Our Staff

Kim Alexander (Gulledge previously)

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.

Dave Almquist

Invertebrate Zoologist

Dave has been FNAI's Invertebrate Zoologist since 2005 and added the responsibilities of Assistant Data Manager in 2017. He is most knowledgeable about beetles, but has worked with a variety of rare invertebrates, including bees, grasshoppers, and spiders. 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. On the data management side, he helps by bulk loading data, training staff on database methodologies, and increasing accuracy and efficiency of data entry by creating and maintaining tools and guidance documents.

Kelly Anderson

Field Botanist

Kelly joined the FNAI team in March 2020. Primarily she conducts rare plant monitoring and surveying, vegetation monitoring, invasive plant surveys, and natural community mapping. Kelly has a M.S. in Biology from Austin Peay State University where she studied floristics and biogeography of riverscour communities on the Locust Fork of the Black Warrior River from the Cumberland Plateau of Alabama.

Jenna Annis

Field Biologist

Jenna joined FNAI in October, 2015. She is involved with a variety of projects, including natural community mapping, vegetation monitoring, rare plant surveys, and rare animal surveys. Jenna has a bachelor's degree in Biological Sciences and a Master of Science degree in Biological Sciences with emphasis on Botany from Eastern Illinois University. While at EIU, Jenna conducted undergraduate and graduate ecological research with two Florida State-listed carnivorous plants, Pinguicula ionantha and Pinguicula planifolia.

Kerri Brinegar

Data Analyst

Kerri joined FNAI in December 2017. With her interest in both computers and biology she assists in a variety of projects including, data services, website maintenance & web mapping, python scripting, tool development, GIS mapping and GIS analyses. She also assists various staff on GIS related questions and problems. Kerri has a B.S in Biological Sciences and an M.S in Geographical Information Sciences from Florida State University.

Tyler DeVos

Gopher Tortoise Biologist

Tyler joined FNAI in September 2022. Her primary responsibility is conducting and managing field surveys for gopher tortoises. She has a Bachelor's degree in Zoology from Northern Michigan University and a Master's degree in Biological and Environmental Sciences from the University of Rhode Island, where she studied the effects of urbanization on hybridization among native and introduced anole lizards in Florida. Tyler has a passion for all things herpetological and has worked with a wide variety of reptile and amphibian species through past research and field technician positions in Michigan, Alabama, the Bahamas, and Rhode Island.

Derek Dunlop

Field Biologist

Derek started at FNAI in 2017 after headstarting flatwood salamanders with FWC. Although he primarily works on herpetological surveys at FNAI, he is interested in a variety of taxa and the role they play in the environment. After receiving his bachelors in evolutionary ecology from the University of Tennessee he traveled to over fifty countries, working on various wildlife projects along the way. An active cave diver, when not trekking thru the woods of Florida, he is most likely swimming underground in the Floridian aquifer.

Mitch East

Data Manager

Mitch joined FNAI in November 2021. He is responsible for managing data collection systems, processing and QC protocols, and generating data products. He has previous natural heritage program experience from work with Natural Heritage New Mexico where he managed data entry, QC, and information requests. Prior to joining FNAI, he worked with the Wildlife Resources Division of Georgia DNR and then the St. Johns River Water Management District. Mitch has a Master’s degree in Biology from Missouri State University.

Camille Eckel

Field Botanist

Camille joined FNAI in October 2019. She is involved in a variety of different projects including rare plant surveys, natural community mapping, and vegetation monitoring. Camille graduated from Oregon State University with her B.S. in Biological Sciences, and has traveled around the world doing botanical field work.

Padraic Elliott

Field Biologist

Padraic joined FNAI in May 2022. He conducts invasive species surveys, gopher tortoise surveys, compliance inspections, and conservation easement monitoring. He earned his B.S. in Biological Science from Florida State University and an M.S. in Conservation Biology from Texas Christian University, where his research studied habitat use by Texas horned lizards in central Texas to improve future reintroduction success.

Robert Gundy

Field Biologist

Gundy, who prefers to go by his last name, has been with FNAI since 2016. He works on a variety of projects including herpetological surveys, rare plant surveys, invasive species monitoring, conservation status ranking, and mapping rare species data. He has worked across the country as a field technician with reptiles and birds. His scientific interests in biology include herpetology, ornithology and botany but his curiosity for wildlife knows no taxonomic limits. A Florida native, he graduated from Florida State University in 2010 with a bachelor's degree in biology.

