Meet Sandy Sonnichsen
Sandy worked as a fishery biologist with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game for more than 20 years doing all sorts of things. She worked at a fish hatchery analyzing the impacts of a proposed hydroelectric plant. She worked on a project where she wrote fish species life history and habitat requirements documents and mapped fish distribution for the whole state. She has done data analysis, report writing, project design and review, training, public relations, education...you name it.
When Sandy retired, she moved to New Hampshire and started working at area libraries and volunteering with local organizations. She currently lives in Goshen and is the chair of the Goshen Conservation Commission, a member of the Goshen Historical Society and a lifetime member of the American Fisheries Society. She volunteers at the Newport, Richards Free Library, and for Trout Unlimited on a stream survey project in the Warner River watershed. She is a trained educator with New Hampshire Fish and Game's Trout in the Classroom program and has all the equipment for this program.
As a volunteer for the Sullivan County Conservation District, Sandy has helped collect macro-invertebrates in the county ponds with an undergraduate student from Colby-Sawyer college. She has used the stream table to demonstrate to over 150 5th graders how rivers change over time at Lake Sunapee Protective Association's Watershed Discovery Day. And Sandy demonstrated the stream table and shared her knowledge and experience about natural resources careers with over 200 area high school and middle school students at the Career Fair held at the Sugar River Valley Regional Technical Center in Claremont this week.
Sandy is a great educator that shows passion for the natural world, especially aquatic ecosystems, and likes to tell stories. We are very thankful for the hours she commits to conservation work and education with the Conservation District.
When asked what Sandy likes best about volunteering, she said "I love the Conservation District because [they] are easy to work with and never ask for too much of me. It is great to find a organization that can use my time and skills, but will not immediately ask me to be in charge or take on a bunch of stuff that nobody else wants to do! It is great to be outside and it is really fun and funny to help with programs for kids."
We can always use more dedicated volunteers. Please contact us if you want to help with conservation efforts in Sullivan County. Whatever your skill set, we can use them!