RiverXchange is produced by New Mexico-based Orilla Consulting, LLC, owned by Amy White, who has managed the program since its inception. RiverXchange was developed in 2007 by Experiential EE, LLC and Illinois-based National Great Rivers Research and Education Center with just two class partnerships. The program has grown from two partnerships in 2008 to 49 partnerships in 2014, all thanks to funding from New Mexico water resources agencies and in-kind contributions from dozens of organizations!
Orilla Consulting, LLC provides consulting and project management services on water resources topics to several agencies. All projects are carried out by teams of independent contractors who have a wide range of skills, work experience, certifications and interests.
Amy White is the CEO/Owner of Orilla Consulting, LLC, and RiverXchange Program Director. She developed the RiverXchange curriculum and has managed the program since 2007. Amy holds an M.A. in Education from the University of New Mexico and a B.S. in Chemistry from Harvey Mudd College. She is also a part-time Faculty member at Central New Mexico Community College. Previously, she managed the Rio Rancho Children’s Water Festival for two years, and has worked in science education at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science, as well as at Explora Science Center and Children’s Museum. A former engineer, Amy is also an avid vegetable gardener, blogger and freelance food writer. If you love great food and especially great veggies, check out her blog: www.veggieobsession.com.
Bonnie Schmader has been our Field Trip Coordinator for RiverXchange classes located in central New Mexico since 2010. She has worked for the U.S. Forest Service, the Albuquerque BioPark, the City of Albuquerque Open Space Division, and the Jane Goodall Institute’s Roots & Shoots program. Bonnie has also provided contract services for curriculum development and teacher training for Experiential EE, New Mexico State Parks, the University of New Mexico, and Southwest Education Institute of the Southwest (SEIS). When Bonnie isn’t teaching students about water resources, she’s playing her flute and harp for hospital patients as a therapeutic musician, and traveling with her husband.
Michelle Watson has been our New Mexico Teacher Coordinator since 2011. She also managed the Albuquerque Bernalillo County Children’s Water Festival for four years. She received her B.S. in Computer Science from New Mexico State University and worked as a software engineer for 10 years while living in Colorado. This background has been put to use in analyzing data to improve RiverXchange and other water resources outreach programs. She is passionate about water! Her other interests include coaching swimming and participating in triathlons.