Journalist in Our Midst

Headwaters Chapter certified master naturalist Stephanie Gardner penned a monthly naturalist column for our area’s Daily News-Record’s North Fork Journal and Shenandoah Journal in 2012.

In her words, here’s how Stephanie got started as a columnist:



In autumn of 2011, Lauren Jefferson, then editor of the Daily News-Record’s North Fork Journal and Shenandoah Journal, was looking for a nature writer as a 2012 monthly guest columnist.  She had recently written an article on the Virginia Master Naturalists training course and thought a Master Naturalist might make a good potential guest nature author and photographer.  She also wanted the columnist to be from one of the areas served by her publications.

Rivanna Master Naturalist, Jim Lawson, passed along my name to her as a Virginia Master Naturalist who had recently moved to Bridgewater, Virginia.  I had recently completed Master Naturalist training in Blacksburg, Virginia through the New River Valley chapter and was in Bridgewater as the new Special Collections Librarian at Bridgewater College.  I started writing the column and later was happy to connect with the Headwaters Chapter.  I declined payment for the column and used it toward fulfilling my Virginia Master Naturalist volunteer hours in 2012.

It was great fun to write and research the columns.  Although I am certainly not the most qualified person to write on many of these subjects, I learned a lot and hope the columns sparked interest in citizen science among their readers.

Find links to many of Stephanie’s Adventures of a Citizen Scientist columns in the image captions below.