Sound Water Stewards - Board of Directors - 2015-2016


Jay Adams

Beach Watcher Experience

Life/Work Experience

Skills re Board

Passions/Hobbies

Reason I want to serve


Sound Water Stewards - Board of Directors

Kate S Ambrus

  • BW Class of 2013
  • Camano resident since 2009

Beach Watcher Experience

  • Frequent participant in Camano Intertidal Monitoring, and occasional participant in Whidbey Monitoring (love doing quadrats)
  • Steering Committee Member for 6 months in the past year
  • Project Committee Member
  • Member of Training Committee for 3 months
  • Participated in phytoplankton training at NOAA Fisheries (would like to do monitoring on Camano if microscopes become available)
  • "Beach Captain" for Iverson Spit Sea Grant/UW invasive European Green Crab monitoring
  • Assisted with EZID training for Camano Island BW Trainees, and currently mentor one trainee
  • Participate in trainings given by other environmental groups such as Shannon Point (eel grass), or Padilla Bay (water quality)
  • Presenter at FOCIP Educational Days for second Graders at the Camano State Park for the last two years
  • Presented at BW monthly meeting on the history of Glacier Peak

Life/Work Experience

  • Bench Scientist - microbiologist - in an R&D lab with Allergan Pharmaceuticals for 26 years
  • Manager of a an R&D microbiology lab for the spin-off company now Abbot Medical Optics for 7 years prior to retirement
  • Administrative experience, knowledge of many computer programs, data bases, Internet, literature searches
  • BS in medical microbiology, MA in general psychology, some graduate work in geology
  • Catalogued and coordinated a library at a Mt. Vernon church, and provided some support for the BW library on Camano
  • Previously lived in Southern California for 40 years, and Czech Republic)

Skills re Board

  • Member at large of Board of Directors for a church in Mt Vernon for one year (church size about 80 members)
  • Administrative experience

Passions/Hobbies

  • Mushroom hunting
  • Geology
  • Nature and Hiking
  • Travel (to exotic places of the temperate and arctic climates)
  • Love to learn new things
  • Photography

Reason I want to serve

  • Help maintain the new Beach Watchers organization as a vibrant, enthusiastic and involved group of citizen scientists. Finding new and creative ways to run the new organization.

Dave Brubaker

  • BW Class of 2008
  • Camano resident since 2006
    (spend winters in Prescott, AZ)

Beach Watcher Experience

  • Co-coordinator of Camano Intertidal Monitoring
  • Steering Committee Member
  • Project Committee Member
  • Co-coordinator (with Linda Brubaker) Camano 2011 Training
  • Member of Training Committee
  • BWAC Monitoring Committee
  • BWAC Structure Committee
  • Member of Barbara's Science Advisory Committee
  • Provide EZID Refresher for Camano Island BW and EZID for BW Trainees
  • Camano/Snohomish Eco-Net member
  • Crab Cord Education
  • European Green Crab Monitoring Training

Life/Work Experience

  • Twenty six years of College Biology teaching at Seattle University; Ecology, Invertebrate Zoology, Marine Biology
  • Field Trip organization and logistics
  • Field data collection
  • Administrative experience: Chair of Biology Department for 6 years; Chair of General Science Department for 3 years; Co-founder and Director of Environmental Studies Program (11 years); Founder of Seattle University's Environmental Council

Skills re Board

  • Member of Board of Directors of Earth Ministry of Seattle (6 years)
  • Board Chair (3 years). Facilitated transition from founding Executive Director to Interim Executive Director to new Executive Director

Passions/Hobbies

  • Environmental Stewardship
  • Being an Eco-grandfather
  • Collecting Insects
  • Playing the Autoharp

Reason I want to serve

  • To help provide the new non-profit with a sound and enthusiastic start

Lois Farrington

  • BW Class of 2015
  • Whidbey resident since 2003

Beach Watchers Experience

  • Clam harvester count, two beach monitoring sites, helped in the Beach Watchers booth at the Penn Cove Water festival, enjoyed many quiet mornings with the Mutiny Sands Pigeon Guillemot survey, currently serving as Program Committee Co-Chair for Sound Waters 2016, and also wading in the muck at Race Lagoon for the European Green Crab survey. All of it fun!

Life/Work Experience

  • With a degree in Biology and a career in clinical microbiology, I am familiar with biological processes, cell physiology, and biochemistry, which help me understand the material we are given in Beach Watchers classes.
  • I also worked for a short time in Sialkot, Pakistan upgrading laboratory procedures and training staff for a hospital in that area.

