Leading a local community in appreciating, understanding, and protecting birds and their natural habitats.

Board of Directors

Seattle Audubon is supported by a dedicated Board of Directors. They help to accomplish the mission to lead a local community in appreciating, understanding, and protecting birds and their natural habitats, through a set of shared values that underline our vision of a healthy environment in balance, where people enjoy, respect and care for our urban community.

Our Board of Directors play a vital role in ensuring Seattle Audubon has the strategic direction and necessary resources to create a sustainable community. In addition to their role as at large board members, several serve on Committees. We are grateful for their expertise and focus ranging from policy/legal, marketing, management, planning, communications, and community engagement to ensuring financial stability of the organization.

Officers    
Jennifer McKeirnan, President Andrew Schepers, Vice President  
Mary Bond, Secretary Susan Marks, Treasurer  
     
Board At Large    
Bryony Angell Kathryn Reniewicki  
Ashley Black Bob Sieh  
John Farnsworth, PhD Peggy Stromme  
Supriya Kumar, PhD Amanda Virbitsky  

 

2018-2019 Seattle Audubon Director Biographies

Jennifer McKeirnan, President: Jen is a Master Birder and leads field trips with Seattle Audubon. She is a graduate of the University of Washington with a BS in Mechanical Engineering and has earned her Project Management Professional (PMP) certification. She has worked at Boeing for over 15 years as a stress engineer,  flight controls test director and currently as a Project Manager.  In 2016, she took a year off of work to do a WA State Big Year and designed a website www.wabirdyear.com.  In her free time, she volunteers for various activities with Seattle Audubon including the Governance Committee.  She also enjoys traveling, hiking and biking.

Andrew Schepers, Vice President: Andrew has been building growth strategies using marketing technology for over fifteen years. He is currently the Senior Manager of Marketing Operations at Starbucks, where he leads a team responsible for digital content publishing and technical strategy across the US, Canada, and the UK. In his previous role managing email marketing for Teavana, his efforts engaged over two million new customers. He moved to Seattle in 2014, after falling in love with the local flora and fauna, especially the birds. Andrew strongly believes in engaging diverse communities in the effort to protect and renew nature. He has been active with Seattle Audubon’s NextGen Advisory Council since its inception in October 2018 and recently assisted Seattle Audubon with their email system migration and newsletter redesign. Andrew is an avid birder and regularly attends Seattle Audubon neighborhood walks, classes, and the CBC.

Mary Bond, Secretary: Mary Bond has lived in Seattle for over 35 years. Her children, now grown, participated in Seattle Audubon's Finding Urban Nature (FUN), Nature Camp, and Teen Birder programs. She served as SAS's Conservation Manager for two years. Most recently she has worked doing plant monitoring in prairie and sagebrush-steppe ecosystems for the University of Washington's Terrestrial Restoration Ecology Lab. Mary has a BA from The Evergreen State College, and a Certificate in Wetlands Management from the UW.

Susan Marks, Treasurer: Susan is a CPA and a semi-retired Audit Principal with McDonald Jacobs, P.C., with over thirty five years of experience as an auditor and practicing accountant, specializing in the nonprofit industry. After 15 years of commuting between Seattle and Portland for work, Susan has settled permanently in Kirkland with husband and pets. Susan also serves on the finance committee for The Street Trust (Portland). Susan received a BS degree in business administration/accounting from Oregon State University.  

Bryony Angell: Bryony is a lifelong resident of Seattle and was born into birding; her parents introduced her to annual trips to the Skagit to see eagles when she was a toddler. Birds and the outdoors have been a part of her life ever since. She's birded in Honduras, England and Italy's Po River Delta, but the Northwest is still her favorite place to spend time in nature. Bryony is a professional writer covering health care and parenting topics, and in her free time blogging about being an urban girl birder. She loves social media and wants to make birding as mainstream to her peers as brunch on Sundays. She lives with her husband James and children Vireo (yes that is his name!) and Vesper in North Seattle.

Ashley Black: Ashley has spent her career in communications, marketing, and branding in the high tech, biotech, and health care industries. She is also a writer of novels, short stories, and screenplays. She holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in philosophy and classical studies and an MFA in screenwriting from UCLA Film School. She explains how she became involved with Seattle Audubon: “I had just moved to Seattle and was missing my home in San Francisco when a crow dropped a stone on my head and cawed raucously at me. Then I knew what I had to do.”

