Laura McDonald is a rare species – a native of Fairfax County and a witness to the ever-expanding growth and development that has occurred over the past four decades. As the natural resources have dwindled, replaced by asphalt, roof tops and strip malls, her career path has developed and followed her passions; to preserve the unique ecosystem that is Northern Virginia and educate people along the way.

Her interest in nature started early in life when Laura would stand on her tippy toes next to her auntie who patiently watched with her to catch a glimpse of Northern Cardinals and Blue Jays eating seed from a backyard bird feeder. Her appreciation for gardening and nature grew in high school when Laura worked at a local roadside plant stand.

A recent graduate of George Mason University Laura developed a unique curriculum and earned a degree in Urban Ecology. Laura, her husband Regan and constant 4-legged companion, Meli, have enjoyed turning their 108 year home into welcoming habitat for birds and butterflies. She looks forward to returning to GMU in the fall of 2017 to continue her education.