Directors and Officers
The Western Cave Conservancy is governed by a seven to eight-director board, with day-to-day business conducted by the four officers and various committee chairs. The directors (along with the advisory board) bring scientific expertise in the disciplines of archaeology, entomology, geology and hydrology, as well as professional cave resource management skills and cave rescue teaching credentials. All the directors and officers are longtime cavers, whose enjoyment of the underground has gone beyond recreational caving to become a major avocation and even a profession.
Bruce Rogers, President and Acquisitions Director
Bruce Rogers began cave exploring in New England in the 1950's. Since then he has explored the basements of North and Mesoamerica in addition to many of the island nations of the Pacific Basin. His wide-ranging spelean interests encompass mineralogy, geology & geography, paleontology, cartography, and history. He is the author of numerous publications on caves and related subjects, usually illustrated with his own photographs and drawings. Bruce is a Fellow of several scientific societies. Since the early 1970s, increasingly restricted access to caves prompted his interest in conservation. As long-time supporter of conservation efforts, he brings a nation-wide perspective to the Western Cave Conservancy board. His interest in caves led to a formal education in geology and a position as a field geologist at the U.S. Geological Survey in Menlo Park, CA, as well as cooperative earth science programs at the National Park Service and NASA. Now retired from Federal service, Bruce is now Acquisitions Director for the WCC.
Mike Spiess, Vice President, Treasurer
Mike has been caving in California since the late 1960s. He has a long interest in conservation and has served as founding Board member and treasurer of the Sierra Foothill Conservancy and as a Board member and treasurer of the Northern California Regional Land Trust. Mike is a member of the Cave Research Foundation and has worked for many years at Lilburn and Lava Beds. He is an avid backpacker and fly fisherman. Mike is currently a Professor of agricultural education at California State University, Chico where he teaches and manages a number of water conservation projects.
Martin Haye, Secretary
Since early childhood Martin has been a caver at heart, building tiny spaces of blankets and boxes and then crawling into them. In 1990 he discovered the existence of other claustrophiles and has been a caver ever since. Martin spends most of his time as a software engineer for the California Digital Library, and brings years of project management and people skills to the board. As WCC's Stewardship Director, Martin recently re-started the effort to open Windeler Cave.
Marianne Russo, Weller Preserve Manager
Marianne has been an active caver for over 20 years. Professionally she is an archaeologist, and managed the Sacramento regional office of the California Archeological and Historical Resources Inventory for 25 years. She has participated in numerous field surveys and excavations and has taught summer field schools. Marianne has also served as Chairman and Secretary of the Mother Lode Grotto and Vice-chair of the Western Region of the National Speleological Society. She has assisted in training novice cavers and teaching vertical techniques. Marianne is a National Cave Rescue Commission instructor who has helped conduct several cave rescue training seminars.
Jerald Johnson PhD, Volunteer Resources Director
Jerry is professor emeritus in the Department of Anthropology at California State University, Sacramento, and was chairman of the department from 1996-2002. Jerry was supervisor of the CSUS Archaeology field class students in 1964 who worked at Pinnacle Point Cave as part of the Central California Archaeological Foundation Project. In addition, he belongs to numerous professional organizations in the fields of Archeology and Anthropology. In 2001, Jerry received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society for California Archaeology and was elected as a Fellow of the National Speleological Society in 2011. He has taught upper division and graduate courses in cave archeology and presented professional papers at NSS National Conventions and at two International Congress of Speleology meetings. Jerry is WCC's Volunteer Resources Director.
Kelley Prebil, Stewardship Directorp
A Bay Area native, Kelley started caving in 1996 during her undergraduate studies at Cornell University. She returned to the Bay Area after graduating in 1999 and after missing the smell of dirt, joined the National Speleological Society and San Francisco Bay Chapter of the NSS in 2001. Conservation was her main interest in joining organized caving so when the Western Cave Conservancy was formed, it was a natural fit for her. Her other contributions have been Newsletter Editor for the SFBC (2002 - 2003), Webmaster for SFBC (2002 onwards), Webmaster/Email List Admin for the CRF Lilburn Cave Project (2003 onwards), 2003 NSS Convention Webmaster, Webmaster for the WCC (2008 onwards), Windeler Committee Member (2008 onwards) and Trustee (2010 onwards), and NSS IT Chair (2003 - 2005). When she's not caving or recovering from hip surgery, she enjoys skiing, hiking, canyoneering, riding motorcycles, swimming, scuba diving, and traveling. Her day job is being a Database Administrator for Coupons.com Inc. where she helps keep the busiest SQL Server database servers outside of Microsoft in line.