Krishun Karau

Growing up in Northeastern Wisconsin Krishun spent her time building forts, catching frogs, and camping in the woods and waters of the Midwest. It’s where she fell in love with the outdoors.  She earned her B.S. in natural resources management, majoring in wildlife ecology from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. After graduating she spent time working on both coasts, in South Carolina teaching the public about low-country ecology and in San Francisco as a restoration technician working on National Park Service lands. Eventually she heard the Blue Ridge mountains calling and moved to Asheville. She spent 5 years working for a non-profit conservation corps, leading crews of young adults and managing ecological restoration projects throughout the Eastern U.S.  Krishun loves to teach others about the ecological, economic, and social values of natural resources and our lands, especially the unique forests of the Southern Appalachians, which is why she is so thrilled to be working for EcoForesters.  In her free time, she loves to travel, play soccer, fly fish, hike while botanizing, and pack in as much snowboarding as she can when the weather allows.”


Jon Shaffer

At an early age Jon gained an appreciation for the outdoors and forested ecosystems through exploring the woods around his home, canoeing and fishing along the Potomac River, and enjoying family camping trips in the Maryland and Virginia mountains. To pursue his goals of forest stewardship and conservation, he obtained a master’s of forestry from the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University. Since that time, Jon has worked extensively in the southern Appalachian region for more than six years, providing consulting forestry services to private landowners and municipalities, as well as being involved in prescribed fire research on state and federal lands. He has comprehensive experience in forest stewardship planning, forest inventory design and implementation, timber sale planning and administration, forest growth modeling, controlled burning, and geospatial analysis. Jon has also become one of a small handful of experts capable of quantifying and verifying carbon offsets from Appalachian forestlands. In addition to starting our New England EcoForestry branch, Jon’s work includes verifying Forest Carbon Offset projects under the California Air Resources Board protocol. Jon recently moved to New Hampshire where he enjoys working in and exploring New England’s forests, fishing, cross country skiing, gardening, hunting, and backpacking and canoeing with his wife and Labrador retriever.

Gabby Hovis

Gabby spent her early life hiking and camping with her family and gained a fond appreciation for the joys of the woods and what it provides. At Western Carolina University, she earned a bachelor’s degree in Natural Resource Conservation and Management and a minor in Biology. Immediately after graduation in 2014 she joined Forest Stewards as an intern and later stayed at Forest Stewards as an AmeriCorps Project Conserve volunteer. Gabby joined EcoForesters in 2016 and continues to enjoy her time here as the GIS and Forestry Associate. In her spare time, she loves reading, traveling, learning new things, and spending time with family and friends.

Lang Hornthal

Lang’s business background and sustainability mindset bring a different lens to our mission of helping private landowners keep their forests healthy. A passionate advocate for forest stewardship, Lang can be found collaborating with partners and seeking opportunities that will help forests be more resilient in the future. He likes to spend his free time with family and friends outside and can usually be found listening to music or watching the Red Sox.

Andy Tait

After exploring the woods for his whole life and 10 years doing on-the-ground research on ecologically beneficial forest stewardship in western North Carolina, Andy has been the EcoForestry Director since EcoForesters’ inception in 2015. Putting to use the best science on southern Appalachian forest stewardship – which he was part of at the US Forest Service’s Southern Research Station in Asheville for 6 years – is his passion. Andy works to advance the practice of forestry from his experience with cutting edge upland hardwood silviculture (how to grow trees, oaks in particular) at the Bent Creek Experimental Forest, and integrated forest health management to conserve, restore, and enhance our forests. Andy has also managed a private forest and worked on numerous natural resource conservation projects in the region since 2005. Previously, Andy taught high school and led youth backpacking trips, hiked half the Appalachian Trail, and bicycled around the country before moving to Asheville with his wife (who is from the area) to follow his true calling: forestry. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking, biking, gardening, and spending as much time as possible with his wife and two little boys. Andy oversees all of EcoForesters’ Southern Appalachian forestry projects, including forest stewardship planning and timber sale administration.