Jeremy developed early ties to the mountains, forests, and lakes of the Monadnock Region during summers spent visiting family in Hancock and Peterborough.
He graduated from Bowdoin College, then attended the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, where he earned his master’s degree. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Washington College of Forest Resources in 1998. For 11 years, he was a professor at the University of Maine, where he directed research programs that advanced understanding of forest stand and landscape dynamics. He taught undergraduate courses on forest ecosystem management and a graduate course exploring issues of scale in forest ecology and management.
He and his wife Katie were married in a ceremony at the Harris Center in the early 1990s. They live in Dublin with their four children, ages 9 to 20.
In 2008, after 33 years, Meade handed the Executive Director reins over to Laurie Bryan and asked for the title “Senior Naturalist— emphasis on the Senior.” He retired from his role as Land Program Director and Senior Naturalist at the end of 2012, but he continues to spend time at the Harris Center — working on land protection, as well as programs and outings — as our first-ever Naturalist Emeritus.
Meade served as a faculty member in Antioch University New England’s Environmental Studies Department for 34 years. Lifetime awards include: the Monadnock Conservancy’s Abe Wolf Award; New Hampshire Audubon’s Tudor Richards Award; co-winner of the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forest’s first Sarah Thorn Award; first to receive New Hampshire Audubon’s Meade Cadot Award; Antioch’s Horace Mann Award; Antioch’s Community Excellence Award; N.H. Fish and Game’s Ellis Hatch Award; Silver Lake Land Trust’s Stewardship Award; and EPA’s New England Region Lifetime Achievement Award. Meade and his spouse Sandy Taylor live in Hancock.
Janet’s love of outdoor living began as a young child in the aromatic white pine/rhododendron forests and blueberry swamps of northeastern Pennsylvania. She declared “outdoor therapy” as her career path at age 18, and has been bringing outdoor therapy to schools for 34 years while teaching science in Fort Morgan, CO and Damariscotta, ME; writing curriculum for the National Geographic Society and the National Gardening Association; teaching at Antioch University New England; and as a Harris Center Naturalist-in-Residence, exploring the wild edges of schoolyards in the Monadnock Region since 1989. Janet’s favorite places for her own renewal are in the garden, where she experiments with year-round food production; alpine and subalpine ridges; and Muscongus Bay, ME.
Margaret joined the Harris Center as our Communications Specialist in 2013. She comes to us with twenty years of freelance graphic design and marketing experience, including work on the Harris Center’s iconic bobcat logo!
John grew up in Boulder, CO, where he spent his childhood exploring the outdoors in pursuit of all things crawling, and later earned a B.A. in Biology at the University of Colorado. He has since worked as an education program specialist at Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo, an environmental educator with Nature’s Classroom, a science teacher at the Chicken Coop School in Athol, MA, and a student biology teacher at Fall Mountain Regional High School in Langdon, NH. He recently graduated from Antioch University New England with an M.S. in Environmental Studies and a New Hampshire Life Sciences Teaching Certification. In his free time, John enjoys exploring the woods of New England, trail running, taking photos, and playing the mandolin.
Pete is the Harris Center’s go-to guy for maintenance and construction projects on our building and grounds. Prior to coming to the Harris Center, he worked for a land trust in upstate New York, building and maintaining more than 30 miles of trails and constructing rustic benches and bridges. He lives in Peterborough with his wife Joyce.
Dori has been teaching kids for the better part of the last twenty years. After teaching in the classroom and co-founding an Expeditionary Learning charter school in Asheville, NC, she migrated north to go to graduate school. While earning her master’s degree in environmental education at Antioch University New England, she fell in love with the Monadnock Region and has been calling it home ever since. She lives in a co-housing community in Peterborough. When Dori’s not outside with kids, you’ll find her rambling in the woods with her dog, birding, or making pottery.
Michael is a Texas transplant with New England roots. Born in Austin and raised in Arlington, Michael’s lifelong commitment to exploring, studying, and teaching about the natural world was nurtured as a youth in the suburban greenspaces of northern Texas and as an adult SCUBA diving and hiking the Texas Hill Country. Michael earned an undergraduate degree in Geography from the University of Texas at Austin, then taught middle and high school social studies for seven years before moving to New Hampshire to earn an M.S. in Environmental Education at Antioch University New England. At Antioch, Michael focused on food systems and increasing community food security. He and his wife Whitney live in Chesterfield.
