Our Board and Advisors
Diane Tomecek, President & Secretary
Diane began her non-profit career with The Butterfly Pavilion in Westminster, Colorado. Diane’s skill at problem-solving and attention to fine detail combined with her big-picture outlook make her an asset to nonprofit organizations.
Diane has spent the last fourteen years working and volunteering for many nonprofits including The Butterfly Pavilion, Family Tree, Inc., The Colorado Mountain Club, Denver Museum of Nature and Science, Downtown Aquarium, The Community Resource Center, The River Otter Alliance and, most recently, The Women’s Foundation of Colorado. Via these nonprofit organizations, Diane has gained valuable experience regarding the nonprofit industry giving her the skills to succeed in a leadership position with the Sea Otter Foundation & Trust.
In her free time, Diane enjoys maintaining social media pages dedicated to otter education, long-distance running, animal and landscape photography and traveling to new locales.
Lillian Tomecek, Treasurer
David Tomecek, Grant Chair & Board Member
David has a history of supporting nonprofits and helping them move forward with his organizational, logistical and analytical skills. In 1990, he began a long association with the Society of Fire Protection Engineers (SFPE), assisting the Chapter at the University of Maryland and then the Rocky Mountain Chapter, serving on its Board of Directors as a Committee Chair, Member at Large, Vice President, President, and Past-President. He is also active with the technical committee program for the National Fire Protection Association, sitting on two committees responsible for three separate technical standards.
Additionally, he has volunteered with Wings Over The Rockies Air and Space Museum, participating as a leader in the Restorations Department, coordinating and executing the ongoing projects assigned to the group. As well, he contributed to other museum projects, such as exhibit construction, events support and safety management. For that work, he earned multiple Volunteer of the Year nominations. At various times, he has lent his skills to the River Otter Alliance (Denver, CO), St. Peter Evangelical Lutheran Church (Baltimore, MD) and the Butterfly Pavilion (Westminster, CO).
Andrea Kiere, Board Member
Andrea resides in Monterey, California and presently interns with the SORAC (Sea Otter Research and Conservation) program at Monterey Bay Aquarium and is employed as an animal educator and zookeeper at Monterey Zoo.
Prior to moving to Central California, Andrea has worked as a veterinary assistant for a private practice Veterinarian in the Dallas, Texas area. Additionally, she served as a part-time zookeeper for the domestic and exotic animals of Zooninversity (www.zooninversity.org) and volunteered weekly at the Dallas Zoo and the Dallas Fort Worth Wildlife Coalition. She is a current member of the American Association of Zookeepers (www.aazk.org).
Andrea knew from an early age that her life’s passion would be to work with animals. In 2010, she visited The Seattle Aquarium where she fell in love the both the river otter and the sea otter. The sea otter, in particular, called to her heart just a bit more. Through much personal research, Andrea found new reasons to help save these beautiful creatures. Also, she is currently enrolled to obtain her bachelor’s degree in Wildlife and Fishery.
In addition to Andrea’s passion for working with animals, she is experienced and comfortable in handling both large and small crowds, and excels primarily when under pressure.
Kathy Sullivan, Board Member
James L. Bodkin, Science Advisor
Past board member, Andrew Johnson
SOFT extends its sincere appreciation to Andrew for his past service on our board. He assisted in the launch of SOFT and was an invaluable asset to us from 2012 through mid-2014. We could not have launched this organization without his insights, knowledge of the sea otter community and his expertise in the sea otter world.
Since 1997, Andrew has managed the Sea Otter Research and Conservation (SORAC) program at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Through the years, he has served on the Southern Sea Otter Recovery Implementation Team, the Oiled Wildlife Care Network Advisory Board, the Board of Directors of The Otter Project, and the Board of the American Association of Zoo Keepers (San Diego Chapter), and he has edited feature and research articles as a member of the International Marine Animal Trainers Association’s Editorial Advisory Board. Additionally, Andrew belongs to the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the Society for Marine Mammalogy, and the International Marine Animal Trainers Association.
We extend our appreciation to our past Board members; especially Treasurer Cathy McGuire (2014-2017). Additionally, we appreciate the contributions of Dr. Dave Jessup and Glenn VanBlaricom who served on our inaugural advisory board.