I am pleased to introduce myself, Sara Bandali, as the new Barbara Rice intern in the vegetation program. This internship has been established in memory of Barbara Rice, an avid botanist and CNPS member who was instrumental in surveying the rare and native plants and vegetation of Sea Ranch and the northern California coast. I am a recent graduate from Cal Poly Humboldt (formerly known as HSU), where I earned my B.S. in environmental science and management with a concentration in ecological restoration and environmental planning and policy. As the Barbara Rice Vegetation intern, I work with and coordinate local chapter volunteers supporting the North Coast vegetation sampling with a focus on sensitive natural communities. In my position, I also get to work with CNPS vegetation and rare plant scientists to explore and better understand California's plants and plant communities along the coasts of Humboldt, Del Norte, and Mendocino counties. Since starting this position in July, I have grown massively as a botanist and an ecologist and my knowledge of the plants and plant communities that occur in the North Coast ecoregion has grown exponentially. I have been lucky to work with some amazing botanists to sample rare and sensitive plant communities in some truly amazing places up along the North Coast like Lanphere Dunes, Big Lagoon Fen, the Lost Coast Headlands, Table Bluff, and some incredible state parks like Jedediah Smith, Del Norte Coast Redwoods, Russian River Gulch, and Tolowa Dunes. This position had given me the opportunity to experience a job I dreamed about as a child but always thought was unachievable. One where I get to work with brilliant scientists who are passionate about our natural environment, in places that are so beautiful they seem unreal. I couldn't be more grateful. CNPS has a long history as a place where emerging professionals can work on the big environmental issues facing California today with leaders in the field. I am grateful to the donors who have helped to celebrate the stories of inspiring individuals like Barbara Rice and have given other early career scientists (like myself!) a rare chance to find their own personal missions in the native plant community. A massive thank you to David Rice whose generous donation made this internship possible and for supporting California's next generation of conservation scientists!
Sara Bandali is the new Barbara Rice CNPS Intern! She began working with CNPS in July when she participated in a field training with Teresa and others in the Humboldt Bay Area (see 2022 September-October edition of the Calypso, page 4). Based out of Arcata, Sara came to Mendocino to work with Teresa and others in late August and is looking forward to her next visit in October. More about Sara can be found in the 2022 July-August edition of the Calypso, page 3 in the President's Column. Welcome Sara!
Pinus muricata Rapid Assessment Survey - Albion Claudia Voigt, Sara Bandali, Stevie Jean Photo Credit: Jim Gibson