I came to Nevada in the mid-1960s, the one sister in a rag-taggle band of 6 brothers. My parents moved us from a happy and wild upbringing in Anaconda, Montana to the quiet (in the 1960s) streets of Reno, in search of a more stable home-base in The Biggest Little City in the World. My father, a doctor in private practice in Anaconda, figured out that he could not raise 7 kids in a mining town under strike (Anaconda smelter, 9 months); he noted that no one gets sick when they aren‘t working. So off to Reno we moved, and my parents successfully raised all 7 rambunctious kids. My roots in Montana provided a tie to mining from the start; and I moved to a state dominated by world-class geology and ore deposits and wide-open spaces … all of which I enjoyed with my family from a very early age.
Upon graduating from high school in Reno, my parents insisted that I go away to school, for a multitude of reasons! I chose Bozeman, Montana as it was a pseudo return to roots. Upon returning to Montana I realized I had become a desert rat—and wrestled with the blanket of trees found everywhere; one had to hike long and high to get out of the cover and into the views. I figured early in my studies that I was not destined for forestry. I wandered into geology in my first elected science course (Geology 101), taught by Dr. Steve Custer who had an interesting teaching style rooted in his dual geology and theater degrees from Berkeley, CA. I was hooked from day one, and haven‘t looked back since. And why would I; seriously interesting work whereby companies pay you to hike, do science, interact with truly spectacular cultures and people, and travel the world!
After graduating from Montana State, I started my geologic career first with the US Forest Service, taking a job with the Mountain City Ranger District in 1980. I chose to retire from the stability of a government job, instead seeking out the variability of the mineral development industry—landing interesting, challenging and exciting work here in the US and overseas, with the Majors as well as with Junior exploration companies. I have had the pleasure of working in a broad spectrum of capacities in exploration and mining from boot leather to the boardrooms, advancing mineral development in a broad diversity of settings throughout the world. I started an energy-focused company in 2008, Remote Energy Solutions, bringing innovations and energy solutions to the mining sector. As well, I remain very committed to the mineral development field, having served in the NWMA leadership; Board seats in mineral and geothermal companies; and advocacy focused work with the Women‘s Mining Coalition.
Back to high school; I had 13 best friends — 9 guys and 4 girls—in high school, with whom I remain friends, and one who I had the dang good fortune to marry: Tom Carpenter, geophysicist extraordinaire and gravity dude. We have made our home in Reno since the late 1980s, after a truly raucous 1988 wedding and reception at Piper‘s Opera House in Virginia City, Nevada. Old mining camps continue to this day to be very important staples in our lives.
I cannot remember what year I became a GSN member (I am over 50 and memory seems to be a fleeting commodity). But I believe it was in the mid-1980s, and I have had the great pleasure of benefiting from this fine Society ever since. As well, I have served as an officer, serving in the shadows of some very brilliant people; as GSN Foundation Chair working closely with the very talented and dedicated DD LaPointe and too many others to list; and as part of two Symposiums, assisting in various capacities. It is a pleasure to be a part of the GSN and associated with such fine people throughout its membership.
Tom and I continue to make our home at the base of the mountains up the Mount Rose Hwy, just 15 short minutes to the local ski area, Mount Rose, where we see regular GSNers such as Eric Ruud and family, John Cleary, and a long list of others. Skiing is a major part of our lives (as long as our bodies hold out, that is), as illustrated by the sno-cats in the back 40‘ of our home—beacons of stylish landscape art for friends and neighbors in the hood to visually enjoy. Although we don‘t have kids of our own, we have a very large and fun extended family in the Reno area stretched out between the Carpenters and Shonnards (my maiden name) from Carson City to the North Valleys.