Who Are We

Our People

Join Our Team

Are you passionate about Earth Science?   
Concerned on the direction of ESS in your State?

Want to join a community of like-minded teachers & academics advocating for Earth Science?

Do you like being a part of fresh, useful and relevant professional development?

Become a Member           Join our Team!



John-Henry "Scratty" Cottrell

Murrieta, CA

High School ES & Physics Teacher (13 yrs)

Prior Profession:
US Marine Corps - SSgt (select) (10 yrs)

Making jokes at the improper time
Marketing / Art / passion for ESS

Getting the right people together to create wonderful things

All around jack of all trades

HS lead for CA NGSS Rollout PD Development
HS Advisor CA Science Framework

Creating / Curating NESTA's Twitter Account

Architect of NESTA's Restructuring

On a whim, I changed my major from Architecture to Geology.  Since 6th grade I had my own fashion sense of plaid shirts w/ shorts.  I walked into my Mineralogy course & low behold the class was full of like-fashion-minded people... I had found my peeps
While teaching I realized that ESS is not represented strongly and not given the proper respect it deserves.  I want to help change that.

President's Message

NESTA will continue advancing over the next two years; giving equal value & care to NESTA's Three Pillars: Advocacy, Community & Professional Development.
“What makes a useful Teacher’s association in the 21st Century surrounded with social media and free access online?”  Answering that will give strong direction, ensuring NESTA is a community of Earth System Science teachers, for decades to come.  However, it is important that we stay true to our roots, & rightfully honor those who came before us. 
How can we best support & advocate for the new teacher today with cutting-edge expectations, while also honoring our Legacy members, those that have or will soon retire?  Both sets of members are equally important, though due to time & place in life, can offer different strengths.  The young with new ideas & fresh excitement.  The seasoned with sage advice, measured experience & more time to offer assistance.  After all, regardless of age or place in life, we are ties by our Passion for the Earth System Sciences.   NESTA is about bringing together those passionate for the Earth & creating one Community to help & assist each other. The new mixed with the old… it is there that we find balance

Past President

Dr. Rick Jones

Kapolei, HI

University of Hawai'i West O'ahu, Professor Science Education
Science Methods Courses;  ES Content Courses 

Prior Profession: 

7-12 Science Teacher (Retired).

MS-ES, Health, Life Sci, Physical Sci
HS - ES, Bio, Physics    


Favorite: Topographic Mapping & Geologic Mapping Love teaching weather & climate


El Nino/La Nina Research—1998 & 2010 NOAA Teacher-at-Sea 

Global Climate Change Research—2000 "Teacher Experiencing Antarctica at the South Pole" w/  U of Washington &  Idaho

Field Geologist w/ Mercy Corps—Sudan 1986 putting water wells & water utilities for refugee camps

I worked in a gold mine in the late 1970's and discovered a career that, while exploitive in nature, was interesting, exciting, and very profitable. I decided to get a Geology degree and then work in the oil business to make even more money. The economy didn't allow that, I ended up working in environmental geology and groundwater geology and realized that making money wasn't really a goal that made me happy, but to have the ability to provide others a little bit of knowledge about the Earth could go a long way to making the planet a better place. So I went back to school and I have taught "The Earth" ever since.


Missy Holzer, PhD

Somerset, NJ

Science Standards Specialist, Great Minds PBC

Physical Geography Adjunct Professor

Prior Profession:
HS Earth, Space, Environmental Science Teacher (34 yrs)

Learning Sciences - Science Education

Visited all 50 of our wonderful States!

25+ years as a PD providerNJ State Standards efforts;

Teacher at Sea (hydrography GA coast; hydrothermal vents OR; IPEV sediment Chile), Earthwatch Expedition Educator (Jamaica, Sierra Nevadas, Ecuador, Kenya)
PolarTREC Teacher '08 (Svalbard), AMS Maury Project.

 NASA SOFIA Ambassador, HHMI BioInteractive Ambassador, CLEAN Ambassador, AMS Certified Teacher

The world is a wonderful place beckoning our exploration. Go with an open mind & immerse yourself in all its splendor. Then come back & tells us about your experiences! This picture was taking in 2017 during a NESTA sponsored trip to Iceland.

