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Our Boards

Friends of Del Norte & Friends of Del Norte Conservation Council

Joe Gillespie

Board President for FODN & FODN CC

Joe serves as the co-founder of the Friends of Del Norte, as well as the Founder / Director of the Del Norte Trail Alliance. Joe has been stewarding the Friends for it's entire existence of now over 50 years. In addition to his environmental advocacy, Joe is also a retired science educator and Eco-Garden Director for the Crescent Elk Middle School in Crescent City.

Jonnel Covault

Vice President for FODN

Jonnel Covault is a professional artist/printmaker, retired picture framer and environmental advocate. She was born and raised in CA, spending most of her childhood in San Rafael, CA. While at CSU Chico in the 1970’s she was co-founder of the Butte Environmental Council. She moved to Alaska in 1977 and commercial salmon fished with her husband and son for 20 years at a remote fish camp in Bristol Bay. Jonnel and her family moved to Oak Grove, OR where they lived and worked for many years. She received a BA in Art from Marylhurst University and showed her work extensively in Oregon. Upon retirement Jonnel and Bruce moved to Crescent City, CA. She joined Friends of Del Norte in 2018. Love of the natural environment inspires her artwork and her work with FODN to protect wild places in Del Norte County.

Donna Thompson

Vice President for FODN CC and Volunteer Bookkeeper

Donna, born and raised in Salinas, California, received her BA from UC Berkeley. She has been married for 46 years and counting. For the last 17 years of her working life, she served as a public junior high school English Teachers' Assistant in Amagasaki, Japan. She and her husband moved to Crescent City for retirement in 1998, joining the Friends of Del Norte (and Friends of Del Norte Conservation Council) soon after. Donna is also a keystone volunteer for the Tolowa Dunes Stewards.

Richard Pederson

Treasurer for FODN & FODN CC

Richard serves as the Friends of Del Norte and Friends of Del Norte Conservation Council Treasurer. He is a retired Counselor for the Pelican Bay State Prison. Prior to that, Richard worked for the U.S. Forest Service as well as timber companies. He holds a B.S. in Forestry from Humboldt State University.

Janet Gilbert Carr

Secretary for FODN & Board Member for FODN CC

Janet has a bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in biology from UC Santa Barbara. She spent several years working on veterinary medicine and then went back to college to earn a teaching degree in the sciences. She has enjoyed teaching biology, chemistry and mathematics to secondary students. Janet has since retired and moved up to Northern California when her husband took a job as a paramedic. Janet volunteers in the community as a tutor for young students at the family resource center, and helps in beach clean ups, and with the Tolowa Dunes Steward on a regular basis removing invasive plants to restore the native ecosystem.

Don Gillespie

Volunteer Board Member

Don has been a Friends of Del Norte Board member for over forty years; including two terms as president. He is a retired teacher, having spent 37 interesting and dynamic years in youth filled classrooms. Don was raised in Crescent City by a commercial fishing family and is very passionate about preserving and restoring salmon and steelhead habitat on the Smith River. Don is very proud of the good work and accomplishments of the Friends of Del Norte over the past fifty years.

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