Staff 2018-2019



Dan “Tan Oak” Randrup, Director  
Dan was raised in the San Joaquin Valley and is a fifth generation Californian.  His Great-Great-Grandfather came to the Golden State in 1850. He graduated from Humboldt State University and received his teaching credentials from Fresno State and his Administrative Credentials from Stanislaus State.  This is his 32nd year in education.  He enjoys the outdoors and traveling to places (foreign and domestic) he has always wanted to see.
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Allison "Sorrel" Collins
Principal
Allison is delighted to be the principal of her favorite place on earth, San Joaquin Outdoor Education.  A naturalist at SJOE from 2008-2011, Allison spent time in traditional education in Santa Cruz County before returning to the wonderful world of outdoor education.  She is a native of Monterey County, California and spends her free time exploring YMCA Camp Jones Gulch with her husband and her son, whose nature name is "Bug".  


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Pierce "Willow" Bradner
Evening Director & Senior Naturalist

Pierce grew up in Richmond, VA with a neighborhood full of small creeks, lots of insects, and friends to explore them with. As a child she developed a love for being active outside. She was always either playing soccer or rock hopping on the James River. Every summer she attended a small all girls’ camp in the Appalachian Mountains where her appreciation for nature grew even stronger. She went to college at George Mason University in Virginia where she studied Neuroscience. Here she developed a better understanding of nature’s importance to positive mental health and development. Her life was altered when she spent one summer during college backpacking on the John Muir Trail. It was the first time she had been backpacking and the first time she had been to California and she was blown away. She loves to travel and went on a solo backpacking trip around Europe. She worked with a family in Sweden, at a bed and breakfast in Italy, and on an organic farm in Austria. After college she packed up her things and drove across the country to San Jose to work with Elementary school students in an under-resourced school. She tutored third graders that were struggling in reading and taught fifth graders in the after school program. She spent last summer as an instructor at a summer adventure day camp and took kids ages 6-13 rock climbing, kayaking, paddle boarding, and hiking. She loves exploring new places, long hikes, the mountains, backpacking, coffee, and running. Pierce is incredibly excited to spend this year in the redwood forest and hopes to inspire kids to create their own curiosity and understanding of nature.




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Holly "Squid" Clegg
Evening Director & Senior Naturalist
Born and raised in Santa Cruz, California, Holly grew up on a small farm in the redwood forest with easy access to the ocean. With a dog as an adventure partner, Holly spent her time exploring the mountains around her home, playing with her family’s animals and hiking up creeks. She quickly developed a love of nature and a desire to protect our planet. While studying at Humboldt State University, Holly’s curiosity moved from the land to the sea, leading her to work as a research assistant on various intertidal projects. Holly graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Biology in December 2016. Her passion for science and youth development has led her to work as a naturalist at Camp Ocean Pines, San Joaquin Outdoor Education and Camp Southern Ground. While not on trail, Holly spends her time running, baking, reading and practicing yoga. Holly is so glad to be back in the redwoods once again and looks forward to sharing them with students.
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Michelle "Montaña" Peres
Senior Naturalist
Michelle grew up in the San Joaquin Valley area, where she spent her time at local music shows and star gazing in the vineyards with friends. Slowly exposing herself to the beauty of the great outdoors, she decided to follow her curiosity. She graduated from Fresno State with a B.S in Recreation Administration, emphasis in Adventure Recreation and Tourism. Before joining the SJOE team, Michelle was teaching in various places. In college she was a white water rafting guide on the Kings River. This lead her to work for companies to inspire folks to get outside. She has worked on ropes courses in California and Illinois. She started her joy for teaching in IL. Helping Chicago inner city students rock climb, joining folks on canoe trips in Michigan, and teaching in Malibu. This summer, she spent her time climbing mountains in Juneau, Alaska. Ran on glaciers, went searching for bears, and lots of time on some of the most beautiful mountains. In her spare time, Michelle enjoys surfing, movies, and spending time in a hammock with a good book. Michelle is looking forward to spending time hiking through the redwoods and tide pooling with her students. She is beyond stoked to share this experience with the San Joaquin Valley students.
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Meghan "Sprout" Rondon
Health Clerk & Senior Naturalist
Meghan is from Santa Rosa, CA, where she grew up playing soccer and exploring the local parks’ trail systems by foot and bike.  She developed her love for adventuring from a young age and became more aware and interested in reducing human impact after attending 6th grade science camp in the Marin Headlands.  This is where she first joined the hard core apple club and has been an avid advocate ever since! Since graduating from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo with a degree in Kinesiology, Meghan has worked as a camp counselor in the Tahoe National Forest and as an English teacher at an elementary school near Leon, Spain.  She is super stoked to be back in California this school year, living amongst the Redwoods and banana slugs, and looks forward to sharing these forest gems with the students!
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Corey "Canine" Kaye
Senior Naturalist

Corey is a Senior Naturalist in his second year at SJOE from Philadelphia, PA.  He graduated from Penn State with a degree in Human Development and is an AmeriCorps alum. Corey has since pursued in Outdoor Industry in many forms including time as a white water guide on the Nantahala River in North Carolina, leading kayak tours in the Florida Everglades and Elkhorn Slough, and teaching Outdoor Education and working with children with special needs in Ohio. Corey is most excited for spending peaceful and inspiring moments in the sprawling Redwoods as he learns more about them



