John Myers has been executive director of Indian Creek Nature Center in Cedar Rapids, Iowa since May 2013. Working with the organization’s board of directors, John leads the strategic planning and growth of the organization ensuring that its vision to create champions of nature is achieved. John believes that Indian Creek Nature Center can and should be a leader in the outdoor field by championing new and innovative initiatives that make substantive change.
Jean Wiedenheft started as a volunteer at the Nature Center, helping with scout workshops and spreading wood chips on the trails. She’s been a full-time employee since 2001, sharing her enthusiasm for nature with volunteers and visitors. She enjoys horseback riding, beekeeping and walking in the woods.
Sarah Halbrook joined the staff of the Indian Creek Nature Center in 2017 after several years of service as a board member and Development Committee Chair. Her service to the organization led to a desire to work daily toward the mission of creating champions of nature. Prior to joining Indian Creek Nature Center Sarah worked for Cedar Rapids Bank & Trust and United Way of East Central Iowa. An avid follower of politics and public policy, she has also volunteered and worked for many local and state level Iowa politicians and grassroots organizations.
Kelli is an Iowa native, raised in northeast Iowa and living in Linn County for the last 15 years. She and her husband, John, reside near Mount Vernon and are in the final stages of building their dream home – a small log cabin in the woods.
Adriane joined the Indian Creek Nature Center team in 2018. She supports our teams as we continue to create champions of nature. After leaving the Midwest for a few years, Adriane was reminded of its natural beauty when she moved to Iowa in 2015. She has since become an Iowa Master Naturalist and regularly volunteers with Bur Oak Land Trust in Iowa City. Prior to coming to Indian Creek Nature Center, Adriane was the Financial Health & Wellness Director and Horizons, A Family Service Alliance. She is also an active member of Junior League of Cedar Rapids. In her free time, Adriane enjoys staying active outdoors and playing board games with friends.
Liz Zabel, a Minnesota native and Iowa State University graduate, joined the Nature Center staff in 2018. She is a former journalist turned marketing whiz and a photographer, videographer and all-around storyteller. Liz cares deeply about protecting our planet and is proud to promote Indian Creek’s mission to create #championsofnature every day. When she’s not working, Liz enjoys spending time with her husband, fur-children (a dog and two cats) and friends; getting outdoors as often as possible by gardening, camping, hiking, paddling and generally exploring. She also caught the wanderlust bug and loves to travel every chance she gets — let her know where she should go next!
Jane Schlegel grew up in a large family on a farm near Ryan where she learned to appreciate and be a good steward of the land and resources from her parents. Joining the team at the Indian Creek Nature Center gives her an opportunity to help others foster that same appreciation and connection with our natural resources. Prior to the Nature Center, Jane graduated from UNI, was successful in the business world, working at KCRG and most recently as a financial advisor. She gives her time to her church, Rotary West, Chamber Ambassadors and various other non-profit organizations. She has lived in Cedar Rapids for over 25 years and enjoys baking, reading, golfing, camping, playing board games and cards, and spending time with her husband, Scott, and children, Katie and Matt.
Jason Bies grew up in rural western Michigan and received a B.S. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Michigan. He joined Indian Creek Nature Center in 2017 after settling in Iowa City in 2016. Look for him while you’re out on the trails, where he’ll be controlling invasive species and keeping the grounds in good order. In his spare time he enjoys reading, spending time with his family, and all manner of outdoor activities — canoeing, camping, and mushrooming being among his favorites!
Rachel Bailey was born and raised in Cedar Rapids. She received an English degree from Mount Mercy University and has a background in marketing and nonprofit work. Rachel is eager to connect with community members and foster a love for nature and preservation. In her spare time, she enjoys camping with family, baking, gardening, and spending time with her husband and two golden doodles.
Sarah grew up on a farm in central Illinois raising sheep. She received her B.A. from Monmouth College and her Masters from Kansas State University. After spending 18 years in Student Affairs in the Higher Education setting, Sarah joined the Indian Creek Nature Center in August 2018. She enjoys traveling, bike riding and reading a good book.
Dana Wood grew up in Center Point, Iowa. After college, she spent several years at Weddings, Etc. working as a seamstress. A career change made her Administrative Assistant at Global Crossing where she stayed until becoming Office Manager at Indian Creek Nature Center in 2002. Dana enjoys volunteering and coaching at her children’s school, sewing, swimming and camping.
