Current Board Bios
Barry Pilger, President, is a fourth generation Nebraskan, raised in state’s panhandle ranch country. After graduation from the University of Nebraska, he moved to the Bay Area and soon after built his first house in Buckingham canyon in 1977, and constructed his second post fire in 1992. After the 1991 fire, he was asked to join the City of Oakland's builder advisory panel, convened to streamline rebuilding of the north hills. He later served on the city's citizen's Budget Advisory Committee, co-chaired the Oakland Wildfire Prevention District campaign and now serves on the district 's advisory committee. Now broker, principal and Realtor of Stafford Real Estate and Stafford Mortgage, Barry has served as president of the North Hills Phoenix Association, treasurer and member of the Executive Committee for the World Affairs Council of Northern California and treasurer of the San Francisco Merola Opera Program. He has served as head of human resources for several Bay Area firms and has been a general contractor for over 20 years. He is a private pilot and holds an instrument rating. He has been married to third generation Bay Area native Catherine Moss for more than 30 years.
Joseph H. Engbeck Jr., Vice-President, is the author of five books and many other publications about the history and natural history of California and the American West. He has been actively involved in the environmental movement since 1960 and is currently a councilor of the Save-the-Redwoods League and a board member of Save San Francisco Bay Association. He was a trustee of the California Historical Society for six years and helped organize People for Open Space in the 1960s before joining the California Department of Parks and Recreation where he was a writer, editor, and manager of the State Park System's publications program. He is a founder and past president of the Claremont-Elmwood Neighborhood Association and co-chair of the Friends of Claremont Canyon.
Marilyn Goldhaber, Treasurer, is a native of Oakland and a graduate of UC Berkeley with degrees in mathematics and biostatistics. She began her love of Claremont Canyon in the 1970s when she and her husband Nat were students and resided in a little farm house in the mid-canyon just above Gelston Road. There, the Goldhabers took care of the land and managed to raise a few goats in pursuit of defensible space (and a little fresh cheese). The property eventually sold to the East Bay Regional Park District and the Goldhabers moved down the canyon to Stonewall Road, where they now enjoy a hillside garden full of live oaks and other native California plant species. Marilyn became interested in fire ecology, wildland management and native plant restoration after the 1991 Great Fire in the Oakland Hills. She and eleven others formed a neighborhood task force to study the matter and eventually, in 2001, founded the Claremont Canyon Conservancy. Marilyn, is currently the Conservancy's webmaster, newsletter editor and membership coordinator, as well as Treasurer of the Board. Marilyn has triplet sons who are now in college. Her previous professional work, included directing research projects at the Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program in Oakland, California, and at the Department of Health in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Tamia Marg Anderson had the good fortune to grow up on the edge of a eucalyptus forest at the top of Claremont Canyon where she grew to love the land. During her first year in college, she happened to be home to experience the 1970 wildfire that passed through Gwin Canyon. After decades of living in more urban contexts, she returned to the Canyon's middle ridge, where her father has kindly allowed her and her husband to live. She received an MFA from California College of Arts and worked for years in film and video production. After earning a Masters in Landscape Architecture from UC Berkeley in 1982, she began managing a ranch near the Monterey Bay and later one in the eastern Sierras. She has been caring for her family's land in Claremont Canyon since the 1991 fire, in particular, thinning eucalyptus and eradicating broom. For a couple years, she served on the Oakland Wildfire Prevention Advisory Board as a representative for District One and was a strong advocate of local monitoring of Diablo wind conditions and digital mapping. In addition, she has served on the boards of the Quarryhill Botanical Garden in Glen Ellen and of the Minerva Foundation in Berkeley. She is currently working on an archive of photographs and stories illustrating both the cultural and plant succession in Claremont Canyon since the early 1900s.
Shelagh Broderson: "Enjoying the outdoors as a hiker, backpacker, skier, and bicyclist I have long been an advocate for the environment, supporting organizations involved in protecting threatened ecosystems and dwindling biodiversity. I am a former social worker and public school teacher with a Master of Science degree in Speech and Language Pathology. I began my teaching career when I moved to the Bay Area in 1976. I have taught special day and English as a Second Language Classes, as well as 6th grade. Special projects have included mentoring other teachers, directing Student Council, and was a Building Facilitator where I moderated group decision making. Since moving to our present house on Evergreen Lane in 1982, I have witnessed several winter storm related landslides on our property (one on our 1st night in our house), as well as the 1991 Firestorm. These incidents motivated me to find ways to reduce both our risk of landslides and our risk of wildfire. For the past 3 years I have been Chair of the NHPA Drainage Committee - our goal has been to form a partnership with City of Oakland to address our many serious drainage issues. As a founding sponsor of CCC I have participated in many stewardship sessions and walks in the many beautiful spots in Claremont Canyon. I now welcome the chance to work actively with the Claremont Canyon Conservancy in finding the best ways to balance the fire safety concerns with the need to protect, restore and maintain the natural beauty of Claremont Canyon."
