Shawn earned a dual degree from Ohio State University, where he studied Economics and Environmental Policy & Management. This interdisciplinary background shapes much of his outlook on ecological restoration. He believes we must use both social and hard sciences to be successful in environmental management, as conservation projects are inevitably collaborative endeavors. As an undergraduate, he worked at the Byrd Polar Research Center, studying climate change in the Peruvian Andes, before conducting forest carbon sequestration research in rural China.
Shawn earned his Master’s degree from the University of Arizona in Tucson, where he explored restoration ecology efforts on degraded mine lands in the Santa Rita Mountains of southeastern Arizona. This led to a couple seasons of assessing public and tribal lands, where he gained an unyielding love for the American southwest. He spent several years working with the Gila Watershed Partnership of Arizona, managing riparian habitat conservation initiatives on the Upper Gila River. In 2017, he moved to New Mexico, became the New Mexico representative of the Society for Ecological Restoration: Southwest Chapter, and helped establish the Southwest Seed Partnership.
He has an abiding passion for wildlife, and responsible land management. With expertise ranging from rangeland ecology, habitat restoration, botany, grant writing, strategic planning, and environmental policy, Shawn is a jack-of-many trades.