Volunteers Community Partners


Andrea Locke, WNY PRISM Coordinator

Andrea Locke, Coordinator

Andrea Locke – Coordinator

Andrea Locke started as WNY PRISM Coordinator in January 2014, as the first full-time employee of WNY PRISM. Prior to working for WNY PRISM, Andrea worked for The Nature Conservancy, on a large scale, high diversity prairie restoration in Northwest Indiana and for Huron Pines in northern Michigan, where she coordinated a partnership network focused on working with private landowners in order to help implement stewardship on their lands.

Contact:  [email protected]


Lucy Nuessle, Project Manager

Lucy Nuessle, Project Manager

Lucy Nuessle – Project Manager

Lucy Nuessle was welcomed back to WNY PRISM as our new Projects Manager in 2017, after spending a summer with us as one of our Invasive Species Management Assistants in 2015. Prior to returning, Lucy spent a number of years working in the nursery and agricultural fields, as well as the conservation field where she previously worked as a Naturalist Intern at Reinstein Woods and a DEC Giant Hogweed Crew Member. Lucy graduated from University at Buffalo in 2012 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Chemistry and Social Sciences.

Contact:  [email protected]


Brittany Hernon Project Manager

Brittany Hernon – Great Lakes Slender False Brome Working Group Project Manager

Brittany Hernon started with WNY PRISM in November 2017. Prior to working with WNY PRISM Brittany worked on invasive species surveys in the Adirondacks and Long Island and species distribution modeling as a graduate student at Stony Brook University. She also worked on hummingbird surveys and nectar studies with the Hummingbird Monitoring Network in Patagonia, Arizona and enjoys volunteering at Reinstein Woods. Brittany completed her undergraduate work at SUNY at Geneseo and received her M.A. in Biological Sciences and Applied Ecology from SUNY at Stony Brook.

Contact:  [email protected]


Dr. Christopher Pennuto, Director

Dr. Christopher Pennuto, Director

Dr. Christopher Pennuto – Director

Dr. Christopher Pennuto is a professor of biology with SUNY Buffalo State and Director of WNY PRISM. He has had a 20-year career in aquatic ecology and invasive species research with 30 publications and nearly $3 million in external funding. Chris is passionate about stream ecosystem functioning and loves doing insect identifications.

Contact:  [email protected]



2017 WNY PRISM Seasonal Crew

WNY PRISM 2017 Summer Crew - Nick Ransbury, Heather Zimba and Kevin Sanders. Photo by WNY PRISM

WNY PRISM 2017 Summer Crew – Nick Ransbury, Heather Zimba and Kevin Sanders. Photo by WNY PRISM

Education and Outreach Assistant

Nick Ransbury graduated from SUNY Oswego in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in Global Studies with a concentration in Sustainability. He has previously volunteered for the Rice Creek Field Station in Oswego, NY, managing volunteers to control invasive species. He was also an administrative assistant for NYSERDA (New York State Energy Research and Development Authority).

Invasive Species Management Assistants

Heather Zimba is a recent graduate from SUNY JCC, with an associate’s degree in Environmental Science.  Last summer, Heather interned as a crew leader for the Project Wild America summer program at the Roger Tory Peterson Institute.  As part of that program Heather had the opportunity to document and map various invasive species in Jamestown, NY.  This inspired Heather to learn more about invasive species in New York, and as part of her coursework this last spring, she completed an invasive species internship with a focus on Emerald Ash Borer and Hemlock Woolly Adelgid.  Heather is excited to work with WNY PRISM this summer, and then continue her education this fall, when she attends SUNY Environmental Science and Forestry to obtain a bachelor’s in Wildlife Science.

Kevin Sanders graduated in 2016 from the University at Buffalo with a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Geoscience, and then began his professional career by working for the NYS Parks Service doing Aquatic Invasive Species management. Now employed at the WNY PRISM office as an Invasive Species Management Assistant, he is excited to switch to helping facilitate terrestrial control of invasive species. While not working outside, he also enjoys living it through hiking, camping or simply reading in a hammock


Please help welcome our 2017 Summer Crew!