Nicole was raised in a gold mining family in Fairbanks, Alaska. While learning how to mine she was also taught to be a steward of the land and waters. She has lived in rural villages around Alaska, fought forest fires, helped manage natural resources, and has come face to face with bears on many of her adventures. Graduating from the University of Alaska Fairbanks with a bachelor’s degree in Fisheries and Ocean Sciences helped her pursue her lifetime passion of studying the aquatic environment.
Nicole has had a love for the water since before she could walk. Before she got her first mask and snorkel she was diving under the water, trying to stay down with the fishes for as long as she could. At the age of six she saw her first SCUBA diver and had decided that was going to be her job one day. Her first breath underwater was when she had volunteered on an elodea eradication project with US Fish and Wildlife Service. Since then she has become a dive instructor for PADI and SSI programs, assists with the American Academy of Underwater Science (AAUS) diving program in Fairbanks, and has dove all over the world, including in the Matanuska Glacier. She enjoys underwater photography and filming to help her continue to learn the about the various creatures that live there. As a volunteer at the local dive shop Nicole travels to schools and does presentations about her underwater adventures and aquatic ecosystems.