Conservation Biology Institute
Bridging conservation science and practice

Executive Team

James Strittholt, Ph.D.
President and Executive Director

Jim Strittholt is President and Executive Director of the Conservation Biology Institute and has over 10 years experience in applying computer mapping technologies (including GIS and remote sensing) to address various ecological assessments and conservation planning projects in the U.S. and internationally. He holds undergraduate degrees in ...

Pamela Frost, M.S.
Director of Operations, Conservation Biologist/GIS Analyst

Pamela A. Frost earned a B.S. in Environmental Science from the University of Maine, Machias in 1984 and a M.S. in Natural Resource Information Systems from Ohio State University (Columbus, Ohio) in 1994.  While at Ohio State, she was involved in a number of Federally funded conservation GIS projects including database construction and ...

Lisa Alley
Administrative Assistant

Lisa Alley joined CBI as an Administrative Assistant in May 2014. She is new to the conservation community, but has spent the last 15 years providing back office support for an organization that provided software used internally within credit unions. She is an incredible asset to CBI, providing support and assisting with deadlines. During her ...

Science & GIS Analysis

Dominique Bachelet, Ph.D.
Senior Climate Change Scientist

Dominique was born and raised in northern France. She received her Master’s degree in 1978 in Lille (France) and her Ph.D. in 1983 at Colorado State University working on biogeochemical cycles in the shortgrass prairie. In 1984, after a brief 3 months in Thailand teaching a simulation modeling class, she went to U.C. Riverside as a postdoc ...

Barry Baker, Ph.D.
Senior Research Scientist

Barry received a Ph.D. from Colorado State University in 1991 where his research focused on the effects of climate change on grassland/livestock ecosystems.  Since then, he has worked in Argentina, China, Mongolia, and the US for the United Nations’ Development and Environmental Programmes, the US Environmental Protection ...

Tosha Comendant, Ph.D.
Senior Conservation Scientist

Dr. Comendant is a Senior Scientist and Director of Science Support and Communication with 15 years of experience in research, communication, and organizational capacity building.  Her program and project work is at the nexus of conservation science and technology.  She has a proven track record developing innovative methods, tools, ...

Gwynne Corrigan, M.S.
Project Manager & Communications Coordinator

Gwynne lives in the San Francisco Bay Area of California and has for the past 16 years.  Her life-long interest in ecology and biology brought her to the University of California at Santa Cruz for both her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees.  As an undergraduate, Gwynne worked on projects including studies related to the ...

Rebecca Degagne, M.S.
GIS Analyst, Cartographer, Conservation Biologist

Rebecca Degagne joined the Conservation Biology Institute in 2012. As a GIS analyst and biologist, she employs techniques in spatial analysis & modeling, remote sensing, and cartographic design to explore the natural world and help further conservation efforts. Her multidisciplinary background allows her to create sound, ...

Ken Ferschweiler
Senior Software Architect, Modeler

Ken has 30 years of experience in computer science, and in 2010 he jumped at the opportunity to join CBI's climate change research group and use that experience in addressing ecological modeling problems. Ken has worked in the US and in Europe in areas ranging from artificial intelligence to massively parallel computing, but has been ...

Kai Foster (Henifin), M.A.
Project Manager, GIS Analyst

Kai Foster is a Cultural Ecologist/GIS Analyst with professional and academic experience working with diverse communities on a broad range of environmental issues.  In 2008, she joined Conservation Biology Institute focusing her attention primarily on protected areas in the United States.  Before joining the CBI team, Kai spent three ...

John Gallo, Ph.D.
Senior Scientist

Dr. Gallo started his career as an ecologist surveying for endangered species, developing habitat relationship models, and initiating a long-term ecological monitoring project. He also directed the start-up of a conservation science non-governmental organization (NGO) focused on sustaining the natural heritage of its region via science, ...

Patricia Gordon-Reedy, M.A.
Botanist, Vegetation Ecologist

 Patricia Gordon-Reedy is a Botanist/Senior Vegetation Ecologist with 30 years of experience in endangered species research and conservation planning for private, government, and non-profit sectors throughout the western U.S. and in Europe.  She has been involved in all phases of Natural Community Conservation Planning programs in ...

Mike Gough, B.S.
GIS Analyst

Mike Gough is a GIS analyst with over 8 years professional experience in the geospatial sciences. Prior to joining CBI in 2012, Mike served as a GIS lecturer in the Environmental Science & Management Department at Humboldt State University in Arcata, CA.  During his tenure with HSU’s Institute for Spatial Analysis, he served as the ...

