A WNC native, Jess grew up exploring the natural wonders that attract so many to the region. Her love of nature led her to the University of North Carolina at Asheville to study environmental studies, concentrating in management and policy. She developed a particular passion for environmental education and has held a variety of related positions, such as a Naturalist in a State Park and a participant in the North Carolina Aquarium’s first Baja Island Ecology Educator Program. She is excited to serve her second term as the Foothills Equestrian Nature Center’s Environmental Education Associate and the opportunity to continue her work in fostering a love for nature in area youth, as well as complete her North Carolina Environmental Education certification. When she is not leading a hike or teaching a program, you can find her enjoying live music, traveling, creating art and spending time with her friends and her snake, Hisstopher.