Principal Investigators



Liba Pejchar, Project Co-Investigator
Assistant Professor, Warner College of Natural Resources
Email: liba.pejchar@colostate.edu

Liba Pejchar is an assistant professor in the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology. Her research focuses on finding “win-win” opportunities to conserve and restore biodiversity on private lands while also sustaining the livelihoods of landowners. Her current projects include evaluating the efficacy of conservation development as a land stewardship and conservation finance tool, planting “tree islands” on ranchland to create dispersal corridors for birds while also benefitting cattle, and studying the role of birds and bees in structuring plant communities through seed dispersal and pollination. Her work is generally interdisciplinary, seeking innovative ways to integrate conservation biology, finance and policy to solve important emerging environmental problems at the intersection of biodiversity and human well-being.

Sarah Reed, Project Co-Investigator
Faculty Affiliate, Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology
Email: sarah.reed@colostate.edu

Sarah Reed is an Associate Conservation Scientist with the Wildlife Conservation Society and a Faculty Affiliate in the Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology. Her research combines spatial modeling with field experiments to investigate how land development patterns and human activities affect wildlife and biodiversity. She also works closely with communities, government agencies, and non-governmental organizations to apply ecological science to conservation planning and land use policy. Sarah is especially motivated by research projects that have the potential to inform land use decisions and conservation policies as well as to expand our understanding of how biological communities respond to human disturbances.




Cooper Farr, Research Coordinator
Graduate Student, Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology
Email: cooper.farr@rams.colostate.edu

Cooper is a Masters student in the Graduate Degree Program in Ecology. Before coming to CSU, she worked on a variety of wildlife and conservation biology research projects, including studies on bats, sage-grouse, and fox squirrels. She is broadly interested in understanding how human-driven habitat change influences wildlife communities, and especially in understanding how conservation, economic sustainability, and other land management goals can be balanced over the long-term. For her graduate thesis project she is studying the effects of conservation development on birds and mammals in Northern Colorado. 




R. Patrick Bixler
Sociology, Colorado State University
Email: rpbixler@lamar.colostate.ed

Patrick is a PhD student in the Department of Sociology at Colorado State University.  His interests are focused on the interactions between social and ecological change in rural areas in the U.S. West and Latin America, and their implications for resilient social-ecological systems. His interest in conservation development emerged from his work with community-based natural resource management and the intersection of conservation and livelihoods.

Kelly Curl
Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, Colorado State University
Email: kelly.curl@colostate.edu

Kelly Curl is an Assistant Professor in Landscape Architecture at Colorado State University. She received her B.S. in Comprehensive Science and Mathematics from Villanova University, and received her M.L.A. from the University of Pennsylvania. Professor Curl has extensive knowledge and experience in the design process, working from the master planning stage through construction documentation. After working with Peter Walker and Partners for many years, she brings the skill of craft-ful design into her teaching.

Lindsay Ex
Master's of Landscape Architecture Candidate, Utah State University
Email: lindsayex@gmail.com

Lindsay Ex is an Environmental Planner with the City of Fort Collins and a recipient of a Practitioner Fellowship through the Center for Collaborative Conservation at Colorado State University. Her work with Fort Collins emphasizes the incorporation of ecological principles into the development review process, while her research explores how practitioners cross disciplinary boundaries to achieve better conservation and social outcomes on the ground. Her current research effort with the Conservation Development GCRT is exploring the potential for a Learning Network for conservation development (CD) professionals, which could foster collaboration across the diverse range of individuals engaged in CD. Ms. Ex has degrees in Natural Resources Management and Landscape Architecture and is a LEED Green Associate.

Stephanie Gripne
Leeds School of Business, University of Colorado
Email: stephanie.gripne@cu.edu


Micah Hahn
Postdoctoral Fellow, Centers for Disease Control/National Center for Atmospheric Research
Email: micah.hahn@gmail.com

Micah Hahn is an epidemiologist / disease ecologist who investigates how human-­driven changes to the environment create opportunities for disease spillover from domestic and wild animals to people.  She hopes that by understanding the impact of landscape patterns or social practices on disease risk, we can create science-­driven public health interventions that simultaneously protect ecosystems and human health. Micah received her MPH from Emory University and her joint PhD in Epidemiology / Environment & Resources from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  She is currently a postdoctoral research fellow at the Centers for Disease Control / National Center for Atmospheric Research where she is working on a climate-driven predictive model for human West Nile virus.


Elizabeth Hammen
Environmental Consultant
Email: e.hammen@gmail.com

Elizabeth Hammen is an environmental planner with a background in conservation biology, land use studies, GIS and sustainable design. Elizabeth has a B.A. from Prescott College in Environmental Studies and Education and a M.A. from the Conway School of Landscape Planning and Design. One of her career objectives is to promote collaborative conservation across scales that meets the goals of land users while fostering environmental stewardship and habitat protection. Elizabeth recently worked with Sarah Reed to inventory conservation development regulations in the American West and is currently consulting for the North American Program of the Wildlife Conservation Society on a similar project in the northeast. 

Richard Knight
Human Dimensions of Natural Resources, Colorado State University
Email: richard.knight@colostate.edu

Rick Knight is interested in land uses in the American West, from their ecological, economic, and cultural perspectives, and believes that conservation science should be an active participant in all three dimensions. A professor of Wildlife Conservation at Colorado State University, he received his graduate degrees from the University of Washington and the University of Wisconsin. While at Wisconsin he was an Aldo Leopold Fellow and conducted his research at Aldo Leopold's farm, living in "The Shack." Before becoming an academic he worked for the Washington Department of Game developing the nongame wildlife program. Presently, he sits on a website number of boards including the Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust, the Quivira Coalition, the Science Board of the Malpai Borderlands Project, the Diablo Trust, and The Nature Conservancy’s Colorado Council. He is on the Board of Editors for both Conservation Biology, and for Ecological Applications, and is a Contributing Editor for Working Ranch magazine. Rick was selected by the Ecological Society of America for the first cohort of Aldo Leopold Leadership Fellows which focus on leadership in the scientific community, communicating with the media, and interacting with the business and corporate sectors. In 2007 Colorado State University honored him with the Board of Governors Excellence in Teaching award. He is a three-time recipient of the students’ choice for Outstanding Faculty Member in the Warner College of Natural Resources. In 2008 he was a recipient of the Colorado Book Award for an anthology.

