Our Mission

“The Friends of the Cedarburg Bog support stewardship, understanding, and appreciation of the Bog through land management, preservation, research and education.”

The Friends of the Cedarburg Bog is a nonprofit 501(C)(3) organization that supports preservation, stewardship, appreciation, and scientific study of the Cedarburg Bog in cooperation with the Department of natural Resources and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Field Station. The Cedarburg Bog is one of the largest and most biologically interesting wetlands in Southern Wisconsin. The Bog Friends seek to make the public more aware of the Bog’s uniqueness by creating opportunities for people to visit. It organizes projects and volunteer workdays for invasive species control; it improves facilities for educational and scientific programs, and supports long term monitoring and research.

Our Committees

Executive

The Executive Committee administers the Friend’s day-to-day business under the guidance of the Board of Directors.

Stewardship

The Stewardship Committee helps maintain the University and DNR lands in the Cedarburg Bog. The Committee plans projects and organizes volunteer workdays for invasive species control, to improve facilities for educational and scientific programs and to support long-term monitoring and research.

Events & Education

The Events and Education Committee offers indoor and outdoor educational and entertaining programs for school groups, youths, adults and the public at large.

Coummunication & Membership

The Communication Committee works to promote the work of the FOCB through its website, traditional and social media, print and electronic mail. It also publishes a quarterly newsletter with articles on natural history, local issues and upcoming events. It also seeks to increase membership in the FOCB.

Fundraising & Grants

The Fundraising and Grants Committee raises funds to support projects approved by the Board of Directors. The Committee applies for grants from governments and private foundations and solicits support from corporate and individual donors.

Board of Directors

We are a group of people who care about the Cedarburg Bog. We are supported by our members, donors, and volunteers.

Meet Our:

OFFICERS

President: Jim Ellis

Jim is the Resident Naturalist and Land Steward at Turtle Springs Farm in SW Sheboygan County where he and his wife, Patricia “Patti” Baker Ellis, along with a community of family and friends, are creating a wild life habitat and natural area on 40 acres that was once an active farm. He is also a Teacher Naturalist at Riveredge Nature Center and a Wisconsin Master Naturalist involved in various land stewardship activities, including being a trail steward and managing invasive plants for the Friends of the Cedarburg Bog. Having retired from his psychotherapy practice as a clinical social worker, Jim has turned his attention to expanding his knowledge and understanding of the natural world. He has a passion for helping folks develop a closer relationship with nature and to appreciate the interconnectedness of all living things. Jim, Patti, and their two dogs enjoy hiking, skiing, snowshoeing, and working in the prairies and woods at Turtle Springs Farm.

Treasurer: Andy Holman

Andy Holman is a semi-retired CPA who has worked with nonprofits throughout Southeast Wisconsin while also enjoying biodiversity wherever he can find it. He has traveled to all seven continents during his quest with nonprofits. However, he has always been rooted in Milwaukee. His photos have been exhibited at the Milwaukee Public Library, Betty Brinn Children’s Museum and the Racine Art Museum and they have been published in Handbook of the Mammals of the World. Andy also co-teaches a graduate level class at UW-Milwaukee in Nonprofit Accounting and Financial Management.

Past President: William Taylor

William James Taylor is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and a Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA). He is a practicing CPA providing litigations support services and business valuation services. Much of his professional life has also been as a college professor and is an emeritus professor on the business faculty at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. Giving back to his community is important and he has served as a director and president of a number of not-for-profit organizations. He enjoys outdoor activities including gardening, travel, and spending time in Colorado.

DIRECTORS

Brennan De Lap

I discovered my love for plants at a young age working in garden beds with my grandmother. As a teenager, I learned to love being outdoors backpacking in National parks. I decided to go to school for Horticulture and ended up earning a native flora certificate, which completely changed my view of the world. I soon discovered the Cedarburg Bog through friends and got involved with the glossy buckthorn removal project. Spending hundreds of hours in the bog in all seasons while working and botanizing, has made me realize how special this place really is. Currently, I work for a local ecological land restoration company, managing properties around Ozaukee and bordering counties. I spend my free time time collecting wild food, mountain biking, and advocating for ethical land practices.

Zoe Finney

Zoe is the Creative Lead at Schlitz Audubon Nature Center since 2012. In her time at Schlitz Audubon, she has rebranded the organization, was a part of a major website re-design team, and has helped to make the Center more visual in its marketing. Her specialties include illustration, graphic design, and nature photography. She is an avid birder and participates in the Wisconsin Breeding Bird Atlas II, as well as being involved with the birding community at Schlitz Audubon and Milwaukee in general. Originally from Ohio, she has lived in Milwaukee since 2010. Zoe resides in the neighborhood of Riverwest with her husband Joe, and is excited about her growing yard list, the highlight being a Blackburnian Warbler.

