Houston Audubon is accepting applications for its 2020 Young Professionals Advisory Council (YPAC) through November 29, 2019. The goal of the YPAC is to engage the next generation of conservationists and to build awareness of Houston Audubon’s mission among young professionals. YPAC members have the chance to make a significant impact in the world of bird conservation and play an important role in enhancing wildlife habitat.
The inaugural Young Professionals Advisory Council kicked off in 2019 during Houston Audubon’s 50th anniversary year with 17 dedicated members. This group of passionate young conservationists launched the first ever Houston Bird Week and successfully ran a contest to determine the official Bird of Houston – the Yellow-crowned Night-Heron.
About Houston Audubon
Houston Audubon, founded in 1969, is a nonprofit charitable conservation organization committed to enhancing life on the Upper Texas Coast for birds and people. It is dedicated to advancing the conservation of birds and positively impacting their environments through habitat conservation, environmental education, and conservation advocacy. Houston Audubon owns and manages 17 sanctuaries in five counties totaling 3,477 acres. It delivers hundreds of nature-based program experiences for children and adults every year.
The time commitment for this membership is 12 months, consisting of 6 bi-monthly meetings and any additional socials or desired volunteer time with Houston Audubon.
The ideal candidate is:
- 25-35 years old and active in the professional and/or academic community
- A strong leader eager to make an impact in the world of conservation
- Committed to volunteering their time, abilities and energy to support Houston Audubon
- Energetic and productive
Essential Duties and Responsibilities
- Meeting attendance mandatory
- Provide time and talent to Houston Audubon in an advisory role
- Assist Houston Audubon in its efforts to strengthen its recruitment and retention of young professional supporters by engaging the next generation of conservationists
- Collaborate with other YPAC members to complete a conservation project aligned with Houston Audubon’s goals
- Serve as an enthusiastic advocate for Houston Audubon and network on behalf of the organization
- Current Houston Audubon membership required ($30/individual/year)
- The opportunity to collaborate and socialize with like-minded young professionals
- Build leadership skills and personal development
- The chance to give back to your community and make a positive impact on the natural environment
- The fulfillment of completing a team conservation project with other YPAC members
2020 Meeting Dates *
- January – kick-off social date TBD
- February 6
- April 2
- June 4
- August 6
- October 1
- December 3
- Optional socials to be scheduled
* Meetings will take place the first Thursday of every other month at Edith L. Moore Nature Sanctuary at 4:30 PM.
To apply for this volunteer role, please complete the online application or submit the following documents to Anna Vallery and Zineera Seth at firstname.lastname@example.org by November 29, 2019.
Letter of recommendation
Can be submitted with application or emailed by referrer
Click on the member's name or photo for their bio.
Team Lead, Alta Mesa Resources, Inc.
Patrick Bolgren is a novice birder with a passion for land conservation. He spends much of his free time outside enjoying the many parks and trails Houston, TX has to offer. Patrick works in the oil and gas industry and graduated from The University of Oklahoma with a B.B.A. in Energy Management.
Associate, Mountain Capital
Daniel Crump is a private equity associate at Mountain Capital, where he evaluates and manages investments in the oil & gas sector. Dan has bachelor’s degrees in finance and economics from the University of Maryland, where he developed an interest in birding during hikes along the Potomac. This interest has blossomed since moving to Houston, where he enjoys birding and fly fishing in his spare time.
Lead Analyst, Energy Transfer
Tony Dang is a Rate Analyst in the Rates & Regulatory Affairs Department, with a BBA in Accounting from the University of Houston. His love for birding started during a spring migration in High Island, Texas, which gave him an appreciation for bird migration and conservation. In his spare time, he enjoys birding, hiking, golfing, and spending time with his wife and two fur babies.
Communications and Marketing Manager, Galveston Bay Foundation
Claire Everett is the Communications and Marketing Manager at Galveston Bay Foundation. She is passionate about conservation and advocating for preserving and protecting the health of Galveston Bay. She loves to be outdoors, taking photos and writing stories. Claire joined YPAC to meet and collaborate with other conservation professionals and bird lovers and hopes to help promote the important work of Houston Audubon.
Exploration Geologist, Chevron
Ian Wesley Gapp
Wes Gapp is an exploration geologist at Chevron, with a PhD in paleontology from The University of Kansas. His love for birds began while watching backyard feeders growing up in Central New York. He loves birding with his wife along the Houston bayous, the gulf coast, and the forests of Puerto Rico.