Born and raised at the foot of Mount Greylock, Jaime has spent her professional life teaching children and working in the outdoors. In addition to her academic training at Union College and Antioch University New England, she has worked with youth at summer camps, a children’s museum, an urban park and recreation nature center, an alternative school, and as a girl scout troop leader. When she’s not working for the Harris Center, Jaime is honing her skills by teaching her husband and two children how to identify frog calls, track animals in the snow, and use worms to make compost. Her husband says, “Of course we have a jar of moose poop on the kitchen table, a stuffed skunk in the trunk, and a frozen bat in the freezer; that’s life with a naturalist!”
From a teaching and farming career in nearby Harrisville, NH, through raising two daughters in the great outdoors (and off the grid), Diana now brings her love of the natural world, her love of people, and her long familiarity with the Monadnock Region to her work at the Harris Center. With a dual degree in Education and Animal Science, she is happily melding her life experiences with her work – and play.
The representative from Ireland on the Harris Center staff, Eric also is the co-chair of the Harris Center ornithology department. When not fielding questions about birds and/or Ireland, Eric is the Land Program Coordinator for the organization, monitoring the 22,000+ acres owned and/or conserved by the Harris Center. He lives with his wife Tricia in Hancock.
Please note: Eric is taking a leave of absence from September 2016 through March 2017 to bicycle the migration route of the Broad-winged Hawk from New Hampshire to South America. If you have land protection or stewardship questions during this time, please direct them to James Newsom.
Land Protection Specialist
James rejoins us as a Land Protection Specialist, after serving as an Easement Monitoring Intern in 2013. His work encompasses both land protection and stewardship activities. He learned to love nature growing up in then, but no-longer, rural Bucks County, Pennsylvania, and re-discovered his interest and passion for conservation as a corporate lawyer working on several transactions involving alternative energy facilities. He lives in a 250-year-old house in Contoocook with his wife and twin sons, and spends his winters skiing, springs refereeing lacrosse, and summers fishing as much as time and his wife, Susanna, allow. James holds an M.S. in Resource Management and Conservation from Antioch University New England (2014), a J.D. from Washington University in St. Louis (2002), and a B.S. from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania (1995).
When not teaching for the Harris Center, Polly spends her time rambling through the forests and wetlands of New England (and beyond), marveling at and recording fauna and flora, and trying to keep her dogs out of trouble.
Jenna Spear O’Mara
Jenna grew up in the bustling San Francisco Bay Area and then migrated east, discovering a love for the outdoors along the way. After spending time in Mexico studying marine biology, a career in lab science didn’t seem so interesting, so Jenna changed paths to study forest insects. She has worked for Nature’s Classroom as a naturalist and for the State of New York as a forest entomologist, and has taught entomology from the Adirondacks to the Monadnock Region. For the past twelve years, Jenna has lived and worked in Keene and taught insects to a variety of ages — as an instructor at Keene State College and Antioch University New England, at summer camps, and in the Keene elementary schools.
Susie Spikol Faber
Community Programs Coordinator & Teacher/Naturalist
Susie Spikol Faber spent her youth exploring the wild edges of Brooklyn, NY and roving the rolling green hills of southern Vermont. After one statistics class, she abandoned her childhood dream of becoming a wolf scientist and decided that teaching children in the outdoors was just as exciting as working with a wild pack of canines. After interning as an environmental educator with the Central Park Conservancy and several summer stints with Massachusetts Audubon Society, she wandered upon the Harris Center in 1991 and has never left. (She recognizes a good thing when she sees it!) When not romping around the Harris Center’s Big Woods in search of new additions to add to her scat and sign collection, Susie and her family spend many hours tending to their orchard nestled on the edge of Skatutakee Mountain.
Before moving to the Monadnock Region, Ted taught high school in New Hampton, NH, where he was an active member of the Plymouth Area Renewable Energy Initiative. Now in Peterborough, he has started his own energy audit and building weatherization company.
Ted works with ConVal 9th graders to conduct assessments of heat loss — and make recommendations for improving energy efficiency — in several different buildings, including the Harris Center!
Brett Amy Thelen
Brett was Science Director of AVEO from 2007-2009, and was delighted to return when AVEO became the citizen science arm of the Harris Center in 2011. In addition to her work with the Harris Center, Brett teaches coastal ecology at Franklin Pierce University and serves on the editorial board of Whole Terrain, Antioch University New England’s nationally-acclaimed journal of environmental writing. She received her M.S. in Environmental Studies: Conservation Biology from Antioch University New England in 2007. Prior to her graduate work, she conducted all manner of ecological field research at Cape Cod National Seashore and received her B.A. in Literary & Cultural Studies from the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, VA. When not citizen science-ing, Brett can be found roaming the dunes and shores of outer Cape Cod, scratching her way across desert playas, or exploring the quieter corners of the SuperSanctuary.