Who We Are

Photo courtesy Sally Berry.

Staff

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.00.33 AM

Doug Kern, Executive Director

Before coming to GCC, Doug was Director of Conservation for the Mendocino Land Trust, where he successfully completed more than a dozen endangered Coho salmon recovery projects. He helped conserve old-growth redwoods and agricultural lands through conservation easements and managed Land Trust properties to improve public access. Previously, he was Executive Director of the Urban Watershed Project in the Presidio of San Francisco for 16 years and led the Presidio Restoration Advisory Board.

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.02.05 AM

Janet Koed, Outreach Coordinator

Trained as an early childhood educator at UCSB, Janet taught at Goleta Head Start before becoming Director of the Cornelia Moore Foundation, which focused on early childhood dental care and hygiene. She later joined a small local importing company supporting Zapotec weavers. In 2007, after volunteering for the Naples Coalition, she became Administrator for the Coalition and for Gaviota Coast Conservancy.

Board

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.13.24 AM

Nancy Black, Communications Chair

Co-founder of Mercury Press International, Nancy has served as Board President of Pesticide Awareness and Alternatives Coalition, producing the California Organic Festival and supporting local adoption of integrated pest management for parks, schools, and municipal properties.

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.14.43 AM

Mike Brown, Development Chair, Past President

Mike has worked in business and environmental management over the last 35 years in federal, state, and local government agencies. He also established an internal sustainability program at Patagonia. A partner at Brown Wilmanns Environmental, LLC, he has been involved for nearly four decades in community work, including Santa Barbara Channelkeeper, SBCAN, and the Environmental Defense Center.

LoisCapps

Lois Capps

Trained as a nurse, Lois unexpectedly entered politics when her husband, Representative Walter Capps, died while in office. Serving as U.S. Representative from California's 24th Congressional District from 1998 to 2017, Lois drew on her previous career and created the Nursing Caucus, worked on the Affordable Care Act, and advocated for environmental conservation from a public health standpoint.

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.10.49 AM

Karen Feeney, Vice President

Karen’s work has focused on environmental science, coastal protection, and land use planning. She has been an outdoor school naturalist, a land use planner for the County of Santa Barbara, and spent 20 years developing and managing environmental programs with the Community Environmental Council. She currently works in marketing and business development for Allen Construction.

SteveForsell

Steve Forsell, President

Steve Forsell has lived in Santa Barbara since 1968 where he attended UCSB. He owned a successful Santa Barbara real estate appraisal company for 30 years in Santa Barbara and is now retired. After being introduced to GCC, he became a board member in 2011. He is currently the President of GCC and Chair of the Outreach Committee. He previously served as Vice President.

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.09.52 AM

Gregory Helms

Greg joined the GCC board in 2020, having served on the Naples Coalition for several years. As Fisheries Program Manager at the Ocean Conservancy, he is responsible for ecosystem protection in Southern California. Previously, he was Community Affairs Director for the Environmental Defense Center, where he mobilized the community on coastal protections.

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.08.58 AM

Richard Hunt, Treasurer

A certified public accountant of 50+ years, Richard has served as GCC Treasurer since 2006. He has also volunteered with the Santa Barbara Wildlife Care Network, International Academy at Santa Barbara, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, and 44 years as Treasurer of Los Padres Chapter of the Sierra Club.

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.07.35 AM

Greg Karpain, Secretary

Greg earned his first “paycheck” at age 10 by diving for coins in the emerald waters of Catalina Island. He moved from Redondo Beach to attend UCSB in 1970 and stayed. GCC provides him the perfect opportunity to give back so others might experience the beautiful environment that he knows daily.

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.11.20 AM

Phil McKenna, Chair, Land Use Committee, Past President

Phil discovered the Gaviota Coast as a student at UCSB and was captivated by it. It is his intention that his grandchildren can experience our coastal lands as he was privileged to do. He joined the board at GCC in 1998 and was president for two years. He recently retired from financial consulting.

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.12.46 AM

Lee Moldaver

A long-time Santa Barbara resident, Lee consults on tech sector new product development. An original GCC board member, he serves as stakeholder for the City of Santa Barbara Charter update, the Santa Barbara General Plan and Circulation Element updates, City of Santa Barbara Measure E.

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.12.05 AM

Donna Senauer

A native Southern Californian, Donna grew up appreciating the importance of public beach and coastal access. A retired Orthopaedic Physician’s Assistant, she is a Montecito Planning Commissioner and volunteers with the Naples Coalition, the Land Trust for Santa Barbara County and the Sierra Club.

Processed with VSCO with s2 preset

Michelle I. Sevilla

Michelle brings a unique lens as a locally-raised, young immigrant from the Philippines, more than a decade of environmental education experience in the museum setting, and extensive volunteer work as a leader in other environmental organizations. She works on environment-related policy and local issues in the California State Legislature.

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.08.10 AM

Peter Sperling

Peter is Chairman of the Apollo Group and a co-founder and Chairman of CallWave, Inc. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from UCSB and his MBA from the University of Phoenix.

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 2.50.48 PM

Guner Tautrim

A 6th generation steward of the Orella Ranch in Gaviota, Guner has been a GCC board member for more than 13 years and served on the Gaviota Planning Advisory Committee. He and his family run Gaviota Givings, an agricultural business.

kw with map

Kathryn Washburn, Chair, Governance Committee

Kathy grew up in Southern California and was a city planner in Orange County. She then moved to Washington DC and managed programs at the EPA, Office of Coastal Zone Management in NOAA, and Department of the Interior, where she was Director of International Affairs for 20 years. She retired to Santa Barbara in 2012.

Student Interns

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.05.11 AM

Rylee Mikiya Pupa

Rylee is in her first year at UC Santa Barbara. Majoring in Environmental Studies, she plans to complete a double major in Economics or Earth Science. She is currently an undergraduate representative on the Board of Directors for the Coastal Fund at UCSB, which allocates funds each quarter to projects to restore and protect the Santa Barbara coastline.

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 10.05.44 AM

David Torres

David is a junior at UC Santa Barbara majoring in Cell and Developmental Biology. He is also a transfer student from East Los Angeles Community College. Currently aspiring to work in healthcare, he is passionate about protecting the environment.

Advisory Board

Wayne R. Ferren, Jr.

Dr. Lisa Stratton

Thekla Sanford

Richard Sanford

Steve Gaines

Marc McGinnes

Don Olson

Paul Relis

Dr. Adam K. Green

Diane Wondolowski

Lansing Duncan

Partners

NaturConservancyLogo
Environmental Defense Center logo
SBLandTrustLogo
Sierra Club Los Padres Logo
SB Trails Council Logo
Screen Shot 2020-09-10 at 8.20.21 PM
Scroll to Top