Laurie J. Goodrich, Ph.D. is Sarkis Acopian Director of Conservation Science at the Acopian Center for Conservation Learning, Hawk Mountain, PA. She supervises Hawk Mountain’s conservation science program, assists with long-term monitoring programs, and implements scientific research such as Hawk Mountain’s Broad-winged Hawk migration studies. Laurie received her Ph.D. in Ecology from Penn State University in 2010 on the stopover behavior and ecology of autumn-migrating raptors and an M.S. in Ecology from Rutgers University in 1982 on Least Tern nesting biology. In 2018 Laurie received the inaugural Jerry Ligouri Conservation and Education Award for significant contributions to the hawk watching and raptor research community.
Josh Haas first developed a love for raptors working with the birds of prey at the Kalamazoo Nature Center. Then, a hawk-watching trip to Lake Erie Metropark opened his eyes to raptors in migration. Perplexed by seeing specks at a distance with an overwhelming itch to know what they were, he started learning from veteran hawk watchers and was hooked. He would end up spending seven Fall seasons working with the Detroit River Hawk Watch as a relief counter. He honed his skills and developed a love for teaching visitors unique ways of telling the shadowy specs apart. This, combined with his experience in bird photography and videography, took his teaching to a new level. His goal of making raptors accessible to everyone spawned his movie “Hawks on the Wing,” which teaches viewers about raptors in flight using video and audio commentary. Josh’s work can be seen online at Hawks On The Wing, in birding apps, along in publications all over Michigan and beyond.
Carolyn Hoffman is an author, editor, and outdoor writer who lives in Roundtop Mountain in Pennsylvania. She has been chairman of HMANA for five years and editor of Hawk Migration Studies journal for many years. Carolyn learned to hawk watch at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary but now calls Waggoner’s Gap her home hawk watch. Carolyn started hawk-watching in the years shortly after DDT was banned, and because she wanted to see an eagle, she had to go hawk-watching many times before seeing her first bald eagle. By the time that first eagle passed North Lookout while she was there, she was hooked. Carolyn is also an avid hiker and was the first person to backpack the route of what was then the proposed route of the North Country Trail in 1978.
Amy Wright is a licensed and practicing CPA in the State of Michigan. In addition to HMANA, Amy volunteers with the Detroit Zoo Adopt-a-garden and the March of Dimes. Amy is new to the hawk-watching community but is jumping in with both feet and enjoying the leap! She has two daughters and three cats and is an avid gardener, camper, and crafter.
Julie Brown has been with HMANA since 2009 and is the Raptor Migration and Programs Director. She studied Wildlife Ecology at the University of Maine and received her master’s degree in Conservation Biology from Antioch New England Graduate School in NH. Before working with HMANA, Julie migrated around the country and tropics, working as a field biologist mainly focused on behavioral studies and contamination research with raptors, non-raptors, and mammals. Julie’s first hawk-watching job was counting hawks along the Mississippi River at the Eagle Valley Nature Preserve in WI in 2000, and she’s been in love with migration ever since. Since then, her passion for raptor migration has led her to work at the hawk watch in Cape May, NJ, various New England sites, Kekoldi, Costa Rica, and her now local site, Pack Monadnock. Julie lives in Hancock, NH, with her husband Phil (whom she met hawk watching) and her two bird-loving children, a flock of chickens, and lots of fruit trees. She enjoys all things outdoors and spending time with her kids in nature. She is also a storyteller, synchronized swimmer, and obsessive knitter.
Nick is originally from Ontario, Canada. He obtained his BS in 2016 from Bishops’ University in Quebec, Canada.Over the past 6 years Nick has worked throughout the United States and Canada on various avian projects relating to movement ecology and banding. Some of these projects include banding migratory owls in Northern Michigan, Eastern Whip-poor-will GPS and VHF tagging in Illinois, passerine and owl banding in the boreal forest of Northern Ontario and diurnal raptor trapping and banding in Idaho and Michigan. Nick is a member of Dr. Jennifer Owens’s lab and his research focuses on the movement ecology of Red-tailed Hawks migrating through the Straits region of Michigan. This project is a collaboration between Michigan State University, Mackinac Straits Raptor Watch and The Red-tailed Hawk project. When he’s not calling out every Red-tail he sees on the roadside he enjoys birding, hiking, cross country skiing, and being decent at cooking.
