Stewardship Specialist

Cory O’ Gorman

cory@landpaths.org

Cory O’Gorman was first introduced to LandPaths in 2016 by Abigail Zoger, his wonderful botany professor at Santa Rosa Junior College. Cory went to volunteer at Bayer Farm with Jonathan Bravo and a lasting friendship was created. He officially joined LandPaths as a Stewardship Specialist in July 2021.

Cory received a BA in cultural anthropology and Spanish in 2012 from Long Beach State University. After graduating, he farmed, worked in construction, and traveled throughout Latin America.  He then attended Santa Rosa Junior College, studying chemistry, biology, and botany. He received a Master’s degree in Plant Biology from Sonoma State University.

Cory carried out his thesis research at Pepperwood Preserve, studying the role of fire and Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) in black oak woodlands with the Native Advisory Council of Pepperwood. It was a great honor for him to assist with this project. Throughout his work he strived to bridge the worlds of Western science and TEK, anthropology and biology, and facilitate collaboration between the Native Advisory Council and Sonoma State University.

Born and raised in Sonoma County, Cory is truly grateful for the opportunity to work on something of value to this land and its first peoples. Cory believes that western science and TEK can work cooperatively to assess California’s ecosystems and create unique stewardship plans that account for ongoing climatic and ecological change. He is passionate about getting involved as the community addresses questions about wildfire, fuel reduction, and forest health, in light of the recent fires.  Cory looks forward to working with all members of our community to connect with and collectively steward the land in ways that benefit all life. He believes that knowledge of place and connection to the land can contribute to the collective healing of society and decolonizing society’s perception of land, while simultaneously promoting a cultural shift in society at large.

Cory grew up in Santa Rosa and spent much of his childhood outdoors. The sound of the creek below his home and the smell beneath the redwoods brought him peace. He found a love for plants working with his mother in her garden which blossomed into a passion for ethnobotany, herbal medicine, horticulture, and land stewardship. Cory also enjoys diverse hobbies which include wildcrafting, woodworking, Muay Thai, dance, studying language and writing.

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