Michael Parker is an ecologist and recently retired professor of biology who, for the past three decades, taught natural history, ecology and conservation courses at Southern Oregon University. Michael earned his BS in biology from Southern Oregon State College, MS in Aquatic Ecology from the University of Nevada, and PhD in Ecology from the University of California, Davis. He considers landscapes conserved to protect natural values and maintain ecological integrity as the very best teaching and learning environments, and feels that The Crest exemplifies just such a natural laboratory. Michael has been actively engaged in research and teaching at Willow-Witt Ranch since being introduced to its resident Western Pond Turtle population and looks forward to supporting the educational mission of The Crest.
Michael has a difficult time separating his leisure pursuits and work life because they both take place in beautiful and interesting natural settings; whether it is rafting down a wilderness river, backpacking in the mountains, flyfishing for wild trout, or birding Great Basin wetlands. A former student once quipped that “…Michael Parker is like the Will Rogers of ecology – he’s never met an organism or system he didn’t like…”