:: About GIC :: Who We Are
Karen Firehock, Executive Director
Her most recent publication "Evaluating and Conserving Green Infrastructure Across the Landscape" is available from the GIC.
John A. Scrivani, Ph.D., Senior Forester and Analyst
John Scrivani is the GIC’s Senior Forester and Analyst. He develops models to map natural resources for creating green infrastructure plans, develops urban forest management strategies, calculates ecosystem services and develops new models and tools. He also is an adjunct professor at the University of Richmond, teaching advanced spatial analysis and remote sensing technologies.
Prior to his current position, Dr. Scrivani was a Geospatial Program Manager for the Virginia Geographic Information Network for seven years, a Research Forester for the Virginia Department of Forestry for 20 years, an Assistant Professor of Forestry at Virginia Tech for four years, and a Community Planner in Miami, Florida, and Asheville, North Carolina, for a total of four years.
Special recognition of his contributions have included an ESRI Special Achievement in GIS award and an Information Communications Technology (ICT) Innovations Award for his work developing an enterprise forestry GIS system, an award from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation for his development of a Forest Conservation Layer as part of the Chesapeake Bay Forest Conservation Directive 06-1, and a Geospatial Partnership Award from the Virginia Tech Office of Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing Research.
Dr. Scrivani is also an author of numerous peer-reviewed publications in forestry and remote sensing. He has also been an active non-profit volunteer, serving as President of the Ivy Creek Foundation in Charlottesville and as President of the Virginia Chapter of The American Chestnut Foundation. He has a Masters of Planning degree from Florida State University, an M.S degree in Forestry from Clemson University and a Ph.D. degree in Forest Management from Oregon State University.
Andrew Walker, GIS Analyst and Land Planner
At the GIC, Mr Walker manages the implementation of local green infrastructure planning projects, including liaison with local communities and project partners. He manages the GIC’s mapping and land planning and provides technical assistance to local governments, regional planning agencies, communities, land trusts and conservation groups. He builds state models to help states, regions and counties identify, conserve or restore their natural and cultural assets. He also creates case studies, handbooks and presentations.
Prior to joining the GIC team, Mr Walker worked as a regional development planner for Dobbin International, developing strategic plans for large and small regions in Guinea, Mozambique, and Madagascar to support sustainable development and smart investments. Grounded in spatial analysis and economics, and by taking a multi-sector approach (conservation, agriculture, forestry, tourism, etc.), the plans mapped holistic opportunities for regional development.
Mr Walker has a diverse array of public and private sector experience, having worked at the state, county, and local levels on a variety of GIS and planning projects. He holds a Master of Urban and Environmental Planning degree from the University of Virginia, where he has been an adjunct instructor in the Department of Urban and Environmental Planning since 2013 and teaches graduate-level courses on advanced spatial analysis. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in Geography from Arizona State University, where he graduated at the top of his class, earning the University’s Award for Scholastic Excellence in Geography.
Matt West, Spatial Planner
Prior to joining GIC in 2016, he was the Water Resources Intern for Albemarle County, VA assisting with stormwater compliance. He also worked at the University of Virginia's Scholars' Lab providing technical support to faculty and students in mapping and data management. He has also researched and collected data on climate change and Sea Level Rise in Ghana. His local government experience was gained in Chesterfield county where he supported the GIS Department. He has a B.A. and and M.U.EP. from the University of Virginia. When he is not busy with all of his technical work, he enjoys fencing and time with family in the Richmond area.
Chris McCormick, Community Landscape Associate
Chris McCormick is the GIC's Community Landscape Associate. Chris is an environmental planner and landscape designer with a passion for incorporating food and native plants into community spaces. She employs a data-driven approach to create and achieve community goals. She assists communities with assessing, evaluating and conserving their natural assets. She is working on green infrastructure planning projects across the southern U.S. and beyond.
Chris' past experience includes environmental planning in the Baltimore-Washington DC area, landscape design in the Washington DC area and Certified Naturally Grown farming in the Western Maryland. Chris graduated Magna Cum Laude from Frostburg State University with a B.S. in Environmental Analysis and Planning. While at Frostburg State University Chris collaborated on several research projects. In one such project she studied changes in geomorphology of a local stream and potential impacts to the surrounding urban setting. In addition, Chris collaborated on Chesapeake Bay-wide research of road salt and it's environmental impacts. This project was presented at the American Association of Sustainability in Higher Education conference in Los Angeles, CA. In her free time Chris enjoys hiking, exploring, identifying wildflowers, playing guitar and rock climbing.
Brittany Gardner, Research Associate
Brittany Gardner is a Research Associate for the GIC. She is currently a graduate student in the Urban and Environmental Planning Program at the University of Virginia. Her concentration is Environmental Management and Conservation.
Brittany graduated from Hollins University with a B.A. in Environmental Studies. At Hollins, she was an active member of the Downriver Racing team and received certification in Outdoor Leadership and Leave No Trace instruction.
The Center’s Board of Directors meets quarterly in Virginia. Center board members are listed below with their positions and professional affiliations. Click on the board member's name to read their bio. For 2013, the Center’s board members are as follows:
Chair (Term ends December 2016)
Retired, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Falls Church, VA
Vice Chair (Term ends December 2017)
Director of Stormwater Programs, Water Environment Federation, Richmond, VA.
Secretary and Vice-Chair (Term ends December 2017)
Professor of Geography, Radford University
Friends of the New River, Blacksburg, VA
Treasurer (Term ends December 2018)
At-Large Member (Term ends December 2017)
President, GreenVisions, Richmond, VA.
At-Large Member (Term ends December 2015)
Associate Professor, School of City and Regional Planning, Georgia Tech.
At-Large Member (Term ends December 2017)
Attorney with Troutman Sanders, Richmond, VA.
At-Large Member (Term ends February 2018)
Managing Director and Co-Founder, The Cadmus Group, Inc.
If you are interested in joining the board, attending a board meeting, or have other questions, please contact Karen Firehock. The center’s corporate documents are available for inspection.