Return of the Snakes Biographies

Jenny Richards, Naturalist at Shawnee State Park

baby turtle

Jenny grew up on the edge of Shawnee Forest exploring the outdoors with her family. She obtained her BS in Geography from Ohio University, traveled and worked abroad and returned home to land her dream job as a state park naturalist in the very forest she was raised. She loves sharing her passion for the great outdoors with everyone she meets.




Erin Cashion, Curator of Natural History, Ohio History Connection

Erin received an M.S. in Fisheries and Wildlife Science from The Ohio State University and currently works as a Curator of Natural History at the Ohio History Center in Columbus. Although she formally studied birds, Erin is a strong reptile and amphibian advocate and is dedicated to inspiring curiosity and appreciation for these underappreciated and often maligned animals.







Charlene Hopkins, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology PhD Candidate,
Department of Biological Sciences at Ohio University

Charlene Hopkins is life-long amphibian and reptile enthusiast, who originally hails from Michigan. She is currently a PhD Candidate at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio where she studies how roads impact amphibians and reptiles. Her research aims to find ways to protect wildlife from the harmful impacts of roadways. Charlene has also worked on other amphibian and reptile projects in 11 states throughout the US. She likes to spend her free time going to new places to find critters. Charlene will give an interactive talk about amphibians, reptiles, the conservation challenges they face, and how we can help protect them.





Vince Howard, Field Herpetologist

Vince has been a lifelong explorer of nature and natural history in Ohio. Even as a child he was exploring fields and woodlands for snakes, turtles, insects, etc. Since then, Vince has become an active field herpetologist and specializes in identifying good habitats and actually finding the animals. Vince has been a one of the people who are always able to provide specimens for educational purposes on fairly short notice, as wild collected animals in Ohio may only be kept in captivity for a short period of time before being returned to the place they were captured. He has provided up to 25 species of reptiles and 20 species of amphibians for some of these past events, all captured and returned to their homes without harm in a timely manner. Vince never misses an opportunity to help educate the public about these amazing animals.

Vince resides in south central Ohio and spends countless hours looking for animals and learning more about their behavior and habitat requirements.