WCS North America


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Riley Pollom
BC KBA Regional Coordinator
Riley is the BC Key Biodiversity Areas Regional Coordinator, and supports the work of the Canada KBA Coalition on the Pacific coast. Originally from the prairies, Riley has worked on species and ecosystem conservation across Canada and internationally. He has bachelors degrees in Ecology and Geography from the University of Calgary and a MSc in Biology from Memorial University of Newfoundland. He has worked in terrestrial, freshwater, and marine systems on a variety of taxa, including sharks and rays, seahorses, pipefishes and seadragons, large cats, small mammals, prairie grasses, herbaceous plants, and mosses. This work has involved a diversity of stakeholders, including governments, NGOs, consultants, landowners, and the zoo and aquarium community. Riley has co-authored or facilitated over 600 species assessments for the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, and is a certified Red List Trainer. His Red List work has included organizing international multistakeholder workshops in Brazil, Canada, Colombia, the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, the United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and USA.
Twitter | LinkedIn | Research Gate | iNaturalist
Ross Dorendorf
Wolverine Research Coordinator
Ross Dorendorf has aided federal, state, non-governmental organizations, and contractors in wildlife research and management since he completed his undergraduate degree from the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point. He worked on a variety of research projects across the United States including mammals, birds, fish, amphibians, and insects. Working on studies looking into the dynamic between humans and wildlife particularly interested him. Ross’s passion for the far north and its furbearers lead him to the University of Alaska – Fairbanks where graduated with a master’s degree concentrated on improving indices of furbearer abundance. He now focuses on coordinating wolverine ecology research in Arctic Beringia with a focus on female denning locations and diet.
Sally Andersen
Arctic Beringia Program Assistant
Sally has worked in Alaska for the past 20 years for federal, State, private and non-profit organizations. She has a Master’s degree in botany and wide experience as a field biologist. Her Master’s program through the University of Vermont placed a strong emphasis on communication skills, which is apparent in her writing and web administration abilities. Sally is co-owner of Arctic Wild, a wilderness guide service offering remote expeditions throughout Alaska. She is well versed in arctic field logistics, financial management, and the permitting process for federal and State agencies.
Sarah Reed
Associate Conservationist with Livelihoods Program
Sarah Reed is Associate Conservation Scientist with the Livelihoods Program. She is currently a Smith Conservation Research Fellow at Colorado State University. Her research examines how human development patterns and land use practices affect wildlife and biodiversity. Sarah has worked extensively with government agencies and conservation organizations, addressing issues from local to national scales of resource management, in public as well as private lands contexts. She is especially motivated by research projects that have the potential to inform land use decisions and conservation policies as well as to expand our understanding of how species respond to human disturbances. Sarah’s current research investigates alternative strategies for residential site design to protect biodiversity on private lands. Sarah recently joined the Board of Directors for the Society of Conservation Biology – North America Section. She also lead several projects—Dr. Reed: 1) Co-leads an interdisciplinary working group on the social, economic, and ecological dimensions of conservation development (School of Global Environmental Sustainability); 2) Integrates social and biological information to map human-wildlife conflicts (National Wildlife Research Center), and 3) Maps how habitat connectivity and threats to connectivity in southern Colorado (Southern Rockies Landscape Conservation Collaborative). Sarah earned her Ph.D. in Environmental Science, Policy & Management from University of California, Berkeley. She is based in Fort Collins, Colorado.
Shannon Roberts
Financial/Operations Manager
As Regional Business Manager of the Rockies Program, Shannon is responsible for the creation, implementation and analysis of the Rockies multi-million dollar budget. She also manages the operational details of multi-staffed offices and multiple field sites. Shannon is the Rockies Program Human Resource liaison and is responsible for assisting with recruiting, hiring, evaluating and promoting Rockies staff and all of the details associated with that duty. Shannon joined WCS in 2007 and brings many years of conservation finance experience with various other organizations. Shannon also has experience as Director of an active vacation company. Shannon is a fourth generation Montanan, and as sister, daughter and grand-daughter of US Forest Service engineers she grew up appreciating the importance of conservation management and the cohesive relationship between agencies and the public. Shannon's education is in Political Science from Montana State University, as well as a plethora of additional finance, travel and business management courses.
