All posts by Kara Jamie Norton

Kara Jamie Norton (@whereskara) is an independent science journalist based in New York City.
Rhiannon Kirton: Zoologist | Black Birders Week
Rhiannon Kirton: Zoologist | Black Birders Week

Rhiannon Kirton is a wildlife specialist and one of the organizers behind the viral online movement, Black Birders Week. Although the week has ended, the work has just begun for this grassroots group. Black AF in STEM is now challenging outdoor brands to show the Black community that they truly ...

Alexander Grousis-Henderson: Zookeeper | Black Birders Week
Alexander Grousis-Henderson: Zookeeper | Black Birders Week

The first ever Black Birders Week was organized by the grassroots group Black AF in STEM, and has united Black professionals working across science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. The core message of the viral online movement has been to amplify and encourage more participation and diversity within the outdoor ...

Corina Newsome: Biologist | Black Birders Week
Corina Newsome: Biologist | Black Birders Week

Within the coastal marshes of southern Georgia, Corina Newsome feels most alive trekking through the tall, smooth spartina grass searching for seaside sparrow nests. Newsome is a graduate student at Georgia Southern University and her research focuses around the roles of climate change and predation on MacGillivray’s seaside sparrows. Although ...

Tolga Aktas: Conservation Biologist | Black Birders Week
Tolga Aktas: Conservation Biologist | Black Birders Week

Tolga Aktas is a UK-based conservation biologist who participated in Black Birders Week. “Growing up, there weren’t many outlets showing diversity, so I was only able to be inspired by white conservationists and naturalists,” Aktas said. “The Black Birders Week movement allowed me to see that there are many Black ...

Nicole Jackson: Environmental Educator | Black Birders Week
Nicole Jackson: Environmental Educator | Black Birders Week

“Inner-city Cleveland is not the ideal place for the birth of a naturalist, but it’s the place where my love for the outdoors began,” described Nicole Jackson, one of the co-organizers of Black Birders Week.

At first, nature served as a healing agent for Jackson. This therapeutic connection to the outdoors ...

Julian Victor: Wildlife Filmmaker | Black Birders Week
Julian Victor: Wildlife Filmmaker | Black Birders Week

Wildlife filmmaker Julian Victor hails from the urban jungle of Toronto, Canada. He joined the Black AF in STEM community last year, and participated in the first ever Black Birders Week.

As #BlackBirdersWeek began trending on social media, Victor said that seeing the movement go viral was like “watching lightning in ...

Sheridan Alford: Environmental Educator | Black Birders Week
Sheridan Alford: Environmental Educator | Black Birders Week

Sheridan Alford is one of the organizers behind the online movement, Black Birders Week. Throughout Alford’s life, there were key experiences that were vital to fostering the dedication she currently has for wildlife and the outdoors. This love for nature was cultivated by her mother – a middle school teacher ...

What’s Next for Black AF in STEM?
What’s Next for Black AF in STEM?

Last week, Black researchers and avian enthusiasts flocked to social media to participate in the first ever Black Birders Week (May 31-June 5). “Growing up, there weren’t many outlets showing diversity, so I was only able to be inspired by white conservationists and naturalists,” said Tolga Aktas, a conservation biologist ...