2019 Conference Speakers

Featured Speakers

Tom Hoctor

Florida Regional Landscape Conservation: Obstacles and Opportunities

This talk will discuss both Florida regional landscape scale conservation analysis, planning, and implementation including opportunities and obstacles. This will include the FEGN, CLIP, the Florida Wildlife Corridor, the Air Force regional partnerships project SECAS, Florida Forever, Rural and Family Lands Protection Program, Rural Land Stewardship Program (Collier County), the Everglades Headwaters Refuge, NRCS easement programs, Sector Planning, proposed highways, climate change/sea level rise, and potential future development. That's a lot to cover but the talk will hit on these subjects quickly as part of a broad obstacles and opportunities discussion regarding landscape scale conservation.

Bio

Tom Hoctor is director of the Center for Landscape Conservation Planning at the University of Florida.  He has an undergraduate degree in History and Science at Harvard University and a Masters and Ph.D. in Conservation Biology and Landscape Ecology from the University of Florida.  Tom’s research interests include the application of landscape ecology and conservation biology to regional planning, wildlife corridor design, wildlife habitat modeling and policy, and GIS applications in conservation planning.  He has served as principal or co-principal investigator on many regional-scale conservation analysis and planning projects in Florida and the U.S. His current projects include the Florida Ecological Greenways Network, the Critical Lands and Waters Identification Project, the Identification of Florida Air Force Installation Conservation Priorities project, and working with the National Wildlife Refuge Association and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Regional Landscape Conservation Design projects in Florida and the Gulf Coast.


Reed Noss

Why is Florida So Rich in Biodiversity?

Florida is the hottest spot within a newly recognized global biodiversity hotspot, the North American Coastal Plain. The incredible biological richness of this region went unrecognized for a long time due to several long-standing myths, for example the mistaken beliefs that the region is geologically young and climatically unstable and the idea that the relatively flat topography precluded development of a diverse flora and fauna. We now know that the Coastal Plain is surpassed only by the California Floristic Province as a center of endemism (number of small-range species) in North America north of Mexico. Florida has the highest concentration of endemic plants in the eastern U.S. and the largest number of ancient plant lineages in all of North America, which suggests a long history. Besides relative climatic stability, which characterizes all global biodiversity hotspots, the Coastal Plain (especially Florida) has been enriched by sea-level fluctuations, which produce opportunities for speciation in isolated populations. Furthermore, several regions, including the Appalachians, West Indies, and western U.S. and Mexico, have contributed species to Florida and the Coastal Plain over time. Finally, the high frequency of fire and other natural disturbances allows many species to coexist by reducing competition.

Bio

Reed Noss is a writer, photographer, lecturer, and consultant in natural history, ecology, and conservation and serves as Chief Science Advisor for the Southeastern Grasslands Initiative and the Endangered Ecosystems Alliance. He was formerly Provost’s Distinguished Research Professor of Biology at the University of Central Florida. He received a B.S. in education from the University of Dayton, an M.S. in ecology from the University of Tennessee, and a Ph.D. in wildlife ecology from the University of Florida. He served as Editor-in-Chief of Conservation Biology, Science Editor for Wild Earth magazine, and President of the Society for Conservation Biology. He is an Elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. His recent research topics include disturbance ecology; road ecology; ecosystem conservation and restoration; and vulnerability of species and ecosystems to sea-level rise. He has more than 300 publications, including eight books. His most recently published books are Forgotten Grasslands of the South: Natural History and Conservation (Island Press, 2013) and Fire Ecology of Florida and the Southeastern Coastal Plain (University Press of Florida, 2018). He is currently working on a book on the endangered ecosystems of North America.


Friday Speakers   (day subject to change)

Jacqui Sulek

Plants for Birds

The Audubon Plants for Birds program is based on Doug Tallamy’s approach to landscaping.  The foundation of an ecosystem is the soil.  The plants have evolved with the soil and the insects with the plants.  95% of birds need protein in the form of insects to raise their young.  In fact a pair of Carolina Chickadees will gather somewhere around 9000 caterpillars to raise one brood.  So while people think of berries and seeds as bird food native plants and  insects are a critical component for attracting birds.  If there are no native plants, no bugs and no bugs, no birds!   This session will focus on how to make your yard bird friendly and use resources such as the Audubon Plants for Birds program.

