Staff and Current Vacancies

SuzanneSuzanne Dorsey, PhD

Executive Director

Dr. Suzanne E. Dorsey, earned her doctorate in coastal oceanography and has been working in research and education for over 15 years.  Communicating the importance of our coastal ecosystems, particularly Barrier Islands, is a primary focus for Dr. Dorsey.  She feels that the first step to promoting conservation and preservation, of these critical coastal habitats, is forging a connection between the people who live and visit our beaches and the senstive habitats found here.  The Smith Island Complex encompasses so many examples of rare and sensitive habitats, and the mission of the Bald Head Island Conservancy provides a perfect opportunity to not only educate people but to promote effective stewardship of these environments.  She enjoys working with people and sharing her passion for nature.  Her spare time is devoted to her husband and two children.

Poul Lindegaard

 Director of Operations

 Poul was born and raised in Denmark and graduated from the Danish Technical University with a Masters degree in Chemical Engineering. He is married to Dee from England and have two kids, Sebastian 18 and Louise 16 who were both born in the US. Poul worked for a Danish biotech company for approx. 25 years, primarily heading up technical organizations with responsibility for North America. He has been coming to BHI for more than 10 years, been a property owner and a life member of the Conservancy for approx. 5 years and have been a board member and volunteering in various capacities for the Conservancy for the last year. He is exited to join the Conservancy full time, as the new Director of Operations. When he is not at the Conservancy, you will likely find him at the golf course or on the beach swimming and fishing!

 Caroline Shepherd

 Chief Financial Officer

Caroline Shepherd joined the Conservancy in 2008 as Financial Manager.  She feels this is the perfect opportunity to share her love of nature while using her professional skills to further our important mission in the effective stewardship of barrier island environments.  After serving in the Charlotte area as a CPA in CFO positions for a variety of industries, she became an island girl to enjoy the benefits of sunny coastal living full time. She enjoys any free time spent on or near the water, walking, fishing, preparing the catch of the day for good friends, and reading.

Sandy Rowe

Director of Development

Sandy Rowe has deep roots here in coastal Carolina. She grew up in Wilmington, and spent her childhood on Wrightsville Beach. She attended UNC School of the Arts and received her bachelors degree from Florida State University. With 20 years experience in nonprofit Development she is thrilled to put her professional skills to work for the Conservancy. After traveling to beaches all over the world she can honestly say none compares to NC's barrier islands and she is passionate about protecting them. She has a daughter, Savannah, 21 and a son, Garrett, 18 and loves spending her free time with them sailing on... relaxing beside... and diving under the ocean!

Courtney Reese

 Courtney Spears

Conservation Biologist - Coastal Ecology Program Coordinator

As a trained scientist and outdoors enthusiast, Courtney brings with her great passion and respect for the environment. Courtney grew up in coastal North Carolina, attending UNC Chapel Hill and UNC Wilmington to earn her Bachelor of Science in Biology and Duke University for her Masters in Coastal Environmental Management. Her professional experiences include working as a field researcher for endangered species conservation, an environmental educator, and a coastal resources scientist focused on community resilience. Outside of work she enjoys hiking, kayaking, diving, and volunteering. She is eager to share her experiences with the community and use science and education to help inspire environmental stewardship.

Kendyll Collins

 Conservation Biologist- Environmental Education Coordinator

Kendyll was raised in Medford, New Jersey, where she was inspired by the uniqueness and fragility of coastal ecosystems. She joined the BHI Conservancy in 2011, after graduating with a Bachelor's of Science in biological environmental science and minor in psychology, from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington Honors College. Kendyll has worn many hats from Intern to Environmental Educator to her current role as Conservation Biologist. Kendyll serves as the North Carolina State Representative for the Mid-Atlantic Marine Education Association, and strives to provide exciting, hands-on, relevant, and meaningful experiences for every BHI Conservancy guest. When she’s not working, you’ll often find Kendyll doing “work” related activities like beachcombing or birding, with coffee in hand!


 Jaymie Reneker

 Conservation Biologist- Sea Turtle Program Coordinator

 Jaymie grew up in a small town outside of Des Moines, Iowa. She earned her Bachelor’s of Science in Biology from Iowa State University with a minor in Animal Ecology. Even though she spent her whole life in a landlocked state, she has always been passionate about the oceans and the animals that inhabit them. Jaymie joined BHIC as a Sea Turtle Intern in 2012 and will continue to work with us as our Sea Turtle Program Coordinator. She is excited to continue her work with sea turtles and the community of Bald Head Island. In her free time she enjoys hanging out with friends, beachcombing and being outdoors.

