Catherine brings a diverse background with extensive experience in non-profit management, conservation, and wildlife rehabilitation. As the former Executive Director of Chintimini Wildlife Center, The American Bear Association, and Vince Shute Wildlife Sanctuary, she successfully expanded and led various operations, outreach, fundraising, and conservation efforts. Her approach to promoting a deeper understanding of wildlife and advocating for peaceful coexistence is firmly rooted in community engagement and the transformative power of education. With a career in high-volume wildlife rehabilitation hospitals along the West Coast, Catherine’s journey reflects a lifelong commitment to wildlife and impactful leadership.
Wildlife Rehabilitation Manager
Kassie received her Bachelors of Science in Marine Biology from the University of Oregon in 2014. During that time she volunteered for a raptor center in Oregon, and interned for a sea turtle hospital in China. After graduation she moved to Florida to intern at a wildlife hospital in Naples. She began volunteering for Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care in 2020, and was hired as a Wildlife Rehabilitation Technician in 2021. She is a licensed veterinary technician in both Nevada and California, and is currently a Wildlife Rehabilitation Manager at LTWC.
Wildlife Rehabilitation Manager
In 2009, Eliza completed a certificate II in animal studies and Zookeeper internship at Taronga Zoo, Sydney. Her passion for working with animals was reignited in 2016 when she started as a nestling volunteer with LTWC. At the end of 2017, she became a lead volunteer and a veterinary assistant at a local animal hospital. Eliza is studying to become a licenced veterinary technician with plans to specialize in wildlife. In 2020, she became a wildlife rehabilitation technician for LTWC, working closely with the veterinarians to provide medical care and treatment plans for our rehabilitating birds and mammals.
Wildlife Rehabilitation Technician
In 2018, Paula completed a Bachelors of Science in Biology from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo with a concentration in wildlife biodiversity and conservation. Since graduating, she has spent most of her time dedicated to raptor research, spending fall seasons at migration sites, and spring seasons out searching for Northern Spotted Owl and American Goshawk nests. In late 2022, she published her first scientific paper, on the physiology of lizards during tail regrowth. In 2023, she was hired as a Wildlife Rehabilitation Technician at LTWC and is excited to be part of such a worthwhile cause.
Aaron joined the LTWC team in 2022 to help with the accounting and administrative side of operations. With a background in web design and experience running small businesses, Aaron is also a lifelong animal welfare advocate who has volunteered and worked for animal rescue groups and humane societies. Aaron and his family have called South Lake Tahoe home since 2011.
Facilities Maintenance Technician
Kevin Green, a Lake Tahoe native, earned his Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Environmental Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 2014. Post-graduation, he has built a career with a focus on technical project management and sustainability, demonstrating expertise in hardware engineering, global project management, and more. Kevin is committed to environmental initiatives, showcasing dedication to these principles throughout his career. He is excited for his new role as Facilities Maintenance Technician at Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care, where he continues to contribute his skills and passion for the environment.
Board of Directors
Coralin has been an LTWC volunteer and board member since 2015. She is a retired college professor of exercise science and has experience in presentations, project planning, communications, budgets and research. She received her BA from the College of William & Mary and her MA at UC Berkeley.
After a career in sales and marketing leadership roles for Verizon and Starbucks, Greg now focuses his time on several Board positions in California, Nevada and New York, as well as real estate development and volunteer work for worthy organizations such as Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care. He and his partner love spending time between the mountains and the beach…determined in large part by what their Golden Retriever “Luna” demands at any given moment!
Stephanie Lenstrom, CPA
Stephanie has been involved with LTWC since 2009 and joined the Board as Treasurer in 2016. She has been a practicing CPA for over 32 years, the last 21 years here in South Lake Tahoe. In addition to assisting individuals and local businesses with tax planning and compliance, she has assisted numerous nonprofits with compliance and planning issues at both the federal and state level.
Lauren joined the LTWC Board of Directors in 2017. Lauren brings over 15 years of digital marketing and communications experience within the hospitality and healthcare industries.
Originally from South Lake Tahoe, Lauren is excited to serve her hometown community and support local wildlife. Lauren earned a B.S. in Business Administration from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.
Kevin Willitts, DVM
Dr. Willitts, a graduate of Michigan State University’s School of Veterinary Medicine 1981, has been a practicing small animal veterinarian for over 40 years.
Dr. Willitts has been a volunteer veterinarian with LTWC since 1984, and an LTWC board member since 1990, previously serving as LTWC Board Vice President and President.
Cathy joined the LTWC Board January 2022. A graduate of the University of Nevada Reno, Cathy brings extensive experience after over 40 years in Financial Services and Real Estate. Cathy’s curiosity and keen observation of animals and the outdoors was sparked as a young child playing then working on her family’s ranch in Lamoille Canyon in eastern Nevada. When Cathy’s not volunteering, she can be found outdoors; in a kayak, on skis, snowshoes, or in hiking boots – always with a pair of binoculars around her neck trekking the trails of the Sierra.
Tara is a South Lake Tahoe attorney focusing on estate planning, administration and real estate matters. Tara serves on the Board of other local nonprofits, which are primarily dedicated to issues affecting women, children and the educational community. She loves backpacking, kayaking, nature walks and lounging in a hammock with a good book. Tara received her BA from Arizona State University and her J.D. from McGeorge School of Law.
Caitlin owns a small business in South Lake Tahoe and since she moved here in 2015 has enjoyed being involved in the local community. Having lived and worked in Salt Lake City and Santa Cruz, she loves the outdoors and the wildlife that comes with living here. Caitlin believes in educating the public, in team building and networking and is looking forward to learning and sharing in support of LTWC.
Mark joined the LTWC Board in 2023. As a commercial illustrator, along with wife Diane, a graphic designer, they bring 30 years of experience in advertising and marketing. Both worked with LTWC to establish the new facility’s brand identity. Beyond designing and fabricating signage and print collateral, Mark brings construction experience and advises on capital improvements and repairs. When not working on their third remodel in North Lake Tahoe, Mark, Diane, and their dog Cleo enjoy overlanding, backpacking, and the wild outdoors and wildlife.
Founding Board Members
Board Member Emeritus
Cheryl was a cofounder of LTWC, and was key to its success. She served as LTWC’s original president, and was promoted to executive director in 1983. Cheryl helped care for and treat thousands of wild birds and animals, hosted two international wildlife rehab conferences in Lake Tahoe, delivered numerous papers at wildlife rehab conferences around the country, and trained hundreds of wildlife rehabbers.
Board Member Emeritus
Tom was a cofounder of LTWC, wearing many hats including planning and organizing LTWC fundraising efforts, managing facility operations, organizing volunteers, and providing community outreach. Tom oversaw LTWC’s growth and led the team tasked with finding LTWC’s new home.
Board Member Emeritus
Bob was a cofounder of LTWC and a major financial supporter of the organization. Bob passed away in 2020.
Bob and Sue Rutherdale
Board Members Emeritii
Our work is not possible without our volunteers!
Volunteers are crucial to LTWC’s work, and the value of their time and dedication is immeasurable. They help feed and care for the animals staying with us, assist with animal transport and releases, pitch in with fundraisers and events, donate special skills and services and keep our facility running.