Point Blue is deeply grateful to our Board of Directors for their leadership and generosity. 

Megan Colwell, Chair

Senior Vice President & Partner with Woodruff-Sawyer & Co., San Francisco; co-chair of Woodruff-Sawyer’s Insurer/Market Security Committee, and Trustee on the corporate ESOP Committee. Former SVP with Chubb Group of Insurance Companies.  Former board member and chair of Finance Council for IBA West, a not-for-profit trade association.  BA, Geography, San Francisco State University.

Jeffrey Kimball, Vice Chair

Member, Board of Directors, The Kimball Foundation; Member, Board of Directors, The Acorn Foundation; made a number of award-winning short dramas, documentaries and experimental films; worked in the film industry as a filmmaker, director, executive producer and music supervisor, working closely with directors such as Gus Van Sant, Robert Altman, and Julian Schnabel; produced and directed an hour-long documentary that he originated, about the birds and birders of New York’s Central Park—Birders: The Central Park Effect, and is developing ideas for further films; manages investments and runs a commercial real estate holding company with his siblings; M.F.A. from New York University and a B.A. from Stanford University.

Ellie Cohen, President and CEO

Ellie came to Point Blue Conservation Science in 1999 with extensive management, fundraising and policy expertise.  Born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland, Ellie received her undergraduate degree with honors in Botany (focus on ecology) from Duke University.  Field studies in butterfly ecology brought her to California in 1979. Read Ellie's full biography here.

Ivan Samuels, Secretary

Executive Director, March Conservation Fund; Survey Crew Leader for the USGS SW Biological Science Center/Colorado Field Station; Survey Crew Leader, University of Nevada, North Sierra Nevada Mountains; Field Researcher, Institute for Bird Populations in Sequoia National Forest; Field Researcher, Wildlife Conservation Society in Papua New Guinea; Intern, Point Blue Conservation Science, Farallon Island NWR, and Palomarin Field Station; Lead Collaborator on a Point Blue publication on riparian birds following a fire incident. M.S. in Zoology, University of Florida, Gainesville; B.A.s in Biology and Environmental Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Ivan brings with him direct experience in avian research, restoration ecology, environmental education and sustainable forestry.

Ana Galutera, Finance Chair

Principal and President, Galileo Planning Group. Former Principal, Brownson Rehmus & Foxworth. Former VP Finance, Post Communications. Board member, Polly Klaas Foundation. B.S. Business Administration, Washington University. MBA Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University.

Robert S. Shwarts, J.D., Human Resources Chair

Partner with Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, LLP.  Office Leader at Orrick’s San Francisco office; Member, Orrick’s Risk Management Committee; Member, The Employment Group; Member, American Bar Association; Member, State Bar of California; Member, State Bar of New York; Former Associate, Kronish, Lieb, Weiner & Hellman; Former Associate, Mayer, Brown & Platt; Former Managing Editor, The George Washington Law Review; J.D., The George Washington University Law School; B.A., Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. Rob has provided pro bono legal services to Point Blue for the past 3 years.

Martha Ehmann Conte, Strategic Planning Chair

Civic Leader and Philanthropist. Currently: Trustee and Advisory Group, Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy and the Institute at the Golden Gate; Catalyst Committee Chair and Gala Committee, Exploratorium; Advisory Council, National Partnership for Women and Families.  Formerly: Trustee, Berkeley Repertory Theater; Chair, Gateway Public Schools 10th Anniversary Luncheon; Trustee and Strategic Planning Committee, The Little School; Gala Co-Chair, Cathedral School for Boys; 20th Reunion Co-Chair, Princeton University Class of 1985; Discovery Council, Bay Area Discovery Museum; Trustee and Vice Chair, St. James Preschool; Brand Strategy Consultant and Director, Prophet Brand Strategy, San Francisco; Management Supervisor, McCann-Erickson, San Francisco; VP/Account Supervisor, Ogilvy & Mather, New York; A.B., Economics, Princeton University.