Bio

Jacqui has had a lifelong love for nature. Growing up in Venezuela it was orchids.  After completing her Fine Arts and Education degree at Middlebury College she changed her focus to plants and began taking classes at the University of Vermont.  She spent 3 years as a Ranger-Naturalist on the top of Vermont’s highest mountain protecting the rare Arctic-Alpine Tundra and illustrated a guide to the mountaintop community. After a decade on the high seas she settled in Ft. Lauderdale where she completed a Landscape Design Degree at Broward Community College.  She has been gardening for birds and butterflies since the 1980’s. Jacqui now lives in Ft. White, FL and her ½ acre yard is 99% Florida Native Plants. Jacqui has been working during the last 13 years for Audubon Florida as the go to person for Florida’s 45 chapters. In her role she promotes the National Audubon Plants for Birds Program.


Robert Knight, PhD

Florida's Springs

Bio

Dr. Knight is an environmental scientist/systems ecologist. He has over 38 years of experience as an aquatic and wetland ecologist in Florida. His doctoral work included an ecological assessment of Silver Springs and Silver River under the direction of Howard T. Odum. He completed assessments of the quantitative basis for establishing a minimum flow regime for protection of water and human-use resource values (WRVs) in Volusia County Blue Spring, a 50-year retrospective study of the ecological health of Silver Springs, the basis for establishing pollutant load reduction goals and WRVs for the Wekiva River and Rock Springs Run, and a comparison of the ecology of twelve of Florida’s artesian springs.


Kings Bay Restoration


Matt Schwartz

Fighting Roads


Susan Carr

Panel Discussion: Working with local land trusts to identify and protect critical native plant habitat

Bio

Susan is a native of Gainesville Florida, where her interest in the natural world began as a child exploring the wild lands of Alachua County. After receiving a B.S. in Botany from the University of Florida, Susan worked as an ecologist before returning to graduate school to earn a master’s degree in plant biology from Louisiana State University. ; After returning to Florida, Susan obtained a Ph.D. in wildlife ecology and conservation from the University of Florida. Her Ph.D. research centered on the ecology and diversity of fire-maintained pinelands in Florida, and it was from this work that she developed an appreciation for Florida’s wildlands and an avid interest in land conservation.>


Marc Hudson

Panel Discussion: Working with local land trusts to identify and protect critical native plant habitat

Bio

Marc is the Land Protection Director of the North Florida Land Trust. He is responsible for overseeing the land trust’s real estate acquisitions, restoration, programmatic partnerships, and geographic information systems (GIS). He also developed and leads the strategic conservation planning services. Prior to his work with NFLT, Marc worked for five years in partnership with the Georgia Land Trust, Alabama Land Trust, and the Chattahoochee Valley Land Trust. He also facilitated farmland preservation for the Genesee Valley Conservancy in upstate New York. Marc earned his Bachelor’s degree in history with a special focus on environmental history from the State University of New York at Geneseo. Marc was a 2016 Kinship Conservation Fellow and a 2017 featured speaker for TEDxJacksonville.


Willy The Losen

Panel Discussion: Working with local land trusts to identify and protect critical native plant habitat


Sammy Tedder

Where Ethnobotany and Ethnomusicology Meet

This presentation is both informative and entertaining using a slide show and musical performances on various instruments made from native plants. Basic musicology terms for classifying musical instruments world wide will be defined and the local native plants used in making instruments from three of the musical instrument classifications: Aerophones, Idiophones and Membranophones will be identified. Mr. Tedder will perform songs from his nature film soundtracks to demonstrate these instruments such as the flute (aerophone) made from river cane, Arundinaria gigantea, the coconut shell rattle (idiophone) which contains seeds from the Canna flaccida plant, drums (membranophone) made from local trees such as swamp tupelo and bald cypress and the Australian didgeridoo (aerophone) made from the pokeweed plant. He will also show examples of other plant based utilitarian items such as river cane baskets and rivercane blow guns with darts fletched with thistle down which have been used by native cultures of the Southeast for centuries.

Bio

Sammy Tedder is a musician, composer, filmmaker, and Florida nature sound recordist who has composed film soundtracks and provided ambient nature sounds for several nature documentaries that have aired nationally and regionally on PBS. The saxophone is his principal instrument but for several years he has been making flutes, rattles and drums from native plants and trees which, along with his nature sound recordings add an organic signature to his soundtrack compositions. Sammy is a member of the Sarracenia Chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society in Wakulla County and enjoys sharing his knowledge of how native plants have been used by indigenous cultures of the Southeast. He has written articles about these instruments for the Palmetto, the Sabal Minor and the Trumpet publications.
River cane article published in Sabal Minor.
Canna lily article published in the Trumpet.


