I am Assistant Professor of Geography in the Social Science Department at the University of Wisconsin
Stout in Menomonie Wisconsin. My research spans a number of academic specialties, including political ecology, cultural geography, and critical GIS. I am primarily interested in understanding people’s relationships with the natural world. I use a variety of methods in my research including standard qualitative methods such as talking to people, visual ethnography, and GIS.
I earned my Ph.D. at the University of Oregon, where I researched the interactions between state and local land use governance, sprawling urban growth, and rural values. My academic interests emerged from a decade of working in science and outdoor education. I became interested in both how the physical environment could enhance people’s understanding and appreciation of the natural world and why there was such uneven access to enriching environments such as parks, conservation areas, and picturesque rural landscapes. I earned my masters degree from the University of California Davis, where I researched teens use of outdoor spaces in relation to their development.
Most recently, I have begun research on rural tourism in Wisconsin’s Driftless Region. I’m interested in the work involved in creating spaces for tourism and how rural spaces and places are being transformed by tourism.
This summer I will be working with colleagues at UW Stout and students from across the US on the LAKES REU, which investigates the social, economic, and environmental factors influencing phosphorus pollution and harmful algae blooms in local lakes and waterbodies.
Feel free to explore my teaching, research, and other activities on these pages or contact me through email or social media.