Vic Berardi is the founder of the all-volunteer Illinois Beach State Park Hawk Watch, which has conducted eighteen seasons of full-time hawk migration monitoring since 2000. In 2013 he co-founded a new site at the Fort Sheridan Forest Preserve, also on the shore of Lake Michigan, in Highland Park, IL. This site contributes data to the study of raptors migrating along the western coast of Lake Michigan and through urban areas. Vic served as the Central Flyway Editor for Hawk Migration Studies for several years. In 2014 he was the recipient of HMANA’s Appreciation Award for his outstanding service furthering hawk migration studies and conservation. In 2009 he was awarded the Service to Chicago Area Birders by the Chicago Audubon Society. In 2007 he was awarded the Grassroots Conservation Leadership Award for raptor education and research. Vic is also an accomplished photographer and regularly donates his photos in raptor conservation efforts. Many of his photographs have been on the covers of Hawk Migration Studies. He has also contributed to books by well-known raptor experts, including Brian Wheeler, Jerry Liguori, and Brian Sullivan. Vic is a retired small business owner and sales manager for a leading manufacturing company and has considerable experience in marketing and web design.
Bill Clark is a photographer, author, researcher, and lecturer and has over 50 years experience working with birds of prey, including 5 years as Director of NWF’s Raptor Information Center. He has published numerous articles on raptor subjects; has traveled extensively world-wide studying, observing, and photographing raptors; and regularly led raptor and birding tours and workshops, both home and abroad, with Raptours, which is now being run by his colleague, Sergio Seipke. He has been living in the Rio Grande Valley since 2002. He regularly teaches evening and weekend courses on raptor field identification and biology and frequently presents lectures on raptor subjects. Bill has written a raptor field guide for Europe, another for Mexico and Central America and yet another for Africa. He is a coauthor of the Photographic Guide to North American Raptors and the completely revised Peterson series guide, Hawks. He has on-going research projects on Harlan’s Hawk, White-tailed Hawk, and Harris’s Hawk.
Gil Randell has been active with HMANA since 2003, serving as co-chair of the education and conservation committee, as the board’s vice-chair, chair, and secretary. He started birding in 1954 and visited Hawk Mountain Sanctuary for his first serious taste of raptor migration in the mid-1950s; he wrote his high school senior research paper in 1958 on model raptor conservation laws. Western New York State’s Ripley Hawk Watch (RHW) has been his local spring hawkwatch since the early 1980s; he assumed co-coordinator duties at the RHW in 2003 and served as coordinator and official counter with his wife, Jann, and is enjoying an exploratory fall hawkwatch on Ocracoke Island, North Carolina. He has a BA in English literature from Amherst College and a Ph.D. from the State University of New York (SUNY), Buffalo. He taught English literature at SUNY and at the University of British Columbia before beginning a 26-year career in Chautauqua County government, retiring in 2002 as the county’s director of planning and development. Jann and Gil live outside Mayville, New York.