John Farnsworth, PhD: John is relatively new to Seattle, having recently resigned his chair in environmental writing and literature at Santa Clara University. He is active as an author, with a book just released in November and another contracted in December with Cornell University Press. John brings considerable education leadership experience to the board, having spent 21 years in the classroom at both the secondary and post-secondary levels. He was bestowed Santa Clara University’s top teaching award in 2016, awarded a President’s Special Recognition Award, and emeritus status in the Department of Environmental Studies and Sciences. His PhD specialization was in Literary Natural History, and his writing highlights the conservation of endangered species and habitats. He also volunteers on the Puget Sound Seabird Survey at one of the new expansion sites in the San Juan Islands.

Supriya Kumar, PhD: Supriya is a Program Officer in global public health at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. She believes strongly in equity and access to resources for all members of society, irrespective of race, ethnicity, or economic ability to pay. As an immigrant mother, she represents the view point of immigrant families in Seattle, who may not always know of or know how to access the awesome opportunities to explore natural spaces through Audubon. As a scientist and former professor, she brings scientific leadership experience, and an interest in engaging communities in the value of science. She holds a Master of Public Health degree from the University of Pittsburgh and a PhD in biological sciences from Carnegie Mellon University.

Kathryn Reniewicki: Kathryn is a Human Resources professional with over 18 years of experience.  She is currently Director of Human Resources at the Institute for Systems Biology and was the Director of HR at EMP Museum for several years prior.  She has worked in HR for both profit and non-profit organizations and has been a vice president for the Seattle Chapter of the SHRM board. Her skills include strategic planning & implementation, business metric application and budget management. She currently lives in Magnolia and is an avid skier, hiker, traveler and tennis fan.

Bob Sieh: Bob is a past president of Seattle Audubon (1992-94), current chair of the Martin Miller Special Habitat Selection Committee, and was for many years a board member of EarthShare Washington. Bob grew up in Illinois, and moved to Seattle with his wife, Ellen, in 1975. Since then, Bob has practiced law in various areas, including real estate, corporate, and general practice.

Peggy Stromme: Peggy joined the SAS Board in the Summer of 2013.  She is a licensed CPA, and has worked exclusively in the insurance industry, holding a variety of positions including client service, operations and finance. Currently, she is employed by MCM, a large retail insurance brokerage firm in downtown Seattle. She has an accounting degree and a business degree, both from Central Washington University. She and her family all enjoy hiking, fishing and skiing.  In the past, she served on boards associated with youth service organizations. Her interest in SAS is largely due to their work to preserve habitat in the Northwest through education and awareness. She has lived in the greater Seattle area her entire life and believes that the Puget Sound and the mountains that surround it make it a treasure that deserves our careful stewardship.

Amanda Virbitsky: Virb (Amanda Virbitsky) is originally from Pennsylvania and first started birding while on a 2013 trip to New Zealand with her wife, where lots of the birds were both easy to identify and unfazed by humans. She moved to Portland, OR in 2013 and to Seattle in 2016, and is a graduate of the 2019 Seattle Audubon Master Birder class. She is excited about conservation, and thinks that birds are a great way to get more people outside and to connect them to the natural world. Virb holds a B.S. in Rehabilitation Science and an M.B.A. with a marketing focus, both from the University of Pittsburgh. In her day job as the Volunteer Services Representative at The Mountaineers, Virb helps people across Western Washington get outside safely by supporting volunteer leaders, and works with land managers across Washington state to ensure that the organization is in compliance with permit regulations. Additionally, she is the staff liaison for the "Mountain Queers" LGBTQIA+ affinity group, serves on the Climbing Stewardship and Access Committee, and assists with sustainability and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiatives. She is the elected chair of Seattle Audubon’s NextGen Advisory Council.

 

Committee Opportunities

Seattle Audubon has several program committees that support our organization’s mission to lead a local community in appreciating, understanding, and protecting birds and their natural habitats. Committee members provide their insight and experience in the areas of Environmental Education, Conservation, and Science. In addition, Seattle Audubon has several organizational  governance committees, including Development, Nominating, and Personnel Committees. The committees meet monthly or quarterly and are made up of both board and non-board members.

If you are interested in learning more about the Seattle Audubon Board positions or Committee roles, please send a message to volunteerc@seattleaudubon.org.

 

Seattle Audubon is nonprofit, tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization. Copyright Seattle Audubon.