President - Elect

Natalie Macke

Franklin Lakes, NJ
Science Teacher; Chemistry, AP Environmental Science &
various Earth Science electives (21 yrs)

Prior Profession:
Hydrologist (long ago)
Climate Science Education, My NASA Data products


NOAA Teacher at Sea ParticipantRV Oscar Dyson, Dutch Harbor; Participant/grant recipient/authorNOAA Climate Steward Program; International Ocean Discovery Program, School of Rock “Exploring Ocean Cores & Climate Connections” Cape Town, South Africa

Untethered from a multitude of procedures, Earth Science Education focuses on exploration, orientation, and reasoning. An opportunity exists every day to walk out your door and experience a new and unique story about our Earth systems. I love those moments of clarity when students find personal ways to connect to the world in which they live, forging a path to stewardship.

Board Member Representative to the Executive Committee

Kimberley "No-Jo" Norris-Jones

Columbia, SC

ES, Environmental, Chemistry Teacher

(15 years)

Prior Profession:
Army LTC (retired)

ESS advocacy & Beauty/Artistry of Earth


2019 SC ES-Teacher of the Year

Earth is the only rock we have to live on!
We need to understand it in order to take care of it
It is why I have a passion to teach ESS-I want others to want to take care of our Home.


Parker O. Pennington IV

Ann Arbor, MI

NESTA & MESTA Board / E-News Editor / Rock Raffle Specialist (35 yrs)

Prior Profession:
MS, HS, & C. College ES / Environmental (30 yrs)


Leading Summer field conferences

Presented w/ my 9th grade ES teacher (Dave Mastie) at conferences for decades

ES workshops—various levels

MI state supervisor MSO rock, mineral & fossil event (20 years)

My grandfather taught in my district, my dad taught Conservation in my district. Both my brother and I became ES teachers--just seemed like the thing to do.

Board Member Representative to the Executive Committee

Tom Ervin

LeClaire, IA

Grand Old Man of NESTA

Prior Profession:
High School Earth Science (37 yrs, retired)

Wordsmith, Editor skills, Meteorology, Astronomy, Fossils

Past President NESTA (2x)
Past President Iowa Academy of Science
Thomas B. Ervin Distinguished Service Award named
after "me".

My 8th grade science teacher (Mr. Fox) instilled in me a love for earth science, and I attempted to follow his example. Dr. Robert Yager, past president of NSTA, was my mentor and showed me that service within the science education profession was within my reach



Executive Directors

1982-1992 Dr. Harold B. "Stoney" Stonehouse  
 1993-2006 Dr. M. Frank Watt Ireton 
  2006-2015 Dr. Roberta M. Johnson
2015-2020Dr. Carla McAuliffe

 Tenure President
Secretary  Treasurer
1983-1986  Jan Woerner Marilyn Miles  Rod Cranson
1986-1988  Sharon Stroud Carolyn Brockway Rod Cranson
1988-1990  Frank Watt Ireton Len Sharp Rod Cranson
1990-1992  Mike Burton Leslie Gordon  Rod Cranson
1992-1994  Len Sharp Michael Smith Bruce Hall
1994-1996  Linda Knight Michelle Bartlett Bruce Hall
1996-1998 Howard Dimmick Michelle Bartlett  Bruce Hall
1998-2000  Linda Selvig Michelle Bartlett Bruce Hall
2000-2002  Tom Ervin Linda Selvig Bruce Hall
2002-2004 Carl Katsu Linda Selvig Bruce Hall
2004-2006  Tom Ervin Linda Selvig Bruce Hall
 2006-2008  Parker Pennington IV Missy Holzer Bruce Hall
 2008-2010  Dr. Michael J. Passow Missy Holzer  Howard Dimmick
 2010-2012  Ardis Herrold Jenelle Hopkins Howard Dimmick
 2012-2014  Dr. Missy Holzer Jenelle Hopkins  Howard Dimmick
 2014-2016 Dr. Michael J Passow Lisa Alter Howard Dimmick
 2016-2018  Cheryl L.B. Manning Lisa Alter Howard Dimmick
 2018-2020  Belinda Jacobs Dr. Missy Holzer Howard Dimmick
 2020-2022  Dr. Richard Jones Dr. Missy Holzer Howard Dimmick / Parker Pennington IV
 2022-2024 John-Henry Cottrell  Dr. Missy Holzer Parker Pennington IV

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