I became a budding geomorphologist (before I knew the meaning of the word) when trekking in Patagonia, South America. The intriguing landscapes inspired me to understand why they looked the way they did. Previously, I had studied marine science, environmental science, ecology, soil science, specialised in soil chemistry and then worked in soil science and natural resource management for over a decade in public and private sectors. But none of these really enabled me to ‘read the landscape’. So, I returned to university to complete a PhD in rivers and climate change. I find it deeply satisfying to have the scientific skills to interpret how landscapes function and contribute this to true integrated catchment management solutions. My previous background also allows me to interpret smaller scale things like the connections between soil properties and living ecosystems. I feel this ability to decipher the landscape at multiple scales brings great benefits to our clients.
I am prone to being excessively optimistic and enthusiastic. Both traits are much clearer now I am a full-time mum of two kids with a second job as a geomorphologist! Remaining realistic about what is possible in each day is an ongoing journey. The warning ‘Kate, excitement is not a meal’ is often heard in my house.