Big River Connectivity Coexistence Coordinator
Kelly Borgmann grew up on a historic farm in rural east-central Indiana. Spending her days playing in the woods and taking care of the land gave her a deep appreciation of nature while participating in 4-H and FFA taught her how to be a productive member of rural and agricultural communities.
Following her passion for wild nature, Kelly earned an undergraduate degree in Wildlife Biology from Ball State University. She then spent the next several years traveling and learning about human connections to nature in myriad contexts. She has spent time working as a field guide in South Africa, a human-manatee interactions researcher for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Florida, a National Park Service cowgirl in Montana, and a conservation educator in Ohio. Through all these adventures she maintained and grew her love of coexistence and connecting people to nature.
See Heartland Rewilding: Big River Connectivity for more information on the work Kelly is part of in the Mississippi River Watershed.
Deciding to deepen her knowledge of human-nature interactions, Kelly entered a dual degree program to obtain a Masters of Public Affairs and a Masters of Science in Environmental Science from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University. Her focus has been on reducing conflict at the rural-wildland interface and building proactive coexistence programs. In her role as Big River Connectivity Coexistence Coordinator, Kelly promotes compassionate coexistence and rewilding landscapes across the Midwest.
When not working to create a better world for all life, Kelly can be found hiking with her dog, reading a good book, or exploring the world through art and photography.