Outreach administrator for the Louise Kreher Forest Ecology Preserve
School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences
Jennifer Lolley is the outreach administrator for the Louise Kreher Forest Ecology Preserve. She is an Auburn University graduate with a degree in biology. Lolley wears multiple hats: Among her many roles at the preserve, she plans and presents educational programs for children and adults, maintains the grounds, leads hikes and tours, gives informational presentations to schools and clubs, recruits volunteers, maintains the website, and answers community questions about nature and wildlife. In short, she does everything to make the preserve more accessible and engaging for the Auburn community.
1. What in your background prepared you for your role at the Louise Kreher Forest Ecology Preserve?
Looking back, so many things prepared me for my job running the preserve. My parents loved the outdoors. We spent a lot of time hiking, camping and canoeing all over the country. Our family always had a lot of pets including dogs, a cat, a ferret, horses and occasional frogs and snakes. My 12 years as a Girl Scout and leader helped me develop a wide range of outdoor skills and a love for astronomy, but the years I spent working as a teacher and naturalist at Landmark Park in Dothan, Ala., was my best training. The incredible staff there demonstrated how a nature center should run.
2. What do you think is the best kept secret of the Forest Ecology Preserve?
The best kept secret of the preserve would have to be our beautiful little pond and waterfall. You can go there and sit on one of the benches, listen to the frogs and birds, watch the turtles and dragonflies and feel the stress slip away.
3. What do you see as the preserve's role in the Auburn community?
The preserve is an incredible asset to the university and the Auburn community. It serves as an outdoor classroom for students where we can teach the future stewards of our Earth to love, appreciate and take care of it. Last year more than 5,000 students attended classes at the preserve. It also serves as a great place for some rest and relaxation in a beautiful natural setting. Our unique shaded nature playground provides a fun outdoor activity for young families. Interesting environmental education programs are presented each month for the community's enjoyment.
4. What activities do you have on tap for the coming months?
We have some really great programs coming up this fall. The community can come enjoy a program on reptiles and amphibians, hummingbirds or creepy wonderful critters. Our annual 5K trail run, fall hikes and forest friends programs will make the cooler months lots of fun! All of our programs are listed on our website at www.auburn.edu/preserve under upcoming events.
5. What do you love most about your job?
People! I find most of them highly entertaining. I love working with our Auburn University student volunteers and really enjoy teaching people of all ages.