Andy Holschbach

Andy is the Director of the Ozaukee County Land & Water Management Department, which serves to protect, preserve and enhance natural resources, local ecology and the quality of life in Ozaukee County. He grew up on a dairy farm in Manitowoc County where he gained a great appreciation for our land and water resources. Andy specializes in land and water resource management, environmental policy and regulation, environmental education, promotion and protection of land and water resources. He has a B.S. Degree in Watershed Management with an emphasis in Soil Science from UW-Stevens Point. Andy serves on numerous Boards and organizations dedicated to improving and protecting our land and water resources. Andy and his wife, Terry, enjoy their three children, beekeeping, kayaking, birding, camping, gardening, hiking, biking, and airplanes.

Dennis Milbrath

Attorney Dennis H. Milbrath received an undergraduate degree in economics from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1972. He graduated from New England Law-Boston in 1979 and was licensed in Idaho that same year. He joined Levy & Levy S.C. in 1989 and practices in the areas of family law and related matters. He is also trained as a mediator and practices mediation in both family and other civil matters. Prior to shifting his practice to an emphasis in family law, Attorney Milbrath handled a wide range of both civil and criminal matters and has successfully represented individuals and corporations in jury trials, criminal investigations, federal audit, and grand jury proceedings. Attorney Milbrath is a member of many professional organizations including: State Bar of Wisconsin; Ozaukee Bar Association (Past President); American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (Fellow); Divorce Cooperation Institute, Inc. (Past Chair and Current Vice Chair); Wisconsin Association of Mediators; and Society of Family Lawyers.

John O’Donnell

John has been on the board of the Friends of the Cedarburg Bog for three years. He is a nearly life-long birder and an evolving naturalist and a member of the Wisconsin Society of Ornithology, the Urban Ecology Center, Riveredge Nature Center, the International Crane Society, and the Sierra Club. He has led national and international natural history and backcountry trips for the Sierra Club for 20 years. John has also been actively involved in co-leading bird walks, owl prowls, and participating in ongoing bird migration census work at the Bog for the past six years. He is a 30 year-plus resident of Ozaukee County where he and his wife are engaged in the seemingly never-ending task of prairie restoration and elimination of invasive species. John is a practicing psychologist when not immersed in outdoor activities.

Jim Reinartz

Jim has joined the board after retiring from nearly 40 years working as Manager, and then Director, of the UW Milwaukee Field Station. Jim received his PhD in Botany and Plant Ecology from Duke University in 1981. He teaches courses on the vegetation of Wisconsin, physiology and identification of plants in winter, invasive plant control, vegetation sampling methods, and various other topics. Jim’s primary areas of research were wetland ecology, rare plant ecology and genetics, the control and ecology of invasive plants and natural area management. He is deeply involved in the preservation and management of natural areas and has written management and stewardship plans for many natural areas in southeastern Wisconsin. He was one of the founders of the Ozaukee Washington County Land Trust and served on the board of the Wisconsin chapter of the Nature Conservancy and other organization.  Jim has explored every part of the Cedarburg Bog and shares his deep passion for the wetland.

Julia Robson

Julia has over ten years of experience working in natural-resource management. She has worked throughout the Midwest on various projects including multi-taxa biodiversity assessments, habitat restoration, environmental education and community engagement, and environmental planning. Before coming to Waukesha County Parks in April of 2018, she worked for the Urban Ecology Center and Milwaukee County Parks. Julia also serves on several conservation-related boards and committees including the Southeastern Wisconsin Invasive Species Consortium, the Western Great Lakes Bird and Bat Observatory’s Science Committee, and Waukesha County Land Conservancy’s land management committee. In 2016 the community-based wetland monitoring program that she developed for Milwaukee County was awarded the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources’ Citizen-Based Monitoring Program of the Year award. Julia graduated from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee (UW–M) in 2012 with a BS in biological sciences and a BS in conservation and environmental sciences, and in 2018, she was named “Graduate of the Last Decade” by UW–M’s alumni association.

Chuck Stebelton

Chuck Stebelton is author of An Apostle Island (Oxeye Press, 2019) and two previous full-length collections of poetry. As a birder and Wisconsin Master Naturalist volunteer, he has offered interpretive hikes for organizations including Milwaukee Public Library, Lynden Sculpture Garden, Friends of Lorine Niedecker, Woodland Pattern Book Center, and Interfaith Older Adult Programs. He serves as Program Coordinator for Serving Older Adults of Southeast Wisconsin and is a participant in Lynden Sculpture Garden’s residency program.

Andrew Struck

Andrew serves as the current Director for the Ozaukee County Planning and Parks Department. He joined our Board in 2015.

