Position: Graduate Research Assistant
How long have you worked at the OED? 8 months (since August 2015)
Before the OED, I was: Development Coordinator at Boone, North Carolina-based regional, environmental non-profit Appalachian Voices
Where are you from? Richmond, Virginia
What’s the best part of your work?
Getting real, hands-on experience working with communities on economic development.
Outside of work, what are your favorite things to do?
Hiking, canoeing and floating on rivers with friends, exploring the many gorgeous Appalachian swimming holes, and gardening.
If you could eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Pickles! I love sour/dill pickles (not bread and butter), especially the ones my dad makes with veggies he buys at the farmers market!
Where do you most want to travel, but have never been?
There are so many places I want to go, but Iceland and the Galapagos Islands of Ecuador are high on my list. Iceland has so many unique geologic features that I’d love to see (volcanoes, geothermal geysers, etc.) and it’d be really interesting to see some of the rare endemic animal species on the Galapagos, like the giant tortoise.
Why did you choose your profession/what led you here to the OED?
Working at Appalachian Voices on environmental issues related to mountaintop removal coal mining led me to my interest in community development and OED. My work at App Voices got me thinking about economic diversification and jobs beyond coal in Appalachia.
If you could have dinner with any one person, living or dead, who would they be?
Naturalist and BBC broadcaster David Attenborough (Life series and Wildlife Specials) because he has traveled so many places, has so much knowledge about the natural world, would likely have lots of good stories to tell and seems like a really interesting, thoughtful person.