Jamie VanDerZanden - MEAP Technician
Jamie joined the Mason-Lake Conservation District in May 2018 as the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP) Technician. She grew up on a family farm in Pentwater, MI, that specializes in asparagus and pumpkins, and grows row crops. Jamie graduated from Michigan State University in 2018 with a bachelor's degree in Agribusiness Management. Before graduating she had the opportunity to intern with Ceres Solutions (formerly known as North Central Co-op) in Hart for two summers as their field scout. In addition Jamie interned for one summer in the Grand Rapids area at GreenStone Farm Credit Services as their first crop insurance intern, where she had hands on experience learning to fly a drone to map fields and create orchard maps for farmers.
Rhonda Rasmussen - Administrative Assistant
In April Rhonda joined the staff of Mason-Lake Conservation District, serving as a part time administrative assistant. She helps keep things organized with bookkeeping, human resources, and communication with customers. Before her recent move to the Ludington area, Rhonda spent a career in K-12 education. During that time Rhonda worked for districts in both California and Michigan, filling various roles including high school English teacher, instructional technology coordinator, and school improvement consultant. Rhonda earned a Bachelor's degree from Western Michigan University and a Masters degree from Michigan State University. In addition, she holds Project Management Professional certification from PMI.org. During her free time Rhonda and her husband enjoy life on Lost Lake south of Scottville.
North Country CISMA partner staff at our location
Jenna Johnson - NCCISMA Outreach Coordinator
Jenna started working as the Outreach Coordinator for North Country Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area (NCCISMA) in April of 2018. She was raised in northwest Michigan where she learned to appreciate the outdoors. She attended Grand Valley State University where she pursued a degree in Natural Resource Management, with a double minor in environmental studies and biology. She graduated in April 2015 and shortly after she got a job as the crew lead for the non-native invasive plant crew on the Huron-Manistee National Forest for two years. Afterwards she accepted an AmeriCorps position serving at the Cadillac Department of Natural Resources for ten months. She was a forest health technician; helping private landowners and state organizations diagnose tree disease and forest pest issues throughout the state. After her service year was up, she remained at the DNR as a forest health employee for 6 months. During her free time you can find her hiking with her dog, gardening or kayaking.
Nick Corniuk - Invasive Strike Team Crew Lead
Nick started working with the North Country CISMA in April of 2018 as the field crew lead. He graduated from Central Michigan University in 2015 with a Bachelors in Biology and Natural Resources Management, and will be receiving his Masters in Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology from Eastern Michigan University in the summer of 2018. As an undergraduate student Nick worked in cooperation with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to monitor the status of invasive carp species in Lakes Michigan and Erie, while his thesis work has focused on improving sea lamprey management across the Great Lakes Basin.
Nick grew up in northern Michigan and was thrilled to have the opportunity to work in the area he has called home for so many years. When he's not working you can usually find him on one of the local rivers or in the woods hiking, hunting, or fishing.
Invasive Strike Team Crew
Amy, Gabby, and Abe have recently joined our office as part of the North Country Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area (NCCISMA) crew to help with invasive species management. Throughout the six-county NCCISMA area they will conduct invasive plant management activities using various techniques for our priority invasive species. Also, you may see them assisting at invasive species management workshops and outreach events.