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

Beaver Institute™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 on Facebook, and created an instructional 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

Beaver Institute™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

Beaver Institute™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

Beaver Institute™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: He remains a strong advocate for beaver restoration in the Western Great Lakes areas of WI, MI, MN. and Ontario. You can contact him at

NY – Owen Brown PhD – Dr. Brown, has a PhD in Material Science, and is president of the educational nonprofit Beavers Wetlands and Wildlife (BWW). He was formerly a professor of chemistry  and physics for 23 years, and co-founded BWW in 1985. BWW is based in New York State and provides beaver programs, practical advice about solving beaver/human problems and consulting nationwide and overseas.

NY – Sharon Brown MS – Sharon is a wildlife biologist with the educational nonprofit Beavers Wetlands and Wildlife (BWW). She has a M.S. in Zoology from Syracuse University, has taught college biology courses, and has published articles about beavers, wetlands and other wildlife, and “Beaver Woman” Dorothy Richards in national magazines. She is featured in two beaver videos and is the editor of BWW’s news-magazine, Beaversprite.

WA – Joe Cannon – Joe is a Restoration Ecologist for The Lands Council and their Beaver Solution Program, The Lands Council’s beaver program has a uniquely diversified approach to using beavers to address issues, such as: policy reform, education and outreach, and direct project implementation. They are actively shaping beaver population management policy and connectivity at the state and regional scale by informing and engaging governing agencies and authorities. They give numerous presentations each year to school groups and other organizations and showcase beavers at their annual Picnic with the Beavers each September. Additionally, they offer consultation and nuisance management services such as tree protections and flood control structures from beaver activity and also offer live-trapping and relocation services. Finally, The Lands Council prioritizes long term goals to accommodate greater beaver populations – not only with safeguards for nuisance activity, but also with building future habitats that will reforest our stream reaches with trees and vegetation appropriate for beaver diet and structural needs. WA

CA – Brock Dolman – A wildlife biologistBrock is currently the WATER Institute Director, and Director for the Occidental Arts and Ecology Center Wildlands and Permaculture Program, Since 2012 he has been co-leading the Bring Back the Beaver Campaign in California to integrate beaver stewardship into California policy and restoration in order to improve water quality and quantity, create critical wetland habitat for numerous endangered species and optimize aquatic resource conservation and climate change adaptation strategies. He is co-author of “Restoring Summer Base Flow under a Decentralized Water Management Regime: Constraints, Opportunities, and Outcomes in Mediterranean-Climate California” Water Journal (2017), co-author of Beaver In California: Creating A Culture of Stewardship (2016), co-author of “The Historical Range of Beaver in Coastal California: an updated review of the evidence” California Fish and Game Journal (2013) and co-author of “The historical range of beaver in the Sierra Nevada: a review of the evidence” California Fish and Game Journal (2012). He can be reached at at the Occidental Arts & Ecology Center, CA

OR – Suzanne Fouty – Dr. Fouty currently serves as a U.S. Forest Service Hydrologist/soils specialist at Wallowa-Whitman National Forest, OR. She has a B.S. in Geology (University of Washington), a M.S. in Geosciences (University of Arizona) and a Ph.D. in Geography (University of Oregon). She has worked as a Water Resource Specialist for the State of New Mexico on groundwater contamination issues, as an outdoor environmental educator, and done stream-related work for The Nature Conservancy, the Bureau of Land Management, Department of Justice, and environmental groups.   In exploring the issue of water in the Intermountain West, she has learned about the social and political challenges and opportunities for stream restoration.  Suzanne was included in the PBS Nature episode “Leave it to Beavers” in the Nevada segment.

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 Hagen – Laura Hagen has worked on behalf of animals for over a decade. As the deputy director of advocacy for the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Laura administers the Nion Robert Thieriot Grant Program that has been the inspiration and model for the Beaver Institute flow device incentive program. She also works on legislation, programs, and advocacy efforts related to protecting domestic and captive wildlife, and reducing the wildlife trade. She previously served as part of the ASPCA’s Government Affairs team and worked in the Oregon legislature as an Oregon Sea Grant legislative fellow. Laura received her J.D., cum laude, from Lewis & Clark Law School with certificates in Animal Law and Environmental Law. Laura clerked for the Oregon Department of Justice and for Earthrise Law Center, where she worked on Endangered Species Act litigation. Laura is a member of the American Bar Association where she serves as wildlife subcommittee chair of the ABA’s Animal Law Committee.

MA – Kara Holmquist – MSPCA Living with Wildlife Program, Nion Robert Thieriot Grant Program  MA Soc. for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, MA

OR – Leonard Houston
South Umpqua Rural Community Partnership, OR

OR – Lois Houston
South Umpqua Rural Community Partnership, OR

VT – Linda Huebner – Executive Director, Animals and Society Institute. Linda has worked on behalf of animals for decades. She has significant hands-on experience caring for a variety of domestic, farmed, and wild animals and has also advocated for non-human animals via friend/fundraising, outreach, education, public-speaking, media relations, and legislative advocacy for various organizations. Linda has a BS in Animal Science from Cook College, Rutgers University.  She earned her MS in Animals and Public Policy from Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine. She continued to further her education via PhD coursework in Human Dimensions of Wildlife Management at the University of Massachusetts. For years Linda has volunteered for an array of organizations that help animals and people. Her beaver advocacy has included being an original member of the Pioneer Valley Wetland Volunteers that pioneered flow device installations in MA, as well as administrator of the Nion Robert Thieriot Grant Program, an innovative and very successful flow device grant program for the MA Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

CA – Kate Lundquist – Kate is the WATER Institute Director, Occidental Arts and Ecology Center since 2012 has been co-leading the Bring Back the Beaver Campaign in California to integrate beaver stewardship into California policy and restoration in order to improve water quality and quantity, create critical wetland habitat for numerous endangered species and optimize aquatic resource conservation and climate change adaptation strategies. Lead author of Beaver In California: Creating A Culture of Stewardship (2016), co-author of “The Historical Range of Beaver in Coastal California: An Updated Review of the Evidence” California Fish and Game Journal (2013). Contact Kate at at the Occidental Arts & Ecology Center, CA

UT – Mary O’Brien
Grand Canyon Trust, UT

CA- Heidi Perryman – Dr. Perryman is the founder and President of Worth A Dam, a large grassroots nonprofit organization which started as an effort to protect beavers in her home town, 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 Worth A Dam website and blog are major resources for progressive beaver management and advocacy. You can contact her at

OR- Stanley Petrowski – Founder and President of the South Umpqua Rural Community Partnership, a 501(c)3 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 – West Coast Region, 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 – Senior Policy Advisor, Oregon-Washington Coastal Area Office, NOAA Fisheries – West Coast Region, WA

UT – Joe Wheaton – Dr. Wheaton is an Associate Professor of Watershed Sciences at Utah State University, UT

WA – Kent Woodruff
Methow Beaver Project, and the US Forest Service, WA

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