Willis, Tamra

Willis, Tamra

Tamra Willis is an assistant professor in the Graduate Teacher Education Program at Mary Baldwin College in Staunton Virginia. She has developed an Environment-Based Learning (EBL) program at the college, providing professional development for teachers and a Master of Education degree in EBL.

The program encourages K-12 teachers to take students outside and to use the local environment to teach all subjects including reading, writing, math, science, social studies, and art. A primary goal is to engage students in outdoor learning experiences so that they will connect with nature in a meaningful way. Tamra lives on the side of Little North Mountain, VA in an 1850s farmhouse with her husband, Michael Pelton.

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Wahl, Ron

Ron Wahl is a computer scientist emeritus for the U.S. Geological Survey. He received a Geophysical Engineering degree from the Colorado School of Mines and a Master of Science degree in geophysics from Stanford University. He has taught geology, computer science, physics, and astronomy for Metropolitan State College in Denver, Colorado, and astronomy for the Jefferson County, CO Schools Adult Education Program. Ron has taught various classes at a number of summits across the country since 1973.

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Sherrard, Sally

Early Discovery Program Director Sally Sherrard lives in Littleton, NH with her husband Jim. Sally and her son James have attended 19 summits. With a degree in Early Childhood Education Sally has taught preschool for 25 years. She is presently working as a Para Professional in a Kindergarten class. Her focus is on helping children learn to respect and understand the world in which they live. She believes children learn through playing in their natural environment. Sally enjoys hiking, kayaking, and snowshoeing in her beautiful northern New Hampshire playground; she is also a magician and will share her Nature Magic Show at the Family Summit.

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Sherrard, Leslie

Leslie Sherrard is an educator with 33 years of teaching experience in elementary, middle, and high schools. She currently teaches high school math in Savannah, Georgia. She has worked at Glacier National Park in Montana, and has served as a Director of Camp Invention (a national science camp for elementary students). She is an assistant PADI scuba diving instructor and a full time outdoor enthusiast. Leslie admits: “I hike and camp whenever I can!” She has two adult sons – the older one graduated from Clemson and her younger son graduated from Appalachian State. This is Leslie’s eighth Summit.

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Shelby, Michael

My family’s relationship with NWF Family Summits started in North Carolina. We have attended every Family Summit since 2000. I attend the Summit annually with my wife Sabina and children Nika (19) and Ryan (17). My children always look forward to the next summit as much as we do. We all have made wonderful friends all over the country that we stay in touch with between the summits and always look forward seeing them every summer.

For the last 16 years I’ve resided in West Hartford, CT. I am a Founder and Owner of Shall Be, LLC – a national boutique technology consulting and Internet security firm.

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Schroeder, Teri

Teri Schroeder has worked in the past as director of the child care program. Teri and her family began attending NWF Family Conservation Summits in 1985. Since that first summit, Teri has worked as a volunteer, as childcare staff and director and as a Junior Naturalist leader at many summits.

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Schroeder, Joel

Joel Schroeder became involved with the NWF Family Conservation Summits starting in 1985 and has either served on the teen staff or directed the teen program many times since then. He was a secondary science teacher and technology coordinator for a school district in Iowa and taught classes in all areas of science.

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Sabo, Sue

Sue Sabo first contracted the Conservation Summit Virus (CSV) about 20 years ago when her parents invited her to join them at the Blue Ridge Summit and she has been infected with it ever since! Since the CSV is so contagious, she has managed to infect the rest of her family and a few others along the way! The symptoms of CSV include an intense desire to collect scarves of differing colors, greet others infected with the same virus, and see parts of this country that un-infected people never get a chance to experience! About 11 years ago she developed a new symptom–an uncontrollable desire to become even more involved in the Summit experience. Thus, she entered the “Faculty” phase, working with the Adult Adventure Class, leading the Family Adventure class, and now serving as Director of the Early Discovery Program. Six years ago the CSV mutated into a new but very similar virus known as the Family Summit Virus (FSV), and she hopes to remain infected with this new virus for many years to come! When not indulging her viral symptoms, she is a retired media specialist, a grandmother of 5, and also a member of the Improv Comedy Troupe, See You Thursday, www.seeyouthursday.com

In 2013, Sue assumed the role of Summit Adult Program Director and chair of the Programming Committee. She is also a member of the Family Summits Board of Directors.

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Pelton, Michael

Michael Pelton is Emeritus Professor of Wildlife Science, Department of Forestry, Wildlife, and Fisheries, The University of Tennessee. For 32 years he conducted research on black bears and various other mammals (raccoon, deer, cottontail rabbits, European wild hogs, red wolves, river otter) in the southern Appalachians.

He and his graduate students have delved into numerous aspects of the ecology and life history of black bears and assisted private and public organizations and agencies on management issues regarding this species. Michael is currently technical advisor to a variety of bear projects and wildlife organizations and agencies regarding bear issues. The black bear research project he initiated in 1968 is Great Smoky Mountains National Park just completed its 40th consecutive field season and is the longest continuous research project of any bear species in the world.

He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Valley Conservation Council and is an Associate Director of Headwaters Soil and Water Conservation District. Michael has 4 grown sons and 3 grandchildren. His wife Tamra is on the faculty of Mary Baldwin College in Staunton, VA. They reside on their mountain farm in Augusta County, VA.

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Pellichero, Denis

Denis Pellichero is a retired Naval engineer who is now focusing his skills on improving Health Care infrastructure in Nova Scotia Canada. Denis is at the forefront of a dramatic change in providing Nursing Home Care to an ever increasing senior population as well as a shift to “Green Building” design.

Denis is a certified Casting Instructor from the International Federation of Fly Fishers and a Nova Scotia Professional Fishing Guide. Denis was hooked (pardon the pun) on fishing since he was a little boy but has been an active fly fisher for over 14 years and promotes Catch and Release fishing to help protect the species. Denis has been a certified instructor for over 4 years and teaches part time at the Atlantic Fly Fishing School (http://www.flyschool.net/) in Brookfield Nova Scotia.

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