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How Elizabeth Hargrave turned a passion for ornithology and spreadsheets into a popular game about birds

The New York Times – She invented a board game with scientific integrity, and now it is taking off: “..Elizabeth Hargrave, a health-policy consultant in Silver Spring, Md., is an avid birder, and her favorite local winter birding spot is the Lake Artemesia Natural Area. Fringed with woods, the lake is artificial, excavated during the construction of Washington’s Green Line in the 1970s; in those days, the area was known as Lake Metro….Ms. Hargrave is more diver than dabbler. A spreadsheet geek with a master’s degree in public affairs, she spent more than a decade as a policy analyst with NORC at the University of Chicago. There, she studied, among other things, prescription drug trends for the report to Congress by the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission. She is now her spare time, she’s been crossbreeding her analytics skills and her birding hobby to hatch something new: a board game, her first ever, about … birds. In “Wingspan,” published Friday by Stonemaier Games, players assign birds with various powers — represented by 170 illustrated cards, hand-drawn by two artists, Natalia Rojas and Ana Maria Martinez Jaramillo — to wetland, grassland and forest habitats…”

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