Natural Resources Specialist, Houston Arboretum & Nature Center
Cassidy Kempf is a Natural Resource Specialist at the Houston Arboretum and Nature Center. She works on habitat restoration projects, native plant propagation, and research and monitoring. She studied Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Rice University and loves birding!
PhD Candidate, Baylor College of Medicine
Alexander Kneubehl is a PhD candidate at Baylor College of Medicine in Molecular Virology and Microbiology. Birding is his escape from work and the city, and lets him enjoy nature and meet interesting people. #teamprairiechicken
Senior Associate, Brothers Alvarado, P.C.
Andrew Martinez is a civil litigation attorney in Houston. He is a graduate of Baylor University and South Texas College of Law. He is a beginning birder who enjoys hiking and the outdoors.
Charitable Activities Director, The James B Harrison Foundation
A nature enthusiast and avid outdoors woman, Hannah serves as the Director of Charitable Activities for The James B Harrison Foundation, coordinating activities that support education and research for appreciation of nature, land conservation and habitat sustainability. As a member of YPAC, Hannah hopes to bring awareness of the importance of birding and conservation to our younger generation. In her spare time, she serves as a youth rifle coach and acts as the Rifle Director for the Texas State Rifle Association.
Vice President, Institute for Spirituality and Health
Stuart C. Nelson serves as Vice President at the Institute for Spirituality and Health at the Texas Medical Center. He manages an interdisciplinary team that works within the intersection of spiritual/religious belief, practice, community life, and health. Stuart has completed bachelor’s degrees in cognitive science, psychology, and religious studies at Rice University, and went on to complete a master’s in religious studies at University of California at Santa Barbara. His work focuses on applying theories and methods from cognitive science of religion in the context of health systems to increase quality of care. Stuart is a musically-minded lover of hip-hop, classic rock, and classical Indian music, as well as impressionism, surrealism, and modern art. He is also an avid birder.
Christina Neveu is a recent undergraduate from the University of Houston-Clear Lake where she studied Environmental Science and specialized in water quality and conservation biology. She is passionate about prairie and wetland restoration efforts along with outreach. Her love for birds ignited while noticing and appreciating the small differences in the birds she chased along the shores as a child. She is now an enthusiastic baby-birder who hopes to learn as much as she can about bird conservation so that she can share that knowledge with others. In her spare time, she loves biking, nature walks, cooking cajun food, and watching anime with her cat-roomate named Papasitos.
Project Manager, RES
Andy Newman is a restoration ecologist that specializes in the restoration of wetlands and streams within the southeastern United States. Throughout his career he has worked in multiple ecosystems across the United States with special emphasis on vegetation community classification, threatened and endangered species surveys, and wetland delineations. In his free time, he enjoys birding, hunting, and documenting plant distribution in Texas.
Project Engineer, Jacobs
Carl Nooteboom is a native Houstonian and graduate of Texas A&M University. He has built his career over twelve years in the Oil & Gas industry designing pipelines and associated facilities. In his spare time he enjoys camping & hiking while birding, playing Bocce ball, and is an avid DIYer.
Marketing Manager and Public Information Officer, Texas A&M University Galveston Campus
Shantelle Patterson-Swanson is the Marketing Manager and Public Information Officer for Texas A&M University Galveston Campus. She has experience in a number of different fields including graphic and web design, advertising, social media, publications, editing and disaster response. She works with both Galveston and College Station campus stakeholders, along with off-campus groups ranging from prospective students, parents and alumni, to local and national news media, industry partners, and local, state and federal agencies. In her free time, Shantelle enjoys watching her husband fish, spending time with family and friends, and snuggling on the couch with her fur baby.
Conservation Action Analyst, Houston Zoo
Having entered the realm of wildlife conservation at age 15, I have worked with a range of species including birds, leatherback sea turtles, brown hyenas, and desert elephants. I received my Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from Texas A&M University in 2013, and went on to obtain my Master’s degree in Primate Conservation from Oxford Brookes University in the UK. Since 2017 I have been working at the Houston Zoo in our Wildlife Conservation Department, and moonlight as a social media consultant for the National Geographic Photo Ark. When I’m not busy trying to save wildlife, you’ll often find me exploring the city or watching a good movie with my two great danes!