Sciences from Trent University in Ontario. She works in cooperation with all fish and wildlife staff to oversee data analyses and study design for various projects related to big game and furbearer management. Katy provides technical assistance to other projects related to rare species and fish management. She is essentially the representative of sound statistical science and accountability for the department’s wildlife management, and serves as a liaison for cooperative research projects conducted by the department and universities. Katy has never lived anywhere for more than eight years, growing up between Switzerland, Singapore, Malaysia, Canada, and since 2010 has lived in Massachusetts, Virginia, Hawaii, and California. She enjoys skiing, mountain biking, hiking, and generally loves being surrounded by the beautiful Green Mountains of Vermont!
Contact: Rutland Office, 802-786-0055, firstname.lastname@example.org
John Gobeille, Wildlife Biologist, Essex Junction Office.
John has worked with Fish & Wildlife since 2000. He holds a M.S. in fish and wildlife management from Montana State University. As one of the department's wildlife biologists, John is responsible for overseeing general habitat management and reviewing permits. During his down time, John enjoys hunting and fishing.
Contact: Essex Junction Office, 802-879-5696, email@example.com
Luke Groff, Herpetologist, Rutland Office.
Luke has been with the department since 2019. He earned a master’s degree in biology from Humboldt State University and a Ph.D. in Wildlife Ecology from the University of Maine. As the department’s herpetologist, Luke designs and conducts amphibian and reptile population and disease surveillance surveys, implements amphibian and reptile habitat and population management activities, and works to conserve and recover endangered and threatened amphibians and reptiles. He also coordinates and implements habitat management activities in Wildlife Management Areas to benefit a broad range of species. In his free times, Luke enjoys hiking, backpacking, canoe camping, woodworking, gardening, and flipping logs with his kids.
Contact: Rutland Office, 802-760-0089, firstname.lastname@example.org
Paul Hamelin, Wildlife Habitat Biologist, St. Johnsbury Office.
Paul has been working for the department since 1996. He holds a master's degree in wildlife biology from Michigan State University. Throughout his career, Paul has coordinated department's wildlife management area (WMA) program activities throughout the state, including: budget and funding, accomplishment reporting, policies, archaeological and historical resource issues, and public access and information. He also is responsible administering management activities on several WMAs in northeast Vermont, collaborating with state federal and private organizations on wildlife habitat related issues, and presenting habitat related outreach and education materials to the public. During his down time, Paul enjoys fishing, bird hunting, gardening, and learning about Vermont's history and conservation in North America.
Contact: St. Johnsbury Office, 802-751-0101, email@example.com
Forrest Hammond, Wildlife Biologist, Black Bear Project Leader, Springfield Office.
Forest began working for the department in 1990 as a black bear research contractor and was hired as a full-time biologist in 1994. He holds a master's degree in wildlife management from the University of Wyoming. As a scientist with the department, Forrest is responsible for technical reviews, and is the leader of the black bear project. During his time off, Forrest enjoys fishing, hunting and helping to improve wildlife habitat.
Contact: Springfield Office, 802-289-0626, firstname.lastname@example.org
Jens Hawkins-Hilke, Conservation Planner, Essex Office
Jens started at the department in 2006. He graduated from Connecticut College with a B.S. in Environmental Sociology and University of Vermont with a M.S. in the Field Naturalist program. Jens reviews projects with the Agency of Transportation as well as collaborating on wildlife crossing initiatives. He also provides technical assistance to municipalities and regional commissions related to land use planning for wildlife and wildlife habitat management. He enjoys hiking, kayaking on Lake Champlain, woodworking and travel.
Contact: Essex Office, 802-461-6791, email@example.com
Jane Lazorchak, Land Acquisition and Stewardship Coordinator, Montpelier Office.
Jane has been with the department since 2006. She holds a master's degree in ecological planning from the University of Vermont. Jane is responsible for coordinating land acquisition for the wildlife division, acquiring key additions at Fish & Wildlife's wildlife management areas (WMAs), strategically create new WMAs and steward the department's conservation easements. During her time off, Jane enjoys hiking, biking, gardening and skiing.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-505-0561, firstname.lastname@example.org
Aaron Marcus (they/them pronouns), Assistant Botanist, Montpelier Office.
Aaron has worked with the department since 2007. They have a bachelor’s degree in Conservation Biology at SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, and a Certificate in Native Plant Studies with Native Plant Trust. Aaron manages most endangered and rare plant data that comes to the state, making these data available in the ANR Natural Resources Atlas for conservation planning and science. While coordinating with Native Plant Trust and Green Mountain National Forest to help monitor the state’s most-at-risk plant species, Aaron has spearheaded the status review of hundreds of Vermont’s plant species. Aaron also serves on the agency’s newly created Diversity & Equity Committee. In summers, Aaron performs seasonal botany work for the Green Mountain National Forest, but when off-duty they can be found performing music and dance nationally for traditional community dances, facilitating community conversation and engagement, and traveling the state by bicycle, ski and foot.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-505-8099, email@example.com
Everett Marshall, Natural Heritage Information Manager, Montpelier Office.