Jordan Brewster

 Communications Specialist

While growing up, Jordan spent summers at Bald Head Island and credits the island for sparking her love of sustainability and the environment.  She graduated from Wake Forest University with a BA in History and minors in Environmental Studies and Journalism.  After working on energy, transportation, and defense policy for a DC-based government relations firm, she decided to return to school. While completing her Master’s in Sustainability Management, Jordan worked with corporations to increase their sustainability efforts and in marketing at the World Wildlife Fund.  In June 2014, Jordan graduated from American University’s Kogod School of Business and started working at the BHI Conservancy.  When she’s not working, you can find Jordan cheering on the Washington Nationals and spending time outside.

 Elyse Brown

 Director of Retail Operations

 Originally from Ohio, Elyse has lived in St. Louis, Baton Rouge, Boston, Chicago, Tokyo, Japan and Sparta, N.J. She has recently worked for Bald Head Island Limited as a Sales Executive in their real estate office, but has diverse background starting in Retail and then in Data Processing as a computer programmer/EDP Auditor/Consultant. For many years she participated in a variety of volunteer activities which include: raising funds for non-profit organizations, chairing a variety of town events and committees, and managing/buying for two non-profit gift shops. Elyse graduated from Indiana University with a degree in Biology and a minor in Computer Science and also took graduate courses in Marketing and Accounting at Washington University in St. Louis.

 Mike Thomasen

 Campus Maintenance Director and Jr. Naturalist

 Mike was born in Brooklyn, NY and grew up on Long Island, NY.  He has a lovely wife, three beautiful children, and three precious grandchildren.  Mike first came to BHI in August 2003 joining the Transportation Dept. as a ferry mate.  Prior to 2003, he worked for 30 years in Marine Transportation for an oil company in the north east.  Mike looks forward to participating in the growth of the BHI Conservancy and getting involved with the preservation of the island. 

David R. Hall

Field Technician

 David was born in coastal Florida, and raised in the Appalachian mountains of Western North Carolina. He developed a passion for the outdoors and the environment at a young age, and first pursued a career in outdoor adventure leadership, which took him to several Central and South American countries. After witnessing first-hand the environmental devastation of many coastal ecosystems, he shifted his career towards Marine Biology and Conservation, which he pursued at UNC Wilmington. Dr. Suzanne Dorsey personally selected David for employment from her Barrier Island Ecology and Management Honors course taught at UNCW, and he has been with the Conservancy since April 2013. He plans to continue his pursuit of an advanced science degree in Island Biology, Ecology and Conservation. In his spare time, David enjoys surfing, diving, gardening, traditional archery, and traveling. 

 Dane Horowski

Deer Project Field Technician

Originally from Michigan, Dane studied Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Michigan. While most of his work experience has been with mammalian carnivores in the Western States, he is excited to be doing deer work here in North Carolina. Dane was drawn to our Deer Management project because of its promising experimental nature, unique island setting, and far reaching management implications. When he is not working, he can be found on/in the water, taking nature photos, or watching college football.

Erin Wood

Deer Project Field Technician

Erin will be one of the Conservation Deer Technicians running around the island this winter for the deer project. Originally from Massachusetts, she got her BSc in preveterinary medicine at the University of New Hampshire and has several years of biological field work under my belt. Erin spent four years doing shorebird work on barrier islands in Massachusetts and New York, two years in deer capture in Wisconsin, and two years of bear capture and management in Sequoia National Park in California and Shenandoah National Park in Virginia. She is excited to get back to working with whitetails and look forward to getting to know Bald Head Island.



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BHI Conservancy is an independent, nonprofit, 501 (c)(3) organization. We are able to continue our work through the generosity and commitment of our many members, volunteers and supporters. Your support is necessary to fulfilling our mission of barrier island conservation, education and preservation.

2014 BHI Turtle Nest Count: 33 nests, 32 hatched

Photos courtesy of and ©Copyrighted to: Maureen Dewire, Donna Finley, Andy Gould,
Doug Ledggett, Joe Lemeris, Denny Sorber, Lindsay Rice, Staff
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