Ellie holding a book by Jane Goodall called "Hope for Animals and Their World"

My name is Ellie, and I created Verdant Adventures to share elements of my life where nature and sustainability intersect with my other interests, in hope of inspiring others.

Although I’ve worn many hats throughout the years, my current roles are conservation ecologist, environmental educator, writer, and artist.

My Background

I started my first blog in 2011 when I moved from my home state of Ohio to study abroad at the University of Birmingham in England. Over the years, I added a few other websites to my repertoire, documenting not only my travels, but my many years as a teacher and administrator, my studies in environmentalism and progress in becoming zero waste, my social rights activism, and my poorly-timed vacation portrait photography business (which started to take off right before travel shut down and I found myself stranded in South Africa for a year in 2020).

The events of 2020 provided a chance for me to reflect and consolidate my past and pending projects into the concept that became Verdant Adventures and set me upon my current path.

Upon my arrival back to the US in 2021, I started to study ecology. Becoming a Floirda Master Naturalist through UF’s FMN program has led to where I am now, researching rare insects and teaching others in various roles, like my position as a manatee educator at a state park or the Science Storytime program I created.

I’ve spent years learning (and continue to learn) many different ways, big and small, that I can be mindful of the footprint that I leave on this planet. From simple swaps to behavior and mindset changes, I’ve managed to simplify my life without sacrificing the things that make my time on this beautiful green planet enjoyable.

All of this is motivated by the connection that I have with nature. I love getting outdoors and observing the natural world in action!

Now my aim is to pass on what I’ve learned (and am still learning!) so that you have the opportunity to start your own verdant adventure.

Beyond my dedication to sustainability, I am a photographer and artist, traveler and storyteller, teacher and lifelong learner, researcher and writer, Star Wars nerd and musical theater addict, plant-based chef and upcycling seamstress, nature lover and entrepreneur.

Although sustainability infuses everything that I do, I believe in building a world where sustainability is the default and doesn’t have to be a niche or a hobby but rather something that governments require, businesses abide by, and individuals are mindful of. I hope you will join me in working toward that goal!