Board of Directors

An all-volunteer Board of Directors governs the Beaver Institute. The Directors personify a wide range of organizational skills, professional and life experiences, environmental passion, commitment, and sound judgement. Their collective decisions control the organization. The President is responsible for the Beaver Institute’s day-to-day operations.

Board Members

President/Director - Michael W. Callahan

Michael Callahan is the founder of the Beaver Institute Inc. He received a B.A. from St. Michael’s College and worked for 20 years as a Physician Assistant providing medical care to under-served populations. He began working with beavers in 1998 after founding the Pioneer Valley Wetland Volunteers with his wife Ruth. In 2000 he started Beaver Solutions LLC and has personally resolved over 1,400 beaver-human conflicts. He teaches beaver workshops, started an online Beaver Management Forum, and created a DVD to teach others to do this work. He has gained an international reputation as a leader in progressive beaver management. He believes the Beaver Institute Inc. is the next important step to accelerate widespread implementation of progressive beaver management for watershed restoration.

Clerk/Director -  Michael Kesten

Michael Kesten is the President of Michael Kesten Inc., a Massachusetts corporation he founded in 1993 providing video engineering services. The company’s success is owing to Michael’s business savvy, attention to detail, focus on customer satisfaction, engineering knowledge and skill, humor, and foremost -integrity. He began volunteering to improve beaver management in 1999 and donates his time and energy to many environmental causes.  Mr. Kesten’s passion for environmental stewardship, combined with his business and technical experience will be useful in helping the institute organize and achieve its goals.

Treasurer/Director - Lawrence P. Johnson

Lawrence Johnson is currently the Director of Non-Discrimination Compliance at Westfield State University.  A law school graduate with a graduate degree in in Higher Education Administration from Michigan State, he has worked in higher education for 35 years, serving in capacities both inside and outside the classroom with significant administrative experience and knowledge of laws and policies affecting higher education as non-profit institutions. His integrity, commitment, and his legal training with extensive experience with higher education will be of great benefit to the Board of Directors.

Director - Jeff Horan

Jeff Horan is a wetlands and conservation leader with decades of experience working for federal, state and local governments. He has a B.S. degree in Forest and Wildlife Management from Virginia Tech and taught Forest Ecology and Conservation at Johns Hopkins Univ. Mr. Horan also helped develop award winning conservation programs that provide innovative federal, state and private, technical and financial assistance for private landowners to protect and restore forest, wildlife, wetland and stream resources. His vast experience will be of great benefit to the Beaver Institute Board.

National Advisory Board

The Board of Directors are grateful to these national beaver experts who voluntarily provide their consultative expertise to the Board of Directors on important matters:

WI – Bob Boucher MS – Water Resource Management UW Madison, WI. Founder off Milwaukee Riverkeeper,   Retired Director of the Cedar Lakes Conservation Foundation:  Interested in Beaver restoration in the Western Great Lakes, WI, MI, MN. and Ontario.

NY – Owen Brown
Beavers Wetlands and Wildlife, NY

NY – Sharon Brown
Beavers Wetlands and Wildlife, NY

WA – Joe Cannon
The Lands Council, WA

WA – Benjamin Dittbrenner
Beavers Northwest, WA

CA – Brock Dolman
Occidental Arts & Ecology Center, CA

OR – Suzanne Fouty
U.S. Forest Service, OR

CA – Sherry Guzzi –  Co-founder of the nonprofit organization the Sierra Wildlife Coalition. The Sierra Wildlife Coalition promotes and provides humane and practical solutions for living with beavers, coyotes, and all local wildlife in the Lake Tahoe area.

MA – Laura Hagan
MA Soc. for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, MA

MA – Kara Homquist
MA Soc. for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, MA

OR – Leonard Houston
South Umpqua Rural Comm. Partnership, OR

OR – Lois Houston
South Umpqua Rural Comm. Partnership, OR

VT – Linda Huebner
Animal Advocacy Professional, VT

CA – Kate Lundquist
Occidental Arts & Ecology Center, CA

UT – Mary O’Brien
Grand Canyon Trust, UT

CA- Heidi Perryman Ph.D. Founder and President of Worth A Dam, which started as an effort to protect beavers in her home town, but expanded to become an important international beaver advocate and disseminator of beaver knowledge . A child psychologist, now she educates other cities about beaver benefits with a yearly festival and a website devoted to understanding beaver issues. Her website is a major resource for progressive beaver management and advocacy.

OR- Stanley Petrowski – Founder and President of the South Umpqua Rural Community Partnership (, a 501C3 supporting watershed restoration projects. He serves as Board liaison for the Beaver Advocacy Committee. Stan is President of Umpqua Watersheds, a Pacific northwest conservation organization. A zealous advocate of restoration ecology, his commitments include Lomakatsi Restoration Project, Partnership for the Umpqua Rivers and Native Fish Society South Umpqua River Steward.

WA – Michael Pollock
NOAA Fisheries, WA

OR – Kathy Roberts
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, OR

OR – Jakob Schockey – Owner of Beaver State Wildlife Solutions, which specializes in addressing frustrating conflicts with wildlife in a new way. He is a wildlife biologist and a published researcher in endangered species research.  He’s worked professionally in Oregon’s aquatic ecosystems for over 6 years.

CT – Laura Simon
Animal Advocacy Professional, CT

WA – Torre Stockard
Methow Beaver Project, WA

CA – Kevin Swift
Swift Water Design, CA

WA – Rob Walton
NOAA Fisheries, PNW

UT – Joe Wheaton
Utah State Univ., UT

WA – Kent Woodruff
US Forest Service, WA

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