Angela has a long history with The Nature Institute. She grew up on a property adjacent to the Olin Nature Preserve in Godfrey, IL. She and her neighboring friends used the preserve as a playground of sorts by hiking trails, visiting the waterfalls, and playing flashlight tag in the woods. TNI holds a very special place in her heart.
Before becoming the executive director at TNI, Angela graduated Alton High in 1985. She attended the University of Mississippi where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Finance in 1989. Since then, she has worked in finance for such companies as Talbots, Reebok, and Fox Sports. Angela has a unique mix of professional leadership with business strategy. She has over 20 years of experience in managing a business.
Angela is dedicated to TNI and its members. She is devoted to growing the TNI experience and making it a better place. She believes in a sense of community and is an advocate for the nonprofit. Angela looks forward to continuing on and has several projects she is working towards completion. She is focused on a maintenance stewardship plan to better understand and control invasive species, starting a greenhouse program, working with the education team to increase opportunities in our community, and extending TNI outreach efforts in the Riverbend area.
Timothy Schofield- Stewardship Director
Growing up in rural Greene County gave Tim a deeper appreciation for the outdoors. Most of his uncles were farmers, which allowed him and his cousins to have the free reign to use that property as their playground. Tim’s father was always encouraging him and his brother to explore, fish, and hunt. His mother furthered that thought by telling them to, “Get outside”; although sometimes he feels she had ulterior motives to say that at the time. This environment made it easy to develop a love for the outdoors.
Tim has devoted over 25 years to The Nature Institute and he’s astonished at the growth of the organization. He often thinks about the transition from the days of TNI’s founding members paying for supplies out of their own pockets due to not having the resources to even mow the trails, to today and having the equipment to care for 450 acres, plus having a full staff to further assist in the organization’s mission.
With a degree in geography and history from Western Illinois University, Tim was lucky enough to start working for the Illinois Audubon Society and Mrs. Nelson, TNI camp benefactor and friend, in 1989. As with most stewardship directors, he is a licensed herbicide applicator, Illinois burn manager, and is certified in Illinois to remove venomous snakes. He enjoys all outdoor activities, book collecting, and creating projects on Thursday woodworking nights.
Contact Tim Schofield at: tschofield@TheNatureInstitute.org.
Patricia (Patti) is a Biological Sciences graduate from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville specializing in environmental education. After working for several years with the IL Department of Natural Resources and for the IL Natural History Survey as a Technical Scientist, Patricia (Patti) began working as Volunteer Coordinator for TNI in 2002 and after a year she began working as Education Director.
Since then, TNI has doubled its Discovery Day Camp attendance from only couple of hundred campers to 400 campers attending each year. Patti and her education team provide outdoor programs to students each year through local field trips, creates and conducts home school network monthly series, and presents to numerous local organizations providing information on local plant and animal life.
Patti also facilitates several professional development workshops dedication to educators every year; including the National Projects Curriculum (Project WET, WILD, Aquatic WILD, Flying WILD, Growing up WILD, Project Learning Tree, Prairie School Project), RiverWatch, Leave No Trace, and National Association Interpretation Certified Guide. She is also the past President of Environmental Education Association of IL.
Amy, an Alton native, received her bachelor’s degree in Public Relations through the Speech Communication department of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville in 2011. Upon graduation, she began working for the Alton Regional Convention and Visitors Bureau to assist in promoting tourism to the Riverbend area. Employed with the bureau, she gained experience working with media outlets, municipalities, donors, and the community to promote local sites.
The Nature Institute hired Amy in 2013 to work as Outreach Coordinator to help communicate their mission of preservation and education and then given the new role of Director of Outreach in 2016. She leads efforts through in-print and social media, marketing and grant research, large outreach events such as the Riverbend Earth Day Festival, and inspiring member/donor gifts. Amy often spends her free time practicing yoga, biking, enjoying local music, and exploring the trails in TNI’s preserve. Environmental sustainability and preserving natural resources and ecosystems have always been a passion of Amy’s and she is honored to be advocating for a non-profit that is dedicated to these causes.
Ramona was hired in the summer of 2015 and is very excited to become a part the education team. She received a degree in Biology from McKendree University and has over four years of experience in environmental education. In 2014, she became a Certified Interpretive Guide (CIG) through the National Association of Interpretations. Some places Ramona has interned include the Cincinnati Nature Center in Milford, OH, and the Dunes Learning Center in Chesterton, IN. She also served as a seasonal interpreter at Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site in Collinsville, IL for two seasons.
Ramona loves working as an environmental educator and believes that the best way to save our planet is to instill a love and respect for nature in children and adults of all ages through firsthand experience and exploration.
We are currently looking to fill Senior Camp Staff positions. Think you have what it takes? Check out the application- 2017 Senior Staff Application