Maria grew up in British Columbia, where she was introduced to nature and the outdoors at a very early age. She initially pursued an outdoor guiding and teaching path after completing a Wilderness Leadership Program and an Outdoor Recreation Management Diploma from Capilano University. For multiple years she taught, instructed and led multi-day expeditions on both coasts of Canada, and internationally in places such as Malaysia and Costa Rica. It was during these years that she realized her deepening interest and concern for environmental issues. In 2006, she returned to complete a B.A. in Environmental Studies at Memorial University, where she quickly fell in love with Newfoundland and the wonderful lifestyle it provided.
Since completing her degree in 2009 Maria has worked at various positions from forest research and fieldwork to community development with a particular interest in improving the health and sustainability of forest by researching how forest sustainability, and natural resources, are managed. In 2015 she once again returned to Grenfell to complete an M.A. in Environmental Policy. Her research paper is entitled: Trade-off analysis as a tool to facilitate effective decision-making in natural resource management through examining different visualization techniques.
Whenever possible she enjoys spending time in the outdoors, going on adventures with her dog and friends.