David Ackerly, PhD, Director, Science Advisory Committee Chair

Associate Professor and Gill Chair in Natural History, Department of Integrative Biology, University of California Berkeley; former Asst. Professor, Dept. of Biological Sciences, Stanford University; Fulbright Teaching/Research Fellow, University of Cape Town, South Africa; Fellow, California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco; Faculty Affiliate, Energy and Resources Group, University of California Berkeley; Curator of Ecology, University and Jepson Herbaria, University of California Berkeley; Associate Scientist, Ecology Dept., Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; Distinguished Faculty Mentor Award, Graduate Division, University of California Berkeley; Ecological Society of America, Cooper Award; Co-chair of Terrestrial Biodiversity and Climate Change Consortium in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Anne Chadwick, Director

Writer and photographer Anne Chadwick is past president and current board member of the Truckee Donner Land Trust; former International Trade Policy Advisor to the California Secretary of Food and Agriculture; served on the Advisory Committee on Small Business and Agriculture, Federal Reserve Bank 12th District; past board member of California Council on International Trade, California Wheat Commission, California Association of Wheat Growers, and North Tahoe Arts; and former advisor to High Sierra Resource Conservation and Development District. As owner of a 140-acre ranch in California’s Sierra Valley, Anne negotiated a conservation easement with the Feather River Land Trust to extinguish development rights in perpetuity. In 2014, her ranch pioneered the “Learning Landscapes” program, which brings school children outdoors to study wildlife, farming, riparian habitat, stream biology, bird migration, and more. She has traveled extensively and splits her time between Northern California and Vancouver, B.C.

Edith Eddy, Director

Former Executive Director, Compton Foundation; former program officer, David and Lucile Packard Foundation; co-director, Action Research Liaison Office, Stanford University; instructor in Biology and Assistant Dean of Admissions, Swarthmore College;
Board member, National Wildlife Refuge Association; former Chair, Environmental Grantmakers Association; lead founder, Funders Network on Population, Reproductive Health and Rights; Advisory Board Member, the Center on Ecotourism and Sustainable Development, Coyote Point Museum, Global Philanthropy Forum, and Consultative Group on Biological Diversity;  participant, Earth Summit, Rio de Janeiro and Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing; M. Ed. from Harvard University, B.A. in Biology, Swarthmore College.

Rob Faucett, Director

Museum Collections Manager, Burke Museum, University of Washington; former Instructor, Louisiana
State University, Department of Biological Sciences; Board Member and Science Committee Chair, Seattle Audubon Society; treasurer, Washington Ornithological Society; member, fundraising committee, Burke Museum Association. MS, Ecology and Evolution, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana; BS in Biology, Colorado College, Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Simon Francis, Director

Partner, The Lancer, Group; Co-Founder and Managing Partner, L Capital; Founding Partner, Lancor Partners LLC; former Partner, CTPartners (the former Christian & Timbers), former Practice Leader, Private Equity, CTPartners; former Associate and Principal, Heidrick & Struggles; Lord Foley Scholar, London School of Economics; Law Degree, Inns of Court School of Law, Grays Inn, London; recognized by Silicon Valley Business Journal’s ’40 under 40; featured in Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Fortune Magazine and Financial Times.

Ellen Hines, Ph.D., Director

Dr. Hines is the Associate Director of the Romberg Tiburon Center for Environmental Studies and a Professor in the Department of Geography & Environment at San Francisco State University. She is in the Pool of Experts in the UN World Ocean Assessment, a member of the IUCN Marine Mammal Protected Area Task Force and an invited expert on the Convention on Migratory Species Scientific Council’s Aquatic Animals Working Group.  Her research addresses population and community ecology of threatened and endangered species as related to local conservation efforts and regional scale coastal and marine management science. She is particularly interested in using geographic information systems (GIS) and remote sensing as tools for marine conservation and works closely with Point Blue's marine scientists to mentor graduate students. Learn more about Ellen here and here.

Stuart Jacobson, Director

Former CEO, GT (Gehry Technologies); former CEO, Kivera; former Senior Vice President-Global Sales and Alliances, Saba Software; former Executive Vice President, Novadigm, former Managing Director-International, ViewStar Corporation; former Managing Director, Oracle Corporation, Asia-Pacific; former Manager for defense and high-tech industries; former technical engineering positions, Electronic Data Systems, Applied Data Research.

Peter Norvig, Ph.D., Director

Peter Norvig is a Director of Research at Google, Inc.; previously he directed Google's core search algorithms group. He is co-author of Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach, the leading textbook in the field, and co-teacher of an Artificial Intelligence class that signed up 160,000 students, helping to kick off the current round of massive open online classes. He is a fellow of the AAAI, ACM, California Academy of Science and American Academy of Arts & Sciences.