Tim Vargo

Tim’s background is in applied biological research with an emphasis in conservation biology, tropical biology and ornithology. He has carried out research in Australia, Bolivia, Costa Rica and Panama, and throughout the United States. Tim received an undergraduate degree in biology from Macalester College and a Master’s Degree in biology from Purdue University. Tim started at the Urban Ecology Center as an Environmental Educator and later moved to his current position of Manager of Research and Citizen Science. His team manages a network of urban field stations in which cutting-edge research is being carried out through a collaboration between professional researchers and community researchers. In his spare time, Tim enjoys spending time with his wife, Jessie, and son Henry, playing music, relaxing at home with a good book, and fossil-free (green) birding. He was formerly a referee for the Brew City Bruisers Roller Derby League, under the alter ego, Citizen Defiance.

ADVISORS

Gretchen Meyer, Director, UW-Milwaukee Field Station

Gretchen directs the University of Wisconsin –Milwaukee Field Station, where she has been working for over 20 years. Her responsibilities at UWM include administering the research and educational activities of the Field Station, managing the natural areas owned by UWM, supporting other researchers and educators using the Field Station, teaching classes, conducting research, and supporting educational outreach activities. Prior to her appointment at UWM, she was an Assistant Professor of Biology at Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts, and served as a Lecturer in the Department of Biology at Yale University. She holds a Ph.D in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from Cornell University, a Master’s of Forest Science from Yale University, and an undergraduate degree in Biology from Tufts University.

Sharon G. Fandel, Department of Natural Resources

In 2014, Sharon became the DNR representative on the Bog team. She works as an ecologist for the Bureau of Natural Heritage Conservation of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, where her territory spans the southeastern counties of the state. The Bureau of Natural Heritage Conservation is tasked with preserving Wisconsin’s special places and non-game species, and managing Wisconsin’s State Natural Areas. In addition to providing expertise to other DNR programs involved in decisions and actions impacting natural communities and native species, she is also the assigned property manager for several State Natural Areas in southeastern Wisconsin, in addition to the Cedarburg Bog. Sharon is a native Minnesotan who earned her Bachelor’s degree from UW-Stevens Point and her Master’s degree in Ecology from UC-Davis. She is interested in birds, spends as much time as she can outdoors, and has already put in some time cutting buckthorn in the Bog.

John H. Lhost, Legal Counsel, Quarles & Brady

John has assisted with legal inquiries and is a Partner at Quarles & Brady, Milwaukee.

James A. Reinartz, board member

Jim has joined the board after retiring from nearly 40 years working as Manager, and then Director, of the UW Milwaukee Field Station. Jim received his PhD in Botany and Plant Ecology from Duke University in 1981. He teaches courses on the vegetation of Wisconsin, physiology and identification of plants in winter, invasive plant control, vegetation sampling methods, and various other topics. Jim’s primary areas of research were wetland ecology, rare plant ecology and genetics, the control and ecology of invasive plants and natural area management. He is deeply involved in the preservation and management of natural areas and has written management and stewardship plans for many natural areas in southeastern Wisconsin. He was one of the founders of the Ozaukee Washington County Land Trust and served on the board of the Wisconsin chapter of the Nature Conservancy and other organization.  Jim has explored every part of the Cedarburg Bog and shares his deep passion for the wetland.

HONORARY DIRECTORS

Joanne Kline

Joanne signed up for a Riveredge tour of the Cedarburg Bog in 1985 and has been both a volunteer and fortunate enough to work in the Bog ever since. She is a biologist with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, a Liaison to the Department of Transportation and a member of the State Wetland Technical Team. Her work develops methods to conserve natural areas at both local and landscape scales with an emphasis on wetlands, water quality and habitat for rare species. Before joining state service, Joanne was a researcher in watershed ecology with the International Biological Program at Oregon State University and at the University of California San Diego. She is an avid paddler, a volunteer with the Ice Age Trail Alliance and the United Performing Arts Fund, and an Advisor to The Ozaukee Washington Land Trust and Lac Lawrann Conservancy. Joanne has a M.S. from Penn State University. She lives in West Bend with her husband, Dan.

Dan Kline

Dan is president and CEO of ParaTechnica, an IT management firm he founded in 2001. Dan is the founding President of the Friends. He retired from the Board in 2011 and became an Honorary Director in 2014.

Kate Redmond

Kate, a Wisconsin native, grew up near Brown Deer Park and presently lives near Cedar Grove. She holds a Master’s degree in “Nature Study and Conservation Education” – now known as “Environmental Education”-  from Cornell University, has worked as a teacher-naturalist for a number of Nature centers, including two locally, and presents nature programs at area schools, senior centers, and nature centers. She enjoys writing about, photographing and drawing natural history subjects, volunteers at the Cedarburg Bog, Riveredge Nature Center, and for the Western Great Lakes Bird and Bat Observatory.  She is a founding member of the Friends of the Cedarburg Bog.

Our Friends