Yvonne Hickerson started working to convert the ecology of IAE’s Oregon native plant curriculum to a New Mexico version as a volunteer in fall 2015. Yvonne joined the staff part-time in March 2016, and continues to work on the production and distribution of “Ponderosa to Prickly Pear: Exploring Native Plants of New Mexico.” She assists with various other ecological efforts including grant preparation, environmental outreach, and implementing on the ground restoration at the Leonora Curtin Wetland Preserve.
Yvonne earned a M.A. in Environmental Studies in 1995 from the University of Illinois and a B.S. in Biology from Quincy University. Prior work experience includes working for the National Park Service at Mesa Verde National Park (Vegetation Program Manager), Zion National Park (Restoration Biologist), and Channel Islands. She also was employed by URS Corporation (Santa Barbara, California) as a field biologist and the Palos Verdes Land Conservancy as the Restoration Site Manager at the Navy Defense Fuel Support Point in San Pedro, California. Early in her career her passion for natural resource restoration led her to take various seasonal jobs and Americorps positions in several other locations in Illinois, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico. Although her current focus is parenting her two daughters, Yvonne truly appreciates having a small role to play in IAE’s mission here in New Mexico.