Meet the Board of Directors
Sue Williams | President
Sue has spent almost 50 years as a community volunteer, sharing her expertise in governance, fund-raising, networking and marketing with more than 60 organizations. An Ohio native, she and her husband transplanted to Clearwater Beach in 2002. Locally she served on the Board of the Clearwater Marine Aquarium for 5 years, and currently is on the Board of the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay, chairs the Legacy Society for Church of Ascension, and is the President of Carlouel Homeowners Association.
Prior to becoming a Floridian, Sue demonstrated her passions for green spaces, the arts, education, and community through service on governing boards across all sectors in Ohio. To name a few, these include The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens, Garden Club of America, Dayton Opera, Hanover College, Leadership Dayton, and United Way. Read her full resume here. Sue is a graduate of Hanover College and The New York Institute of Finance.
Amanda Moore | Vice President
Amanda Moore is the Deputy Director for the National Wildlife Federation’s Mississippi River Delta Restoration Program. Amanda joined NWF in 2009 after years of work on Florida conservation issues. She works with government officials, community leaders, and coastal science experts to raise awareness about coastal land loss and build support to move large-scale, comprehensive restoration projects forward. Amanda was part of the on-the-ground response to the 2010 BP oil disaster and has worked to pass and implement legislation to restore the Gulf in the years since. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from the University of Mary Washington and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of South Florida. Amanda resides in St. Petersburg with her husband and two children.
Oscar Anderson | Treasurer
Oscar is a 3rd generation Floridian born into the citrus industry in Polk County. He has a deep understanding of government, serving at the highest capacities in the legislative and executive branches on the local, state, and federal levels. He has served as the chief lobbyist for Orange County Chairman Mel Martinez, managing the Congressional office in Washington DC and later promoted to Deputy Chief of Staff. Oscar specialized in the appropriations process and negotiated the passage of $75 million for the Administration’s American Dream Downpayment Initiative. He returned to Florida in 2003 as Chief of Staff and Assistant Secretary at the Department of Community Affairs (DCA) where he directed passage of the landmark Wekiva Parkway and Protection Act legislation and had a key role in the passage of the first overhaul to the state’s growth management laws in 20 years.
For almost a decade, Oscar has represented hundreds of businesses at the local and state level, specializing in government budgets/appropriations, affordable housing, environmental and land use matters as a lobbyist with Southern Strategies Group. He serves on the Orange County Environmental Protection Commission and on the Board of the East Winter Garden Community Transformation Initiative. Oscar lives in Orlando with his wife Carin and their three children.
Chad Rischar | Secretary
Chad Allen Rischar serves as an Senior Environmental Scientist for DRMP, Inc in their Gainesville office. He’s a classically trained soil scientist and Professional Wetland Scientist. Chad’s a passionate sportsman and dynamic voice in conservation. He also serves as the Natural Resource Conservation Chair and Treasurer for the Keystone Heights Airport, a 2500-acre property within the Osceola-Ocala Critical Linkage. Chad also serves as Vice-Chair for the Southeast Chapter of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, a North American NGO focused on public lands and access issues. Chad received a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science minor in Soil and Water Science from the University of Florida and a fellowship from the Natural Resource Leadership Institute from the University of Florida. He resides in Keystone Heights, FL with his wife and three young children. In his discretionary time, you’ll find him chasing outdoor pursuits and land stewardship initiatives.
Renée Athey is a longtime resident of the St. Petersburg, Florida, area and an honored Certified Florida Educator with degrees from the Florida State University and the University of Florida. She helped to construct the Florida Trail and also western trails, and is a returned VISTA (Montana) and Peace Corps (Colombia) volunteer. Renée used her proficiency in Spanish to assist as an educator/facilitator in the San Blas Islands of Panamá, and with Habitat International in Guatemala. Like her husband and son, she is a lifelong sailor, active with the St. Petersburg Yacht Club, and a longtime organizer of youth sailing regattas. Renée is a musician with the FSU Alumni Band and another marching band (piccolo and bass drum), and active with Pinellas Habitat, Stanford University Sailing, and the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg. Renée considers herself a textile artist and amateur photographer, with many additional interests. Her years of travel around the world for work, pleasure, and volunteer efforts give her a unique perspective regarding conservation efforts and needs, but she believes that education is the pathway to creating a sensibility and a protective attitude toward irreplaceable flora and fauna on our planet.
