Staff

Lenore Eggleston Herbst, Executive Director

lenore@woodcocknaturecenter.org

Sarah Breznen, Director of Education

sbreznen@woodcocknaturecenter.org

Jennifer Bradshaw
Early Childhood Education Coordinator, Educator, Birds of Prey

jbradshaw@woodcocknaturecenter.org

Sam NunesEducator, After School, Scouts

snunes@woodcocknaturecenter.org

Jeanne YoungOffice Manager

jyoung@woodcocknaturecenter.org

Rachel Rogers, Field Trip Educator

Allegra JacobsAnimal Care

Melissa LukasBirthday Party Educator

Board of Directors

Jana Hogan, President

Geri Clark, Secretary

David Tatge, Treasurer

Pete Campbell
James Osborn

Ron Rucolas

Lindsay Sheehy

Richard Vail 

Andy Williams

Advisory Board

Michael J. Rubbo, Ph.D., Program and Science Advisor

Raina Schunk, DVM, Veterinary Advisor 

Lenore Eggleston Herbst: Executive Director​

 

With more than twenty years of experience managing non-for- profit arts organizations, Lenore is thrilled to focus her skills on her passion for wildlife and the environment by managing the general operations, fundraising and marketing for Woodcock. Her previous experience includes twelve years as director of marketing and development for the Westchester Philharmonic, fundraising for Ballet Tech (New York City’s only tuition-free public school for dance), as well as marketing and fundraising for the Kaufman Center in New York, which operates a community arts school, a K-12 public school for gifted music students, and the renowned Merkin Concert Hall. Lenore has been a guest speaker at Pace University and Manhattanville College and is a regular classroom speaker at NYU on marketing and public relations in the arts sector. Lenore holds a B.A. in Dance and Psychology from Connecticut College and an M.A. in Performing Arts Administration from NYU.

 

Lenore has lent her expertise to the Norwalk Symphony Orchestra and served on the board of directors at Woodcock before becoming its executive director in 2018. A resident of Wilton, Lenore lives with her husband and two young boys, rescue cats Boots and Sophie, and a coonhound rescue puppy named Darwin.

Sarah Breznen: Director of Education 

 

Sarah has been with WNC since 2009 after graduating from SUNY Purchase with a degree in Environmental Studies and a minor in Fine Arts. She has always been interested in the influence of art in environmental awareness and the importance of art in reconnecting individuals to the outdoors.  Before joining WNC, Sarah was active in many research and volunteer programs, both local and abroad. She has studied the invasive Asian shore crab along Long Island Sound, has traveled to Croatia helping to reintroduce the endangered Eurasion Griffon vulture along the Adriatic Sea, and spent time on the northern coast of Scotland researching bottlenose dolphins.

 

At WNC, Sarah researches, develops, and teaches field trips and educational programs during the school year. During the summer, she is the Summer Camp Director, hiring and mentoring the camp counselors, and coordinating the curriculum that sets WNC apart from local camps. She lives in Norwalk with her rescue cat, Melvin. 

Jennifer Bradshaw: Early Childhood Education Coordinator, Educator, Birds of Prey 

Jennifer has been visiting the center since she was five years old. She would come to the center with her father to hike and look for snakes and frogs. Many years later she began volunteering at WNC as an animal care volunteer. In October of 2013 she was offered a position on staff- and could not have been happier. Jennifer wears many hats at the center including teaching our wildly popular "Mommy, Me and the Natural World" program that she created and all other preschool aged children's programming. In addition she oversees all the center's resident animals and works closely with our birds of prey. During the summer months she serves as the Assistant Camp Director who also manages our CIT Program.

 

Jennifer is very involved with several advocacy and association committee's- both town and statewide . She is on the Wilton Youth Council's "Free Play Task Force" Committee and is the President of the CT Chapter of the Eastern Region Association of Forest and Nature Schools. In 2018, she became a certified Play-Maker whose job it is to spread the power of optimism to children who need it. Jennifer was awarded the 2019 Excellence in Environmental Stewardship Award given by the COEEA organization and now is an active Board Member of that Organization. This award is a testament to her hard-work and dedication to environmental education. Jennifer lives in Ridgefield with her husband and their son Jase.

Sam Nunes: Educator

Sam developed an appreciation for nature at a young age. Originally interested in Marine Biology, Sam decided to major in Biology at Roger Williams University to broaden the scope of what he could learn about the natural world. There he gained experience working with Cuttlefish and Octopus in their wet lab. He also worked on an Oyster farm for two years researching effective growing methods. Sam has worked with various bird, reptile, and rodent species, including a groundhog and spent time socializing a barred owl for educational programs.  His teaching experience includes programs for elementary through high school students, and lifeguard classes and swim lessons as an Instructor through the Red Cross.

