As a seventh-generation Floridian growing up on the Gulf Coast, a love for Florida’s diverse cultural heritage and natural landscape runs deep in my soul. If you didn’t know where I was as a kid, you’d only have to look to the nearest longleaf pine forest trail, freshly built fort on a beach, or halfway up a large live oak tree, and there you’d find me! It is this love for Old Florida that brought me to degrees in Anthropology, Applied Archaeology from Florida State University (B.S., 2011) and Northern Arizona University (M.A., 2014), and a career spanning the Florida State Historic Preservation Office, the National Park Service, the American Battlefield Trust in Washington, D.C., and now, back to my home state with the Florida Humanities Council (FHC). In the words of Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, “I do not understand how anyone can live without some small place of enchantment to turn to.” And for me, that place is Florida.

Serving as the Grants Coordinator for the Florida Humanities Council, my responsibility is to manage the Community Project Grants program, which redistributes funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities into vibrant and vital local community projects rooted in the humanities. I will be the main point-of-contact for all organizations interested in applying for these grants, and the go-to person for all recipients throughout their grant lifecycle. Additionally, I will be working with my colleagues and thought-leaders across the state to boost the public’s knowledge and awareness of Florida stories, history, heritage, and culture (in other words, humanities!). Moreover, I very much look forward to assessing and improving the grants program to further help local citizens and underrepresented communities amplify their voices. I am thrilled to join the passionate staff at the FHC, and work alongside our partners to shine a light on the Sunshine State’s diverse heritage, one grant at a time!

When not managing all things grants, you could most likely find me in the same places you would when I was a kid – hiking under longleaf pines, kayaking through a mangrove forest, fishing off of Little Gasparilla Island, or diving into the most recent Florida novel (anyone else loving Jack Davis’ The Gulf: The Making of an American Sea??). Although, my tree-climbing days are well behind me!