Everett has been working for the department since 1989. He holds dual bachelor's degrees in botany and finance from the University of Vermont. As natural heritage information manager, Everett Marshall is trusted with overseeing the Natural Heritage database system, providing technical assistance and conservation planning information, developing the department's GIS system, providing regulatory and outreach support, and conducting rare species and natural community inventories. During his personal time, Everett enjoys hiking, Nordic skiing, snowshoeing, canoeing, kayaking, contra-dancing, chess, and learning about natural history.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-371-7333, firstname.lastname@example.org
Toni Mikula, Fish and Wildlife Specialist, Essex Office.
Toni started with Fish & Wildlife in 2017. She holds a bachelor’s from Penn State in wildlife and fisheries science and a master’s in natural resources ecology from UNH. Her primary responsibilities with the department include turtle conservation, waterfowl management, and turkey management. She helps with ACT 250 review, working to minimize the impacts that larger developments have on fish and wildlife habitat. In her free time, Toni can usually be found in the outdoors, hiking, camping and kayaking, or hunting and fishing. She enjoys spending time at home gardening and home cheese making.
Contact: Essex Office, 802-622-4525, email@example.com
Adam Miller, Wildlife Species Program Manager, Montpelier Office.
Adam has been with the department since 2012. He holds a bachelor’s degree in wildlife and fisheries science from Penn State University. As the wildlife species program manager, Adam ensures the responsible biological health and utilization of Vermont’s many wildlife species and oversees the programs and staff that deal with species that are hunted and trapped in Vermont. On his personal time, Adam enjoys hunting, fishing, camping, boating, scuba diving, playing golf, and spending time with his wife and daughter. Adam also spends his free time volunteering as a hunter education instructor.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-777-2852, firstname.lastname@example.org
Doug Morin, Wildlife Biologist and Nongame Bird Project Leader, St. Johnsbury Office
Doug started with the department in 2013. He has a master's degree in natural resources from the University of Vermont and a bachelor's degree in environmental science from Skidmore College. Doug is responsible for directing the recovery of threatened and endangered bird species and the management of bird species of special concern. He also is charged with monitoring post-recovery bird species, as well as habitat management and conservation of bird species of greatest conservation need. Doug is an avid outdoorsman, spending his free time hiking, canoeing, and backcountry skiing, as well as hunting for deer and turkey.
Contact: St. Johnsbury Office, 802-751-0621, email@example.com
Steve Parren, Wildlife Diversity Program Manager, Essex Junction Office.
Steve has been working for Fish & Wildlife since 1987. He holds a master's degree in natural resource planning with a concentration in wildlife biology from the University of Vermont. As the manager of the wildlife diversity program, Steve is responsible for coordinating the program, conducting status reviews and recovery planning for state endangered and threatened species, and revising Vermont's Wildlife Action Plan. Steve also manages important communal nesting beaches used by state-threatened species, the spiny shoftshell turtle. During his personal time, Steve has been conducting long-term monitoring of a wood turtle population, monitoring an amphibian-crossing project. Steve also enjoys bird watching, and observing nature.
Contact: Essex Junction Office, 802-371-7142, firstname.lastname@example.org
Matt Peters, Assistant Ecologist, Montpelier Office.
Matt joined the department in 2017. He holds a bachelor’s in biology from the University of Minnesota-Morris and a Masters of Science from the Field Naturalist/Ecological Planning Program at the University of Vermont. As assistant ecologist he focuses on collecting and managing natural community and botanical information, conducting natural community and rare species inventories to support state land management and conservation science goals, and maintaining this information in the Natural Heritage Database for use in conservation planning. Matt is an avid botanist and naturalist, and enjoys many outdoor pursuits, such as canoeing, camping, hunting, and gardening.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-622-4423, email@example.com
Robert Popp, Botanist, Barre Office.
Robert has been working for the department since 1990. He holds a master's degree in plant ecology from Colorado State University. As the botanist for the department, Robert is responsible for tracking the status and distribution of Vermont's rare, threatened, and endangered plants. Robert monitors population levels, provides management and public outreach and education regarding rare, threatened, and endangered plants. He also assists in natural community inventories. During his down time, Robert enjoys running, cross country skiing, birding, hiking, gardening and playing piano.
Contact: Barre Office, 802-476-0127, firstname.lastname@example.org
David Sausville, Migratory Game Bird Project Leader, Essex Junction Office.