Paul M. Roberts of Medford, MA. has been an active hawk watcher longer than the life of the oldest known wild Bald Eagle. His fascination with hawks began when he encountered them with his wife Julie while mountain hiking in New England. Paul first heard about HMANA from someone counting hawks on Pack Monadnock Mountain in Fall 1974, who described the recent creation of an international organization of people who stood on mountaintops to count migrating hawks. Incredible! Attending a talk by Don Hopkins, one of the founders of the New England Hawk Watch (NEHW) and HMANA, put hawks’ awe, mystery, and significance into perspective. In 1976 Paul organized the Eastern Massachusetts Hawk Watch (EMHW), initially several dozen sites covered to determine where hawks might be seen migrating. Paul started coverage at Wachusett Mountain, Mt. Watatic, and Plum Island (Spring only), which have evolved into significant, long-term sites. In 1978 he saw and documented the most extensive flight of Broad-winged Hawks ever recorded in New England up until that time, changing his life forever. Attending an HMANA conference at Hawk Mountain in late 1978, he became Vice-Chair and then the Chair of HMANA, succeeding founder Michael Harwood. He later also succeeded Don Hopkins as President of the now NorthEast Hawk Watch. When he wasn’t hawk watching, Paul was in marketing and corporate communications for several international high-tech companies. In addition, he taught hawk migration and identification courses for Mass Audubon sanctuaries and bird clubs in his spare time. In 1995 he received HMANA’s Maurice Broun Award for “deep personal commitment and outstanding service to further hawk migration study and conservation.” Early in the 21st century, he returned to the HMANA Board as an Appointed Director, serving on the Communications, Fundraising, Conference, and Strategic Planning (Marketing) Committees, chairing the latter.
Peg Rooney, RN, PhD is currently the coordinator of the masters degree Nurse Educator program at Colorado State University-Pueblo. She serves as President of the Audubon Colorado Council, which comprises all ten Audubon chapters in the state. And, she is President of the Arkansas Valley Audubon Society which serves all of southern Colorado. Peg is also a member of the HMANA Education & Conservation Committee. She sits on the board of the Pueblo Raptor Center which is responsible for raptor rehabilitation. Although Colorado has only one hawk watch at Dinosaur Ridge near Denver, the plains and reservoirs of southern Colorado are home to golden and bald eagles, hawks of all kinds, including Ferruginous, falcons, harriers, kestrels, and kites. In addition to passion for all things raptor, Peg brings organizational skills and educational expertise to the HMANA board.
Rob Spaul has worked in avian conservation and ecology research for nearly 20 years. He studied Wildlife Biology at the University of Vermont and completed an M.Sc. in Raptor Biology at Boise State University. While at BSU, he researched the effects of recreation disturbance on Golden Eagle reproduction and behavior and investigated alternative management scenarios. Rob has conducted ornithological field research for many organizations across North America, studying the effect of human activities on avian distribution, reproduction, and winter habitat ecology of species of conservation concern. He has co-authored peer-reviewed journal articles and white papers and given conference presentations, contributing to collaborative academic, private, government, NGO, and community conservation planning for avian species at risk. Rob also has a passion for raptor migration monitoring, banding, and outreach, having worked with birds of prey in Utah, Wyoming, Washington, Idaho, Sweden, the Yukon Territory, and Ontario, where he served on the Executive Committee of the Niagara Peninsula Hawkwatch, conducting seasonal reporting and statistics. In 2021 Rob founded the GREAT Great Lakes Hawkwatch, a collaborative community science hawk watch effort with seven non-profits. He established hawk watch sites to improve the knowledge of raptor migration routes and broaden the diversity of community scientists participating in raptor migration monitoring. Rob recently moved to Laramie, Wyoming, working as a Wildlife Biologist and Project Manager at HWA Wildlife. He is an avid birder, community scientist, and outdoor enthusiast in his spare time.
Esther Vallejo is a Colombian biologist and has been working with birds for ten years, with experience in wildlife management, conservation, consulting and environmental education. The first time Esther saw the migration was at the largest migration site in the world, Veracruz River of Raptors in Mexico. She never saw the sky again with the same eyes. She continued learning about raptors and migration as a conservation science trainee at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary. After completing her traineeship, she returned to Colombia and founded the NGO “TROPICOS Colombia”. The aim of this organization is to contribute to conservation initiatives and to support the creation of an official long-term raptor migration count site in central Colombia. She became the director of this initiative called “Conserving migrating raptors in Colombia”.
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