Steve Turnipseed

Native Landscaping in an HOA


Eugene

Panel Discussion: Regional Conservation Impacts of Roads and Road Proposals

Bio

Gene is a Conservation Biologist with a long history of working to conserve natural Florida. As the Environmental Lands Planner for the Southwest Florida Water Management District, he helped identify lands to be protected through the Save Our Rivers, Preservation 2000 and Florida Forever land acquisition programs, and also played the lead role in writing land management and public use plans for the acquired properties.  After 16 years at SWFWMD, he spent 5 years serving as the Conservation Planner for the Florida Chapter of The Nature Conservancy before working for several years as a Wildlife Biologist for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. He is currently self-employed working as a conservation biologist and environmental consultant. Gene has also been actively involved with the Florida Native Plant Society’s Board of Directors, where he has served terms as President and Conservation Chair, and is serving currently as the Policy and Legislation Chair.


Valerie Anderson

Panel Discussion: Regional Conservation Impacts of Roads and Road Proposals

Bio

Valerie Anderson is the Director of Communication for the Florida Native Plant Society and the Policy and Legislation Committee Chair for the Pine Lily Chapter. She got her undergrad from the University of Florida in Horticultural Science and her M.S. from the University of Southern California in Geographic Information Science. She is in the process of preventing a toll road from impacting Split Oak Forest WEA in Orange and Osceola Counties. She loves to bike, swim, and row. She also enjoys fiddling about in her mostly native yard.


Scott Davis

Panel Discussion: Regional Conservation Impacts of Roads and Road Proposals

Bio

Scott Davis is a busy biologist, with ethnobotany and rare plant ecology among his passions.  Stationed at St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, he serves as coordinator for a federal Milkweed-Monarch Conservation Initiative. He is also VP for the Friends of Wakulla Springs, VP for the Florida Wild Mammal Association, and as a committee member for the FWC Great Florida Birding Trail and Black Bear Stakeholders. He is president of the Magnolia (Tallahassee) Chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society, and serves on several FNPS committees. He also owns a native plant nursery and is an officer of a non-profit agency on urban forest conservation.
 


Charles Lee

Panel Discussion: Regional Conservation Impacts of Roads and Road Proposals

Bio

Charles Lee has been employed for 47 years by the Florida Audubon Society & Audubon Florida. He is accomplished in the management of environmentally-oriented non-profit organizations. He is well-known by political figures, government officials, and business leaders throughout Florida.


Gary Knox, PhD

Exploring the biology and ecology of the Florida-Endangered Magnolia anshei (Ashe magnolia)

Bio

Gary Knox is Professor of Environmental Horticulture with the University of Florida at the North Florida Research and Education Center (NFREC) located outside Tallahassee. Dr. Knox’s activities focus on emerging pests and diseases of woody plants as well as promoting sustainable nursery production practices and Integrated Pest Management. In addition, he is leading the development of a botanical garden on the grounds of NFREC to evaluate plants for north Florida. This botanical garden includes the Magnolia Garden, recently named by USDA and APGA as part of the National Collection of Magnolia. Finally, Dr. Knox is immediate past president of Magnolia Society International, an organization with 600 members in 40 countries that promotes conservation and cultivation of Magnolia.


Grace Howell

Land Management Partners Committe Presentation


Wendy Wilbur

The Master Gardener Program


Laura Reynolds

Southeast Florida Chapters Initiative for Community and Policy Advocacy


Saturday Speakers  (day subject to change)

John Lampkin

Bugs in Your Bloomers

Insects and flowering plants have been co-evolving for 135 million years and as a result, both groups have flourished, becoming our most abundant flora and fauna. The relationships are more varied, complex and sophisticated than first meets the eye. So, what is that bug and what is it doing in that flower? Armed with macro lens and thinking cap, John Lampkin has been investigating that question and will share some surprising insights he has documented in this beautiful photographic presentation.

Bio

John Lampkin is an avid citizen naturalist and Nature photographer and was an active member of the Rockland County, New York Audubon Society for many years. Now retired from a music career he is busy exploring and marveling at the Floridian universe with camera in hand. Coincidentally, as a professional composer his woodwind quintet, "Insects: A Musical Entomology in Six Legs" won the Grand Prize in the 2001 Composers Guild international competition. John also constructs crossword puzzles for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and the LA Times and other venues, with many of his puzzles having Nature themes. Except for his fascination with bugs and plants he is totally harmless.


