MEET OUR TEAM
STEVE JONES- Nursery Operations Director
DAN GARLEN- Operations Manager
Founder and CEO Scott Quitel, JD, MBA has extensive experience in ecologically-based land use planning, ecological restoration analysis, and ecological landscape design and construction. Scott is a faculty member at the Charles D. Close School of Entrepreneurship at Drexel University, where he is also the Director of Social Entrepreneurship. He also teaches at Philadelphia University/Jefferson, serves on several local boards, and is a frequent invited speaker on planning, design, and ecology. He has led hundreds of educational ecology and design-oriented tours/hikes for people of all ages in natural areas in and around Philadelphia. Scott graduated from Brown University, has an MBA and JD from Temple University, holds a wetland delineation certificate and is an ISA Certified Arborist. Prior to founding LandHealth, Scott was a Principal Ecologist for Philadelphia's Applied Ecological Services (AES), where he led the visioning, public process, and design of a wide range of design and design-build projects, including the Washington Avenue Pier and the Meadow at Longwood Gardens.
Liza brings to LandHealth more than twenty years of experience in education, across K-12 and higher ed, as a researcher, evaluator, educator, and administrator. Currently the Director of Academic Research and Assessment at the Charles D. Close School of Entrepreneurship and Affiliated Faculty at the School of Education at Drexel University, Liza also teaches at the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania in the Education Entrepreneurship program. She served as the Director of the M.Ed. in Educational Program Design and Educational Technology at the University of the Arts, and as the VP of Research, Evaluation and Planning for the Philadelphia Education Fund. Liza graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, holds a JD from Temple University and a PhD from the University of Pennsylvania. She serves on several local boards and is a longtime public school advocate.
Steve Jones contributes to operations at LandHealth's Nursery and to LandHealth's education programs. Steve is the President of Wissahickon Restoration Volunteers, a nonprofit, community-based ecological restoration program in the Wissahickon section of Fairmount Park in Philadelphia. He serves on the Kelly Green Committee, a community/student/teacher collaboration at J.B. Kelly School in Germantown, and the Wissahickon Sustainability Council at Cook-Wissahickon school in Roxborough.
Dan Garlen is a volunteer for LandHealth who believes in putting nature back through better understanding of the challenges and opportunities of land restoration and improvement. Dan's career spanned the direction of projects in software electronics and product design through the preparation of technical proposals, specifications, documentation, testing, deployment, and support. Dan enjoys the water... boating, scuba diving, and simply looking out his window onto the Delaware River. He also respects water and the damage it can cause. A life-long advocate of respecting nature and sustainable resources, Dan believes conservation and restoration is our responsibility and is a proud volunteer at The Franklin Institute (Science Demonstrator) and at the Adventure Aquarium (Volunteer Diver).
Matthew Karnatz is a volunteer greenhouse manager for LandHealth, helping to care for native plants and maintain structures at the nursery site. He has a B.S. in cellular and molecular biology and extensive graduate-level training in ecology and evolutionary biology. He has built several solar-powered climate stations to monitor atmospheric and soil conditions, encompassing both field and laboratory study components of biological research.
Dan Kobza is a volunteer for LandHealth and an urban environmental educator with more than a decade of experience teaching and conducting field work for environmental conservation. Dan is passionate about spending time outside and about sharing this passion with others as manager of three of Philadelphia Water Department education programs: PWS, Wild West Philly, and Jr. Docent. He has taught for the Cobbs Creek Community Environmental Center, Fair Hill Burial Ground, Catalysis Education Solutions, Overbrook Environmental Education Center, and Philadelphia Parks and Rec. An enthusiastic birder, he has participated in The World Series of Birding and captained an area for the Christmas Bird Count. Dan teaches and tutors high school and graduate test prep for The Princeton Review., enjoys complex puzzles and games, and the classics.
In Memory of Paulette Rhone
We remember Paulette Rhone who passed away in February 2019. Born and raised in Philadelphia, Paulette served as the Executive Director of LandHealth. Paulette's passion for nature and community empowerment through experiential educational opportunities in nature A founding board member of the Friends of Mount Moriah Cemetery, Paulette served its president, 2012-19. The restoration and preservation of this 200-acre cemetery, abandoned in 2011, was a great passion of hers. She also served on the Board of the Mount Moriah Cemetery Preservation Corporation. Paulette was with US Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics as the region's Budget Analyst until 2007. She enjoyed her family, her church, lifelong learning, reading, and gardening.
Sales and Project Associate
Joshua is an Entrepreneurship Major at Drexel University. He is an Ambassador for the Close School of Entrepreneurship at Drexel University. His position is as a Sales and Project Associate for LandHealth. As a rising entrepreneur, he is a motivated, dedicated student and worker, who is passionate about every project he undertakes. His excellent interpersonal skills, empathic personality, and ability to integrate into a team as a member or leader, have helped him become a superior sales associate. Other interests include hiking, bird-watching, and caring for his pets.
Community Partnerships Manager
"I am a Fourth Year Environmental Studies and Sustainability Major at Drexel University with a Minor in Video Production. This year I will be working as the Community Partnership Manager for LandHealth Institute. I am focused on developing relationships with the wonderful people of Philadelphia and other environmental organizations through outreach, social media, and development. I think it is of utmost importance that people have access to a healthy environment, and I am excited to be part of that fight here at LandHealth. We have already done so much amazing work and I cannot wait to see what comes next!"
Taisia Osipova- Marketing and Communications Lead
B u s i n e s s
D e v e l o p m e n t and Marketing
"I am a senior at Drexel University pursuing a degree in International business and organizational management, and my role here at Land Health is in Marketing and Business Development. This allows me to foster relationships between Land Health and prospective clients, as well as partners. This is my last co-op and I am excited to work with and contribute to an organization that has such a wholesome vision and is making such a significant impact in the city of Philadelphia and beyond."
Sam Fong-Nursery Coordinator
Nursery Manager and Neighborhood Project Lead
"My name is Bri Zayas. I am a pre-junior at Drexel University. My major is Environmental Science with a concentration in Applied Environmental Science and I am minoring in Chemistry. At LandHealth, my role is the Native Plant Nursery Manager and Neighborhood Project Lead. I plan to use my passions in sustainability and wildlife conservation to connect with the plant nursery and the people we reach through educational efforts. I am very excited to be part of this team and I hope to build a connection with our wildlife and our community inside and outside of LandHealth."
Joshua Benoff - Sales Associate
Digital Media and Communications Associate
"I am a third-year junior majoring in Environmental Studies and Sustainability and a minor in German at Drexel University. This is my second co-op and I am excited to continue improving my outreach skills and gain a better understanding on how nonprofits like LandHealth Institute communicate with the communities they serve. Bringing communities together to protect their homes is especially important to me, so I hope to take what I learn here into the future!"
Bridget Depenbrock - Development and Events Associate
Education and Engagement Associate
"Hi! I’m a third year at Drexel University majoring in Biological Sciences and minoring in STEM Education. I feel that my values are in line with LandHealth’s mission to improve the health of communities across Philadelphia while educating the public about the environment. Through my position as the Education and Engagement Associate, the part that I’m looking forward to the most is learning how STEM Education can be implemented in meaningful ways outside the classroom. During my co-op with LandHealth, I’m excited to learn more about their hands-on approach to strengthening the connection between the people of Philadelphia and nature."
Amartya Jha - Website Development Associate