Jaclyn E. Heikkila is the Restoration Assistant at Friends of the Rouge focused on putting together the annual Rouge Rescue cleanup event, implementing the Rain Gardens to the Rescue program, and leading monitoring efforts of invasive European Frogbit in the Rouge watershed.
Prior to working at Friends of the Rouge, Jaclyn was an intern with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service monitoring Piping Plover and bat habitats, an intern with the Michigan Wildlife Conservancy working on rare mammal research, a lab assistant at the MSU Museum working on carnivore skull development, and a 2016 Glassen Scholar while studying at Michigan State University. She graduated from Garden City High School in 2013 and went on to earn her Associates in Science at Schoolcraft College in 2015 and her Bachelor’s in Fisheries and Wildlife at Michigan State University in 2018.
Jackie is passionate about wildlife, improving natural habitats, and connecting people to nature. She has a particular interest in herpetology and wetlands because of their sensitivity and valuable role in the ecosystem. She loves to share her knowledge about the diversity of life on Earth and other strange science with friends and family. Jackie always encourages those close to her to think about their actions and what they can do to better the planet we all share. She loves to work on a team and lend a helping hand to whoever needs it.
Jaclyn has always known Metro Detroit as home, growing up in Garden City and after school living in Westland and recently buying a home in Dearborn with her life partner Joe and brown tabby cat, Yoruichi.