Rosi Mulholland

Panel Discussion: FNPS Assisted Groundcover Restoration on Public Lands & Panel Discussion: Making the transition from poor groundcover management to excellent groundcover management


Jackie Rolly

Panel Discussion: FNPS Assisted Groundcover Restoration on Public Lands & Panel Discussion: Making the transition from poor groundcover management to excellent groundcover management

As a panel member on restoration Jackie will provide insight into her restoration efforts at Oakland Nature Preserve, a 128 acre property of upland and wetland where the upland had been planted in citrus in the early 1900’s then in slash pines after citrus froze in the 1980’s.  Over 15 acres have been restored to Sandhill using various methods of live plants and seeds, with and without irrigation, Problems encountered in the control of invasive exotics, overabundance of pioneer tree species, use of volunteer help, public perception as the Preserve has several hiking trails.

Bio

Jacqueline (Jackie) Rolly is a resident of Seminole County and has been a member of the Tarflower Chapter of Florida Native Plant Society (FNPS) since 1997.  She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business from Chaminade University in Hawaii, and a Master’s Degree in Contracting from Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, FL.  She retired from Government service in 2006 and served as FNPS VP Admin from late 2009 to 2014. Jackie also served as Secretary for the Tarflower Chapter from May 2007 to May 2015.  Although her education is in business, her volunteer work over the past ten years in plant rescue and ecosystem restoration at the Oakland Nature Preserve continues to provide knowledge in the native plant communities and the wildlife that depends on those communities.  Jackie also has holds certification as a Master Naturalist from the University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences and is lead instructor in Orange County. She was recently awarded the Florida Wilderness Society Citizen Conservation Award and was recognized by Sierra Club of Central Florida for Environmental leadership in 2013.  


Wendy Poag

Panel Discussion: FNPS Assisted Groundcover Restoration on Public Lands & Panel Discussion: Making the transition from poor groundcover management to excellent groundcover management


Vince Morris

RCWs and Fire


Linda Duever

Mockernut Hill Botanical Garden & Panel Discussion: Making the transition from poor groundcover management to excellent groundcover management

Bio

Linda Conway Duever was one of FNPS’s founders and founder of the Payne Prairie chapter. She served on the FNPS board for many years and has made numerous presentations at FNPS conferences and chapter meetings. Having traveled from Atlanta to Florida many times as a child, she moved here in 1973, working as a naturalist at Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary, then on the resource inventory for the Big Cypress National Preserve. After managing the National Natural Landmarks review for peninsular Florida, she became the first Plant Ecologist for the Florida Natural Areas Inventory. There, she developed the terrestrial and palustrine aspects of the FNAI Natural Community Classification, mapped the best examples, and wrote a series of Palmetto articles describing these communities and promoting scrub conservation. She produced a series of posters depicting Florida ecosystems (including a swamps illustration that appeared on a Palmetto cover), organized a symposium calling attention to wiregrass ecosystems, and contributed to numerous ecological greenway/corridor conservation efforts. While doing consulting work for virtually every natural resource management agency in Florida, she prepared dozens of resource and floristic inventories and management plans and produced detailed reports on OHV impacts, red oak woods restoration, cogongrass control, salinity tolerances, saw palmetto ecology and the autoecology of numerous rare, invasive, and otherwise noteworthy plant species. Along the way, she has developed special expertise regarding equestrian lands/trails, spoil islands, and bear habitat. Linda still does consulting work through Conway Conservation LLC, but her primary focus now is developing Mockernut Hill Botanical Garden as a training center for management of Florida land trust properties and other small preserves. There, she burns, pulls weeds, plants seeds, and teaches Strategic Vegetation Management (SVM) methods employing understanding of plant ecology in land management. Linda serves on the FNPS Land Management Partners and Conservation committees.  She has invited every FNPS chapter to come to MHBG for a field trip.


Scott Davis

Disappearing Monarchs and the Importance of Florida's Native Milkweeds

Scott Davis is a busy biologist, with ethnobotany and rare plant ecology among his passions.  Stationed at St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, he serves as coordinator for a federal Milkweed-Monarch Conservation Initiative. He is also VP for the Friends of Wakulla Springs, VP for the Florida Wild Mammal Association, and as a committee member for the FWC Great Florida Birding Trail and Black Bear Stakeholders. He is president of the Magnolia (Tallahassee) Chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society, and serves on several FNPS committees. He also owns a native plant nursery and is an officer of a non-profit agency on urban forest conservation.


Edwin Bridges

The Seasonality of Post-Fire Response in Native Pine Savanna Groundcover


Ashley Turner, Stephanie Dunn, or Rebecca Bradley

Professional Native Landscapes


Workshop Leaders