Mary Talbot Prairie Field Trip New Boston, Bowie County Saturday June 8, 8:30 – 11:00 AM The Native Prairies Association…Read more of this >>
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Texas Bluegrass (Poa arachnifera) is a rhizomatous, cool season grass with fluffy pink to purple seed heads, and in separate male and female plants.
Biography coming soon!
Biography coming soon!
Pat Merkord has served on the Board of Directors of the Native Prairie Association for the past two years as Board Secretary. She is also an active member of the Maddin Prairie Committee. A retired high school biology/chemistry teacher, she has a master’s degree in Biology with a specialty in Wildlife. Active birders for many years, she and her husband Glenn also spend time restoring their “urban acre” in Conroe with native plants. She is currently the owner of a consulting business called “Bluestem Environmental Consultants.” Her past business endeavors include wildlife management plans, wildlife and endangered species surveys, plant surveys and watershed evaluations. She is especially interested in prairie conservation and restoration in Texas.
Professor of Ecology, Department of Rangeland Ecology and Management, Texas A&M University.
Kirsti Harms - I have been a member of the NPAT board for over two years and am actively involved with Maddin Prairie Preserve. I am also editor and designer of the NPAT newsletter and other promotions. I am a designer in TxDOT’s Travel Information Division, working on several publications including Texas Highways magazine and the Texas State Travel Guide. I grew up in Austin and earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Texas at Austin. In addition to my interest in prairies I have been an active member of the Native Plant Society and the Capital Area Master Naturalists for many years. I am also a birder and with a strong interest in grassland birds and their conservation. I credit my parents, Bob and Sirpa Harms for instilling in me a deep passion for nature and for the study of plants and animals. Our camping trips and hikes around Texas during my childhood laid the groundwork for my ongoing love of nature, conservation and travel.
Leslie grew up in central west Texas, near Rocksprings, on a 16,000 acre ranch. There, her childhood was spent exploring the Edwards Plateau—the juniper and oak scrub as well as the karst features of the hill country. Range management and land use techniques were lifelong principles taught for three generations on this land.
Studying prairie fungal diversity was the concentration of her research for over three years as she worked toward her undergraduate degree in Biology at University of Houston-Downtown with concentration in biotechnology and molecular biology. She is now working on a master’s degree at Texas A&M in Natural Resource Management in the department of Ecosystem Science Management.
Leslie now works at Texas Parks & Wildlife Dept as a Natural Resource Specialist at Sheldon Lake State Park in Houston, Texas. There she preserves and manages the same prairie she did all her undergraduate research on—looking and developing new techniques for prairie restoration of disturbed and previously fragmented land. In addition to the prairie, bottomland hardwood forests, bayou/watershed and reservoir are under her direction.
In addition to Natural Resource Specialist, Leslie is also a Wildland Firefighter, Wildlife volunteer for the SPCA, community volunteer devoted single mom to two outstanding kids, and active member and participant of her church. Her hobbies include rock climbing, dragonfly watching, reading, camping, hunting, fishing and learning new things.
Northeast Texas Program Manager for the Nature Conservancy. Board member and former Executive Director of the Natural Area Preservation Association (NAPA), Northeast Texas Program Manager for the Nature Conservancy.
Clair Burleson is a former Development Director of Peaceable Kingdom Retreat for Children.
Mickey Burleson is a former Texas Parks and Wildlife Commissioner, and former board chairperson of the Nature Conservancy of Texas.
B.F. Hicks is an attorney at Law. His family owns Daphne Prairie, one of the largest remaining Blackland Prairie remnants in Texas.
Bob O’Kennon is a Research Associate and Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas, and President of the Texas Land Conservancy.
David Todd, Magnolia Charitable Trust.
Carolyn Vogel, Vogel Conservation Services is the former executive director of the Texas Land Trust Council.
Edward “Jason” Billick was born in San Antonio, Texas. At an early age, it became apparent to Mr. Billick that the environmental agenda in Texas was a low priority. As our planet faces natural resource shortages, an unprecedented population increase, and the threat of climate change, it becomes crucial they we act now to protect Texas’ historic and natural beauty for future generations.
Mr. Billick received a Bachelor of Science in Renewable Natural Resource Management from Texas A&M University in 2005, received a Master in Public Health in environmental health sciences from the University of South Carolina in 2008, and received his Juris Doctor from Vermont Law School in 2011. Mr. Billick is currently an associate attorney for the Law Office of Kleinhans Gruber, P.L.L.C. located in Austin, Texas
As a board member for the Native Prairies Association of Texas (NPAT), Mr. Billick hopes to assist the organization in achieving its goal of appreciating, conserving and restoring native Texas prairies.
Matt Singerwas raised in a rural community in central Texas, acquiring a love and understanding for nature at an early age. As an avid hunter and fisherman, Matt has a great respect for fish and wildlife and the habitats that support them. Acting on passion for the outdoors, he attended Texas A&M where he earned a B.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences in 2005. Matt was a biologist with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission where he worked with high profile endangered species and helped landowners develop wildlife management plans for over four years. Many of these plans involved quail management and prairie restoration. Matt currently serves as conservation lands manager for the Galveston Bay Foundation focusing on habitat restoration and land conservation. He is drawn to prairies as a biologist because of the level of wildlife and plant diversity found in prairie communities. He enjoys the challenge of native habitat restoration and hopes to be engaged in several coastal prairie projects in the near future. Matt hopes to help bring back destroyed native prairies, protect native remnants and bring energy and new ideas to the board with a coastal prairie perspective.