Friendly Staff

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Amanda Bio Pic 2 2018
Joe Bio 1

Mike Maher, Director

Why I Love my Job
Springbrook Nature Center is the perfect place to explore and appreciate the beauty, wonder and science of nature.  As a City of Fridley park, we serve the residents of Fridley through a wide variety of education and recreation opportunities.  Our location also connects us with visitors from throughout Minnesota and across the globe as our park is recognized as a critical habitat and watershed in the Twin Cities metro area.  I sincerely appreciate the opportunity to dedicate my career to the goal of connecting our many visitors and program participants with the natural world. 

Tara Rogness, Interpretive Program Supervisor

Why I love my job:  What could be better than being able to spend time outside with kids?  I feel very lucky to be on staff at Springbrook, it is a warm community of people, and I am very proud of the work that is accomplished here.  

Favorite Nature Quote:
"Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience."  Ralph Waldo Emerson 
Email Tara

Alyssa Kruzel, Community Engagement Specialist
Why I love my job:

I love providing communities with the opportunity to build relationships with other community members through providing a variety of programs and learning opportunities. I am excited to provide a variety of opportunities for community members to come learn, build relationships, and enjoy all the beauty and wonder that Springbrook provides. 

Favorite Nature Joke: 

Q: Why do hummingbirds hum?

A: Because they don’t know the words.

Email Alyssa

Catrina Mujwid-Cole, Administrative Assistant

Why I love my job:
I’ve always thought that there was great value in spending time in nature whether it be for relaxation, exercise or learning. I am happy that I get to help people who come to visit Springbrook Nature Center enjoy their time in the park and I enjoy listening to their stories, sightings and other observations. 

Favorite Quote: 
“It seems to me that the natural world is the greatest source of excitement; the greatest source of visual beauty; the greatest source of intellectual interest. It is the greatest source of so much in life that makes life worth living.” —David Attenborough

Amanda Bixler, Administrative Assistant 

Why I love my job:
Something new and exciting happens at Springbrook every day! From letting our brand-new visitors know what’s fun to explore, to meeting our dedicated volunteers, Springbrook hosts a variety of people who are excited about nature! I love that that nature center holds so many activities, reaching visitors all ages. 

Favorite Quote:
“Unless some like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s Not.”  -The Lorax   

Joe Gavin-Ballanger, Maintenance

Why I love my job:
I love to be able to provide a safe and clean environment for everybody to learn. I also am given a chance to [work] in a beautiful gem that has lots of memories. 

Favorite Jokes:
I just love the wind, it blows me away. 
If the ocean had a personality, it would be salty. 
What do you call a pig that does karate?  Pork Chop