Martin Holden grew up in Southern California, where he developed a fierce love of nature, against the backdrop of the unbridled development of the 60’s and 70’s. He later studied Earth Science at U.C. Santa Cruz. After college, he moved to New York City, where he wrote books on popular science and worked as an editor for various urban publications.
The Martin and his family then returned to California in 1990, just in time to flee the Oakland Hills Firestorm with their new baby in arms. Martin writes for a variety of regional and national publications, on subjects as diverse as food, history, travel, architecture, and design. He also deals in artist-designed and illustrated antiquarian books (Handsome Books) from University Press Books in Berkeley.
When not hiking, biking or kayaking in the wild places of the West, Martin loves to roam Claremont Canyon with his two children, Walker and Chloe. In addition to the Claremont Canyon Conservancy, he is affiliated with a variety of local educational and scientific organizations, such as the California Academy of Sciences, the Point Reyes National Seashore Association, U.C. Botanical Garden, and the Mycological Society of San Francisco.
Jon Kaufman: Jon Kaufman and his wife Jill Horowitz have lived on Alvarado Road for more than 25 years. Jon is executive vice president and a partner at Solem & Associates, a San Francisco-based public relations, public affairs and public opinion research firm. Jon's work involves advising clients on public policy issues and working with public officials throughout the Bay Area. He also heads SA|Opinion Research, the firm's research division. Land use, energy, public utilities and transportation are areas on which he has focussed. In the non-profit arena, Jon is a board member of J, the Jewish community weekly newspaper and is a former board member and past president of the Ann Martin Children's Center, which provides psychotherapy and tutoring to low-income children in the East Bay. His interest in wildlife conservation and the environment date from his childhood growing up in Cleveland, Ohio where is father was a city planner and worked to save local parkland from a proposed interstate freeway construction.
Jerry Kent: Jerry Kent is formerly with the East Bay Regional Park District. He began his career as a park workman in 1962 at Redwood Regional Park, and retired 41 years later as the Assistant General Manager of Operations. During most of his tenure he oversaw fire related vegetation management programs District-wide. He had a front-row-seat during the expansion of the Park District from six parks that totaled 6,000 acres in 1962 to 65 parks and 98,000 acres today. Jerry was instrumental in various blue ribbon panels and consortia. He staffed the 1982 East Bay Hills Blue Ribbon Fire Hazard Reduction Planning Study. He was the Park District’s representative while developing the East Bay Hills Vegetation Management Consortium Fire Hazard Mitigation Program and Plan following the 1991 Tunnel Fire. Jerry also was a principal staff member with the Hills Emergency Forum between 1992 and 2003. Jerry has studied the problem of fires in the East Bay Hills and lead public discussions since 1991 on what might be done to prevent them. Jerry retired from the Park District in 2003, but continued working toward fire safety in the East Bay Hills, serving on the Executive Committee of the Measure CC Campaign that was passed by voters in 2004.
Tim Wallace: "Born outside of Chicago, I've always been involved with natural resources and the policies and actions revolving around them. Ranched and logged for six years in Oregon (where my father was born) - then turned to academics at Oregon State University, UN Reno, Purdue and have been at UC Berkeley since 1963. I've worked in the White House (Sr. Economist on the Council of Economic advisors) on agricultural matters, and was Director of California's Department of Food and Agriculture (the agency responsible for all legislation and regulation concerning the state's food producers and many other aspects of the food system). I've done consulting abroad in Europe, Latin America, Africa and the Far East. Being directly active in the community based Claremont Canyon Conservancy affords me an opportunity to do something that needs doing and will help restore the Canyon to the prestigious position it deserves".
Dick White is a professor of electrical engineering at Berkeley, specializing in sensors. He has co-authored two technical reference books and an introductory textbook. In spite of its risks, he lives on Panoramic Hill because of its proximity to the open spaces of Strawberry and Claremont Canyons and the view. Watching the 1970 and 1991 Berkeley-Oakland fires from atop the Hill motivated him to help organize neighborhood emergency preparedness activities, to serve on the Berkeley Fire Commission for 8 years, and now to be a member of the Berkeley Disaster Council. In the mid '90s, working with the Berkeley Fire Department, he wrote and produced the short video "Fire and the Urban-Wildland Transition", which was aimed at informing people about the importance of the transitional zone and dispelling the notion that a protective buffer zone must be sterile and ugly. His two sons are salaried environmentalists, one an expert on fish and the other on birds.