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The USA-NPN's National Coordinating Office (NCO) guides the development of the Network, facilitates communication between scientists, land managers, policy-makers, and the public who are interested in assessing the effects of global change on natural ecological systems. Staff members work for the US Geological Survey, The University of Arizona and The Wildlife Society.
USA National Phenology Network
National Coordinating Office
1955 E. Sixth St., Tucson, AZ 85721
Fax: (520) 621-7834
Full CV - Résumé
An Interview with Jake on LiveScience
Jake Weltzin assumed his position as Executive Director of the USA-NPN in August 2007. Jake’s interest in natural history developed as he grew up in Alaska and served as an exchange student in the Australian outback. He obtained his B.S. from Colorado State University, M.S. from Texas A&M University, and Ph.D. from the University of Arizona. Following a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Notre Dame, Jake went to the University of Tennessee, where he served as Assistant and then Associate Professor.
Jake is interested in how the structure and function of plant communities and ecosystems might respond to global environmental change, including atmospheric chemistry, climate change, and biological invasions. His research spans temperate and tropical grasslands and savannas, temperate woodlands, deciduous forest, and sub-boreal peatlands. His recent experience as a science administrator at the National Science Foundation underscored the need to foster large-scale science initiatives such as the USA-NPN. As its first Executive Director, Jake’s vision for USA-NPN is “to develop a continental-scale instrument for integrative assessment of global change that simultaneously serves as an outreach and educational platform for citizens and educators.”
Alyssa Rosemartin is the Assistant Director of the National Coordinating Office and serves as a point person for the development of the USA-NPN IT infrastructure, including the national phenology database, user interface and website.
Alyssa received a B.A. in Spanish and environmental science in 2000 from Smith College and an M.S. in wildlife conservation and management from the University of Arizona's School of Natural Resources in 2008. Alyssa has experience in environmental education, science writing, field research, web development, and project management. She has been interested in citizen science since her first job, working on Birds Beyond Borders, a program linking elementary schools across the Americas through the observation of migratory birds.
LoriAnne Barnett coordinates the USA-NPN's education activities, focused on engaging a variety of formal and non-formal audiences in phenology and the Nature's Notebook program. She has worked in a number of educational settings over the last two decades, teaching both youth and adults the importance of place and connections to the natural world.
LoriAnne holds a B.A. in Environmental Studies from Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania and a M.A. in Environmental Science and Environmental Education from Prescott College in Arizona. She has also served as Virginia Cooperative Extension 4-H Faculty where she designed experiential curriculum and programming in science and the outdoors, as well as other program areas, for youth ages 5-19. She has lead workshops on leadership development, Wilderness First Aid and outdoor adventure safety, and risk management. She has served as a chapter advisor to the Rivanna Master Naturalists in Virginia and is an advocate for citizen science, education and stewardship of the land.
Theresa Crimmins coordinates the efforts of USA-NPN partners to achieve common phenology-related goals. USA-NPN partners include individuals and organizations representing communities of researchers, land managers, policy-makers, citizen scientists, and educators. Through our partnerships we seek to encourage and maintain the participatory spirit of the USA-NPN and the involvement of diverse user groups.
Theresa obtained a B.S. in biology and an M.A. in geography from Western Michigan University and a Ph.D. in natural resources from the University of Arizona. Her research interests encompass plant response to global change, spatial analysis, and engaging citizen scientists of all ages in scientific discovery.
Ellen Denny coordinates the design and development of the USA-NPN’s National Phenology Monitoring System for the collection of standardized ground-based plant and animal phenology observations across the nation. She also serves as the scientific data manager for phenology data sets included in the National Phenology Database (NPDb).
Ellen has a B.S. in Aquatic Biology from Brown University, and an M.F.S. (Forest Science) from the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, and has spent the last decade working at the interface of ecosystem ecology and information management. Her interaction with the USA-NPN began as the co-founder and coordinator of the Northeast Regional Phenology Network (NE-RPN), established in 2007. Since then she has served the USA-NPN in various capacities, including helping to advise other developing regional phenology networks across the nation and internationally.
Carolyn Enquist coordinates the USA-NPN’s science and applications-related activities. This includes facilitating applied scientific research related to phenology, working with government agencies, academics and volunteers to implement standardized monitoring protocols and analysis methods, communicating the importance of phenology as a robust indicator of climate change impacts on humans and natural systems, and highlighting the role monitoring can play in facilitating the application of climate change adaptation strategies.
