Only 5% of the entire United States, including Alaska, is protected as wilderness.
Sarah Chase Shaw
Flagstaff, AZ-native Sarah Chase Shaw grew up with public lands in her backyard. Weekends spent hiking in the Grand Canyon or trailing steers on the ranch with her art curator mother and finance professor dad led to a life driven by curiosity, and a love of outdoor adventure, conservation, and the arts. After receiving a master’s degree in landscape architecture from Cornell University, Sarah settled in Basalt, Colorado where she works as freelance writer, landscape architect, and Communications Manager for the Resnick Center for Herbert Bayer Studies at the Aspen Institute. Sarah is the author of four books. Her most recent book, On the Roof of the Rocky Mountains: The Botanical Legacy of Betty Ford Alpine Gardens was released in 2021.
Denise is a non-profit executive with extensive experience in building sustainable and impactful organizations. Over a three-decade career in land conservation and environmental advocacy, Denise has served in a variety of roles from community organizer and fundraiser to chief of staff and executive director. She co-founded the Connecticut League of Conservation Voters and led the Connecticut Chapter of The Nature Conservancy. More recently she served as national director of the Land Trust Alliance and was Chief of Staff at the Humane Society of the United States. In addition to serving on the WLT board, she is currently on the board of an urban land trust, the Tregaron Conservancy in Washington, DC.
Karen is a retired molecular biologist and project manager in the biotechnology industry. She has spent more than 30 years at Genentech, most recently preparing strategies and business cases for cancer drug development projects. She has published more than 20 peer-reviewed manuscripts in scientific journals and holds two US patents. She led the whitewater kayak program for Outdoors Unlimited, a group dedicated to sharing their outdoor expertise with others. She lives with her husband in Mammoth Lakes, CA exploring wild places on foot, in boats and through the viewfinder of her camera.
Zack is the Executive Director of Standing Trees, an organization that works to protect and restore New England’s public lands. He has worked in wilderness stewardship and advocacy for nearly twenty years, beginning as a backcountry ranger for the US Forest Service in Washington and Idaho. Since then, Zack has worked with Montana Wilderness Association, Northeast Wilderness Trust, and Conservation Law Foundation to advance protections for wild ecosystems on public and private lands across the US. When not working to protect wild places, Zack and his wife Kassia can be found exploring them with their daughter, Celeste, and black lab, Stella.
Travis Belote, PhD
Travis is a research ecologist with The Wilderness Society focused on using ecosystem science to inform conservation and adaptive management strategies. He holds a M.S. from the University of Tennessee, Ph.D. from Virginia Tech, and conducted postdoctoral research with the USGS in Flagstaff, AZ. He has published more than 65 peer reviewed scientific articles and serves as a research advisor for graduate students at the University of Montana and Montana State University. Travis lives in Bozeman, MT and enjoys spending time outside with his family and listening to old-time country music.
Jim is a consultant to nonprofit groups in campaign strategy and lobbying. He worked for Sierra Club for 25 years as the regional representative in the Pacific Northwest and Southern California, and as a representative in Washington, D.C. specializing in national forest and national park issues during the legislative fights over the endangered spotted owl. Jim also worked on the legislation establishing the Smith River National Recreation Area in California. He served on the board of the Smith River Alliance. He is an avid fisherman.
Craig is a conservation scientist and planner who retired in late 2017 as the executive director for the Science for Nature and People Partnership or SNAPP, a collaboration of The Nature Conservancy, the Wildlife Conservation Society, and the National Center for Ecological Analysis & Synthesis at University of CA Santa Barbara. He currently serves as the co-chair of the board of directors of the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative. He is also the series editor for IUCN’s World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) Best Practice Guidelines. He has written and published two books on conservation planning as well as more than 50 peer-reviewed scientific articles on conservation planning, protected areas, climate adaptation, and the ecology of at-risk species. His second book, Conservation Planning: Informed Decisions for a Healthier Planet (with co-author Edward Game) was published by MacMillan in 2016. He recently served on a National Academy of Sciences panel to evaluate US Fish & Wildlife Service Landscape Conservation Cooperatives.
Danna grew up in Bellingham, WA with a passion for science. It all started with observing polliwogs during backpacking trips as a kid and evolved to researching nudibranchs while getting her degree in marine biology at UC Santa Cruz. Danna followed her passion for science across the ocean, spending two years in Australia playing with fish in the GBR and kangaroos in the Outback while earning her Masters in Conservation Biology. After school, Danna followed in her family’s footsteps, moving into fundraising for the cause she is most passionate about- conservation. She has worked at non-profits Forterra and the Seattle Aquarium, and is now Associate Director, Corporate and Foundation Relations at UW College of the Environment in Seattle. A true weekend warrior, Danna can be found anywhere in nature- diving, climbing, and hiking with her puppy, Huck, in tow.
