Welcome to Kelly Muller! Our ESLT team is thrilled that Kelly has joined us as our new Land Stewardship Manager.
Kelly comes to us with an impressive background in land restoration and management.
Kelly began working with us in January and is excited to join the ESLT team.
To help you get to know Kelly better, we asked her a few questions about her background and interests:
Tell me about your roots!
I grew up in Colorado in a very outdoorsy family. My parents brought me and my sister on all sorts of adventures- backpacking, rafting, skiing to backcountry huts, and rock climbing. This upbringing cultivated a deep appreciation for the natural world. I enjoyed looking for bugs, flowers, and amphibians, and loved watching and listening to birds. I also loved the ocean and wanted to be a marine biologist. In college, I started out as a marine biology major but realized that the mountains were my true muse.
I graduated from Prescott College in Arizona in 2016 with a B.S. in Environmental Studies with an emphasis in Conservation Biology, and a minor in Wilderness Studies. After graduating I worked seasonally for the National Park Service, starting out on trail crew, working as a biological science technician on backcountry restoration projects for a few seasons, and then as a backcountry ranger in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. During the winter seasons, I worked for California Department of Fish and Wildlife in Bishop on the native fish crew, and for Inyo National Forest in the Wilderness Permit Office. I am currently transitioning out of my latest position with Inyo National Forest as a Wilderness Resource Assistant. Working for so many different land management agencies has given me an appreciation for the collaboration that is required for successful stewardship. I am so happy to have landed with ESLT to continue to contribute towards stewardship of this region.
What brought you to the Eastern Sierra?
I came to the area in 2017 for a backcountry restoration position with Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. I was stationed at the Kern Canyon Ranger Station, and I fell so deeply in love with the High Sierra that I didn’t leave the backcountry for ninety days! Once I emerged from the wilderness, I knew I wanted to be based out of the Eastern Sierra.
What makes you most excited about living in the Eastern Sierra?
My infatuation with the Eastern Sierra can be attributed to the incredible views in all directions, the vastness of undeveloped and protected land, and the amazing access to almost any outdoor activity year-round. I am blown away by the beauty of this place on a daily basis.
What do you look forward to most about working with ESLT in the months to come?
I am looking forward to contributing to conservation efforts in the Eastern Sierra through collaboration with landowners. Land trusts have been on my radar as effective conservation organizations since I first learned about them in college. The Land Stewardship Manager position is my dream job! I am looking forward to meeting members of the community and landowners that are passionate about the protection of vital land in the Eastern Sierra. I am thrilled to be a part of the ESLT team.
What activities do you enjoy outside of work?
My favorite activities vary with the seasons- when there is snow and ice I enjoy backcountry skiing and ice skating on alpine lakes, and when the snow and ice have turned to wildflowers and flowing water I love to backpack, bike, stand-up paddleboard, and garden.
If you see Kelly out and about, please take a moment to thank her for her hard work protecting our wild and working lands!