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Jasper Ridge affiliates and student honored at Organization of Biological Field Stations Annual Meeting

Lysbeth Anderson and John Working accepting the OBFS Mary Hufty Local Hero Award.

Congratulations to John Working, Lysbeth Anderson, and Julien Ueda for awards received from the Organization of Biological Field Stations (OBFS) at the 2021 OBFS Annual Meeting, which took place virtually at Flathead Lake Biological Station in Polson, Montana. 

John and Lysbeth were honored with the OBFS Mary Hufty Local Hero Award, which recognizes “individuals who exemplify the ideals of OBFS and support research, education, and outreach through personal and professional actions, particularly in the areas of biology, conservation, and ecology.”  Their contributions range across two field stations, Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve and Flathead Lake Biological Station in Montana.  John and Lysbeth have not only contributed greatly to past and ongoing work at both Jasper Ridge and Flathead Lake, but also have strengthened the relationship and collaboration between the two field stations.

Both Lysbeth and John have volunteered extensively at both field stations.  John has served as docent at Jasper Ridge for 40 years, where his tours have the reputation of being “legendary.” He helped establish the Jasper Ridge bird transects, an effort that has produced a nearly continuous 40-year data set that continues to this day.  Lysbeth has been an active member of the Flathead Lake Biological Station Advisory board for half a decade, and has been unwavering in her support and providing critical guidance for both Jasper Ridge and Flathead Lake.  At Flathead Lake, Lysbeth and John and their family have literally dipped their hands into more water sampling sites than the rest of their citizen-scientist participants combined (for the Flathead Lake Secchi Dip-in). Both have served in campaign and/or advisory capacities to build support for field stations, including spearheading creation of endowments to support research and education.

“I truly feel it has been my privilege to have various resources and a few brains to enhance the energy of Field Stations where the results of academic research and teaching see a change in the Real World!” Lysbeth said. “I thank you all for your individual contributions to your Stations and for this very special honor.” 

“Words can’t capture the joy I feel for this award,” John added.  “At both field stations, we always have been welcomed, informed, patiently taught, and allowed freedom to roam. I am deeply grateful to you all. I have learned so much. Thank you.”

As the award announcement at OBFS so accurately put it: John’s and Lysbeth’s “passion for the natural world, and their generosity of both spirit and resources will truly inspire future generations of scientists at field stations.  Lysbeth and John are truly Local Heros!”

Julien Ueda was awarded an OBFS Meeting Support Award to participate in the 2021 OBFS meeting. Julien is pursuing a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Science in the Department of Biology. He is a Jasper Ridge docent (class of 2020) and an undergraduate researcher in Rodolfo Dirzo’s research lab studying the long-term bird population trends at Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve.  

He was selected as a recipient of the 2021 OBFS award due to his highly committed work in research and education at Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve. The award gave Julien the opportunity to attend his first-ever OBFS meeting and to network with other OBFS members—experiences that he regards as important steps in his educational journey.  In his own words:

"From some of my favorite classes to bird survey fieldwork and analysis, Jasper Ridge and the dedicated members of its community have welcomed me with open arms and provided countless opportunities for me to advance my career in ecology. At the OBFS conference this week, I am so excited to meet other members of the biological field station community and learn from their work."

And to bring things full circle: it was the long-term bird transect data that OBFS Local Hero Award co-recipient John Working helped initiate that made possible Julien’s studies at Jasper Ridge! 

To learn more about Julien's work, you can watch his Jasper Ridge evening lecture talk and explore his research poster presentation from he 2021 Ecological Society of America