Sam always enjoys learning how interconnected the environment is and how much we all depend upon each other. He loves finding clues in nature to learn about his surroundings and orient himself. He always tries to learn new things and share what he knows. Sam strives to help people understand and appreciate what we have to offer and gain from the natural world.

Rachel Rogers: Field Trip Educator

 

With more than 15 years of experience as an educator and public program coordinator in Hartford museums including The Mark Twain House & Museum and the Connecticut Historical Society, educator Rachel Rogers is comfortable with everything from guiding tour groups and developing programs to planning lectures, fundraisers, and symposia featuring national figures. At Woodcock she plays a key role in running and planning field trip programs for the thousands of local school children who visit each year.  Rachel has lived in Ridgefield since 2009 and discovered Woodcock Nature Center shortly after while visiting with her husband and two children. In her free time, she enjoys reading, baking, and hiking with her family. With fond memories of digging for worms, searching for salamanders, and exploring for lady slippers, she is delighted to share that her teaching at Woodcock reminds her of many happy childhood days growing up in central Connecticut.

Jeanne Young: Office Manager

 

Jeanne brings with her to this role many years of administrative management experience as well as a deep love and reverence for nature. Jeanne works tirelessly to ensure the Woodcock Nature Center runs as smoothly as possible throughout the year. During Summer Camp she is the Camp Registrar and Director of First Aid. Seasonally she handles registration for all of WNC's events. She was born in Stamford, CT, grew up in Ridgefield, and has lived and worked in the greater area since then.

Allegra Jacobs: Animal Care 

 

Allegra has been one with animals her entire life and enjoys learning about and working with all corners of the animal kingdom. She holds a bachelors in psychology and a masters in anthrozoology and hopes for a future career in animal assisted therapy, animal communication, and spiritual mediumship. Allegra works hard to maintain the daily care and cleaning of Woodcock’s animal collection and loves each one of the animals as if they were her own. She shares her home with Ron Weasley, a Syrian Hamster, Pixie, an African Bullfrog, Ollivander, the Crested Gecko, and Inca, a Leopard Gecko (and WNC former resident!)  Find her at the nature center one afternoon and tell her hello!

Melissa Lukas: Birthday Party Educator

 

Melissa has been a birthday party educator at Woodcock for 5 years. Melissa works full time in an office during the week. Being in nature and working with the kids at the parties she leads on the weekends energizes her. Melissa grew up in Norwalk, CT and returned to the area after college. She currently lives in Redding.

Michael J. Rubbo, Ph.D.: Program and Science Advisor

Clinical Professor of Environmental Studies and Science

Department of Environmental Studies and Science, Pace University, Pleasantville, NY

​Mike Rubbo brings a wealth of experience in education, deep knowledge of science and great enthusiasm to WNC.  Mike formerly served as Woodcock's Executive Director. He also served as the Director of Conservation Science at Teatown Lake Reservation in Westchester County, NY where he oversaw the management of Teatown’s 875-acre preserve and directed its scientific research program. Mike received his Ph.D. in Biology from The Pennsylvania State University in 2004, his M.S. in Biology from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in 2000 and his B.S. from the SUNY- College of Environmental Science and Forestry in 1995. He also held a post-doctoral appointment at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. His research has focused on the ecology of ecosystems in suburban landscapes. He has authored numerous articles on ecology and conservation in international scientific journals as well as in the popular press.

Raina Schunk, DVM: Veterinary Advisor

Dr. Raina Schunk is Woodcock Nature Center’s Veterinary Advisor. She received her undergraduate degree in Animal Sciences as well as her veterinary education from Cornell University. Dr. Schunk pursued special training in the care of birds and exotic pets through programs such as the Cornell Raptor Program, Swanson Wildlife Health Center, and the Zoo and Wildlife Society.  She also participated in a service trip to Honduras with her peers to provide medical care to macaws and other exotic animals in sanctuaries. After veterinary school, Dr. Schunk pursued specialized training in the medical and surgical care of birds and exotic animals in the form of a one-year internship and two-year residency program. When not at WNC, Dr. Schunk can be found at the South Wilton Veterinary Group, where she sees all manner of exotic pets and wildlife (and even the occasional dog or cat!).

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Woodcock Nature Center

56 Deer Run Road, Wilton, CT 06897

P (203) 762-7280

F (203) 834-0062

wnc@woodcocknaturecenter.org

Our mission is to connect people to the habitats, plants and animals of Southwestern CT through programs that build awareness, nurture understanding, and advance conservation. 

© Woodcock Nature Center 2019