I am a geographer, interested broadly in the use of remotely sensed data to monitor and measure land cover and land use change. I earned my bachelor’s degree in Environmental Geography from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and my master’s in Physical Geography from the University of Oklahoma-Norman. My master’s research focused on the use of spatial technology to analyze and inform human interaction with the landscape. My work centered specifically on the development of a suite of tools to aid land managers in siting low impact development applications on a watershed scale in order to mitigate the effect of impervious surface on the water cycle.
Most recently, I worked for the U.S. Geological Survey in Glacier National Park, Montana on a series of projects that utilize aerial imagery, satellite imagery and LiDAR point cloud data with advanced GIS technology to quantify and track landscape change over time. For example, I have created and published a time series of glacier margin datasets ranging from the maximum extent during the Little Ice Age to present day extent. I used these to analyze change in glacier area and volume over time, tracking the melting of Glacier National Park’s namesake and the downstream ecological impacts. I also employed LiDAR data to derive a variety of landscape metrics and to develop high resolution species level vegetation maps. Understanding avalanche path return periods is crucial for hazard mitigation, especially in transportation corridors, and also a driving force in mountain ecosystems.