Skills re Board

  • My experience includes positions in supervision and laboratory management, including financial planning and forecasting for a small laboratory.

Passions/Hobbies

  • My love of the natural world began at an early age with countless family outings in the mountains and on the sea. Hiking is still my passion, as well as fine art nature photography, oil painting, gardening, traveling, and just about any adventure you can dream up. I love shopping the farmer's markets and tasting fine food, too!

Reason I want to serve

  • Beach Watchers is an extraordinary organization of enthusiastic people, who are eager to learn and contribute their diverse talents. I think we have a unique commitment to both public education and participatory environmental science.

Bob Gentz

  • BW Class of 2008
  • Whidbey resident since 2001

Beach Watcher Experience

  • Beach Watcher Advisory Council (since 2015),
  • Sound Waters Committee Treasurer (since 2008),
  • Development Committee (since 2014),
  • Seining Project (since 2008),
  • Eelgrass Monitoring Project (since 2008), and
  • Intertidal Monitoring, Forage Fish Study, Fishing Line Recycling, Beach Clean-up, and Education Outreach.

Life/Work Experience

  • Project manager, engineering administrator, & engineer (Retired)
  • Whidbey Watershed Stewards Board Member, Treasurer, Educator, & Land Steward
  • Goosefoot Community Fund Board Member & Treasurer
  • Whidbey Audubon Society Board Member & Treasurer (2009 to 2011),
  • Whidbey Camano Land Trust Steward
  • The Nature Conservancy Steward
  • COASST
  • WSU Climate Steward Program, Waste Wise Program

Skills re Board

  • Board and Treasurer experience with various non-profit organizations, project management, financial management, and business management.

Passions/Hobbies

  • Enjoying the Pacific Northwest 's unique natural environment, exploring its many beaches and wilderness trails.
  • Concerned about environmental health, wildlife preservation, and sustainable living practices.

Reason I want to serve

  • Develop the new organization into a sustainable operation. Work to further engage current Beach Watchers. Increase public outreach.

Linda Ade Ridder

  • BW Class of 2005
  • Whidbey resident since 2002

Beach Watchers Experience

  • Sound Waters Team member, 2009-present (Secretary 2009-10; Program Chair 2011-2013; Event Chair 2014, 2015; Advisor, 2016)
  • BW Futures Committee, 2013
  • BW Change Committee, 2015-present (Chair)
  • Various other BW activities, including BW Travel Coordinator, 2006-08; Beach Monitoring, 2006; Beach Litter Clean-up

Life/Work Experience

  • Retired University Professor Emerita, Miami University of Ohio; Department Chair (including program, personnel and budget responsibility, etc. for two departments: Family & Consumer Sciences (had to close it down) and later Sociology, Gerontology, Anthropology), Faculty Senate (headed Faculty Governance for many years, including creating an electronic voting system for faculty elections). Served on many committees, etc.
  • Whidbey Watershed Stewards, 2002-2012 (Board Member 2002-12, Board President 2006-2009) [close collaborator with BW through 2010; included major organizational changes, including governance, name and rebuilding the Board] and EcoNet (WWS was the lead organization from start in 2009 for 2-3 years).
  • Helped found and create a new non-profit, Mother Mentors of Whidbey Island, 2009-present (led governance non-profit and organizational development; Board President since inception; now has a $100,000 budget with one third in reserve by our 3rd year).
  • Served on many Boards throughout career, including in Island Co. Big Brothers Big Sisters (led S.Whidbey auction fundraiser several years) and Readiness to Learn Foundation (fiscal sponsor for MMWI prior to becoming 501(c)(3)).
  • Co-Chaired assessment of Child Protective Services in Butler Co., Ohio (350,000 residents); wrote report/recommendations; restructured CPS (with more than 500 children in out of home care) from the Co. Health Department to an independent non-profit; served on the Board and as Board President.

Skills re Board

  • Organizational Development (extensive experience); governance experience; communications; served on many Boards (especially social service ones); comfortable with web/computer environment; detail-oriented; familiar with personnel and budget issues; navigated politically difficult situations; university level graduate and undergraduate instruction.

Passions/Hobbies

  • I love the natural world and want to preserve it; love being a grandparent; love to garden, sew, cook, watch movies, travel, and observe the constantly changing world outside our door! We chose Whidbey as the place where we want to grow old and live out the rest of our lives and where we want to do what we can to preserve and sustain it for future generations. This is a special place, and we want to leave it enhanced, not diminished.

