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Mono Lake volunteer spotlight: Charles Gessert

Thursday, September 27th, 2018 by Maureen, Membership Assistant

There are so many ways to help Mono Lake! Recently a member from Minnesota used his particular passion to donate time and resources to Mono Lake.

Dr. Charles Gessert is a lifelong stamp collector and has been a Mono Lake Committee member since 1985. To build his stamp collection, Charles would buy entire collections at auctions. But this led to excess stamps, so a few years ago he started donating the stamps he didn’t need to local charities to (more…)

Mono Lake volunteer spotlight: Joy Costello

Sunday, August 26th, 2018 by Anna, Mono Lake Intern

Originally from San Antonio, Texas, volunteer Joy Costello has found home in the Mono Basin. She moved to Bridgeport in 2013 and discovered Mono Lake soon after: “Mono Lake was one of the coolest things. I knew I wanted to be around it more and learn more about it.”

Joy helping remove invasive white sweet clover in the Mono Basin at a restoration event. Photo by Nigel Bates.

One of her favorite early memories of the lake is when she saw a nest of Great Horned Owls on a canoe tour. She enjoys watching all the animals at the lake, especially the California Gulls eating the alkali flies. As a lover of animals and the environment, becoming a Mono Lake Volunteer was a natural next step for Joy. (more…)

Mono Lake volunteer spotlight: April Sall

Monday, August 20th, 2018 by Anna, Mono Lake Intern

Although new to the Mono Lake Volunteer program, April Sall is no stranger to environmental advocacy. Originally from the California desert, she worked as a biologist for the National Park Service in Joshua Tree National Park before moving to the Eastern Sierra two years ago.

April enjoys spending time outside with her dog. Photo courtesy of the Bodie Hills Conservation Partnership.

She is currently the director of the Bodie Hills Conservation Partnership; a non-profit that works to preserve and protect the Bodie Hills. Her main objective right now is to secure permanent protection for the area that is currently undesignated BLM land and Wilderness Study Areas. April manages and (more…)

Mono Lake volunteer spotlight: Maddog

Sunday, August 12th, 2018 by Anna, Mono Lake Intern

Maddog, spring. She says that making tasks fun is one of the best parts of volunteering. Photo courtesy of Maddog.

If you’ve ever walked down the boardwalk at Mono Lake County Park, or taken a sunset stroll at South Tufa, you have Maddog to thank for the clear trail. A dedicated volunteer since 2011, Maddog has spent many hours tearing out stinging nettle at County Park, repairing the stairs at the Mono Basin Scenic Area Visitor Center, and trimming back the overgrown brush along the trail at South Tufa. “It’s a good way to give back,” she says of her time spent volunteering.

Although born in New York, Maddog moved around a lot in her childhood—spending time in more than eight different states before moving to Hawthorne, Nevada in 2004. She first visited Mono Lake in 2010 and was inspired to become (more…)

Mono Lake volunteer spotlight: Janet “JB” Barth

Friday, August 18th, 2017 by Mono Lake Committee Staff

This post was written by Aviva North, 2017 Mono Lake Intern.

While Mono Lake Volunteer Janet “JB” Barth might be new to living in the Mono Basin, she certainly is not new to volunteering, environmental activism, or her love for the Eastern Sierra.

JB taught in the Napa school system for more than 20 years before retiring and moving to Benton, California. Photo courtesy of JB.

In high school in Napa, California JB participated in a camping and outdoors club and their first-ever outing trip was to Mono Lake around 1970—that’s when she claims, “the first time I saw this place I knew this was where I wanted to be.” (more…)

Mono Lake Volunteer spotlight: Jo Bacon

Wednesday, August 9th, 2017 by Mono Lake Committee Staff

This post was written by Aviva North, 2017 Mono Lake Intern.

“Volunteering has always been a part of my life, ever since I joined Girl Scouts,” says Mono Lake Volunteer Jo Bacon. Part of the original class of volunteers in 2004 and named Volunteer of the Year in 2011, Jo is a stalwart volunteer with a passion for engaging the public and protecting the Mono Basin.

Mono Lake Volunteer Jo Bacon, left, with Volunteer Coordinator Janet Carle. Photo by Rose Catron.

She originally discovered the wonders of the Eastern Sierra in the 1970s on a trip to cross country ski and eventually moved to Mammoth Lakes full-time in 2002 after more than 25 years in Riverside, California. Since her move, Jo has certainly made her mark on the Eastern Sierra community. She served on the Mammoth Lakes Town Council for eight years, including two as mayor, then another two on the planning commission, along with doing interpretive work for the Mammoth Ranger District and some naturalist work in the area.

She was drawn to the Mono Basin originally by (more…)

Mono Lake volunteer spotlight: Cathy Foye

Wednesday, August 2nd, 2017 by Mono Lake Committee Staff

Cathy & Rich Foye, left and center, with fellow Mono Lake Volunteer Rosemarie Willimann. Photo by Bartshe Miller.

This post was written by Aviva North, 2017 Mono Lake Intern.

If you have taken a Saturday canoe tour this summer you will probably recognize our awesome volunteer Cathy Foye, who, every weekend, is prepped with a scope set on an Osprey nest perfectly perched on a tufa tower in Mono Lake.

Born and raised in Southern California, Cathy had actually never explored the Eastern Sierra until her now husband, and fellow volunteer, Rich Foye, took her on vacation. Their favorite parts of visiting were the guided canoe tours and weekly star talks offered during the summer. During their 25 years together in Fullerton they became frequent visitors to the Eastern Sierra, initially attracted to Mammoth Lakes, where they permanently moved to in 2009. (more…)

Volunteer spotlight: Rich Foye

Wednesday, August 15th, 2012 by Mono Lake Committee Staff

This post was written by Lynette Villagomez, 2012 Mono Lake Intern.

Have you ever visited Panum Crater in the Mono Basin? If not, you may want to take advantage of the free Panum Crater walks that are made possible by volunteers such as Rich Foye.

Volunteer Rich Foye, right, leads a Panum Crater tour. Photo by Lynette Villagomez.

Anyone who has spent an afternoon at South Tufa will be familiar with Panum Crater—the youngest volcano in the Mono Craters, which stretches to the southeast of Mono Lake and forms the base of what was once Mono’s shore. Visitors are often shocked to learn that Panum Crater is the result of a volcanic explosion that took place only six hundred years ago, rising up from the basin floor at the same moment that (more…)

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