David has been working for the department since 2000. He holds a bachelor's degree in wildlife biology and a minor in forestry from the University of Vermont. As a scientist/migratory game bird project leader with the department, David is responsible for conducting data analysis and season recommendations on migratory game birds, running waterfowl banding operations, wildlife and wetlands outreach and education, and state lands management within the Essex District. Additionally, David works cooperatively with partnering agencies and non-governmental organizations on land conservation and management. During his free time, David enjoys hunting, fishing, and camping.
Contact: Essex Junction Office, 802-879-5699, email@example.com
Jodi Shippee, Assistant Data Manager for the Vermont Natural Heritage Inventory (VNHI), Montpelier Office.
Jodi has been working with the department since 2001. She holds a B.S. in wildlife biology from the University of Vermont. As assistant data manager for the Vermont Natural Heritage Inventory, Jodi is responsible for populating the natural heritage database with rare and uncommon animal survey information and for providing natural heritage information to Fish & Wildlife staff , other Agency of Natural Resources staff, conservation partners, consultants, and others. She is also responsible for maintaining the taxonomy, nomenclature, distribution, and status of animal species in the natural heritage database.
Contact: Montpelier Office, 802-272-2855, firstname.lastname@example.org
Andrea Shortsleeve, Private Lands Habitat Biologist, Barre Office
Andrea is a native Vermonter who received a B.Sc in wildlife biology from McGill University and an M.S. in human dimensions of natural resources from Colorado State University. She works on private lands habitat management, assisting landowners in habitat improvement through the federal EQIP program as part of the Farm Bill. She works with county foresters in Vermont’s Forests, Parks & Recreation Department to include wildlife habitat considerations in the development of forest management plans. And she works directly on habitat conservation outreach efforts. In her free time, Andrea enjoys hiking, cross-country skiing with her dog, hunting, fishing, gardening, and enjoying the water through rafting, paddleboarding, or swimming.
Contact: Barre Office, 802-479-4439, email@example.com
Ryan Smith, Fish and Wildlife Specialist, Springfield Office.
Ryan has been working with the department since 2006. He holds a B.S. in wildlife biology from the University of Vermont. As a fish and wildlife specialist, Ryan works on furbearer and bear projects, conducts sampling of fish communities in southeast Vermont, monitors fish passage on the Connecticut River and conducts creel surveys. Ryan also is responsible for the wildlife regulatory review, and occasional equipment maintenance when needed. During his personal time, Ryan enjoys fly fishing, photography, hunting (deer, turkey, and snowshoe hare), and running his farm with his wife in southern Vermont.
Contact: Springfield Office, 802-289-0627, firstname.lastname@example.org
Tony Smith, Fish and Wildlife Specialist, St. Johnsbury Office.
Tony grew up in St. Johnsbury, Vermont and attended the University of Vermont where he earned a B.S. in Wildlife Biology, with a minor in forestry. Tony started working for the department in 2004. Tony is responsible for management areas in the St. Johnsbury district, as well as assisting the moose and furbearer programs. Tony also conducts creel surveys, electrofishing surveys on rivers and streams, and boat electrofishing surveys on Northeast Kingdom Lakes and Ponds. On his time off, Tony will be found hunting, fishing or photographing the Northeast Kingdom.
Contact: St. Johnsbury Office, 802-661-8332, email@example.com
Eric Sorenson, Natural Community Ecologist, Barre Office.
Eric has been with the department since 1996. He holds a master's degree in ecology from the University of Maine. As the natural community ecologist for the department, Eric is responsible for the description and classification of Vermont's natural communities, working with landowners and the general public to conserve important natural communities, reviewing and providing recommendations on how to minimize environmental impacts of development projects and providing presentations and field trips based on ecology, wetlands, natural communities, and biological diversity. Additionally, Eric is also responsible for conducting state-wide inventories of natural communities as well as identifies opportunities to protect biological diversity and landscape-scale features (such as large habitat blocks and wildlife corridors). During his time off, Eric enjoys hiking, traveling, running, gardening, and harvesting trees in his woods for firewood.
Contact: Barre Office, 802-476-0126, firstname.lastname@example.org
Bob Zaino, State Lands Ecologist, Barre Office.
Bob has been working with the department since 2008. He holds a master's degree from the field naturalist program at the University of Vermont. As the department's state lands ecologist, Bob is responsible for the inventory, assessment, and monitoring of natural communities and important ecological features. Bob also works statewide on lands owned and managed by the agency of natural resources including wildlife management areas (WMAs), State Forests, and State Parks. Bob is also charged with collaborating with other state lands managers to protect and enhance significant ecological features and work on the development of the state lands long-range management plan. During his time off, Bob enjoys fly-fishing, rock climbing, canoeing, and backcountry skiing.
Contact: Barre Office, 802-476-0128, email@example.com