Brenda Herring

Field Botanist

Brenda has worked with FNAI since 1994 conducting natural community and rare plant surveys on public and Department of Defense lands. She has worked on large scale ecological monitoring projects, historical rare and invasive plant surveys, floristic inventories, Florida DEP Conservation Easement Monitoring inspections, and Florida Forever Field Assessments. Brenda has a Master of Science degree in Botany from the University of Florida. Her M.S. research “A Floristic Inventory of Ichetucknee Springs State Park” started her path for a life-time love and interest of the flora of Florida.

Geena Hill

Research Biologist

Geena joined FNAI in 2020 and is primarily responsible for data management and research of at-risk butterflies in North Florida. She also assists with other FNAI projects such as endangered species surveys, species status ranking, and vegetation monitoring for reference natural community sites. Prior to FNAI, Geena worked at the Florida Museum of Natural History on several pollinator ecology projects, as well as a private consulting firm that focused on mitigation banking. Her experience involves project coordination, environmental resource permitting, and conservation planning in both the public and private sectors. Geena has a B.S. in Archaeology from Kent State University, and a M.S. in Interdisciplinary Ecology and Wildlife Conservation from the University of Florida.

Dan Hipes

Senior Field Ecologist

After 29+ years at FNAI, Dan stepped down from the Director position in January of 2022 to work a part-time schedule assisting with field projects and administrative work where needed. He has broad expertise in rare species inventory as well as ecological evaluation of natural areas throughout Florida. Dan started work with FNAI in 1993 as a field biologist conducting rare species inventories and natural community mapping. He was promoted to Senior Zoologist in 1995, the Chief Scientist in 2001, and Director in 2016. Dan has a Master of Science degree in Wildlife Science from Auburn University where he studied waterfowl behavioral ecology and habitat analysis.

Ethan Hughes

Field Botanist

Ethan began his work with FNAI in May 2020. He is primarily focused on botanical work, such as OBVM, NC mapping/monitoring, rare plant surveys, LEO Longleaf mapping, and invasive survey work. His interests are in plant taxonomy, natural community classification, and rare plant species ecology. He received his M.S. degree in floristic work in 2020, focusing mainly on natural community classification through vegetation survey work and rare plant species surveys.

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 4 decades studying and conserving Florida's herpetofauna, with research emphasis on freshwater turtles, and has published more than 90 scientific papers and book chapters. At FNAI he oversees database development for amphibians, reptiles, and aquatic 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 as a field biologist and has been the Senior Botanist since 2005, holding primary responsibility for management of the state-wide rare plant conservation database and tracking list, rare plant monitoring and surveying, supervising large natural community mapping projects, and training staff in FNAI database entry and protocol. Amy has conducted field work throughout the state, including invasive and rare plant surveys, field assessment of land acquisition projects, and present and historic natural community mapping. Amy coordinated a comprehensive ecological inventory of Orange County and co-authored the 2010 edition of the Guide to the Natural Communities of Florida. She has been working in field ecology in Florida since 1997. Amy has a bachelor's degree in Biology from Florida State University and a Master of Science degree in Interdisciplinary 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.

Carolyn Kindell

Research Scientist

Carolyn joined FNAI in 1993. She has conducted several current and historic natural community mapping projects, vegetation monitoring projects, rare plant surveys, conservation land acquisition assessments, and enjoys helping FNAI colleagues with gopher tortoise surveys. She has expertise in pyrogenic natural communities in Florida and working with land managers to develop restoration strategies. Carolyn has a Master of Science from Florida State University where her research focused on local variations in wiregrass (Aristida stricta) populations in wet and dry habitats.

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.

Ashley McKelvy

GIS Manager

Ashley joined FNAI in 2021 as a data/GIS manager. She completed her PhD in ecology & evolutionary biology from the City University of New York Graduate Center and her undergraduate at Albion College. Prior to joining FNAI, Ashley worked with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission's Wildlife and Habitat Management section.

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

Chief of Conservation Planning Services

Jon has been with FNAI since 1999. He is involved in several conservation planning projects, including GIS analysis, modeling rare species habitat, and assessment of conservation priorities for the Florida Forever program. Jon also oversees FNAI's environmental review and data sharing efforts. 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.

