Faculty Advisor

Gretchen Gorecki is the Natural & Cultural Resource Manager at the Virginia Department of Conservation’s Division of State Parks.  She works directly with district resource specialists to implement resource management activities across all 41 state parks in Virginia, including invasive species management, native species and pollinator habitat restoration, prescribed burning, and other beneficial stewardship activities. Gretchen relies on her GIS and mapping skills to provide additional support to these projects. She also supports policy development, conducts regulation and guidance reviews, and promotes recreational and educational access to park visitors. Gretchen was previously an environmental consultant, where she focused on natural resource program management, facility and environmental documentation programs, encroachment strategies, and geospatial analyses primarily for federal clients, including the U.S. Department of Defense. Gretchen completed her MSc in Biodiversity, Wildlife, and Ecosystem Health from the University of Edinburgh. She obtained her BS from the University of Mary Washington, where she double majored in Environmental Science and Geography, and received a GISc Certificate. She is a certified GIS Professional (GISP), completed a National Fellowship with the Environmental Leadership Program, serves on the board of the Friends of Lake Anna State Park, volunteers as a Virginia Master Naturalist, participates as a judge at Virginia regional science fairs, and is a tenor drummer and highland dancer with the UMW Eagle Pipe Band. She is also a Master Hiker after completing Trail Quest by visiting all of the Virginia state parks. Gretchen enjoys outdoor recreation, including hiking, sup-ping, and rock climbing, and spending time at her backyard farm with her five dogs, horse, rabbits, cows, and geese.