Carolyn has been in the biodiversity conservation field for two decades, having worked for the National Wildlife Federation, the National Park Service, the Forest Service, and the Nature Conservancy. She has largely focused on understanding the ecological implications of climate change and identifying adaptation options for conservation and management priorities in the southwestern U.S. and elsewhere. She is also an adjunct assistant professor at the University of Arizona’s School of Natural Resources and the Environment. Carolyn received a B.A. from Mount Holyoke College a M.S. and Ph.D. from the University of New Mexico.
Kathy Gerst is a plant ecologist working as a liaison with the California Phenology Project on the implementation of plant phenology monitoring in California National Parks. She is participating in the development of project documentation, annual plant monitoring protocols, species profiles, and outreach materials.
Kathy received a B.S. in Ecology, Behavior and Evolution from UCLA in 2001 and completed her PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Arizona in the 2011. Her research interests include reproductive ecology and physiological ecology of desert annual plants. She also has a background in tropical biology, invasive species biology, and science education.
Patty Guertin is an in-house botanist at the National Coordinating Office in Tucson, Ariz. She assists with developing USA-NPN's plant and animal species’ profiles, focusing on gathering the necessary details for developing plant phenological protocols.
Having lived in many regions of the United States, and having investigated the local and regional flora of each area, Patty subsequently completed a B.S. in Plant Sciences at the University of Arizona. As a non-degree graduate student, she focused on field botany, GIS experience, and vegetation mapping and measurements. For the last 15 years, she has worked on vegetation and botanical projects as a field botanist and GIS specialist in the Southwest US, Texas and California, primarily for the national parks, focusing on non-native invasive plants and/or local flora.
Lee Marsh develops, enhances and maintains the USA-NPN's PHP and Java web applications, as part of the USA-NPN's IT team. He also plays a key role in data output and integration efforts.
Lee graduated from the University of Illinois, Springfield campus, with a B.S. in computer science, and has spent the last several years working for the private industry, including a regional startup and a Fortune 500 consulting firm. His interests include artificial intelligence and computer gaming systems.
Sharon Oliver handles the administrative details of the National Coordinating Office including budget and travel processes, and supports the planning of conferences and meetings. She brings a wide range of experience to the position, having worked for a number of years in the federal sector. Her most recent position was with the U.S. Embassy in Athens, Greece where she worked as part of the executive administrative team supporting the Ambassador and Deputy Chief of Mission.
Upon returning to Tucson in the fall of 2009, Sharon became involved in the community, volunteering with the United Way where she prepared taxes through the VITA program and joining the Community Gardens of Tucson. She enjoys traveling, reading, and gardening.
Erin supports USA-NPN's outreach and engagement efforts through resource development and communication with observers. She is also the USA-NPN's liaison to the US Fish & Wildlife Service, and is working on a pilot project implementing phenology monitoring at the Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge in Albuquerque.
A Seattle native, Erin received her B.A. in Environmental Biology from the University of Colorado at Boulder, then worked on a variety of field biology projects. She first came to the USA-NPN as a Peace Corps Fellow in 2010, during her graduate program in the University of Arizona's School of Natural Resources and the Environment. In 2013 she was awarded a Masters of Science for her research on wildlife species diversity at endangered red squirrel middens.
Web Designer & Developer
Sara Schaffer works for the USA-NPN as a Website designer and developer, working on website modifications using drupal. She has experience with graphic design, photography and publishing. She creates, formats and edits several of the documents produced by the NPN. Sara also provides support by completing various tasks related to daily operations and procedures. Her work varies depending on the tasks and events occurring in the NCO.
Sara is a born and raised Tucsonan, and received her B.S. in Microbiology from the University of Arizona in May 2010. She is currently working towards applying to graduate programs at the University, as well as Universities in Texas and California. In her free time, she enjoys the company of her dogs, traveling, and cycling.
North American Bird Phenology Program
Fax: (301) 497-5694
Jessica Zelt coordinates the North American Bird Phenology Program (BPP) based at Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Laurel, Maryland. The BPP, with the help of volunteers worldwide, is digitally reviving a collection of 6 million bird migration cards from around North America, originally collected between 1880 and 1970. Jessica organizes all aspects of the program from volunteer coordination to management of the website and database and outreach.
Jessica obtained a B.S. in environmental science and policy from the University of Maryland, College Park. She has previously worked as a naturalist for the Conservancy of Southwest Florida and as a research assistant for the Smithsonian’s Migratory Bird Center.