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The SER Team

 SER Staff

Alexis Gibson
Program Manager

Alexis Gibson joined SER’s staff in 2019. Her role focuses on developing the Society’s programs and activities, including ongoing educational programs, the monthly and quarterly newsletters, the Restoration Resource Center, and the biennial World Conference. Alexis lives in Missoula, Montana and holds a B.A. in Biology and a PhD in Forestry and Conservation, both from the University of Montana. Before joining SER, Alexis was a postdoctoral researcher in the Restoration Ecology lab at the University of Montana. Her research focused on improving the selection of native plant materials for restoration by incorporating local adaptation and genetics into seed sourcing. She loves raising her kids in the open spaces of Montana, canoeing, hiking, and knitting. 

Bethanie Walder
Executive Director
Bethanie Walder joined the Society for Ecological Restoration as Executive Director in September 2015 and has more than 20 years’ experience in environmental conservation, restoration and education.

Prior to joining the SER, Bethanie served as the Executive Director of Wildlands CPR, where she oversaw several highly successful conservation and restoration campaigns. Bethanie has also worked as an organizational development, strategic planning and natural resources management consultant. She was a founding member of several coalitions and non-governmental organizations including Women’s Voices for the Earth and the Washington Watershed Restoration Initiative. She is responsible for helping guide SER's overall work to achieve its mission of advancing the science, practice and policy of ecological restoration.

Bethanie has an undergraduate degree in Political Science and International Studies from Duke University and a Master of Science in Environmental Studies from the University of Montana. She lives, works, and plays in Missoula, Montana.


Chris Lenhart
Certification Coordinator
Christian Lenhart joined SER in 2020. His role is to manage the certification program (Certified Ecological Restoration Practitioner (CERP), continuing education credits and developing online trainings. Chris is also a Research Assistant Professor with the BBE Department at the University of Minnesota and contributes to The Nature Conservancy, Mn-ND-SD chapter.  He has degrees from Notre Dame, the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of Minnesota (UMn). Chris’s work has focused on treatment wetlands, stream restoration and water quality management, particularly in agricultural areas. He teaches Ecological Engineering Design and Global Water Resources & Sustainability at the UMn. He has many scientific publications and co-authored, Ecological Restoration in the Midwest: Past, Present and Future in 2018. He has also co-authored several widely-used management documents including the Aquatic Organism Passage Handbook for the Minnesota Department of Transportation. Chris lives with his family in Roseville, Minnesota and enjoys cross-country skiing and native landscaping.  
George Gann
International Policy Lead
Since SER's founding, George has been involved in a variety of ways, including serving as Chair of the SER Board of Directors, Chair of the Science and Policy Committee, and as a Global Restoration Ambassador. He has also been a lead figure in the development of the SER International Standards. In 2019, SER appointed George as its International Policy Lead. In collaboration with his duties as the Acting Director and Chief Conservation Strategist for the Institute for Regional Conservation (IRC), George is leading SER’s international policy program to advance the science, practice and policy of ecological restoration. George has spent the last 40 years working on the conservation of rare plants, the restoration of ecosystems and a host of other conservation and sustainability issues. He has a B.A. with distinction in International Affairs and Environmental Conservation from the University of Colorado, and has traveled widely in Latin America, as well as Europe, Asia and Australia. He and his family live in Delray Beach, Florida, USA. 
Laura Capponi
Membership Director

Laura Munley Capponi joined SER in 2018 as Membership Director, and leads member recruitment and retention efforts to build SER's global community. She also provides guidance and program support to the Society's chapters and sections, fundraising efforts, and volunteer leadership. Laura's membership career officially started in 2010 after completing the coordination of a five-year $26 million federal research contract from the Institute of Education Sciences. Before that, she served in various roles for an international public interest advocacy firm based in Washington, DC. She received a BA in Government & Politics from the University of Maryland, and an MA in Government from Johns Hopkins University. She lives and works in DC, and divides her free time between her garden and yoga mat.

Contractors and Consultants

Keith MacCallum

Programs Consultant

Keith joined the SER team as a contractor in January 2020. He works to support the initiatives of the Membership Director, Program Manager, and Executive Director. After discovering the field of Ecological Restoration while pursuing an undergraduate degree in Environmental Science, he went on to complete Niagara College's Ecosystem Restoration Graduate Certificate and the M.Sc. in Ecological Restoration program at Simon Fraser University/British Columbia Institute of Technology. A proud SER member since 2016, Keith has been involved with several regional and student chapters, and has held his CERPIT designation since 2017. Despite regularly being on the move, his home will always be Alma, New Brunswick.  
Sarah Cotter

Social Media Coordinator

Sarah Cotter joined the SER team as a social media contractor in 2019. She is a recent graduate of the Restoration of Natural Systems program at the University of Victoria, Canada, where she specialized in Garry Oak meadow restoration. In addition to her work at SER, Sarah is an Ecological Restoration Policy Analyst for Parks Canada, where she writes wildlife management policy, and facilitates strategic conservation planning workshops in parks across the country. In between jobs, she has a passion for organizing alternative music festivals, hula hooping, traveling, kombucha-brewing and mushroom hunting in her beautiful home on southern Vancouver Island.  

Stephen Murphy
Restoration Ecology Editor-in-Chief
Stephen Murphy is the Professor and Director of the School of Environment, Resources & Sustainability at the University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.  He focuses on restoration ecology in a variety of habitats, especially in the Great Lakes region. He also is involved with strategic planning, management, policy, and advances in monitoring and data analysis for restoration ecology from regional to international levels. As Steve enjoys both the professional development and social aspects of conferences, you will find him leading sessions or entire programs at SER regional and international conferences.

Valter Amaral
Restoration Ecology Managing Editor
Valter Amaral is a benthic ecologist at the Marine and Environmental Sciences Centre, Universidade de Lisboa, Portugual. Valter's research combines ecological and molecular tools to understand the mechanistic underpinnings of organisms' responses to environmental change and disturbance. He is particularly interested in aspects of population structure, regulation and evolutionary adaptation of marine and coastal biota. Most importantly, Valter is a father, husband, and yogi, who loves travelling and being close to the sea.

Vickie Stubbs
Bookkeeping and Finance
Victoria Stubbs is a passionate, energy centered, solutions oriented business consultant, accountant, and tax preparation professional. Vickie has been a member of the Society for Ecological Restoration since 2008 and is honored to help facilitate SER’s Mission as Treasurer of the Southwest Chapter. Beyond accounting, Vickie enjoys working in the yard, sprouting plants/herbs, UofA Basketball, and her absolutely wonderful husband of 27 years, Roger!