WFO Board Transitions 2023

The annual WFO conference serves as the time to recognize outgoing Board members for their service and welcome new Board members. The Board welcomed four new members and thanked five outgoing members for their service.

Outgoing members were Matt Baumann, Wendy Beers, Susan Gilliland, Andy Mauro, and Kristie Nelson. Matt served for five years, as a member of the Publications Committee and as an associate editor for Western Birds, a position he continues to hold. Wendy served for six years on the Board, as a member of the Student Programs Committee and its chair, and helping on several conference meeting committees. Susan served for three years and was a member of the Graduate Student Research Grant Subcommittee of the Student Programs Committee. Andy served for three years, spearheading and founding our Birdathon Committee and serving on the Outreach and Fundraising, and Finance Committees. Kristie served for three years, as chair of the Conservation and Science Policy Committee and chair of the Finance Committee.

New Board members for 2023–2024 are Carol Beardmore, Teodelina Martelli, Robert McKernan, and Debbie Van Dooremolen. 

Carol Beardmore.

Carol Beardmore

Carol returns to the Board having served two terms beginning in 2007. She is a graduate of Kansas State University (bachelor of science degree in Wildlife Biology) and Texas A&M University (master’s degree in Wildlife Ecology). Her master’s research was on Golden-cheeked Warblers. In Texas she worked for the US Fish and Wildlife Service as a listing and recovery biologist and later in Arizona with the FWS Migratory Bird Program as western coordinator for Partners in Flight and science coordinator for the Sonoran Joint Venture.  She retired from the Fish and Wildlife Service after 28 years of service. Since retiring, she has been a contractor with the US Forest Service International Program and a volunteer for Arizona Game and Fish, both teaching birding and bird conservation and doing bird surveys and monitoring.

Teodelina Martelli.

Teodelina Martelli

Teodelina joined WFO when she was awarded a youth scholarship to attend the conference in 2014. Through the conference events, she made valuable connections and friendships that vastly expanded her understanding of the birding world and helped build her career in ornithology. She attended every conference after that, presenting research on the California Condor Recovery Program at the Science Sessions in 2017 and successfully fundraising at a banquet speech in 2018. Currently she is a rising senior at Pomona College in biology with a minor in late antiquities. During the summer of 2023, she worked at the Baldwin Lab of the Max Planck Institute for Biological Intelligence in Germany on a project with the goal of finding the genes controlling for taste receptors in different birds. It has been nine years since she joined WFO, and she is particularly grateful to the organization for its influence on her career.

Robert McKernan.

Robert McKernan

Robert has been a member of WFO since the 1970s, serving as president from 1990 to 1993. He is the emeritus director of the San Bernardino County Museum (SBCM). His professional career spans over 38 years: twelve years as SBCM museum director; five years as senior curator of biological sciences at the SBCM; seven years as assistant curator of biological sciences at SBCM; six years as research ornithologist at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (NHMLA); and four years as research biologist at the University of California, Riverside; and serving as a contract ornithologist with the California Desert Plan (BLM). Robert completed his undergraduate degree in zoology at California Polytechnic Pomona and his graduate work in zoology at Arizona State University. His research is principally in the southwestern US, including radar and night-vision studies of bird migration ecology in the southwestern US; research on sensitive and endangered riparian birds along the lower Colorado River (Bureau of Reclamation–SBCM); and 25 years studying Eared Grebes and other waterbird populations at the Salton Sea in collaboration with Hubbs-SeaWorld Research Institute, NHMLA, SBCM, and various federal and state agencies.

Debbie Van Dooremolen.

Debbie Van Dooremolen

Debbie returns to the Board having served two terms beginning in 2007. She has been an environmental biologist with the Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) since 2001 and has managed the avian monitoring program on Las Vegas Wash, the primary drainage channel for Las Vegas Valley watershed, for more than 15 years. Within the past 10 years, she has also taken over compliance-related bird surveys at the Warm Springs Natural Area in Moapa, Nevada, which SNWA owns and manages for the benefit of native species. She enjoys teaching the Las Vegas community about the Wash and its wildlife through outreach and education and has developed the bird identification component of SNWA’s education program. She gives presentations and tours each year to various stakeholder groups, speaking to hundreds of people. Debbie participates in a number of professional organizations, such as Nevada Partners in Flight and the Lower Colorado River Terrestrial and Riparian biologists’ group.

—John Harris, President


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