2023-2024 EEAA Board
President - Toni Bruner
Vice-President - Susan Caplow
Secretary - Kim Corson
Treasurer - Jennifer Lolley
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Region 1 - Mike Ezell
Region 3 - Alma Huston
Region 4 - Joyia Davis
Region 5 - Scottie Jackson
Region 6 - Renee Raney
Region 7 - Lauren Massey
Region 8 - Shirley Farrell
Region 9 - Roger Birkhead
Region 10 - Jimmy Stiles
Region 11 - JoAnn Moody
Environmental Education Association of Alabama
Toni Bruner has been working in informal education for 18 years. Her love for nature began on the banks of the Alabama River, where she spent most of her summers alongside her father who worked at Fort Toulouse in Wetumpka, AL. Toni’s career in education began in 2004 with Legacy Partners in Environmental Education. In 2016 she was recruited as the Education Manager, building the Cook Museum of Natural Science in Decatur, AL a 64.000sq.ft. natural science museum. Following the opening of the Cook Museum Ms. Bruner join Auburn University to develop the Auburn University Museum of Natural History outreach department. She has since returned to her roots as the Executive Director for Legacy, Inc. In her downtime Toni enjoys caving and has been a member of the Southeastern Cave Conservancy Inc., Leading Caving Expeditions for 14 years. Toni says she considers herself blessed to have a job she loves in one of the most diverse states in the nation working alongside some of Alabama’s best and brightest educators.
Susan is an associate professor of Environmental Studies at University of Montevallo. She coordinates the Environmental Studies program and sustainability initiatives at UM. She received her Ph.D. in Environment and Ecology from UNC-Chapel Hill, her M.Sc. in Environmental Sciences and Policy from Central European University, and her B.A. in Public Policy Analysis/Biology from Pomona College.
Susan teaches courses that explore the interface between humans and the environment, and she incorporates field-based activities and service learning into her courses as much as possible. Susan’s research focuses on how people interact with conservation interventions (including policies, projects, or education) and how those interactions can lead to environmental/social change that supports conservation efforts. She has conducted research or led educational trips in Tanzania, Belize, Sri Lanka, Mongolia, St. John (USVI), the Florida Keys, and Hungary.
Before graduate school, Susan worked in a variety of environmental education settings, including Carolina Raptor Center, Haw River State Park, Warner Nature Center, and Monteverde Butterfly Garden.
Kim (she/her) grew up in northeastern Iowa where she could usually be found playing outside and in the woods. She studied Elementary Education but fell in love with teaching outdoors, not inside the traditional four-walled classroom. Kim worked for two years as a Naturalist in southeastern Minnesota at Eagle Bluff Environmental Center, where she perfected her Minnesotan accent and learned about the vast world of environmental education. She’s also taught environmental education in the Adirondack State Park of New York and in the mountains of northern Utah. Kim first came to Alabama and Camp McDowell in 2017 as a seasonal instructor for the Environmental Center. After two seasons as an instructor, Kim joined the team full time in 2018 as the Program Coordinator/Assistant Director at MEC. She has a Masters in Environmental Education through Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota. In her free time, you'll find her outside somewhere hiking, rock climbing, looking at neat wildflowers/lichen, or roller skating.
I was born and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa, which has ignited my love for the natural world. I taught creative writing to gifted and talented students in the Birmingham, Alabama Public Schools System. I am a published author, including a middle grade eco mystery series, The Adventures of The Sizzling Six. I have received numerous scholarships and awards, including The Blanche Dean Award for Outstanding Nature Educator. During my tenure as teacher, my students and I developed a nature trail, recently named in my honor as the Alabama Audubon-Datnow Forest Preserve.
Naturalist emeritus- Alabama State Parks Mike retired in 2020 from Alabama State Parks after serving 3 years as Park Naturalist at Lake Guntersville State Park. Previously, Mike served 1 year for ADEM and 10 years as a classroom Secondary Science teacher. His career also includes 13 years for Goodyear as a Quality Control Chemist. He has a BS in Chemistry from the University of North Alabama, and a BSEd in Science Education from Athens State University. Currently he is serving as a volunteer Naturalist, Consultant, and Environmental Educator in State Parks and other public lands all over the state of Alabama.
