Mosquito Task Force Bios
Rebecca Ness is the Vice Chair for Green Bexley. She spearheads Love Your Alley, a Bexley initiative to transform underutilized alleys into extended living space while creating our own Homegrown National Park with native plants that support our pollinators and biodiversity. Rebecca organizes kids’ green boot camps and facilitates the Green Bexley Parents' Facebook Group. Rebecca is an Acupuncturist and herbalist and recognizes the strong correlation between the planet’s health and human health.
Bob has been a resident of Bexley since 1995. He is a pediatric endocrinologist who came to the area to start his career in pharmaceutical development (at Abbott Labs). He has since worked with several biotech companies, and has partnered with his son Isaiah at Invirsa, Inc since 2015. Though Bob is excited about all aspects of science and medicine, he is particularly intrigued to find novel ways to improve health, so it was just natural that Bob found his way to the Mosquito Task Force, since it was an opportunity to enhance the health of our Bexley biosphere.
Paula has a M.A. in Virology/Immunology, as well as a M.S. in Computer Science. Her career has spanned virology research, college level biology instructor, computer scientist, vegetarian caterer, and passionate gardener. In recent years, she has learned to develop her Bexley gardens into a wonderland of beauty, productivity, and eco-responsibility.
Mary received her Ph.D. in 2008 and is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Entomology at The Ohio State University. Her research program focuses on the ecological value of urban vacant land. The Gardiner Lab at OSU examines how alternative vegetation designs and management regimes influence the value of vacant land for the conservation of biodiversity and the provision of ecosystem services. Mary is also a State Specialist in Extension and works with several stakeholder groups including home gardeners, Master Gardeners, Master Naturalists, and urban farmers. Her extension programming focuses on identifying and attracting beneficial insects to gardens and farms to promote conservation and ecosystem services. In 2015, she released a book focused on natural enemies and their role in biological control in home gardens titled: Good Garden Bugs: Everything You Need to Know about Beneficial Predatory Insects. She has also embraced the use of citizen science in her research with the statewide program, Pollination Investigators, which engages volunteers in the study of pollination services.
Megan is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Entomology at The Ohio State University. She graduated from The Ohio State University in 2004 with dual Bachelor's of Science Degrees in Entomology and Microbiology. She then continued her graduate work at OSU, where she worked in Dr. David Denlinger's Insect Molecuar Physiology Lab, earning her Ph.D. in December of 2014. Her research is interested in how precisely mosquitoes are able to tell what time of year it is and appropriately respond to their environment. Members of her lab group study how circadian clock genes might allow mosquitoes to measure day length to determine the time of year; how male mosquitoes change their accessory gland proteins to influence female behavior and physiology; and whether mosquitoes in urban environments are active for longer periods during the year and/or bite humans more frequently. Members use a variety of molecular, genetic and physiological techniques to investigate these questions. The lab group’s ultimate goal is to uncover specific ways to manipulate seasonal responses in insects so that we can more effectively control them.
Jen has been a representative of Bexley City Council since January of 2020 and brings a commitment to community connectivity to her service on the body. With a degree in Art History and Administration from The Ohio State University, she began her career creating programs for the City of Columbus Recreation and Parks Department. She then held the position of Program Director for the Columbus Council on World Affairs, creating and implementing educational programs for children, adults and seniors across the city of Columbus. Jen currently directs HarmonyKIDS, the youth arm of Columbus’ Harmony Project. Working with elementary, middle and high school children across central Ohio, she facilitates the building of bridges between communities through service opportunities and music and arts programming.
Jen serves as the Chair of the Safety and Health Committee, working with the Chief of Police, the Police Department and the Mayor to ensure the continued safety of and excellent service to our residents. Jen and her husband Ken live in North Bexley with their three children Nikolas, Jakob and Lucy. The Robinson family has called Bexley home since 2008.
Marci Lininger is a graduate of the Masters of Environment and Natural Resources program at the Ohio State University. She currently works for the Ohio Department of Transportation as the District 6 Environmental Coordinator. Marci has worked in the field of wildlife several years having experience in research, endangered species, transportation ecology and landscape habitat restoration. In addition, she has studied the use and implementation of wildlife crossings in the State of Ohio including the use of strategic roadside habitats that enhance use and crossing capabilities. In addition to her regular duties, Marci serves as the State Coordinator for the Ohio Pollinator Habitat Initiative, which is a statewide network of partners who work to increase pollinator awareness and hands on habitat creation throughout the State, and sits on the board for the Ohio Wildlife Management Association. Marci is also a college instructor educating students in the fields of environmental science, ecology and transportation ecology research.
Alex is a graduate student at The Ohio State University pursuing a professional master’s degree in Environment and Natural Resources. He grew up in Bexley and attended school here from preschool to high school, but joined the Taskforce in a roundabout way through his work with the Ohio Pollinator Habitat Initiative as Partnership/Outreach Coordinator. Alex graduated from Ohio University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism in 2018 and later worked as newspaper reporter in Wheeling, West Virginia. With this background, he is assisting the Taskforce with communication and outreach efforts.