In 2008, filmmaker, photographer, and author David Gonzales won the Wyoming Film Office’s inaugural Short Film Contest with a series of four short films. Check out one of the four, ‘Get Up, Stand Up,’ here. With his prize winnings, David produced a film about recent devastation to whitebark pine in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, and created TreeFight, to rally volunteers to protect remaining whitebark.
Seeing Red won Best Environmental Film in the Winter Wildlands Alliance’s 2010 Backcountry Film Festival, and was included in the United Nations International Year of the Forest Film Festival. In 2010 and 2011 he recruited 200 volunteers and students to help protect whitebark forests in the GYE. In 2011, Gonzales was awarded the Hats Off Award, ‘for leadership in valley conservation efforts,’ by the Jackson Hole Conservation Alliance.
Previous to founding TreeFight, Gonzales worked as a photographer and author. His 2001 large-format book Jackson Hole: On a Grand Scale won the 2003 Ullr Award from the International Skiing History Association. His articles and photos have appeared in Newsweek, People, Men’s Journal, Skiing, Powder, Rock&Ice, Paddler, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and others. A pretty long time ago, he was a syndicated travel columnist for Universal Press, and before that, he was a cub reporter for the Dallas Morning News.
Taylor has been working with TreeFight since the Fall of 2010 as an assistant to David Gonzales and an educational programmer. During her undergraduate years at Penn State university, she studied climate change ecology in Greenland, living with the Inuit and seeding her passion for helping communities adapt to rapid environmental change.
Following her B.S. degree in Biology and Environmental Studies, she spent a year living in a sustainable community as a water resource specialist, a year teaching high school environmental science on the Navajo reservation in New Mexico, then landed in Jackson, Wyoming to join TreeFight. Taylor has worked as a certified wildlife guide, helped to program a volunteer river restoration trip on the Pueblo reservation, and has given many public lectures and interviews, including on national ABC news for her work with climate change and the Inuit culture.
In 2012, Taylor begins graduate studies at the Yale School of Forestry. She is planning on basing her graduate thesis project around TreeFight.
Many other people have been instrumental in helping us launch and expand TreeFight, including:
The management and staff of the Bridger Teton National Forest, the Caribou-Targhee National Forest, the Gallatin National Forest, and the USFS Federal Nursery.
Kelly McCloskey, Grand Teton National Park
Nancy Bockino, Grand Teton National Park
Dr. Jesse Logan, entomologist emeritus, retired USFS
Wally Macfarlane, GIS specialist
Willie Kern, aerial photographer
Derek Craighead, Craighead Beringia South
Sophie Craighead, Englehard Foundation
Sophie and Lance Derrickson, Chichester Dupont Foundation
Teton County Recreation District
Teton Conservation District
Center of Wonder
Community Foundation of Jackson Hole
Wyoming Arts Council
Jackson Hole Center for the Arts
Jimmy Chin, explorer-artist-philanthropist
Thais Beltrame, artist
Jennifer Love, philanthropist
Rachel Stevens, graphic artist
Hans and Nancy Johnstone, rancher-philanthropists
Taza Schaming, Cornell Lab of Ornithology
Lisa Samford, Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival
Travis Walker, Teton Art Lab
Logan Smalley, Darius Goes West, TED-Ed
David Holbrooke, Mountainfilm
Bill Schreiber, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort
Jessica Milligan, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort
Anna Olson, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort
Zahan Billimoria, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort
Nick Centrella, original JH whitebark warrior
Bruce Gordon, Ecoflight
Lisa Robertson, pilot
Pete Mueller, pilot
Dan Long, technical specialist
Chris Denny, Denny Ink
Eric Henderson, Denny Ink
many other impassioned fighters,
our gracious and patient families,