Joaquin Murrieta-Saldivar, PhD
Joaquin is the Conservation Director at Borderlands Restoration Network in Arizona. He specializes in building resilience in diverse communities by enhancing the connections between people, culture and natural resources. Joaquin is a graduate of the University of Arizona with an MSc in Natural Resources and Agricultural Economics and a PhD in Renewable Natural Resources Studies with an emphasis on management, policy and economics of natural resources. Originally from Sonora, Mexico, Joaquin splits his professional time between Mexico and Arizona implementing community-based approaches to watershed management, river restoration, geo-tourism, conservation and best practices for ranching communities.
Joaquin lives with his wife in Tucson and loves to hike, play soccer, cook and listen to music. While he appreciates many musical styles, Pink Floyd is the absolute best.
After earning master’s degrees from Michigan State University in both Fisheries & Wildlife Management and Interpersonal & Organizational Communication, Connie Myers worked for the US Forest Service for over 30 years. For much of that, Connie served as the founding Director of the Arthur Carhart National Wilderness Training Center where she advanced the training of nearly 27,000 agency staff and partners in wilderness stewardship and helped lead national information and education programs. She was also a founding board member of the Society for Wilderness Stewardship, and in recognition of her many contributions was awarded the USFS National Bob Marshall Wilderness Champion Award and USDA Unsung Hero Award. Connie lives in Missoula, Montana.
Bill is a recovering attorney, born and raised in Seattle but now living in Mazama, WA. He has served on the boards of Earthjustice, the Nature Conservancy of Washington, and the Washington Trails Association. In addition to the WLT, Bill is currently a board member of Washington Conservation Voters. He is a longtime outdoorsman and wilderness advocate, and the owner of the Mazama Country Inn, a rustic mountain lodge located in the Methow Valley in Washington State. He formerly served as corporate counsel at Microsoft.
Doug began his career in 1968 with The Wilderness Society in Washington, DC. For 17 years, Doug served as conservation director and associate executive director of the Sierra Club. Doug was involved in the enactment of the Eastern Wilderness Areas Act (1975), the Endangered American Wilderness Act (1978), the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness (1980), the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (1980) and the California Desert Protection Act (1994) among many other wilderness designation statutes. He is the author of The Enduring Wilderness: Protecting our Natural Heritage through the Wilderness Act (Fulcrum Publishing, 2004).
Mark served on the staff of the U.S. House Interior Committee from 1979 until 1995 under Chairmen Mo Udall and George Miller. He was responsible for the committee’s jurisdiction over parks, public lands and wilderness. During that time, the Committee led Congress to double the size of the National Parks System, triple the lands in the National Wilderness System and enact landmark conservation laws including the Alaska Lands Act. Previously, he was a staff writer for Congress’s Environmental Study Conference. He holds a degree in journalism from the University of California, Berkeley, and worked as a newspaper reporter in the San Francisco Bay Area. He is now an independent consultant and editor at KQED Public Radio in San Francisco.
Torrey grew up in Carbondale, Colorado where he forged an early and lasting connection to the ski mountain and outdoors. Today, Torrey is the Chief of Staff of Protect Our Winters, a non-profit that helps passionate outdoor people protect the places we live and lifestyles we love from climate change. There he ensures the organization’s financial management, people operations, organizational performance, partnerships, and decision-making are aligned to propel it toward its goals.
Torrey is the descendant of a line of conservationists and adventurers. Torrey’s grandfather and great-uncle, Morris and Stewart Udall, each played significant roles in conserving natural landscapes throughout the United States. Torrey’s maternal grandfather, Dick Emerson, was part of the first successful American expedition to Mount Everest in 1963.
Jacqueline Van Dine
Jacqueline is the vice president of merchandising at Birkenstock, leading all product development and portfolio management functions. Jacqueline was the co-founder and brand director for Ahnu Footwear. She was awarded Sporting Goods Business “Top 40 under 40” in recognition during Ahnu’s first year in business. She previously managed product design and developed trade and consumer marketing strategies for Birkenstock and Keen Footwear.
Since 1988, Andy has worked for Western Land Group, which specializes in public and nonprofit land transactions. His extensive experience in legislative affairs includes serving as counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Public Lands and National Parks, and the Subcommittee on Mines and Mining. Andy serves on the boards of the Wilderness Workshop and High Country News.
Jon Mulford, Emeritus
Jon is an attorney and is founder and past president of The Wilderness Land Trust. He formerly practiced law in Denver and Aspen, specializing in federal public land law. He is a fellow of the University of Colorado Natural Resources Law Center.
Past Board Members