Makeyev is a field biologist for the Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo County in California. She has been working on a conservation plan for 9,000 acres of coastal dune habitat and is close to finishing her goal. Makeyev has a degree in environmental studies from the University of California-Santa Barbara where she also worked in several lab projects at the Marine Science Institute on campus. Studying out of Woodshole, Massachusetts, Makeyev sailed the length of the North Atlantic on the crew of the SSV Corwith Cramer, doing original research on pelagic copepods. An avid equestrian, she rode her horse 1,700 miles from Mexico to Oregon last summer.