Fred Lanoue, President
My first real volunteer experience was the winter of 06/07 when I volunteered at Santa Anna NWR leading interpretive tours. I found that I really enjoyed the challenge of helping people connect to nature. That led to becoming a volunteer at Aransas when we moved here in 2007. When I got a chance to join our board of directors in January of 2012, I had two goals. I wanted to find ways to connect with our members and also expand the opportunities for members to participate in our activities. I also want to develop new outreach programs to let everyone in our community know what a wonderful place our refuge really is.
Mollie Huber, Secretary
A Native Texan, I am in the midst of a 21 year career in public education. I have taught English, World History, and U.S. History while coaching softball and volleyball. Currently, I am a Professional School Counselor at Van Vleck High School in Matagorda County. I became a Texas Master Naturalist in 2012 to lend my hands to volunteer projects that protect nature. As a counselor, I am a huge proponent of power of nature to heal. Aransas National Wildlife Refuge soothes our souls with its beauty, silences our inner voices with its tranquility, and reminds us that we are connected to all creatures who call the Refuge home. It is my honor to serve on the FAMI Board as we protect and promote this valuable resource.
Linda Lanoue, Treasurer
I was an accountant for most of my working life. Although I have no formal education in the field, I have been interested in nature & wildlife for as long as I can remember. I began volunteering for Aransas NWR when we moved to the area in 2007, and have been a member of the Friends since 2008. To date, I have volunteered over 3000 hours for the refuge. I feel fortunate to be able to give back to a place that means so much to me, and I enjoy being part of the refuge team.
Linda Frank, Director
I was born and raised in Denver, Colorado, but have lived all over the United States from the West Coast to the East Coast and now, in retirement, the Gulf Coast. I have two married sons and two grandsons. My most recent job was as Volunteer Coordinator at Living Desert Zoo and Gardens State Park in Carlsbad, New Mexico. I moved to Rockport in 2010, in 2011 became a Master Gardener, and in 2012 became a Master Naturalist. I enjoy reading, gardening, and making wheel-thrown pottery. Aransas National Wildlife Refuge is a unique place and I am looking forward to working with the refuge staff and the FAMI board.
Linda Swiggett, Director
I was born and raised in San Antonio where I volunteered as a docent for the Witte Museum of Natural History, and for the Museum of Fine Arts. I spent most weekends in Flour Bluff, enjoying the coastal area with my grandparents. I moved to Rockport five years ago and became a Master Naturalist in 2013. One of our classes was held at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge where I was drawn to its beauty. The wild flowers and wildlife first captured my attention. I now have a favorite spot at the refuge we fondly call the Sanctuary Tree. Please join me at the refuge and discover the unique experience this tree has to offer. As a member of FAMI I volunteer in our Nature store and also enjoy leading public tours.
Butch Andreozzi, Director
I moved to Fulton from Rhode Island a few years ago & have been fortunate to discover the refuge & the photo opportunities there. I am retired so have free time, a decent camera, and over 40 years of photography experience. I purchased my first camera in 1970 while serving in Viet Nam and have never stopped taking photographs. I have sold at outdoor art festivals, and have a couple of credits in children's books -one of a spider web colony and one of a hut in the Venezuelan jungle along the Orinoco River. I can assure you that I will endeavor to help the group and the refuge in any way I can.
Ryan Ford, Director
I am a TPWD licensed all-water paddlecraft guide, ACA certified instructor and a certified wildlife guide. I am trained by TPWD as an Angler Educator and a big advocate for youth kayaking, cooperating with local schools and youth organizations to promote safe paddlesports for the next generation. I am also working on creating an Adaptive Paddling program for Texas, to help people of all abilities get on the water. I grew up fishing the bays around Rockport, TX and am a full time guide and owner of Rockport Kayak Guide Services. I am active in the kayak community, helping coordinate a local charity tournament and assisting with kayaking demonstrations across the state. I am also active in his local community, as a Leadership Aransas County Alumni, business member of the Aquarium at Rockport Harbor, and active Chamber of Commerce member. I believe “kayaking allows you to move fast enough to get where you are going, but slow enough to still see everything.” When not kayaking, I can be found hammock camping with my wife and dogs or, more likely, talking about kayaking. I have enjoyed working with the Aransas Wildlife Refuge in the past and look forward to increasing my involvement with them.
Raymond Starr, Director
Born in San Antonio in l937, grew up in South Texas, earned BA and PhD in history at University of Texas (l958, l964). Appointed to faculty of history department of San Diego State University in l964 and retired as Professor Emeritus of History in 2004. The most important experience I bring to the Friends of the Aransas Wildlife Refuge is my experience in San Diego between l982 and l998 on the board (twice as chair) of the Cabrillo Historical Association, the cooperating association of the Cabrillo National Monument. I was also active in the national organization of cooperating associations, and attended some National Parks workshops and programs After returning to Texas I have been active in a number of organizations, such as historical commission, Goliad County Library, boards of Presidio La Bahia and Museum of Coastal Bend, and member of Regional Parks Coordinating Council of San Antonio River Authority.