Reason I want to serve

  • The transformation for this organization that I care about is just beginning, and in collaboration with a diverse and dedicated team, I would like to continue to develop the vision of what this organization can become, incorporating the best of the past with the potential of the future.

Amnon Shoenfeld

  • BW Class of 2015
  • Camano residence since 1987
    (live in Seattle)

Beach Watcher Experience

  • have really enjoyed learning all the things needed to be a contributing Beach Watcher.

Life/Work Experience

  • I worked for King County Human Services for 34 years, the last 12 as director of the mental health and substance abuse service division, which has 140 staff and a yearly budget of $200 million.
  • My other volunteer work includes Cascade Bicycle Club and serving as the Board Chair for Forefront, a non-profit organization based in the UW School of Social Work that focuses on suicide prevention training, advocacy, and support for survivors.
  • Now that my wife and I are both retired, we have more time to get involved in volunteer work on the island.

Skills re Board

  • Executive experience for organization of 140 staff
  • Board experience on non-profit.

Passions/Hobbies

  • Love to learn, travel, music - playing and singing, swimming and biking

Reason I want to serve

  • I think my management and board experience would be helpful as Beach Watchers transitions to a new structure.

Tom Vos

  • BW Class of 2009
  • Whidbey resident since 2003

Beach Watcher Experience

  • Worked, as a class project on taking PSP's Puget Sound Starts Here, adapting the message to Whidbey, and gave presentations at numerous organizations' events.
  • Beach Watcher Advisory Council 2010-2015, President 2013 and 2014
  • Organized and current facilitator of BW Development Committee 2014-2015
  • "Enthusiastic volunteer" in beach monitoring, seining, eel grass mapping, occasional events, and current lead for the Maxwelton Tidepool monitoring team.

Life/Work Experience

  • Started as a Design Engineer in the Automotive Industry coincident with the emergence of Automotive Safety Regulations and redirected my career into the design, manufacturing, and promotion of safety products ... seat belts, air bags, and infant carriers. Many unique and memorable experiences in the assembly of multi-disciplinary teams and the development of new technologies. Even at the Director level, my knowledge of the product and technology had me as the technical spokesman for the company, speaking with the auto engineers and government agencies around the world. I made many friends around the world and, upon retirement in 2003 was flattered by being named Design News (magazine) Engineer of the Year.
  • In Michingan, held positions in various local church and government (township planning committee).
  • Friends of Saratoga Woods - 2005-2008
  • Hearts & Hammers Board 2006-20015, volunteer coordinator 2014 & 2015
  • Baby Island Saratoga Club Bord - 2010-2015

Skills re Board

  • through BWAC, strong knowledge of BW people, activities, and challenges.
  • strong management, team leadership, delegation and presentation skills.

Passions/Hobbies

  • Architectural design and construction: Designed and built 5 houses
  • Gardening
  • Living in the most beautiful part of the world

Reason I want to serve

  • I want to see a seamless transition from our current program into a strong and sustainable non-profit corporation. I think my six years on BWAC and having been engaged in varous capacities in BWs allows me to contribute to this start up process.

John Welsch

  • BW Class of 2014
  • Whidbey resident since 2007

Beach Watcher Experience

  • Current Treasurer Beach Watcher Advisory Council (BWAC)
  • Current Beach Watcher Advisory Member (BWAC)
  • Intertidal Monitoring
  • Beach Litter Cleanup

Life/Work Experience

  • Over 40 years of experience with business accounting, including many years with my own businesses.
  • Setup new accounting systems for many different businesses.
  • Volunteer Firefighter / EMT (Urbandale, Iowa)
  • South Whidbey Island Rotary (2008-2012)
  • Hearts and Hammers Volunteer

Skills re Board

  • Current Beach Watcher financial knowledge and experience while working with LEP & WSU for Beach Watchers
  • Current Board member / Data manager - Whidbey Island Garden Tour
  • Current Chairman - Useless Bay Shores Water District
  • Past Chairman and member of a church finance committee.
  • Past Treasurer and President of a homeowners association.
  • Past President and board member of a retail association.

Passions/Hobbies

  • Travel, Hiking, Gardening, Woodworking, Family, Boating.

Reason I want to serve

  • To help facilitate a smooth financial transition from WSU Beach Watchers to the new organization, and also to help set up a new working board instead of an Advisory Council.