Jim Elleson, Owner. I got my start in restoration at the feet of my grandfather, who worked out of the Wisconsin Conservation Department’s Forest Protection Headquarters in Tomahawk, and my uncles who farmed in western Wisconsin’s Coulee region. I took a detour for a 20-year career as a mechanical engineer, helping people use less energy in homes, offices, and factories. Working on my own land in the town of Vermont led me to a deeper understanding of what it means to take care of the land, and I started taking classes and educating myself to broaden my ecological knowledge. I started Quercus Land Stewardship Services in 2003, and since then we’ve been steadily increasing our land management capabilities. I love seeing the impact that we have on our customers’ properties, and I’m proud of our dedicated, professional crew who make it happen. I especially enjoy getting my grandkids out on the river or primitive camping.
Brittany Pierpont has a Bachelor’s in Environmental Science with an emphasis in Conservation and Resource Management from Carroll University. I have been with Quercus since 2012 and have advanced training in Wildland Fire management. I enjoy working outside restoring Wisconsin’s native ecosystems and seeing the transformation each site goes through and communicating with landowners to discuss their goals and the potential their land has. One of my favorite things is discovering hidden gems like uncommon plants, birds, and incredible rock outcroppings. When I am not in the field or office working, you can find me on the landscape enjoying the Driftless area. Whether it is canoeing, growing veggies, or trail riding my horse Smokey, I am on the landscape looking at what should be burned next.
Nate Humphreys-Loving has been with Quercus since since 2013. I graduated with a Bachelor’s from Carroll University in Environmental Science with an emphasis in Conservation and Resource Management. I am a certified Emergency Medical Technician and have advanced training in Wildland Fire management. I enjoy being outdoors and in nature and am glad to have a job that puts me out there. I really appreciate the way the ecosystems involve many factors and functions and would like to see the world based on such symbyosis and collaboration. At Quercus, I find it very satisfying to help maintain these ecosystems so that each part may flourish. In my free time I enjoy canoeing, bird watching, hunting, gardening, and checking chores off the never-ending list.
Jaya Elleson has been with Quercus since 2004. I am a certified Emergency Medical Technician and first aid trainer, and have a Bachelor’s in Biology and Environmental Studies and have extensive training in Wildland Fire management. I like to canoe, kayak, hike and ski, and want to keep working to preserve natural areas so there are more places to canoe, kayak, hike and ski!
Jake Michaels has worked with Quercus since 2013. I graduated from Carroll University with Nate and Brittany where I received a Bachelor’s degree in Biology. Working with Quercus has afforded me some invaluable experiences and advanced training in Wildland Fire management. I’m grateful to be employed in a field that allows me to direct my passion for Nature into a productive purpose. When I’m not working I spend time outside enjoying the fruits of our daily labor at a slower pace. I also enjoy a variety of water and snow sports, and I’m especially fond of wind-driven activities.
Logan Schendel joined the crew in 2016 and received his Bachelor’s degree in Natural Resource Management from Grand Valley State University. My experience includes 6 years working for the US Forest Service out of Ely, MN. I enjoy working for Quercus because I enjoy hard work outside, running chainsaws, and seeing the transformation the sites go through that we work on. My hobbies include dogsledding, watching baseball, and canoeing.
Jake Pulfer started with Quercus in 2016 and received his Bachelor’s degree in Applied Science from UW-Stout. I have experience working in the conservation field in many locations including Guantanamo Bay, the Florida Keys, and Wisconsin. Ecological restoration speaks to me, because we are helping to reverse the impact that humans as a species have had on our planet. It also allows me to protect the places where I recreate in my free time. I feel as if life would be lesser if I could not enjoy fishing, kayaking, botanizing, hiking, and camping in Wisconsin’s gorgeous landscapes.
Bill Ishmael joined Quercus in 2016 following his retirement from the WI-DNR where he worked for 30 years as a Wildlife Biologist, primarily in SW Wisconsin. I received a Bachelor of Science in Wildlife Ecology (1979) and Master of Science in Wildlife Ecology (1984) from UW-Madison and am a Certified Wildlife Biologist with The Wildlife Society. I have extensive experience in wildlife population ecology, wildlife damage abatement, public lands management, invasive species control, and habitat restoration. I enjoy working in the outdoors with people who share the common goal of restoring and enhancing native vegetation communities that support a diversity of wildlife. When not working with Quercus, you can find me fishing or kayaking (or both) on the waters of southern Wisconsin.
Yasi Rezai joined the Quercus crew in late 2016. I received a Master’s degree in Environmental Conservation from UW-Madison. I love working outside everyday and watching how the restoration projects help increase biodiversity and help native flora flourish. In my free time I enjoy traveling to new places, hiking, running, yoga, and reading.
Jenevieve Hartung joined the crew in late 2016. I graduated from UW-Stevens Point with a Bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Ecology Research & Management and Biology. My passion for the great outdoors started with my farming background and has continued throughout my journey in life. Working for Quercus has allowed me to indulge in diverse activities that promote habitat restoration. In return, I hope to create a sustainable environment for future generations and wildlife to coexist peacefully with the evolving landscape. In my spare time I enjoy fishing, kayaking, gardening, and painting.