Rebecca is the President/Owner of Insurance Resources & Risk Management, Inc and Freedom Hill Farms, Inc., Tree Nursery. Prior to insurance she worked in the Trust and Financial Services Industry for 18 years. Rebecca is also a former County Commissioner and is a diligent and dedicated advocate for Citrus County, its residents, and natural resources. Over the years she has served on numerous governmental, nonprofit and charity boards. Rebecca and her husband, Mike (a long-time Citrus County State Farm Agency owner and local business entrepreneur), are avid boaters, bow hunters and outdoor enthusiasts.
Matthew Blackshear is a real estate attorney in the Tampa office of Shutts and Bowen LLP, a full-service law firm with offices throughout Florida and a deep connection to Florida’s history. Matt received his B.S.B.A. from the University of Florida and his J.D. and M.B.A. from Florida State University. He and his wife were raised in Tampa, and they spend much of their time on the water with their three daughters. They are active volunteers with many habitat preservation and restoration organizations in the Tampa Bay area, and are encouraged by, and appreciate, the positive impact those organizations have had on our community and waterways. His latest volunteer efforts include identifying potential habitat restoration projects in the west central coast of Florida. He looks forward to bringing his fundraising experience and real estate expertise to the Board.
Josh Bomstein, LEED AP
Josh is Vice President of Business Development and Sustainability for Creative Contractors Inc., a leading commercial contractor headquartered in Clearwater that serves west central Florida. A graduate of Emory University, Josh is a recognized leader in the “Green Building Movement.” Included as one of the “40 Under 40” by the Gulf Coast Business Review, Josh serves on many councils, including the Clearwater Arts Alliance and the U.S. Green Building Council, Florida Gulf Coast Chapter. He has been involved in the construction of many of Florida’s greenest buildings including the Largo Community Center (LEED Platinum) and the University of South Florida Science and Technology Building (LEED Gold.) Born and raised in Dunedin, Josh values the Florida landscape and seeks to be a good steward of natural Florida for future generations.
Meg Lokey is the Director of Development & Marketing for the Clearwater Free Clinic, a nonprofit that helps the low-income, uninsured with medical and mental health care. A 2nd generation Florida native, Meg grew up in Tampa Bay area and learned to appreciate the outdoors through family adventures. She graduated from The University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics. Over the past 10 years she has played a major role in promoting growth and success of nonprofit organizations around the Tampa Bay area through board, volunteer and committee placements. She looks forward to pairing her love for Florida wildlife with her passion for fundraising as a member of the board of directors.
Bert is a Vice President at The Tampa Bay Trust Company, a Florida based asset management firm. At the Trust Company Bert is responsible for bringing in new business and is a member of the Asset Management Committee. Previously, Mr. Martin was a partner at Caerus Ventures, a West Palm Beach, FL based venture capital firm. Bert is a graduate of Rollins College where he earned a B.S. in Economics and played on the men’s varsity tennis team. He was a member of the 2001 Division II National Championship team. Born and raised in Tampa, Bert is an avid outdoorsman who enjoys hunting, fishing, hiking, skiing, golf, and tennis.
Kimberly Davis Reyher
Kimberly Davis Reyher serves as the Executive Director of the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana, a nonprofit that drives science-based action to rebuild the Mississippi River Delta. Kim joined CRCL in 2014 after 13 years with the World Wildlife Fund, where she promoted fisheries sustainability through engagement with the seafood industry and fisheries around the world. Kim co-led the development of a $29 million tuna management project with the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, led the International Smart Gear Competition and supervised projects in 20+ countries. Kim also spent 6 years at the Ocean Conservancy, first in Florida, and then in Washington, D.C. A fourth generation Floridian, Kim received a bachelor’s degree in Geography from Dartmouth College, and a master’s degree in Natural Resource Economics and Policy from Duke University. Kim now resides in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Carlton is an environmental photojournalist from Clearwater, Florida, with graduate training in ecology and anthropology. His first book, The Edge of Africa, is a product of the months he spent in the tropical rain forests of Gabon with scientists from the Smithsonian Institution. Using custom photography techniques, Carlton documented over 400 different species of plants and animals, many of which were new to science. For his most recent international project, Carlton photographed endangered desert elephants to raise awareness of the last population found in the Sahel of West Africa. In the U.S., Carlton’s projects are aimed at celebrating Florida’s vanishing natural heritage, recognizing the power of photographs to influence public perceptions and inspire change. He regularly produces stories for newspapers and magazines, including recent features in Smithsonian, National Wildlife, Africa Geographic, and Outdoor Photographer. In 2009, he published the book Florida Cowboys: Keepers of the Last Frontier, depicting the role of ranching in preserving Florida’s open spaces. Carlton’s passion for nature was born from the Florida landscape, where eight generations of family history have grounded his perspective. He sees cultural heritage and the natural environment as two of society’s greatest yet most threatened resources. www.carltonward.com
Meet the Staff and Volunteers
Jason Lauritsen | Executive Director
contact Jason: email@example.com
Jason Lauritsen is the Executive Director of the Florida Wildlife Corridor where he implements the vision and mission of the organization to connect, protect and restore essential conservation habitat statewide.