Steve Laposa
Global Real Estate Research Center
Alavarez & Marsal Real Estate Advisory Services, LLC


Sarah Maisonneuve, Research Coordinator
PhD Candidate, Graduate Degree Program in Ecology
Email: smais@nrel.colostate.edu

My research focuses on working at the interface of human and natural systems. I have extensive experience living and working in East Africa, where my dissertation work has been devoted to predicting and mitigating conflict between humans and elephants outside Ruaha National Park, Tanzania. My aim with my project in Tanzania is to work toward identifying and achieving goals that are compatible with both human development, and natural resource conservation. I am broadly interested in applying knowledge of both the social and physical sciences to improving human livelihoods, and conserving biodiversity.

Jeff Milder
EcoAgriculture Partners and Cornell University
Email: jcm85@cornell.edu

Jeff Milder is an ecologist and land-use planner who has been conducting research on conservation development and its impacts since 2003. Previously, he founded and managed the community planning group at Daylor Consulting Group, a Massachusetts design firm, where he advised developers and communities on land-use planning alternatives. Dr. Milder is currently Director of Strategic Planning and Research at EcoAgriculture Partners and a Visiting Fellow in the Cornell University Department of Natural Resources.

Miranda Mockrin
Rocky Mountain Research Station, US Forest Service
Email: mhmockrin@fs.fed.us

Miranda is a research scientist with the USDA Forest Service, based at the Rocky Mountain Research Station in Fort Collins, CO. She received her PhD in Ecology from Columbia University in New York. Current research focuses on understanding changing natural resource use and management with shifting human sociodemographics, including examining housing development on private lands, changing patterns of wildlife-based recreation (hunting and viewing) on public and private land, and other impacts of the growing wildland-urban interface on resource use and conservation.

DeAna Nasseth
Department of Forest, Rangeland, and Watershed Stewardship, Colorado State University
Email: deana.nasseth@gmail.com

DeAna is a Ph.D. Candidate in Ecology at CSU. Her research and interests focus on the interactions of natural and built environments, regional land use and ecological integrity, and sustainability. She has a B.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences from Texas A&M University and M.S. in Environmental Biology from Baylor University, and has worked in jobs ranging from medical research to  wildland firefighting.  At SoGES, she has been a Scientific Communications Leadership.  She has volunteered extensively in K-12 and natural resource advisory groups, currently as Lead of the Natural Environment Working Group for the Pikes Peak Sustainability Strategic Plan and Peak Alliance for a Sustainable Future. http://www.nrel.colostate.edu/students.html

Josie Plaut
Institute for the Built Environment, Colorado State University
Email: josie.plaut@colostate.edu

Josie Plaut is Director of Projects for the Institute for the Built Environment at Colorado State University where she leads a variety of green building and sustainability projects across the commercial, non-profit and government sectors. In addition to green building consulting, Josie works with companies to develop capacity and create action plans for organizational change toward sustainability. Josie has a degree in Sustainable Enterprise from Fort Lewis College and a Masters of Construction Management with an emphasis in Sustainable Building at Colorado State University.

Andy Seidl
Agriculture and Resource Economics, Colorado State University
Email: andrew.seidl@colostate.edu

Andy Seidl is Head, Global Economics and Environment Programme (GEEP) with the International Union for Conservation of Nature in Gland, Switzerland. Since January 2009, Seidl has been on leave from his post as Professor & Public Policy Specialist at Colorado State University.  His work involves natural resource based economic development.  Andy uses the tools of non-market valuation, cost-benefit analysis, economic policy and community or regional economics to help inform community, regional and national scale economic development decisions involving natural resource management. In particular, his recent research has involved land use planning, agricultural land preservation, recreation and tourism, and some fiscal impact analyses of consumptive (e.g., hunting, mining) and nonconsumptive (e.g., skiing, nature tourism) natural resource based industries and policies.

Dave Theobald
Human Dimensions of Natural Resources, Colorado State University
Email: davet@warnercnr.colostate.edu

Dave is a landscape ecologist interested in understanding patterns of landscape change and their effects on wildlife habitat and biodiversity, especially in the Rocky Mountain west. He received his B.A. and Ph.D. from the Department of Geography, University of Colorado, Boulder, and his M.A. from Department of Geography, University of California, Santa Barbara. Recent projects he has led include leading an natural resource condition assessment of Rocky Mountain National Park, analyzing trade-offs in the effects of proposed planning policies on the sustainability of Ouray County, directing the inventory of open space and protected lands in Colorado (COMaP), developing national forecasts of development patterns that are consistent with climate change scenarios (called Integrated Climate and Land Use Scenarios), and identifying movement through natural landscapes at continental scales.

George Wallace
Human Dimensions of Natural Resources, Colorado State University
Email: george.wallace@colostate.edu

Dr. Wallace is the Director of the Center for Protected Area Management & Training. Protected area management and land use planning are two of his major research interests, as well as devolution and community-based conservation. Dr. Wallace conducts research both in the United States and Latin America. He serves on the Larimer County Planning Commission, and the County Agricultural Advisory Board. He is also a member of the IUCN World Protected Areas Commission.