During her 38 years of being involved in formal educations, Alma had many jobs. After her graduation from East Carolina University she taught for six years on the elementary level. During this time, she also received a Master of Science in Educational Psychology. She began doctoral work at the University of South Carolina but left to marry and move with the military life of her husband. She has been a director of counseling, a principal, a middle school and high school teacher. Her favorite times were teaching environmental science and seeing how it affected young minds. She is passionate about environmental education and still teaches occasional teacher workshops to better equip teachers in this vital area. She is a board member of both Legacy and EEAA. Now that she is retired, she enjoys quilting, puttering in the garden and playing with her nine grandchildren and three dogs.
Jimmy Stiles is a Ph.D. Candidate at Auburn University with a B.S. in Biology from Samford University and M.S. in Herpetology from Auburn University. Jimmy is focused on the conservation of rare and imperiled species. Before entering the Ph.D. program he was most recently a Research Associate with the Alabama Natural Heritage Program (Auburn University Museum of Natural History/Department of Biological Sciences). His current research is focused on Chinese privet’s effects on wildlife communities and using fire treatments to restore privet-infested bottomland hardwood habitats.
Shirley Farrell has been teaching environmental education all of her life. As a gifted specialist, she was able to include environmental education into her classes and facilitated school gardens and outdoor classrooms, bird festivals, water festivals, and backpack teaching kits focused on different topics for teachers to use outdoors. She is an avid bird-watcher and loves to garden and hike. She has served on the EEAA board for almost 20 years and currently serves as the treasurer for EEAA.
Renee is the Chief of Interpretation for Alabama State Parks. Most people lose touch with “fairy tale” enchantment as they grow up…but not Renee. She learned to sustain and share this magic with others to inspire a respect for nature and the conservation of wild places through storytelling and unique EE programs. Over the past three decades Renee has researched, developed, implemented, and assessed interpretive and EE programs for over a million participants throughout her career with Alabama State Parks, Georgia-Alabama Land Trust, Jacksonville State University Field Schools, and the Anniston Museum of Natural History. She is certified in “Measuring EE Outcomes” through Cornell University and has served on the EEAA Board for 19 years.
Janice Barrett is Education and Outreach Coordinator for Wild Alabama, a non-profit forest protection organization that works in the Bankhead National Forest and Talladega National Forest and all three federally designated Wilderness areas in Alabama, Sipsey, Cheaha and Dugger Mountain. In her work with Wild Alabama, she leads interpretive hikes in the Bankhead National Forest and Sipsey Wilderness for people of all ages, is a forest bathing guide, conducts field trips for school groups and leads community science projects in the Bankhead National Forest in partnership with the U. S. Forest Service. Janice lives in Lawrence County, Alabama on her ancestral family farmland. She is the mother of Taylor Barrett Moore and is an artist.
Joyia Davis (she/her) is the Education Outreach Coordinator at the Alabama Museum of Natural History, where she is responsible for public outreach through the delivery of educational programs for all age groups. She also teaches Museum Education and Exhibition at the University of Alabama. Joyia has a B.A in Anthropology from the University of Alabama and a M.A.T in Museum Education from George Washington University. Joyia is new to environmental education but is excited about inspiring the next generation to connect with nature.
As a marine educator with Dauphin Island Sea Lab Discovery Hall Programs, JoAnn Moody focuses on sharing environmental and Gulf of Mexico literacy with students of all ages. She translates and shares what scientists are studying locally, as well as breaks down global topics like climate change. JoAnn has a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) and a bachelor's degree in marine biology, both from the University of West Alabama. In her free time, JoAnn enjoys spending time outdoors with her husband and daughters.