Nadine Peterson, Director

Nadine Peterson was formerly the Chief Deputy Executive Officer for the California Coastal Conservancy where she was responsible for legislative affairs, federal funding for nationally significant projects, administrative functions, strategic planning, and for developing and overseeing the agency’s climate policy, project selection criteria, and Climate Ready program. She served on and lead many steering committees including the Bay Area Ecosystem Climate Change Consortium, the BAECCC executive committee responsible for the Baylands Ecosystem Habitat Goals Climate Update, the CA Landscape Conservation Cooperative, and the Alliance of Regional Collaborative for Climate Adaptation.  As the Conservancy’s first San Francisco Bay Conservancy Manager she oversaw a collaborative effort to develop and implement regional program goals and strategic plan objectives, grant program that provided technical and financial assistance to hundreds of priority conservation and recreation projects, and oversight of the planning and implementation of major national resource restoration projects including the South Bay Salt Pond Restoration, Hamilton/Bel Marin Keys, the Napa River Salt Pond Restoration, and the Invasive Spartina Removal project. Nadine holds a Masters, degree in Urban and Regional Planning from Cal State University at San Jose and a BA degree in Environmental Studies from Cal State University at Sacramento.

James F. Quinn, Ph.D., Director

Professor, Environmental Science and Policy and Director, Information Center for the Environment, University of California, Davis; former Lecturer in Biology, University of Pennsylvania; Head, California Node of the National Biological Information Infrastructure; NSF-ITR Science on the Semantic Web: Prototypes in Bioinformatics; principal investigator on numerous state, federal, and international projects applying geographic information technology to public policy on biodiversity, land use, water quality, and climate change; Ph.D. in Zoology, University of Washington, A.B. cum laude, Biology, Harvard University.

Edward Sarti, Director/Immediate Past Chair

Edward R. Sarti, attorney at law; formerly with The Schinner Law Group, San Francisco and Robert W. Wood, PC, San Francisco; member, State Bar of California; Certified Public Accountant, State of Texas; JD, University of San Francisco School of Law; BS, Business Administration, Rider University, New Jersey.

Honorary Board Members

Carolyn Johnson

Former Capital Campaign chair for Point Blue, President of the Fledgling Fund, a philanthropic family foundation; former Vice President and Treasurer of The Laguna de Santa Rosa Foundation; member of education, executive, restoration and finance committees; Co-founder and Secretary/Treasurer of the Leadership Institute for Ecology and the Economy; co-founder, Sonoma Wildlife Rehabilitation Center; member, Society of Wetland Scientists and Society of Ecological Restoration. MA, Sonoma State University, Rohnert Park; BA, Evergreen State College, Olympia, Washington.

Ted Eliot

Ted Eliot was a career Foreign Service Officer for 30 years, serving in Sri Lanka, Germany, the Soviet Union, Iran and, from 1973 to 1978 as U. S. Ambassador to Afghanistan.  In Washington, his tours included Country Director for Iran and Executive Secretary of the Department of State.  From 1978 to 1985 he was Dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, following which he directed the Center for Asian Pacific Affairs at The Asia Foundation.  He has been the director of three corporations, including the Raytheon Company, and is currently a Board member of The Asia Foundation and the Community Foundation Sonoma County.  Birds have been his lifetime hobby, and he joined Point Blue in 1988 and became Board  Chair in 1991 and 1992.  He has also been on the Board of the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology. He and his wife, Pat, live in Sonoma and have four married children and 9 grandchildren. They have both been active in conservation organizations in Sonoma County.  Ted received Point Blue's Lifetime Conservation Achievement Award in 2007.

Bill Foss

Bill Foss served on the Board of Directors of Point Blue from 1997 to 2007 and was Chair of the Board from 2000 to 2003.  He is a retired Senior Vice President and General Counsel of DFS Group, an international retailer based in San Francisco. His current environmental focus is on ocean conservation and he is Chairman of the Environment of the Sea Committee of the Cruising Club of America. He is now in the fourth year of an extended cruise aboard his boat, Détente, which is currently in Turkey.

Jack W. Ladd, Chair Audit Committee

Managing Director of Ladd Associates, Inc.,  provider of strategic planning software and consulting services to the publishing industry; Point Blue Board of Directors, 1996-2008; Board Chair 1999-2000; former President, Presidio Golf Club;  Stanford Alumni Consulting Team; Dartmouth College, AB in History; Stanford, MBA

Stephen Thal

Point Blue Board of Directors 1999-2009; Board Chair, Hospice by the Bay; Board of Directors, American Bird Conservancy; Board of Directors, National Hospice Foundation; Chair Emeritus and former Chair, Board of Directors, Hospice of Marin; Former President, Board of Directors, Audubon Canyon Ranch; Member, Birdlife International, National Audubon Society, Marin Audubon Society; Member, Earth Day Every Day Committee, Marin Community Foundation.