Janelle Chojnacki
Janelle Chojnacki

Humboldt State University
William Randolph Hearst Scholar

I hope to show that women can excel in science and be leaders in their fields.

Growing up with divorced parents who lived in separate counties, Janelle Chojnacki says the adversity she faced has shaped who she is today: a beacon of positivity who has excelled academically and personally. She earned a B.S. in environmental justice from UC Berkeley and is currently a wildlife graduate student at Humboldt State.

Passionate about community service, Janelle holds leadership positions at the regional chapters of The Wildlife Society and Audubon Society. With a focus on diversity and inclusion, she creates events that provide practical experience and job and leadership opportunities for youth, students and community members.

Janelle makes it a point to reach out to groups—such as women, youth and people of color—that haven't historically participated in local birding events and provides them with leadership opportunities and the ability to feel safe and supported.

After graduation, she hopes to start a wildlife research nonprofit that addresses conservation and ecological restoration.​