Female forest ranger makes history in Talladega National Forest - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Female forest ranger makes history in Talladega National Forest

TALLADEGA, AL (WBRC) - Gloria Neilsen is the first female to ever head the Talladega District, in a position that's becoming more and more female oriented. Neilsen's trailblazing career has taken her all over the south, including Florida and Mississippi. 

The Auburn graduate and Double Springs native says she's glad to be back in her home state. "I didn't want to be right in the back door of where I grew up," says Neilsen, "but I thought that this would be an excellent opportunity for me and my family to move back closer to my family."

Neilsen began her fascination with the outdoors and the Forest Service when she was 13.  "I think I was 13 when my mother actually started working with the forest service," she recalls. "She was actually a seasonal employee with the forest service, and she planted trees and did some herbicide work and different kinds of things along those lines."      

Neilsen is now in charge of 120,000 acres of forest land. The Talladega National Forest extends into two other ranger districts.  Both of those are also headed by the first women in those jobs.  In an area that's supposed to be nothing but sky, they've broken the glass ceiling.

"It's a lot of work making sure that the area is administered properly, and that we're managing the forests for future and present generations." Neilsen's priorities including protecting rare bird species like the red-cockaded woodpecker, and education.  She expects to spend some time at Munford Elementary School, which is built in a forestland motif and does a lot of nature study.

  • NewsMore>>

  • Hanceville school holds security meeting after recent school shooting in FL

    Hanceville school holds security meeting after recent school shooting in FL

    Tuesday, February 20 2018 6:30 PM EST2018-02-20 23:30:25 GMT
    "We do everything we can to make sure that students are being safe, taken care of here at Hanceville schools." (Source: WBRC/Steffany Means)"We do everything we can to make sure that students are being safe, taken care of here at Hanceville schools." (Source: WBRC/Steffany Means)

    The principal of Hanceville High School in Cullman County is not wanting to take any chances after a recent school shooting in Florida. On Monday night Hanceville High School principal Jimmy Collins held a security meeting with the Hanceville Police Department, the mayor of Hanceville, Cullman County Sheriff Matt Gentry and the Cullman County superintendent. Collins said they looked at ways to improve the schools and make sure the safety is as good as it could possibly be. "We...

    More >>

    The principal of Hanceville High School in Cullman County is not wanting to take any chances after a recent school shooting in Florida. On Monday night Hanceville High School principal Jimmy Collins held a security meeting with the Hanceville Police Department, the mayor of Hanceville, Cullman County Sheriff Matt Gentry and the Cullman County superintendent. Collins said they looked at ways to improve the schools and make sure the safety is as good as it could possibly be. "We...

    More >>
  • New boat ramp coming to Smith Lake Park

    New boat ramp coming to Smith Lake Park

    Tuesday, February 20 2018 6:29 PM EST2018-02-20 23:29:19 GMT
    Smith Lake Park in Cullman County is already remodeling the boat ramp at the park to try and make it easier for you this summer. (Source: WBRC/Steffany Means)Smith Lake Park in Cullman County is already remodeling the boat ramp at the park to try and make it easier for you this summer. (Source: WBRC/Steffany Means)
    With the warmer weather many of you may already be thinking about the lake trips you will take this summer. Smith Lake Park in Cullman County is already remodeling the boat ramp at the park to try and make it easier for you this summer. "Before we did remodeling we had a three lane boat ramp that most of the time turned into a one lane because people didn't know how to share the lanes," said Park Manager Brittney Heron. "So now we have the ramp part finished and ...More >>
    With the warmer weather many of you may already be thinking about the lake trips you will take this summer. Smith Lake Park in Cullman County is already remodeling the boat ramp at the park to try and make it easier for you this summer. "Before we did remodeling we had a three lane boat ramp that most of the time turned into a one lane because people didn't know how to share the lanes," said Park Manager Brittney Heron. "So now we have the ramp part finished and ...More >>
  • Downtown stadium proposal facing some obstacles

    Downtown stadium proposal facing some obstacles

    Tuesday, February 20 2018 5:35 PM EST2018-02-20 22:35:36 GMT
    Proposed stadium for downtown Birmingham. (Source: BJCC)Proposed stadium for downtown Birmingham. (Source: BJCC)

    The proposed $174 million 55,000 seat stadium for downtown Birmingham is facing some obstacles.

    More >>

    The proposed $174 million 55,000 seat stadium for downtown Birmingham is facing some obstacles.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly