Dedicated to Saving Mountain Lions


Brent Lyles

Executive Director
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Brent began his professional journey teaching middle-school science in rural North Carolina. Since that time, Brent’s career has focused on science education, compassionate and inclusive leadership, and environmental stewardship. He holds master’s degrees in biological anthropology and not-for-profit management. Before joining the team at the Mountain Lion Foundation in 2022, Brent served as executive director at several not-for-profit organizations in Austin, Texas, and the San Juan Islands, Washington. Other experiences include playing in mediocre rock bands, management consulting, writing national science textbooks, and, as a young person, dreaming about someday seeing a mountain lion in the wild.

Gowan Batist

Coexistence Programs Manager
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Gowan is a regenerative sheep rancher, hand-shearer, wool spinner, writer and dog enthusiast who grew up outdoors with wildlife in Northern California and is committed to fostering a land stewardship ethic that increases and preserves biodiversity for future generations.

A co-owner of Fortunate Farms on the Mendocino Coast and member of the Board of Directors of CAFF, Gowan is deeply invested in facilitating positive interactions between humans, agriculture and wildlife. She has a long history of engagement and education, including receiving recognition for her work from California Farmer’s Guild, American Farmland Trust, Americorps NCCC, and the Sustainable North Coast Award from the office of Congressman Jared Huffman.

When she’s not working, she’s somewhere out in the bunchgrasses and wildflowers.

Elizabeth Bennett, PhD

Director of Communications
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Elizabeth is a non-profit communications leader who has built a post-academic career working with  organizations committed to protecting animals, their habitat, and the communities that thrive around them. She joins the Mountain Lion Foundation after directing communications at a regenerative agriculture firm that helps build thriving economies and ecosystems in the Global South. She was formerly Managing Director at a content marketing agency in service to plant-based food brands. She is passionate about companion and farmed animal welfare, and the preservation of wild places for future generations.

Elizabeth lives in southern California with her adventurous husband, mischievous son, devoted rescue dogs, vocal parakeets, and inquisitive aquatic turtle.

Lou Galgani

Membership Coordinator
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Lou Galgani first joined the Mountain Lion Foundation team in 2015, returning after a brief hiatus. She has a background in animal care and a bachelor of arts in biology from California State University Sacramento. Her experience in office administration and organizational skills are invaluable assets. You’re most likely to hear her cheerful wit if you call our Sacramento office.

Erika Mathews

Director of Development
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Erika has dedicated both her personal and professional life to the welfare of all animals. She has extensive experience fundraising for both national and grassroots issues concerning the environment, animal sheltering, farm animals and wildlife issues.

Outside of work she enjoys hiking, swimming, kayaking, reading and raising foster kittens. She shares her home with her husband, daughter, rescued dogs, cats and chickens.

Paige Munson

Science and Policy Coordinator
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Paige coordinates the organization’s science communication and research, and policy work. She holds a bachelor’s of science degree from California State University, Chico in biology, with a focus on ecology, evolution, and organismal biology. Before joining the Mountain Lion Foundation team in 2021, she worked for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and researched Northern California’s mammalian carnivores during her studies.

When she isn’t working, Paige is likely trail running, reading, or crafting.

Chelsea Robinson

Operations Manager
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Chelsea Robinson joined the Mountain Lion Foundation staff in 2020. She deftly handles myriad aspects of maintaining this organization and the services we provide and coordinates our Living with Lions webinars.

Prior to joining this team, she worked in administration with various nonprofits in and around Sacramento. She received her bachelor of science in business management — studying music, music business and culinary arts on her way to that degree.

In her spare time, she sings karaoke and DJs in Northern California, spends time with her lab mix dog, Jack, and photographs people and places.

Josh Rosenau

Director of Policy & Advocacy
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Josh is a mammalogist who has worked to protect wild salmon and orcas, defend science educators against political pressure, and led efforts to push candidates to explain how science would inform them in Congress and the Oval Office. After graduating with a bachelors in Biology from the University of Chicago, he began a doctoral program at the University of Kansas, based in the Museum of Natural History. During his doctoral studies in Kansas, he changed directions from ecology and evolutionary biology to focus on science communication and science policy. With coalitions of clergy leaders, scientists, and parents, he led campaigns to defuse conflicts over the science lessons on topics like climate change and evolution. At the Mountain Lion Foundation, he is returning his focus to mammals, connecting and informing communities about their cougar neighbors, and helping to turn conversations from conflict to cooperation as we strive to Save America’s Lion.

Outside of work, Josh loves to explore wild places with his wife and two children. A lifelong hiker and birder, he has led Grand Canyon rafting trips and hikes, and since moving to Washington, has taken up kayaking and fly fishing.

Board of Directors

Bob McCoy

Sammamish, Washington

An interest in researching Puma concolor led Bob to the Mountain Lion Foundation. That was in 2009. Shortly thereafter, he successfully worked to stop the Washington Cougar Hounding Pilot Program, formed the Washington Cougar Coalition (WA Cougar), and become the Foundation’s Washington State field representative. Since then, Bob and volunteers successfully stopped several bills that would have harmed cougars. In 2013, Bob represented the Foundation on a panel at the 13th Mountain Lion Workshop in Utah. In 2015, Bob spurred WA Cougar to appeal the Washington Fish & Wildlife Commission’s failure to follow proper procedure in setting cougar hunting guidelines. Humane Society of the United States’ lawyers authored the administrative petition to the governor that achieved the first overturn and rollback of a citizens’ commission ruling in Washington state history. As part of a small coalition of groups and individuals, Bob helped in getting new commissioners appointed (2021 – 2023) that gives a majority vote to prioritize science over extractive “opportunity.” Bob frequently testifies for carnivores, and participates in outreach and education events. He is 100% committed to the Foundation’s mission. Bob has a Bachelor of Science degree and a Master of Business Administration.

Member of the Board of Directors since 2016.

Dr. Chris Tromborg

Vice Chair
Davis, California

Dr. Chris Tromborg is an emeritus  Professor of Biological Psychology, Cognitive Science, and Animal Behavior and Cognition at Sacramento City College and a former lecturer in Psychobiology, Perception, and Advanced Animal Behavior at the University of California, Davis. His research interests include captivity and behavior, with an emphasis on behavioral enrichment through environmental engineering, Animal Communication, and Wildlife Conservation, emphasizing Felids.

Along with serving on the Foundation’s board, he also serves on the Board of Directors of The Feline Conservation Foundation, and is a past board member of The African Wild Dog Conservancy.

Member of the Board of Directors since 2010

Bruce Rylander

Wilsonville, Oregon

Bruce joined the board of the Mountain Lion Foundation in 2022. As treasurer, he ensures the board sees good, clear data to inform decisions.

Bruce is a retired executive director from an international computer software company. Prior to that he was an executive director with an international cellular company. He has a great depth of experience forming high-powered structured and unstructured teams with a focus on operational and financial analysis.

Past volunteer positions include board treasurer positions with two non-profits in Washington’s San Juan Islands.

Bruce holds a bachelor of arts in English, a master’s in business administration and a graduate level certificate in program management.

Donald Molde, M.D.

Reno, Nevada

Donald Molde is a retired psychiatrist; former board member, Defenders of Wildlife, 20-year board member, Nevada Humane Society; and long-time Nevada wildlife activist defending carnivores and opposing fur trapping. Don developed the initial brief and served as the Nevada plaintiff in WildEarthGuardians lawsuit against Nevada Wildlife Services, which was settled to great advantage to wildlife in 2016. Don is currently suing the Nevada Board of Wildlife Commissioners to protect non-target species, including mountain lions, from fur trappers. Don is the co-founder of the Nevada Wildlife Alliance, and is widely regarded as the expert on mountain lions in the state. Dog owner, bird-watcher, and Nevada back country enthusiast, Don has endless energy for wildlife and the environment.


Toby Cooper

Eastsound, Washington

Financial Advisor, Former Program Director of National Issues, Defenders of Wildlife, Washington DC; Former Staff, National Parks and Conservation Association, Washington DC.; 1968 U.S. Olympian; Former Board Member, California Center for Wildlife (now Wildcare), Vivamos Mejor, Peninsula Conservation Center Foundation (now Acterra).

Elizabeth Sullivan

Board Member
Cotati, California

Elizabeth held a dual career in wealth management and law.

She was a wealth management advisor for a private firm and provided financial advisory for financial consulting firms like Merrill Lynch and Wells Fargo Advisors. Her work included planned giving and legacy consulting to non-profits and individual estates.

As an attorney, she practiced in environmental litigation and toxics litigation including cases involving mitigation of several Environmental Protection Agency Superfund sites. She has also spent time as pro-bono counsel on habitat and land use issues.

At age six, she volunteered to clean local marshes, and her lifelong concern for wildlife has carried on since then to include a wide range of efforts, including penguin behavioral studies at San Francisco Zoo in college and feeding orphaned chicks at wildlife rehabilitation centers. When it comes to preventing the loss of wildlife species, she firmly believes that every individual counts.

Member of the Board of Directors since 1996

Fauna Tomlinson

Board Member
Lake Tahoe, California

Fauna Tomlinson’s passion for the big cats of the world initially started with the Indian Bengal tiger and the snow leopard, which led to many trips to India and Nepal. She now works closer to home on native lion and coyote issues.

From Tahoe, her home base for the past three decades, she works in real estate and serves as the Sierra Nevada Representative for Project Coyote.

Fauna also serves on the California Council of Wildlife Rehabilitators.

Being on the board of Mountain Lion Foundation offers her a chance to make a difference on behalf of America’s lion in a new and exciting way.

Member of the Board of Directors since 2020

Field Volunteers

Robin Parks

Field Volunteer, Events
San Diego, California

Jane Santorumn

Julian Mountain Lion Project, Depredation Deterrence & Response, Field Volunteer, Events
Julian, California

Mike Poremba

Field Volunteer, Depredation Prevention and Response, Events
Jackson County, Oregon

Science Advisory Council

Chris Tromborg, PhD

Science Advisory Council Chair
Professor of Psychobiology and Animal Behavior at Sacramento City College and lecturer in Psycho-Physics and Animal Cognition at the University of California, Davis.

Bob McCoy


Cristina Eisenberg, PhD

Chief Scientist Emerita, Earthwatch Institute
Graduate Faculty Oregon State University College of Forestry Department of Fisheries and Wildlife

Rodney Jackson, PhD

Executive Director, Snow Leopard Conservancy

Laurie Marker, PhD

Executive Director, Cheetah Conservation Fund

Sharon Negri

Founder and Director, WildFutures

Carter Niemeyer

Retired USFWS trapper, Conservationist

Laura Prugh, PhD

Prugh Lab, Associate Professor of Quantitative Wildlife Studies, University of Washington

Jennifer Verdolin, PhD

Assistant Professor of Practice, School of Natural Resources and the Environment at the University of Arizona

Carolyn Whitesell, PhD

Assistant Cooperative Extension Human-Wildlife Interactions Advisor, UC Cooperative Extension, Half Moon Bay

Rob Wielgus, PhD

Retired Professor/Director of Large Carnivore Conservation Lab , Washington State University

Christine Wilkinson

PhD Candidate Livestock Predator Conflicts

Paige Munson

State Policy Associate, Field Biologist
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Josh Rosenau

Director of Policy & Advocacy
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