Dave Almquist Invertebrate Zoologist
Dave is responsible for compiling, entering and updating information about the invertebrates tracked by FNAI, evaluating additional species for inclusion in the database and surveying for the presence of rare invertebrates. He began working at FNAI in 2005. Dave has a Bachelor's degree in entomology from University of Florida and is a Research Associate with the Florida State Collection of Arthropods. While at UF he discovered two new species of beetles, invented a non-invasive method to survey for insects associated with gopher tortoise burrows and produced stunning insect photographs using advanced computerized technology.
Dorothy Gochnauer Office Manager
Dorothy has been with FNAI since 2005. She is responsible for managing all financial information, human resources, and office functions for the Florida Natural Areas Inventory, including: financial controls and reporting; accounting and bookkeeping; recruiting, hiring, orienting, evaluating, and training; office operations; compliance with FSU policies and procedures.
Kim Gulledge Community Ecologist
Kim joined FNAI in January, 2005, and has been involved with natural community mapping and vegetation monitoring projects as well as rare plant surveys and the coastal uplands project for DEP. Her background is in plant systematics and field botany, with an emphasis on the flora of North Central Florida. Kim has a master's degree in Botany from the University of Florida.
Brenda Herring Field Ecologist
Brenda has worked in close association with FNAI since 1994 conducting natural community and rare plant surveys on public lands. With a background in botany and ecology, she has worked on large scale ecological monitoring projects, historical rare plant surveys, Florida Forever Field Assessments, and floristic inventories. Brenda developed protocols for surveying and documenting invasive plants and has applied that technology to projects on Federal and State lands. Brenda has a Master's degree in Botany from the University of Florida.
Dan Hipes Chief Scientist
Dan has been the Chief Scientist at Florida Natural Areas Inventory (FNAI) since 2001. In this role he coordinates both the field and office activities of the ecology, botany, and zoology sections of the program. Dan has been with FNAI since January of 1993 when he was hired as a field biologist, employing his broad expertise in rare plant and animal surveys. As a field biologist and later as chief scientist he developed extensive experience conducting natural community mapping throughout Florida, combining field data collection, GPS expertise, and GIS mapping technical skills. Dan supervises FNAI’s team of scientists who evaluate projects submitted to the state’s land acquisition programs, providing objective, science-based guidance to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. Dan coordinated the production of FNAI’s Field Guide to the Rare Animals of Florida, which includes summarized information and exceptional photographs of more than 150 of Florida’s rarest animals. Dan’s education focused on management of upland game species and waterfowl. He has since added rare species and natural systems to his viewpoint of land management, allowing him to contribute a broad perspective during his participation in land management planning and review. Dan has a Master of Science degree in Wildlife Science from Auburn University.
Dale Jackson, Ph.D. Senior Research Zoologist
As FNAI’s longest-tenured staff member, Dr. Jackson helped to found FNAI in 1981 and was instrumental in ushering the program through the successes and challenges of its early years. Since moving southward from Illinois to pursue graduate studies, he has spent 37 years studying and conserving Florida’s herpetofauna, with research emphasis on freshwater turtles, and has published more than 60 scientific papers and book chapters. At FNAI he oversees database development for amphibians, reptiles, and invertebrates and is a principal participant in our office’s advisory role to the Florida Forever land acquisition program. Dr. Jackson earned his B.S. degree in Zoology from Eastern Illinois University, and his Ph.D. degree in Zoology from the University of Florida.
Amy Jenkins Senior Botanist
Amy joined FNAI in 2004. She is working on natural community mapping and monitoring on Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Division of Forestry natural lands. Her background is in Florida ecology, field botany, and upland restoration of pastures in central Florida. Amy has a bachelor's degree in Biology from Florida State University and a master's degree in Ecology from the University of Florida.
Ann Johnson, Ph.D. Community Ecologist
Ann has been with FNAI since 1987 and has been community ecologist since 1998. Ann supervises FNAI's natural community database, conducts rare plant surveys, and is involved in a field project to map vegetation on all Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission properties in Florida. She is co-author of the chapter "Dunes and Maritime Forests" in Ecosystems of Florida, edited by R.L. Myers and J.J. Ewel. Ann has a Ph.D. degree in Ecology from the University of California at Davis and has done post-doctoral studies on scrub species at Archbold Biolgical Station in Florida.
Sally Jue Conservation Lands Biologist
A native of Tallahassee, Sally has worked at the Florida Natural Areas Inventory since February 1990. Her main responsibility has been to develop and maintain a statewide database of Florida conservation lands and to oversee a site database for environmental land acquisition projects. As a staff scientist, she contributes to field surveys, especially those involving birds and butterflies. Sally received a B.S. in Biology from Emory University and did graduate study in Zoology at University of Michigan. She has been a bird watcher for over 35 years and is an active member of the Florida Ornithological Society. In 2001, she helped establish the Hairstreak Chapter of the North American Butterfly Association which serves the Apalachicola region of Florida. Sally is currently president of the Hairstreak Chapter.