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Will "Dogwood" Harmon
Naturalist
Will grew up in Independence, Missouri surrounded by Oak-Hickory forests and muddy rivers. He spent time exploring those forests as a Boy Scout and runner through middle and high school. Towards the end of high school, he discovered his love for the mountains and photography, during a 12-day backpacking trip at Philmont Scout Ranch. He spent 28 days exploring the backcountry of Yellowstone and the Absaroka Range with the National Outdoor Leadership School, where his desire to work as an outdoor educator grew. While attending the University of Missouri, studying Environmental Science, he spent his summers working at Philmont Scout Ranch and at a University-affiliated challenge course. After graduating in May, he fully pursued his desire to work as an outdoor educator, by moving to California. He spent his first summer after graduation as a Wilderness Leader for Camp Tawonga, before beginning work for the year at San Joaquin Outdoor Education. When not looking at Banana Slugs or tidepools with students, he likes to spend his free time running, reading, and taking pictures.
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Cierra "Alpenglow" Carrigan
Naturalist

Cierra was born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska. She grew up spending time with family and friends while climbing mountains and combing the coast. She attended Colorado State University and graduated in May of 2018 with a B.S. in Ecosystem Science and Sustainability. Throughout seeking her degree, she focused her studies on environmental communication. She completed a Scholar’s Program on environmental education and leadership, wrote a thesis on the messaging strategies of environmental campaigns, and worked as a canvasser in the summer. During her time at CSU she was active in sports, and played on the women’s Club Volleyball team. She enjoys spending time with loved ones, playing volleyball, hiking, running, exploring, baking, cooking, and ice skating. Cierra is ecstatic about the opportunity to work for SJCOE. She hopes to help create meaningful experiences in nature, and inspire kids to appreciate what awaits right outside the front door.

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Samuel "Burl" Beeler
Naturalist

Sam is a 1st year Naturalist intern with San Joaquin Outdoor Education.  From Ripon California, Sam attended SJOE as a cabin leader in both Junior and Senior years of high school.  This past May Sam graduated from Humboldt State University with a degree in Environmental Science and Management.  While at HSU Sam was a 20-minute bike ride both to beaches and redwood forests; a very different experience from the Central Valley where most of his outdoor experiences growing up involved walking through almond orchards and cow fields.  Over the summer he worked as a Tour Guide in Redwood National and State Parks where his knowledge of and love for the Sequoia Sempervirens grew.  He hopes to share with his students the importance of these forests, their inhabitants, and ecosystem.  Previous jobs have included Activities Assistant at a Nursing Home, Intern Wilderness Ranger in Stanislaus National Forest, and Tour Guide at Humboldt State University.  When not out on the trail or planning lessons, Sam likes to bake, sing karaoke, watch movies, and go hiking.  Sam is very excited to be returning to Jones Gulch as a Naturalist and wants to help his students have as great and inspiring of a time as he did when he was here as a student.  

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Estela "Quetzal" Suriano
Naturalist

Estela was born in the San Fransisco Bay Area and raised in Stockton California. She Graduated from the University of the Pacific with a Bachelors of science in Psychology. She has worked as an instructional assistant for preschoolers with autism aiding in their social, fine and gross motor skills. Estela has also done work for organizations in Stockton that aim to prevent adolescent substance abuse and proctor coping courses for adults who are dealing with substance abuse. Overall she enjoys helping others and loves to be light hearted. She enjoys exploring and laughing with her students, and loves seeing them take in all their new experiences. Estela is excited for everything new she will experience with the kids on trail— every week, something new.


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Gregory "Turtle" Sosniki 
Naturalist
 
Gregory was born in Delaware. Gregory was raised in Virginia. Gregory graduated from Radford University in 2011 with a Theatre degree and History Minor.  Gregory worked for SCA in the Daniel Boone National Forest in Kentucky as a intern. Gregory worked as a AmeriCorps intern in Indian, Alaska. Gregory was a volunteer at Bridger-Teton National Forest for six months. Gregory was at the Salmon-Challis National Forest in Idaho as a AmeriCorps/SCA  intern. Gregory worked as a AmeriCorps intern at the Great Basin Institute in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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Elizabeth "Fish" Fishman
Naturalist
Elizabeth is a Phoenix, Arizona native who first fell in love with nature through the lens of a camera, capturing the mountains of Phoenix, red rocks of Sedona, and Aspen forest of Flagstaff. A graduate of Haverford College, she studied molecular biology and film photography while playing NCAA lacrosse. During her college years, Elizabeth studied abroad in Australia, and her travels to the Great Barrier Reef were formative in her path to becoming an educator. She loved applying what she was learning in the paleobiology classroom in the real world at the coral reef. Elizabeth joins SJOE after years of tutoring students in the STEM fields and arts. She has worked extensively in neurobiology, development and evolution, and epigenetics labs, where she has conducted research on flies, worms, fish, and mice (but fish have by far been her favourite organism!). Elizabeth is excited to share her love of science, art, and nature with her students and help them make real-world connections to the topics they have learned in the classroom at school.




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Sarah "Goose" Bennett
Naturalist
Sarah was born in Placerville, California where she first fell in love with animals and the movie “Fly Away Home.” Realizing that her struggles in math and science would not be conducive to her dream career as a vet, Sarah took her knack for storytelling and headed to NYU for acting school. After a few years surrounded by the concrete of Manhattan, she decided to take her soul on a break for a few years traveling in lush green places overseas. By the time she went back to finish school at UC Santa Cruz, Sarah was beginning to realize she could combine her love for storytelling with her love for nature. Her job as a kayak guide in the Elkhorn Slough Wildlife Reserve and her participation in the Natural History Field Quarter program at UCSC provided her with a new appreciation for natural sciences and new motivation as a conservation activist. Her goal now is for every student to leave Outdoor School with a stronger relationship to nature, and with the empowerment to continue fostering that relationship throughout their lives.









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