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Oregon Birding Association
PO Box 675
Lincoln City OR 97367-0675

Meet the Oregon Birding Association Officers

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President Cathy Nowak

Also serves as Marketplace Chair

Cathy has worked as a wildlife biologist for over 17 years. She has been watching birds since she left restaurant management to pursue an education and career in wildlife and natural resources over 20 years ago.

Cathy participates in the Union County CBC, serves as Union Co. coordinator for the NAMC and previously ran 3 ECAS winter raptor routes.

As biologist for Ladd Marsh Wildlife Management Area, she conducts a number of different bird surveys including point counts, marsh bird surveys, owl surveys and monthly all-bird surveys on driving transects. Cathy also closely monitors nesting sandhill cranes on Ladd Marsh including arrival and nesting dates, nest success and color banding colts when possible. She coordinates the Ladd Marsh Bird Festival and is ODFW liaison to the Friends of Ladd Marsh.

In addition to membership in OBA, Cathy is a member of the ABA and the Iowa Ornithologistís Union. She is a 14-year member of Union County Search and Rescue and served on that board in various capacities for 9 years.

President-elect Jimmy Billstine
James Billstine started his birding career by volunteering at North Mountain Park Nature Center in Ashland, where he helped revise the Outdoor School Birding Program.

In 2015, he became a board member of the Umpqua Valley Audubon Society, where he led fund-raising efforts as well as promoted and led field trips. In the spring of 2016, he wrote a monthly birding column for the Roseburg Mail Tribune before relocating to Garibaldi.

As a first-generation college student, James completed his Bachelor's and Master's degrees at Southern Oregon University in Ashland. He currently teaches high school sophomore and Advanced Placement English at Neah-Kah-Nie High School in Rockaway Beach.

Past President Harv Schubothe
Harv is a native Oregonian and, while officially retired from his work as a non-profit administrator and public administrator, is the executive director of the Greater Bandon Association.

He has also been recognized and serves as a Ford Family Foundation Community Fellow. He volunteers on a number of†non-profit boards and is President of Shoreline Education for Awareness; Harv also is chairperson for both the City of Bandonís Parks and Recreation Commission and Planning Commission.

He is the compiler for the Coquille Valley CBC, participates in other CBCs, NAMCs and hosts field trips for the Oregon Shorebird Festival and the Birds and Blues Festival as well as Shoreline Education for Awareness in Bandon. He is tri-pod carrier and†spotter for his wife, wildlife photographer Kelle Herrick.

Secretary Caryn Stoess

Caryn grew up in Reno, Nevada and moved to Eugene for graduate school. Despite having quail running around the parking lot behind her house when she was a kid, Caryn didn't discover birds until 2011 when her husband gave her a bird feeder. Since then the number of bird feeders at her home has grown substantially as has her optics collection and yard list.

She is the Operations Manager for a small organization that creates career development software.

Caryn is currently working on turning all of her friends and coworkers into birders.

Treasurer and Membership Chair Dawn Villaescusa
Dawn Villaescusa was born in Winona Lake, Indiana, and moved to Salem, Oregon, in 1971. Growing up, the family did a lot of camping and hiking, always with the Peterson Bird Guide in hand.

In Salem, Dawn adapted her backyard to be wildlife friendly, and kept daily notes of the birds that came to her pond and feeders.

In 2009, Dawn moved with her husband to Lincoln City. While excited about being on the coast, she feared that her birdwatching days were over -- after all, "all that's there are seagulls." However, a visit from her brother, an avid bird photographer from Tennessee, rekindled her interest in local birdlife. Lacking much of a backyard, she began exploring area parks, beaches, and "open spaces". Her blog "Central Oregon Coast" (, highlights many of the areas she has explored.

Dawn is a retired Business Analyst, having worked for the State of Oregon for 28 years.

Board Member Jeffrey Dillon
Jeff Dillon grew up in west-central Indiana on his parents' farm where birding was basically a "see what has come into the feeders."

While earning a Bachelor of Science in Forestry at Purdue University, Jeff was shown by a good friend (an avid birder) what birding could really be like with a fall warbler migration on the south side of Lake Michigan. This was the day he became an avid birder himself.

Jeff moved to Baton Rouge, earning a Master of Science in Wildlife Ecology studying Northern Bobwhites at Louisiana State University. He spent several years in Louisiana, Georgia, and Mississippi birding every chance he could get. Eventually, he moved to California and worked as wildlife biologist out of Sacramento for a year. Then an opportunity came to move to the northwest and he has been here ever since (19+ years).

Jeff now lives in Gladstone, Oregon, with his family on their little lot trying to create just a tiny bit of bird habitat while teaching his daughter to appreciate the wonder of birds.

Board Member Tim Blount

Tim Blount has been birding since he was a youngster in Nebraska. At age 15, he and his family moved to Salem and Tim blossomed into a full-fledged birding maniac. For over 30 years he has birded every corner of Oregon and many other places throughout the Northwest.

He is an alternate member of the Oregon Birds Record Committee and has served on the OBA Board for over a year.

Tim’s website,, has been a very popular site for birders wishing to visit Malheur NWR and the surrounding county.

Tim is the Executive Director of the Friends of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge and most days can be found poking around the brush at HQ looking for the next vagrant sighting.

Board Member Kathleen Krall
Kathy grew up in Sebastopol, California. She developed a love for Oregon listening to stories from her dad's childhood in Bend in the 1920's. Kathy caught the birding passion from her boyfriend (now husband) Michael, who discovered birds on a college trip to Asa Wright Nature Centre in Trinidad.

Work and raising children slowed the birding down, but spending time at a beach cabin at Netarts has renewed their interest in birds. Kathy is a retired family nurse practitioner who now enjoys citizen science projects as an opportunity to contribute to conservation science.

She and Michael take part in CBC and NAMC for Portland and Netarts, a raptor run for Tillamook east, as well as Coastwatch and COASST (Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team). Her favorite birds are peeps and any baby bird. She is just as interested in behavior as in identification. She is not a lister, although of course she enjoys seeing new birds. Kathy has birded in Israel, Costa Rica, and Italy and will spend a month in Southern Africa this summer.

Board Member Ken Chamberlain
Ken has been birding for the last 17 years. He loves birding and exploring rural areas of Oregon, with the majority of his time afield spent in Tillamook County. Ken lives in Portland Oregon with his wife and birding partner, Jeanne. He enjoys traveling and birding in Latin America, especially Mexico.

When not birding he enjoys fly fishing for trout and steelhead, winemaking, and playing upright bass in a bluegrass band.

Ken is a retired registered Land Surveyor. He surveyed for the Forest Service and BLM for 34 years. He was lucky enough to work in many parts of both Oregon and Washington during that time.

Not Pictured:

Archivist Barb Combs

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