Well, hello, everyone! My name is Grace and I am the newest staff member at CSNW. I recently moved back to Washington from my home state of Ohio and words can’t describe how excited I am to be here.
My first day at CSNW was in 2017 as an intern with the Central Washington University Primate Behavior program, and it didn’t take long for my intern days to become the highlight of my week. I came to CWU after completing a Bachelor of Science in Anthropology at The Ohio State University (go Bucks!), where it took me a while to find my niche. While I couldn’t decide on a major, I began work as a seasonal keeper at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium. This job presented me the opportunity to work with captive animals and help me discover my passion for great apes. This experience, along with a field school program with Field Projects International in the Peruvian Amazon, had me hooked. During my time at CWU, I studied the effect of sound on the chimpanzees at the Fauna Foundation in Montreal, Canada. As an intern, I lived on site for four months and I still miss hearing the chimpanzees pant-hoot late into the evening.
After graduating from CWU, I decided to continue my graduate education and I moved to York University to pursue a M.A. in Philosophy, as my interests focused on the intersection of captive welfare and ethics. While there, I had the opportunity to spend some time volunteering for Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary north of the city. This was my first time supporting the care of monkeys in sanctuary and I loved it! It gave me the reassurance I needed to know that I was ready to step out of academia and into the world of hands-on caregiving.
I graduated from York right as the pandemic hit and I’m sure my mom would love to tell you about the time I had her drive with me to Toronto and back in eight hours, so I could move my stuff out of my school apartment as the borders were being closed. We made it, though, and I began the search for a career. In the next year and a half I worked a few office jobs, met some amazing people, and got married. When I was offered the opportunity to come back to CSNW, there was no question.
During one of my first days back in Ellensburg, Kelsi told me “Welcome home!“. As someone who struggles to find the right words, this summed up my feelings perfectly. CSNW has always felt like home and I am so thankful to be back.
Honey enjoying the sunshine before the recent surge of winter storms.
Julie O says
Welcome back Grace!
John Joseph O'Brien says
Honey looks so cute, though a tad bit sassy, with her tongue out. 🙂
Linda C says
Well, li’l Dora stuck *hers* out, so Honey didn’t want to be the oddball..
Go Bucks Grace! Ohioan here. Glad you are finding a hone with the crew at CSNW.
Yes she sure does. What a cutie.
Welcome, Grace! It’s good to have you back. As I was scrolling down anticipating your photo there’s Honey looking both adorable and glamorous, if that’s a possible combination. It sounds like you bring wonderful additional depth of experiences to the sanctuary and its human and chimp people. Thanks for the hard work and investment you’ve already put into your work in the world — we all appreciate it! Now we get to find out how fast Jamie wants you to run alongside her!
Cynthia Cavalle says
Nice to meet you, Grace, and glad to have you back!
Welcome (back) Grace. I just know that you’re going to love the best job in the world!
Welcome HOME Grace. All of us, particularly the 16, are thrilled to have you in the “family ” . . as I’m sure are barn kitty and the bovine crew. We look forward to your blogs and your unique views of it all. It’s so cool to get to know the personalities of each human and resident from each blogger’s perspectives and observations. Again, welcome!
Daina Liepa says
It was great to have you at Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary. I know you will enjoy your time at CSNW.
Welcome hope, love, HOME Grace!
Tara McKenney says
Welcome back, Grace!
Dear Grace, as your name says, “effortlessly charm”, welcome! Your addition to the CSNW team feels as though you have found your home to practice all the knowledge you have . Lucky, Cy, & all the group are fortunate to add you to their daily interactions to stimulate their curiosities so they don’t get bored. Wishing you well & hope they don’t overwhelm you too soon. Stay safe.
Linda C says
A second “welcome back!”, Grace! You’re a bit of a drive from Mom now….she’ll have to mail the ketchup chips!
We look forward to seeing your racing style!
Hi Grace, Welcome home!
I’m looking forward to getting to know you through the blog.
I’ll bet Jamie will have a thing or two to say about you being back, She seems really observant about people coming and going….And their shoes.:revolving_hearts:
Hello to you Grace! What an amazing background, academic and hands-on experience. You have lived in Canada and the Peruvian Amazon. Plus you know all the wonderful primates at Fauna too. And now you get to Gator Race with Jamie?! I am incredibly jealous.
Rosalie Allen says
Grace, Glad I will get to read a fellow Buckeye’s adventures with the wonderful chimpanzees and caregivers of CSNW! i live in Cbus and my husband is an alum and I’ve done some grad work-GO BUCKS!
Welcome back!!! You have some great experience and quite the education!! They are lucky to have you! Captive welfare and ethics is near and dear to me and can be a very fine line to walk… enjoy!
Jeani Goodrich says
Welcome home Grace!
Linda C says
Where were you in Perú, Grace?
I think that I saw a photograph of you the other day being subjected to footwear inspection by the Boss. I assume that, posting this message after the fact (Jamie is quite the stickler for correct footwear amongst her employees, as you may have learned), you or at least your work boots passed inspection. Welcome aboard (P.S., Terry is a bit of a flirt).
Welcome home Grace, and I am also looking forward getting to know you, as far as that is possible through this blog….
I loved that picture of a couple of days ago with all you girls captured in action racing with Jamie….Is that you in last position?
And then this photo of Honey Cow; that little hole in her ear as a tiny window for the sun to shine through onto her nose….pretty!
Linda Jean Plampin says
You’re a keeper, Grace! So glad your journeys (and your Mission Impossible 8 hour round trip BC journey with Mom) brought you back to one of the best places on the planet. May The People you care for give you many more pant hoots in the future!