Our Teachers

Nancy Jones


"I love the earth. The beauty of the natural world resonates with my soul and the myriad of creatures who inhabit our world are a source of constant inspiration."

Nancy Jones is the Executive Director and Founder of the Blue Heron Nature Preserve and a veteran art teacher of 33 years. She was named Teacher of the Year during her tenure at Sarah Smith, an honor voted on by the faculty. She has received several awards for her work at Blue Heron, including the Outstanding Citizen Award from Common Cause of Georgia. Most recently she retired from part time teaching at St. Anne's Day school where she spent intensive time studying the Reggio method of early childhood education. This experience opened her eyes to the possibilities of working with very young children.

She is a graduate of Sewanne, the University of the South, and has been a working and teaching artist ever since her graduation.

Nancy has one grown son, Nash, who lives in Atlanta. She resides in an historical building on Peachtree with her rabbit, Raymond.

Kevin McCauley

Kevin McCauley is the President of the Blue Heron Nature Preserve and has been an activist in the North Buckhead neighborhood ever since returning to Atlanta with his family 15 years ago. He established the first organic, community garden in North Atlanta at Blue Heron in 2006 and is a firm believer in the principles of locally grown, organic produce. He also is an avid beekeeper who along with others established the bee apiary at Blue Heron 3 years ago.

To supplement his gardening enthusiasm with hands on knowledge Kevin will be conducting his classes along with Community Garden members who are Master Gardeners and professionals in the growing trade.

Maura Dudley

Maura Dudley loves everything about streams and the wetland areas that surround them. A native of Pittsburgh, Maura graduated from the University of Notre Dame with her Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science. She then attended Duke University, where she received her Master's of Environmental Management, with a focus on water resources. Maura spent the last two years working for the San Antonio River Authority as their Education Coordinator, teaching students from kindergarten through adults about the San Antonio River and the value of water resources. 
Maura moved to Atlanta in the summer of 2012 with her wonderful husband and crazy dog, Molly. She hopes to continue her education at the University of Georgia in their PhD program while assisting the Blue Heron Nature Preserve with educational programs and stream restoration.

Kayla Hughes

Kayla Hughes loves the outdoors and all things nature. She recently graduated from Oglethorpe University with a Bachelor's Degree in biology with a minor in educational studies. She spent her last semester of college as an intern at Blue Heron and her main interest is conservation. Kayla hopes to pursue graduate studies and start on her master's degree in the near future. In her free time, Kayla also volunteers at the Georgia Aquarium and loves to travel and hike with her dog, Sadie.

Amy Zvonar

Amy Zvonar is a Georgia native and a graduate of Agnes Scott College with a Bachelor’s degree in biology. Her passion for environmental education began with a college internship at the Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Since then, she has taught on whale watching boats in the Gulf of Maine, the beaches of St. Simons Island, GA, the coast of Long Island Sound, and the streets, city parks, and classrooms of New Haven, CT. Amy earned her Master’s of Environmental Management from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, where she focused on how to improve environmental education experiences for young children in urban environments. After seven years in the Northeast, she is excited to return to Georgia and continue her work in environmental education.
Amy, her husband, and their quirky dog, Solon, currently reside in Athens, where her husband is pursuing a PhD in Education from the University of Georgia.  They enjoy bird-watching and hiking and are excited to enjoy all the nature Georgia has to offer!

Diane Evans

Diane Evans, the daughter of an Air Force Colonel who has lived all over the world, collects and always had an interest in “things”. She attended school in Omaha NE, Ft. Worth TX and Dayton OH. After which, she worked in the visual merchandising department at Neiman Marcus in Atlanta, GA. Prior to NM, she held the same position at Maas Brothers in Tampa, FL.

Recently, she retired after teaching art for 29 years at a private day school. For the past ten years Diane has studied painting and collage with Chery Baird and clay with Carol Brull at the Spruill Center. Along with her painting and clay, she has worked with beads, fibers, and textiles, which have led to various creations.

Diane belongs to an artist group called the Perspective Seven. Their mission is to critique, encourage and support each other in their common interest of creating art.