A native of southern New Jersey, Nancy moved with her family to Cedar Rapids in 1970. She has two bachelor’s degrees, received 14 years apart, in vastly different fields: business administration with an English minor; and biology and general science. Nancy joined the Nature Center staff in 2000 and her responsibilities involve all aspects of fundraising, overseeing memberships, and managing the donor database. Nancy enjoys exploring nature on foot with her husband and their enthusiastic dog.
Andria Cossolotto, a graduate of the University of Northern Iowa, came to Indian Creek Nature Center in May of 2016 having previously been a naturalist in western Iowa. As a Naturalist at ICNC, Andria leads school field trips and camps, helping to instill the love of nature in future generations. In her spare time, Andria works to help improve pollinator habitats and enjoys getting outdoors with her husband and two children whenever possible.
Emily Roediger is originally from Rochester, Minnesota. She graduated from Gustavus Adolphus College with majors in Biology and Environmental Studies and minors in Geology and Music, and has an environmental education graduate certificate from Hamline University. She has over 4 years of experience with multiple environmental education organizations, and is excited to be at Indian Creek! Emily enjoys being outside whether she’s hiking and exploring new places, camping, playing tennis, bike riding, or even just sitting!
Zachary D’Amico grew up in his grandfather’s garden. Running amongst the grapevines and giant zucchini, catching snakes and encouraging worms instilled within him a love for all things natural. Harvesting heirloom romas and garlic bulbs for his grandmother to transform into sauce gained him appreciation for the work it takes to put a meal on a table. He takes this passion for the natural world and appreciation of agriculture to Etzel Sugar Grove Farm, where he looks forward to practicing sustainable farming methods, in the likeness of nature.
Barb retired from teaching at the Anamosa State Penitentiary in December of 2015, and was hired as a Guest Services Associate shortly thereafter. She’s been a teacher all her professional life, and continues in this endeavor as she shares the wonders of the Amazing Space with guests. She lived in cities all her life, so had limited outdoor experiences, but these days she encounters nature in the gardens she’s created in her front and back yards.
Kileen was born in Maryland and has lived in Colorado and California for a brief time but has lived most of her life in Cedar Rapids. She attended Kirkwood Community College and graduated with a Parks and Natural Resources degree in 2016. She is passionate about the health of our planet and is always finding new ways to reduce her footprint on it. She enjoys kayaking and camping with friends, exploring natural areas and parks, reading just about anything, avidly journaling, playing music, and spending time with her leopard gecko.
Kathryn is a native of the dry mountains of northern Utah. Growing up, she spent as much time as possible outside climbing trees, gardening and exploring the wonders of nature. Instilled with a love and respect for the environment, she later completed a BS in Landscape Design, focusing on sustainable landscaping and a masters in Horticulture. As a new resident of Iowa, she is excited to expand her skills and knowledge of the natural world to help create Champions of Nature at ICNC. In her spare time she continues to enjoy hiking and gardening with her husband, as well as, cooking gourmet meals and baking.
A Cedar Rapids native, David has been volunteering at the Indian Creek Nature Center ever since his high school internship in 2001. He graduated from Upper Iowa University in 2007 with a degree in conservation. Outside of the Nature Center, he stays busy with the Five Seasons Ski Team and the Eastern Iowa Circus.
Ryan Murphy | President
Senior Vice President of Sales & Marketing, Marion Process Solutions
Brooke Fitzgerald | Past President
Top Chickadee, The Early Bird Café and Commercial Realtor, Skogman Realty
Jen Welton | Secretary
Vice President of Commercial Banking, Great Western Bank
Travis Fell | Treasurer
Partner, RSM US LLP
Terry Strait | Member
Retired Associate Principal, Jefferson High School
President/Partner, Mediaquest Outdoor
Vice President for Advancement, Coe College
Account Executive, TEKsystems
President & CEO, Acumen
Sustainability Manager, Frontier Co-op
Attorney & Mediator, Lynch Dallas PC
Veenstra & Kimm Engineering and Co-owner, Sustainable Landscape Solutions
Manager, Alliant Energy
Allan Custom Homes
Retired Mercy Medical Center Foundation
President, Kings Material
Vice President, Investments, Cedar Rapids Bank and Trust