Nicole Galase - Chair
Nicole Galase was born and raised in Hawai'i and obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration with a Marine Option Program Certificate from the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa. Nicole has spent time working for various agencies on Midway Atoll, Kure Atoll, and French Frigate Shoals. She achieved a Master of Marine Conservation from Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand, then went on to study the Band-rumped Storm Petrel at Pōhakuloa Training Area on the Island of Hawai'i. She is currently the Managing Director for the Hawai'i Cattlemen’s Council, Hawai'i Beef Industry Council, and the Hawai'i Rangeland Stewardship Foundation in a position that supports Hawaii’s ranching industry and aims to increase local food production. Her goal is to highlight the overlapping goals of cattlemen and the conservation community to foster closer collaboration.
Ilana Nimz- Vice Chair
Ilana Nimz is from Oahu, and remained in Hawaii to design her own major in Conservation Biology and Marine Science at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She is currently an ecologist for Oikonos Ecosystem Knowledge and an ecological consultant with her own business, Leaf & Feather. Nimz has spent six field seasons in Papahānaumokuākea working with monk seals, seabirds, and habitat restoration projects. She has also participated in seabird research in the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge, Farallon Islands, and on Kauai. Nimz recently completed her Master's degree in the Pelagicos lab at Hawaii Pacific University, focusing on foraging habits of Christmas Shearwaters in the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. In addition to research, she enjoys sharing stories of the unique habitats of Hawaii through writing and painting.
Barry Stieglitz - Secretary
Barry was a second-generation employee of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Born in Florida, he lived in several other states before earning his Bachelor of Science in Forest Resources with a concentration in Wildlife Management from the University of Georgia in 1983. He worked in the Service’s Division of Law Enforcement as a Wildlife Inspector before moving into the National Wildlife Refuge System. His interests in recovering endangered species and combatting invasive species led him to positions in Florida and South Carolina before he transferred to the Headquarters Office to work on policy and conservation planning. While there, he earned his Master of Public Administration and was recognized as a Certified Wildlife Biologist ® by The Wildlife Society. He was grateful to serve as the Refuge and Monument Supervisor for 13 years, overseeing the National Wildlife Refuges and Marine National Monuments in the Pacific and thoroughly falling in love with Hawaiʼi, before family responsibilities required his early retirement and return to the continent. He hopes to continue the important work of conserving the special places of Hawaiʼi from afar by service on the Board.
Onye’ Ogene - Board Member
Onye’ Ogene is from Miami, Florida and obtained her Bachelor’s in Environmental Studies from Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers, Florida. With a love and passion for the ocean, Onye’ was able to concentrate her degree in three areas: Marine Science, Climate Change and Interdisciplinary Studies. After traveling to Oahu to complete her Senior Research about people’s opinions on the plastic bag ban, Onye’ attended Hawaii Pacifc University’s Global Leadership and Sustainable Development Master’s program. Here Onye’ learned the importance of education in combating almost every environmental problem that exists. Onye’ recently completed her Master’s in Education with Alder Graduate School of Education. She now hopes to transform the current education system into the pillar of sustainable development by developing teacher training programs and adapting science curriculum.