I have spent my entire life wandering around in the woods. I spent my formative years as an indentured field assistant to my dad who is an ichthyologist. I graduated with a B.S. in biology from Berry College in Rome GA. I nearly became a botanist, but ultimately my love for turtles and snakes won out. I spent several years doing biological consulting work across the southeast then became a field assistant at the Jones Ecological Research station in SW Georgia. I ended up doing my master's work there through Auburn University on seed dispersal by gopher tortoises (botany AND herps!). currently employed by the State Department of Education as the Biology Specialist for the Auburn University region of the Alabama Science In Motion program. My wife is the chair of the biology dept at AUM and I have three children. I enjoy all outdoor activities and documenting my interesting finds on iNaturalist.
Throughout her teaching career, Traci has participated in a variety of state and national endeavors and organizations that are both an extension of her conservation ethic and an investment in being the best environmental educator she can be. She has served on the Alabama Environmental Literacy Plan Task Force, as a Board Member of the Environmental Education Association of Alabama, the Governor’s Task Force for Environmental Literacy in Alabama and is a Life Member of the Alabama Wildlife Federation and president of the Ben Knight Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation, named in honor of her father. Under her leadership, her school achieved Certified Alabama Outdoor Classroom Status, the Project Learning Tree Green School Award, the National Wildlife Federation Green Flag Award, and the U.S. Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Award – the first school in the nation to receive all of these awards. Traci is currently serving as the 2022 National Project Learning Tree teacher leader of the year.
Scottie Jackson is the District Superintendent for the Central District for Alabama State Parks. She began her career with the state of Alabama as the Assistant Superintendent for DeSoto State Park in Fort Payne, Alabama, then moved to the Central District as the District Naturalist. Prior to her work in Parks, Scottie served as the Director of Education and Outreach and Wildlife Rehabilitator for the Alabama Wildlife Center, and Animal Care Coordinator for the Alabama 4-H Science School. Scottie also serves on the board of directors for the National Farmer’s Trust and as a co-founder and volunteer educator with TALON Education Group. She is a Certified Prescribed Burn Manager and NASP Certified Archery Instructor and holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology and a Master of Science in Environmental Management, both from Samford University. Scottie is passionate about sharing the spectacular natural resources and recreational opportunities of Alabama’s Central District Parks with all guests, offering inclusive, diverse, and accessible programming elements within the parks that she serves. When Scottie is not playing in the wilds of Alabama State Parks, she enjoys spending her time with her wife Katie Stubblefield, Clinic Manager and Lead Wildlife Rehabilitator at the Alabama Wildlife Center, a menagerie of dogs and cats, four horses, and a federally permitted Red-tailed Hawk named Fera.
Lauren Massey is a Birmingham native who grew up in the wildernesses of Alabama wilds with her sister, mother and father and a myriad of animal companions. She began her career in education as an intern with Samford University in 2013 and then later moved into a fulltime position as the Education Program Coordinator for the Alabama Wildlife Center training raptors of all kinds for education and leading groups on avian adventures. Fast forward a few years and she accepted the position at Oak Mountain State Park as the Park Naturalist and has been loving it for nearly 5 years and counting. She enjoys teaching thousands annually about Alabama's beautiful natural resources and preserving and protecting Oak Mountain's wildlife, endangered plants, and historical sites with her over 10 years of EE experience. In this time, she also co-founded and teaches with TALON Education Group. She is a Prescribed Burn Manager for Alabama State Parks, a NASP certified archery instructor, NAI Certified Interpretive Guide, certified search and recovery SCUBA diver, artist, and all-around nature nerd. She spends her off-time playing in nature just as she did in her childhood with her husband and many animal friends.
Emily is currently a lead educator at Little Mountain Forest School in Huntsville. Emily loves the invitation nature offers to believe in abundance, reciprocity and the power of diversity. She is passionate about cultivating wonder, wholeness and authentic connection— and knows no better setting for these things than the outdoors. She has a BA in History from the University of Minnesota and is a trained yoga teacher for both grown ups and kids. Though her love for the outdoors started in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, Alabama’s wild spaces have captured her imagination and curiosity. She feels privileged to continue to learn and share her enthusiasm alongside a thriving community of educators and creative kids.
Bio Coming Soon
Bio Coming Soon