Stephen Insley
Associate Conservation Scientist
Dr. Stephen Insley is the WCS Canada Arctic Lead and part of the broader WCS Arctic Beringia program, working on the effects of climate change on Arctic ecosystems and northern communities. He leads two main projects in the Inuvialuit Settlement Region with Inuvialuit partners. The first uses passive acoustics to predict and avoid future shipping impacts through ambient underwater noise monitoring, identifying biologically sensitive areas, and predicting ship noise footprints. The second project collaborates with Inuvialuit communities to monitor seal diet and condition in order to understand ecosystem change and its effect on local food security. His research background has had three general themes: (1) animal acoustic behaviour; (2) the application of behavioural ecology principals and techniques to conservation biology; and (3) conservation through local stewardship. His approach has involved experimental field biology, mostly with pinnipeds and seabirds, and working with remote subsistence communities in a wide variety of field locations including the Bering Sea, the North and South Pacific and the North Atlantic Oceans. He has graduate degrees from the University of California Davis and the University of Victoria, where he is an Adjunct Professor of Biology, as well as Postdoctoral experience at the Smithsonian Institution.
Research Gate | Google Scholar | LinkedIn | Arctic acoustics program
Steven Gallo
System Administrator
Steven Gallo has been working with WCS since 2004 in various capacities. His current role is System Administrator for Global Programs with IT responsibility for systems including SunSystems, the Human Asset Database, and the Time and Effort Reporting system.
Tina Dias
HR and Finance Administrator
Tina supports the WCS Canada Toronto office throughout the full scope of its Human Resource and Finance functions inclusive of recruitment, payroll, policy development/amendments, employee relations and all relating initiatives. Tina is also a part of the operations team, providing support to execute upcoming organizational goals and strategies. After graduating from York University with her Bachelor of Health Sciences, Tina has worked in an array of Administrative positions in both the corporate in non-profit sectors over the past 8 years; her roles have focused on providing support and development direction for Human Resource and Operational initiatives.
Tobi Oke
Post-Doctoral Fellow
Tobi Oke is a post-doctoral fellow with WCS Canada and the University of Saskatchewan, working on the Northern Boreal Climate Change Adaptation program. Tobi uses bioclimatic envelopes and vegetation models to evaluate species distributions, vulnerability, and projections for future distributions under climate change and natural disturbance. He also facilitates the development of web-based decision-support tools for interactive model parameterization and evaluation for northern ecosystems, in collaboration with the South Beringia Priority Place Initiative, Yukon First Nation Governments, Yukon Environment, Canadian Wildlife Service, Yukon Land Use Planning Council, and the Canadian Forest Service. Tobi completed his PhD in Integrative Biology at the University of Guelph, where he explored some of the mechanistic workings of northern peatlands, from plant traits to ecosystem dynamics including projections for future distribution of peatlands in North America. He recently completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Texas Marine Science Institute, where he led a biodiversity synthesis project, using long-term fisheries independent surveys that he compiled for estuaries across the U.S coast, from the Gulf of Maine to the Gulf of Mexico. Google Scholar
William Halliday
Associate Conservation Scientist
Bill is an Associate Conservation Scientist in WCS Canada’s Arctic Beringia Program. He is based in Victoria, and works closely with Dr. Steve Insley in WCS Canada’s Whitehorse office, as well as with Dr. Francis Juanes at the University of Victoria. Bill studies marine mammals and fish in the western Canadian Arctic using passive acoustic monitoring (i.e. underwater listening). He examines how climate change and vessel traffic influence these animals, and is particularly interested in underwater noise pollution and the development of effective marine spatial planning. Bill has a strong background in quantitative ecology, with a specialization on habitat selection and animal behaviour, including four years of experience working at remote field sites in the Arctic on lemmings. Previously, Bill was a post-doctoral fellow with WCS Canada, completed his PhD at the University of Ottawa, and his MSc and BSc at Lakehead University.
Twitter | Website | Arctic acoustics program
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