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A Bit About Me

Bettymaya Foott

Photographer and dark sky advocate


+1 435-260-8540


An avid astrophotographer, you can usually find me out under the stars with one of my three cameras battling off mosquitos. My photography has been featured in Sky and Telescope, National Geographic, and the Los Angeles Times. My dark sky advocacy efforts have reached TedX Kansas City and the New York Times. 

Growing up in picturesque Moab, Utah and spending summer nights sleeping on the trampoline under the stars, I fostered an early appreciation for the night sky. My childhood was filled with hiking, camping, boating, and wandering in the desert, both below the hot sun and under clear dark skies.


I graduated from the University of Utah Honors Program with an H.B.S. in Environmental and Sustainability Studies and a Minor in Spanish Language and wrote a thesis entitled “Light pollution hazards within ecosystems and mitigation strategies for the future.”


My dark sky career began working for Utah State Parks, starting 12 International Dark Sky Park applications across the state. I then worked as Coordinator for the Colorado Plateau Dark Sky Cooperative and the Consortium for Dark Sky Studies at the University of Utah before making my way to DarkSky International. Preserving dark skies is my life goal and I find that astrophotography is an incredibly effective way to connect people with the beauty and value of a dark sky. 


Work Experience

Director of Engagement

DarkSky International

2018 - Present


Colorado Plateau Dark Sky Cooperative


Lead Park Ranger Aide

Utah Department of Natural Resources


  • Directs DarkSky’s global advocacy program to empower grassroots engagement around the issue of light pollution.

  • Plans and executes all DarkSky global events, including International Dark Sky Week, the Under One Sky global virtual conference, and the Capture the Dark photo contest.

  • Administers 70+ DarkSky chapters, 100+ delegates, and 2500+ advocates in 40+ countries.

  • Builds alignment among volunteers around brand key message, voice, and positions.

  • Manages a program of regular, two-way communications, including training, networking, and reporting, with volunteers.

  • Directed and administered training and educational programs across the Colorado Plateau, emphasizing citizen and municipal engagement.

  • Planned, marketed, and executed an inaugural stakeholder workshop engaging people across the Colorado Plateau.

  • Organized, documented, and promoted dark sky events, including a dark sky symphony tour.

  • Created marketing and outreach materials. Managed and updated website and social media.

  • Supported the creation of the University of Utah Consortium for Dark Sky Studies, the first academic center of its kind.

  • Created and implemented the Utah State Parks Dark Sky Program.

  • Authored and administered 12 International Dark Sky Park Applications.

  • Drafted and coordinated  lightscape management plans with park personnel.

  • Administered exterior lighting data collection, entry, and analysis across 12 parks.



Honors Bachelor's of Science

University of Utah


HBS Environmental and Sustainability Studies​

  • Spanish Language Minor

  • Senior thesis: Light Pollution Hazards Within Ecosystems and Mitigation Strategies for the Future

  • Eccles Distinguished Scholarship Award

Professional Affiliations

  • Official Photographer for The World At Night (TWAN)

  • Board of Directors, IAU North American Regional Office of Astronomy for Development

  • Ambassador, Astronomy in Chile Educators Ambassador Program, 2022

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