John Takekawa, San Francisco Bay Program Director, 415-388-2524 x108
John’s most recent assignment was as the Director of Bird Conservation for National Audubon Society, but in his new position, his role will be to help set strategic directions and guidance for the San Francisco Bay Program. Prior to 2014, John worked for 33 years as a supervisory research biologist for the USGS and USFWS and founded the USGS San Francisco Bay Estuary Field Station in 1995. He initiated programs in San Francisco Bay on migratory and endemic waterbirds, salt pond ecology and restoration, foraging ecology and contaminant effects on waterfowl and shorebirds, tidal marsh wetland restoration, and climate change effects on estuarine habitats, and he built the field station into an office supporting 30 full-time staff including postdocs, graduate students, and interns. John has coauthored more than 210 peer-reviewed scientific papers, and he has developed partnerships for conservation of waterbirds and wetlands in the estuary, on the Pacific coast, and internationally. A resident of the Bay Area for more than 25 years, John is a native Minnesotan with an undergraduate degree in Forestry and Wildlife from the University of Washington, a Master’s degree in Wildlife Biology from the University of Idaho, and a PhD in Animal Ecology from Iowa State University.
Andrea Jones, Director of Bird Conservation (CA), 415-388-2524 x113
Andrea leads our coastal programs and works with staff and the network of Audubon chapters across the state to implement conservation projects at high priority Important Bird Areas (IBAs). She oversee our efforts in priority bird species and serves as the spokeswoman for bird conservation across California. Prior to California, Andrea worked at Massachusetts Audubon where she served as the Director of the Coastal Waterbird Program. Andrea received her M.S. in Wildlife Conservation/Ornithology and her B.S. in Wildlife Biology and Management from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She is a past board member and continues to volunteer for her local Audubon chapter, Morro Coast Audubon.
Casey Arndt, Engagement and Operations Manager, 415-388-2524 x111
Casey focuses on Richardson Bay’s Audubon Youth Leaders program, working with teens from alternative programs and the juvenile justice system on conservation leadership. Casey manages a staff of summer employees, interns and youth to deliver Audubon Adventure Summer Camp. Her other responsibilities include sanctuary operations, managing property and facility improvements, and managing our events vendor.
Before coming to Audubon, Casey spend 10 years working with youth in formal and informal environmental education settings, taught special education, and was a volunteer firefighter for the Seward Volunteer Fire Department in Alaska. Prior to her work, she received her B.A. in poetry and creative writing at a small liberal arts college and is originally from an Athabascan village of 300 people in rural Alaska. Casey grew up mushing a sled dog team, driving snowmachines, and immersing herself in the Alaskan wilderness. When she's not working, Casey loves birdwatching, being in nature, and writing.
Shannon Grover, Biological Aide 415-388-2524 x109
After a few years of working in factories and cornfields, Shannon’s foray into ecology began when she landed an internship restoring the prairies and woodlands in her home state of Wisconsin. For the first time, she began learning the names of all the plants around her, and it didn’t take long before she was hooked. Shannon has participated on research projects in botany and community ecology around the US, living out of her tent one hot Missouri summer and later traveling to Iceland where she first discovered the mysterious world of benthic invertebrates. After graduating with a degree in conservation biology from UW Madison, she worked as a wildlife technician monitoring spotted owls in the Sierras and decided she never wanted to leave California. Shannon is elated to now be working with Audubon, where she will primarily be responsible for benthic invertebrate monitoring and native plant propagation. In her free time, she enjoys growing food, sleeping in unusual places, and playing banjo loudly and enthusiastically.
Juita Martinez, Biological Aide 415-388-2524 x103
Juita left the big city of Los Angeles for life in the redwood forest while pursuing a Zoology degree with a minor in Wildlife at Humboldt State University. During her time as an undergraduate, she interned for the National Science Foundation, NOAA, the American Zoological Association and the National Park Service. She immersed herself in all aspects of conservation from captive rearing the San Juan Island’s endangered species candidate the Island Marble Butterfly to studying microbes in shrimp living in the coastal habitats of Charleston, SC. From leading supplemental classes and tutoring at Humboldt State to teaching biological concepts to fifth and sixth graders as a naturalist, her passion for science education and engagement is continuously growing. As a Biological Aide for Audubon, she will focus on supporting the restoration and waterbird conservation programs including coordinating Richardson Bay's volunteer program. In her free time, she is usually backpacking, traveling and documenting her journeys’ through photography.
Julia Kelly, PhD, Biological Aide 415-388-2524 x109
Julia is an avian ecologist and biogeographer. As an undergrad at UCLA, she studied a rare Loggerhead Shrike subspecies (Lanius ludovicianus anthonyi) endemic to the northern Channel Islands. Highlights from island excursions include close encounters with adorable endemic foxes, barbecuing the last wild boar eradicated from the island, learning to drive stick on 25% grade dirt roads, and watching shrikes skewer lizards. Her fascination with island endemism is best described by David Quammen's "Song of the Dodo."
Julia recently earned her PhD in Geography at the University of Colorado Boulder where she studied the effects of spruce beetle outbreaks and logging on bird communities in subalpine forests. Her research highlights the importance of bark beetle outbreaks for American three-toed Woodpecker populations in the Rockies. Julia is thrilled to be back on the California coast studying the San Francisco Bay ecosystem. With Audubon, she'll be involved in waterbird research and the Sonoma Creek restoration project. Wintering Buffleheads have a special place in her heart because they are beautiful diving ducks known to nest in cavities excavated by Northern Flickers.