Amy Knight GIS Program Specialist
Since coming to FNAI in 2000, Amy has coordinated the Florida Forever Conservation Needs Assessment, a project that involves GIS analyses and resource data development in support of the Florida Forever program. She is also involved in a variety of other projects at FNAI. Amy recently took on new responsibilities as FNAI's GIS Program Specialist and provides GIS support to the office as well as continuing to conduct project-specific GIS analyses. She has a master's degree in Zoology from the University of Florida. Amy is not related to Gary Knight, FNAI's director, even though they are both from Alabama.
Gary Knight Director
Gary has been with FNAI since 1990, and has been the program's director since 1995. Prior to becoming Director, he also served as Managed Areas Biologist and Senior Botanist. Gary is responsible for the overall direction and management of FNAI, including program development and planning, fundraising, financial administration, and all personnel matters. He is the program's principal spokesperson and primary contact. Gary also serves on the Board of Directors for the international conservation organization NatureServe and is on the Center for Plant Conservation's Science Advisory Council. Gary has a master's degree in Biological Science from Florida State University.
Martin Ma System Administrator
Martin has been with FNAI since 2002. Martin has more than 15 years of IT industry experience. As system administrator, he is responsible for the daily administration and maintenance of FNAI's network and Oracle database. Martin provides solutions and deployment/migration stratagems to keep the system updating smoothly and efficiently.
Katy NeSmith Zoologist
Katy has been with FNAI since 1986. She is currently responsible for collecting and processing rare animal occurrence data, concentrating on birds; conducting field surveys for rare animals (most recently seaside sparrow, limpkin, Florida scrub-jay); and identifying, evaluating, and describing high priority natural areas in Florida. She has worked on county inventories and is involved in several current and historic natural community mapping projects. Katy has a master’s degree in Biological Science from Florida State University.
Jon Oetting Conservation Planner
Jon has been with FNAI since 1999. He currently is involved in several planning projects, including GIS analysis and computer modeling of rare species habitat and land acquisition priorities for the Florida Forever program. Jon oversees the Inventory's environmental review and data distribution efforts, and manages the content and organization of the FNAI website. He has a master's degree in anthropology from the University of Illinois and a Master of Science in Planning degree from Florida State University.
Nathan Pasco Technical Support Analyst
Nathan started work with FNAI in 2011. He serves as the Data Services Coordinator, fulfilling data requests from the public. He also provides GIS mapping and analysis
support to a variety of projects. Nathan has a MS degree in Geography from Florida State University.
Frank Price Data Manager
Frank has worked for FNAI since 2007. In 2010, after managing FNAI’s invasive plant mapping program for several years, he moved into the role of Data Manager. In this position he is responsible for the design, maintenance, and support of primary data systems and leads the development of standards and tools to ensure data quality and consistency. Frank came to FNAI with a varied natural resource background including experience in terrestrial and aquatic ecology, riverine dynamics, and fisheries research. He is also experienced with most of the major software packages used in the storage and analysis of spatial data including ArcGIS, Oracle, Access, SQL Server, and Crystal Reports. He develops customs solutions and data products using SQL, Python and VBScript. Frank has a Master’s degree in Environmental Planning and Natural Resource Management from Florida State University.
Paul Russo Field Biologist
Paul joined FNAI in the spring of 2004. Since that time he has worked on numerous projects across the state with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, Florida Division of Forestry, Suwannee River Water Management District, Southwest Florida Water Management District, US Forest Service, and the Department of Defense. Paul’s work at FNAI commonly includes natural community mapping, vegetation monitoring, rare plant surveys, rare animal surveys, and exotic species surveys. In 1998 he earned a degree in Wildlife Management from The State University of New York at Cobleskill. Prior to joining FNAI, Paul worked for both Colorado State University and Penn State State University collecting information relative to natural and constructed wetlands. Paul's interests include field botany, nature photography, and virtually all aspects of the natural world.
Jim Surdick, Ph.D. Field Ecologist
Since May of 2004 Jim has conducted surveys of rare plants and animals and mapped natural communities for FNAI in many regions of Florida, but can be found most often on SRWMD lands. Before joining FNAI he gained invaluable experience due to a combination of wanderlust and nature study which lead him through the environments of Wisconsin, Minnesota, Missouri, the Everglades, Central America, Ecuador, and Botswana. Jim has a BS degree in Wildlife Ecology from University of Wisconsin-Madison, a MS degree in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation from the University of Florida, and a Ph.D. in Systems Ecology from the Department of Environmental Engineering at the University of Florida.
Gary Schultz Inventory Ecologist
Gary has worked for FNAI since 1983 on projects in all parts of Florida. He has a Master's Degree in Horticultural Science and a Bachelor's Degree in Botany from the University of Florida. His expertise is identifying and surveying for listed plant and animal species. Gary has extensive experience in assessing natural communities and rare species habitats. He has written numerous reports for FNAI, including ones for Cape Canaveral Air Station, Picayune Strand State Forest, the Lake Wales Ridge with Linda Chafin, and the Cross Florida Greenway with Brenda Herring. He is currently working on projects for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, Suwannee River Water Management District, and Volusia County.