Lauritsen’s expertise includes environmental conservation and restoration, land management science, wetland protection, and Wood Stork recovery in the Western Everglades. He is an experienced speaker, educator, and writer who has authored numerous papers, publications, and presentations throughout his more than 20-year career in conservation and natural resources management.
Lauritsen has served on the Estero Bay Agency for Bay Management, SWFL Watershed Council, Wood Stork Monitoring and Recovery Group and the Lee County Density Reduction/Groundwater Resource Advisory Committee. At the crossroads of science and policy, Jason developed tools and refined regulatory approaches to improve impact assessment and mitigation for wetlands and listed species for State and Federal agencies. He has provided consultation to agencies and private land owners on preserve design and configuration to maximize local and landscape level benefits to wildlife. In 2016, he served as a delegate to China on a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) exchange program to share expertise in wetland restoration and mitigation.
Lauritsen has a Master’s in Science Education from the University of Iowa and a Bachelor’s in Animal Ecology from Iowa State University. He worked as a rainforest guide in Ecuador in 1992. In 2001, he joined Audubon at the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary as the Natural Resources Manager and prescribed burn boss. Continuing his career with Audubon he became the Big Cypress Ecosystem Science Coordinator in 2005 before being promoted to Assistant Sanctuary Director in 2007 and Sanctuary Director in 2012 where he led the crown jewel of Audubon’s Sanctuary network until Dec of 2018.
Lauritsen is committed to landscape level conservation and long planning horizons to achieve sustainability. He advocates the pursuit of a deep science-based understanding of our complex and often fragile ecosystem that undergirds the quality of life for both people and wildlife. If future generations are to enjoy the beauty and diversity of a healthy natural world, Jason believes it will require broad stakeholder support and partnerships that are central to effective land stewardship.
Nicole Brand: Program Manager
Contact Nicole: firstname.lastname@example.org
Nicole Brand has served in several capacities for the Florida Wildlife Corridor since 2016. She received her undergraduate degree in Communications from the University of Georgia and a Masters of Science in Food Systems from Oregon Health and Science University. She is passionate about strategizing to connect the world of land conservation to healthy food systems and she loves to journey on her own citizen-led expeditions through wild Florida in her spare time.
Maureen Vacaria: Staff Member
Contact Maureen: email@example.com
Maureen is a homegrown Floridian with graduate degrees from both the University of Florida and the University of Miami. Through her extensive work with humanitarian, international, domestic health and other organizations, Maureen gained a passion for advancing the purpose driven missions of nonprofits with her extensive fundraising skills. She now brings these experiences to the Florida Wildlife Corridor to help connect the state’s fragile wild places. Beyond the workplace, Maureen is passionate about wildlife rehabilitation and has served as a volunteer for multiple animal rescue and rehabilitation organizations.
Nicholas Doubleday: Intern
Nicholas Doubleday is a Geography major with a concentration in Environment and Society at the University of South Florida St Petersburg. Next spring, he will be the first college graduate in his family and he hopes to use this degree to improve environmental awareness education in the public school system. He sees education as the bridge to invoke critical thought – which he believes can lead to increased environmental awareness.
Maddie Southard | Social Media Consultant
Maddie Southard has worked in several capacities for the Florida Wildlife Corridor since 2013, including Communications and Program Manager. Maddie now serves the organization as an independent Communications Consultant.
Maddie is a dedicated environmental advocate with a passion for land and water conservation initiatives. As a fourth generation Floridian, Maddie’s love for nature stems from a childhood spent along the gulf coast. She has a Master’s degree in Communication Studies from the University of South Florida, where she studied effective communication strategies for promoting sustainable energy and environmental awareness.
LINC transitions to Florida Wildlife Corridor
Beginning May 7, 2014, the Legacy for Nature and Culture (LINC) officially transitioned into The Florida Wildlife Corridor, an organization dedicated to the establishment and protection of the remaining natural lands, waters, working farms, forests and ranches from the Everglades to Georgia and Alabama, protecting a functional ecological corridor for the health of people, wildlife and watersheds. The organization is now officially doing business as the Florida Wildlife Corridor. We thank the LINC Board members who assisted with this transition and continue to serve on the FWC Board of Directors.