Sharon Grace

Attorney, Orca Activist

Sharon is a long-time Southern Resident Killer Whale and Snake River wild salmon advocate, orca poop scooper (for research), and attorney, trying to influence those in power to breach the four lower Snake River dams to prevent orca and wild Snake River salmon extinction.

Jan Hare

Retired Professor of Human Development/Gerontology

Jan has been an orca enthusiast (primarily the Southern Residents) for several decades. She completed a Ph.D. at Oregon State University and was on faculty at University of Wisconsin-Stout until her retirement. She lives in Vermont and spends some time on San Juan Island every year. She enjoys spending time with her grandchildren (who also are knowledgeable orca enthusiasts), writing, kayaking, hiking with her dog, and gardening.

Dave Nimmer

Former Managing Editor for The Minneapolis Star, Asst News Director at WCCO TV, Professor Emeritus at The University of St Thomas and Volunteer

Dave Nimmer was born and raised in Fond du Lac, Wis., graduated from the University of Wisconsin and moved to Minnesota in 1963. He is a former reporter and managing editor for The Minneapolis Star, a reporter and assistant news director at WCCO Television and a professor emeritus at The University of St. Thomas, where he taught journalism for 11 years.

Now retired, Nimmer is active as a volunteer with the Visitation Monastery of North Minneapolis and the North4 program of Emerge, a non-profit involved in workforce training and community development in Minneapolis.

In his spare time, he hikes and fishes and does yard work for his friend and partner at her home in Hudson, Wis. He lives in Echo Ridge, a seniors’ apartment complex in Oakdale, Minn. Among the items he carries around are an AARP card, a fishing license and a lifetime pass to America’s national parks.

Rick Rupp

Retired Business Owner, Land Trust Advisor

25 years land trust advisor, conservationist, river advocate, fly fisherman. Ardent supporter of Orcas/Salmon and a free flowing lower Snake River. Owner of a ranch on the Lower Snake River for several years.

Rod Sando

Natural Resources Management, Director and Executive Levels

Rod has had a long career in natural resources management with degrees in forest management and forestry, minors in fish and wildlife management, public affairs and information systems.

He has served; in the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and as Director of the DNR, Director of Idaho Fish and Game, and Executive Director of the Columbia Fish and Wildlife Authority.

Rod’s experience provides an in depth understanding of the relevant science as well as the policy and political issues swirling around the recovery of salmon and steelhead in the Columbia River. He is very concerned about the current status of the salmonid species in the Snake River and its tributaries.

Betsey Thoennes

Photographer, Sculler & Activist

Betsey's background as a developer, project manager and technology integration consultant lends itself well to her environmental advocacy and activism passions. She provides web & social media support for several marine ecology groups. She is a wildlife photographer, a rower (sculling), kayaker and enjoys spending as much time outdoors as possible.