Heather Rustigian-Romsos, M.A., M.S.
Conservation Biologist, GIS Analyst

Heather joined CBI in August 2003. She is a landscape ecologist/GIS specialist whose work has focused on predicting effects of land management and landscape change on vertebrates with spatially explicit habitat, population, and connectivity models. She has over 10 years of experience in applied ecological GIS analysis and modeling.  Heather ...

Tim Sheehan, M.S.
Ecological Modeler

Tim joined the Conservation Biology Institute in 2008. He has an M.S. in Geology from the University of Missouri - Columbia and an M.S. in Computer Science from the University of Colorado - Boulder. His experience includes porting and tuning climate modeling software on massively parallel supercomputers as well as developing high data flow ...

Wayne Spencer, Ph.D.
Director of Conservation Assessment and Planning

Dr. Spencer is a wildlife conservation biologist with over 30 years of professional experience in biological research and conservation planning.  He specializes in the practical application of ecological and conservation science to resources management, design of nature reserves, and recovery of endangered species.  He has conducted ...

Jerre Ann Stallcup, M.A.
Conservation Biologist

Jerre has worked with CBI for 16 years as a conservation ecologist in endangered species research and landscape-scale conservation planning and management of natural resources in the U.S., Europe, and Mexico. She is passionate about developing and orchestrating partnerships among the academic community, government agencies, non-governmental ...

Alexandra Syphard, Ph.D.
Senior Research Scientist

Alexandra Syphard is a research ecologist who investigates landscape change that results from the interplay between human and natural disturbances, especially wildfire, urban development, and climate change. She uses a variety of spatial analytical and modeling methods to investigate how change has occurred in the past, how it is likely to ...

Ann Van Zee, M.S.
Communications Specialist

Ann joined the CBI team in September of 2013. She has her M.S. in Community Development and Natural Resource Management and a B.A. in Business and Communications with a minor in Spanish. Her background is in marketing, publications and education and she has extensive writing, editing and production experience. Prior to joining CBI she worked as a ...

Jessie Vinje, B.S.

Jessica is a biologist with 17 years’ professional experience in field biology, botany and land management throughout California with a strong background in coastal and desert ecology, botany, wildlife biology, and desert and coastal natural resource management and restoration.  She is particularly knowledgeable of the Central and ...

Brendan Ward, M.S.
Software Engineer, Conservation Biologist, GIS Analyst

Brendan Ward joined the Conservation Biology Institute in December 2007.  He has brought experience in GIS, spatial analysis, ecological modeling, and software development to the institute.  Brendan has a passion for harnessing computer power to advance conservation science and ecological research.  He aspires to contribute to ...

Katie O'Connor, M.S.
GIS Technician/Freshwater Specialist

Katie O’Connor is the Freshwater Specialist and a GIS Technician for Conservation Biology Institute. She focuses on promoting enhanced data collection, collaboration, and policy decisions for land managers and citizen science groups through the use of Data Basin, a web-based tool that provides access to data and tools to integrate complex ...

Software Engineer

Daniel Harvey
Software Engineer

Daniel Harvey joined CBI in November 2013. He specializes in application and database design and development, with experience spanning Microsoft and Unix-based platforms and a broad range of client- and server-side technologies. Since earning a Master’s Degree in Computer Science in 2006 with an emphasis in GIS, he has worked in many ...

Mike Lundin
Software Engineer

Mike got his Bachelor of Arts in English from Oregon State University. After becoming a technical writer, he discovered that he enjoyed writing code more than he enjoyed writing documentation. He has spent the last 10 years working with programming languages and databases while designing and maintaining software used internally by credit unions. ...

Tara Starr E. Marvin
Software Engineer

Tara joined Conservation Biology Institute in March of 2010 as a Software Engineer. She brings over 15 years of experience in the software industry with a focus on web applications. Tara has a passion for building intuitive, helpful web applications that run smoothly. She's currently working on the Data Basin system...doing what she can to make ...

Nikolas Stevenson-Molnar
Software Engineer

Nik grew up in rural Eastern Washington, and took an early interest in computers and programming. He followed this passion throughout childhood and into college, attending The Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA and studying software design and media. While at Evergreen, Nik found a job working on software to manage and ...


Justin Brice
GIS Intern

Justin recently joined the CBI team in October of 2015. He has a B.S. in Wildlife Conservation and Management with a minor in Geospatial Sciences from Humboldt State University. His background is in small mammal ecology. Prior to joining CBI his work has been in the field studying small mammals and analyzing habitat characteristics. At CBI, ...

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