Geoff Parks

Ecologist

Geoff came to work for FNAI in spring of 2021. He is involved with a wide variety of FNAI projects, including the Southeastern Longleaf Ecosystem Occurrence geodatabase, vegetation and wildlife monitoring, and support for the Florida Forever land acquisition program. Prior to joining FNAI, he spent 18 years managing natural areas in north central Florida, and has extensive experience in prescribed fire, management planning, and invasive plant control. Before moving to Florida, Geoff spent 4 years focused on avian ecology and conservation, conducting field work in Arizona, California, South Carolina, and Puerto Rico. Geoff has a BA in Biology from Wesleyan University and an MS in Botany from the University of Florida, where his research focused on seed banks and seedling germination of groundcover plants in longleaf pine sandhills.

Nathan Pasco

Conservation Data Analyst

Nathan started work with FNAI in 2011. He serves as the Conservation Data Analyst, maintaining and improving a statewide database of Florida conservation lands and overseeing a site database for environmental land acquisition projects. 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

Director

Frank is responsible for providing primary fiscal, administrative, and scientific oversight of FNAI. He develops projects for, and coordinates the varied activities of the program related to land management and conservation in Florida and the southeastern U.S. He came to FNAI with a diverse natural resource background including experience in terrestrial and aquatic ecology, riverine dynamics, fisheries research, GIS, and data management. Frank was hired as FNAI's Assistant Data Manager in 2007, transitioned to Data Manager in 2010, and to Assistant Director in 2017. He became FNAI's fifth program Director in 2022. He has a Master's degree in Environmental Planning and Natural Resource Management from Florida State University.

Sean Riggs

Accounting Specialist

Sean started with FNAI in September 2021. He has a B.S. in Business Administration with a concentration in Finance from West Virginia University and a Certificate in Business Analytics from Michigan State University. Sean has over 25 years of finance and accounting experience in the government and non-profit sectors.

Hanna Rosner-Katz

Research Scientist

Hanna joined FNAI in May 2021 and helps to assess the conservation status of Florida's rare plants in order to inform the most urgent research and management needs for these species. She also helps to conduct rare plant surveys and vegetation monitoring for natural community reference sites. Hanna also acts as the Florida Plant Rescue Coordinator, a project led by the Center for Plant Conservation to seed bank the state's most at-risk plant species. Before coming to FNAI, Hanna worked as the Plant Conservation Program Biologist at the Lake Wales Ridge State Forest in Polk County. She received her Bachelor's in Plant Science and Master's in Landscape Ecology with a focus on developing species distribution models to discover new rare plant populations.

Katherine Russell

Field Scientist

Katherine joined FNAI in December 2022. She contributes to a variety of projects, primarily focusing on gopher tortoise surveys, invasive plant surveys, and vegetation monitoring. Katherine holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Georgia's Odum School of Ecology and has conducted field work in many different ecosystems across the United States, including California’s Sequoia National Forest. Her primary fields of interest are dendrology, ornithology, and ethnobotany. In addition to her work in conservation, she is an avid explorer, reader, and writer

Dexter Sowell, Ph.D

Research Scientist

Dexter joined FNAI in 2017. He assists other staff in conducting vegetation monitoring, natural community mapping, gopher tortoise surveys, Florida Forever site assessments and Early Detection-Rapid Response (EDRR) invasive plant surveys. He has conducted numerous compliance inspections of FWC Uplands-funded invasive plant treatments on public conservation lands. He is active with the Florida Invasive Species Partnership (FISP) and liaisons with several CISMAs throughout the state. He has broad experience with Florida's native flora, including rare and listed species, fire-dependent ecosystems, invasive plant species management, and prescribed burning. Before joining FNAI, Dexter worked for several years as a biologist for the Florida Forest Service in southwest Florida, and has previously worked with an environmental consulting firm. Dexter has a BS degree in Biological Sciences from Florida State University, a MS degree in Biology from Georgia Southern University, and a PhD in Biology from the University of Virginia.

Angie Standley

Office Administrator

Angie joined FNAI in February 2022. She has twenty years of administrative experience at FSU. Angie has a B.A. degree in Business Administration from Flagler College and a M.S. degree in Library and Information Studies from Florida State University.

Carly Voight

GIS Analyst

Carly joined FNAI in May 2019 to assist with GIS projects such as the Southeast Longleaf Ecosystems Occurrences (LEO) database. She holds a B.S. in Ecosystem Management from University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and a master's in Tropical Conservation and Development - Latin American Studies from the University of Florida. Carly has over 10 years of experience working for non-profit conservation organizations. At The Nature Conservancy, Carly was the lead GIS Analyst for a spatial conservation planning project on migratory species in the Gulf of Mexico. As a GIS Specialist at a community-based NGO in Belize, she conducted forest cover change analysis, deforestation predictive modeling, and spatial prioritization modeling.