Kristen Nolte - Kristen Nolte is a Florida native, born in Gainesville and raised in Tampa. She earned a BA in Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, but after working as a Crisis Counselor decided that she wanted to take her career in a different direction.  She went back to school at the University of Florida (UF) to pursue a degree in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation.  As an undergraduate she interned with the Whooping Crane Breeding Program at Patuxent Research Refuge, and fell in love with cranes.  Upon graduation she was hired by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s (FWC) Whooping Crane Reintroduction Program, and worked as a crane biologist for 5 years.  While working full-time for FWC, she conducted a research project on Infectious Bursal Disease (a virus that can cause morbidity and mortality in whooping cranes) to earn a Master’s degree from UF in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation. 

Throughout her career Kristen has acquired a wide variety of work experience, including FWC’s State Bald Eagle Nest Coordinator; Private Lands Coordinator for the Upland Ecosystem Restoration Project; and private contractor for an environmental consulting firm.  She currently works for FWC performing migratory bird surveys and crested caracara nest surveys on Fisheating Creek Wildlife Management Area. 

Kristen is very interested in expanding public awareness for wildlife conservation, particularly that of preschool and elementary school children.  She is currently collaborating with the director and teachers of Peace Lutheran School to develop an environmental education curriculum for preschool and kindergarten students that will be implemented next year.  In her free time Kristen enjoys bug collecting with her kids and native plant gardening.