The Friends of Cañada de los Osos is a non-profit conservation organization dedicated to providing youth outdoor education programs. Below are the biographies of the CDLO board members.
Henry Coletto spent 35 years as County Wildlife Ranger and Game Warden with the Parks and Sheriff's Departments until he retired in 2003. In addition to law enforcement duties, he put together wildlife interpretive programs for the Parks Department, was involved in numerous wildlife studies, including black-tailed deer, wild pigs, and wild turkeys, and played a role in the re-introduction of tule elk and pronghorn antelope to the Mt. Hamilton Range. He worked with the California Department of Fish and Game and other agencies on surveillance of wildlife diseases, conservation planning, and a wide variety of other issues. Throughout his career, he has been involved in outdoor education programs related to hunting, fishing, and natural resource education.
Since retirement, Henry's interest in wildlife has led him to a variety of volunteer activities, including serving as Vice President and Project Committee Chair for the California Deer Association, and assisting with on-going research of black-tailed deer. Most of his time has been spent as the volunteer manager of the Cañada de los Osos Ecological Reserve. This includes coordinating other volunteers for youth outdoor education and junior hunting programs, creek restoration and other habitat enhancement projects, and working with local schools and universities to expand environmental education opportunities on the Reserve.
Born and raised in Gilroy, California, Amanda Amstutz studied Professional Writing at Southern Oregon University where she received her Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Writing. A Ronald E. McNair Scholar and a member of the Omicron Delta Kappa National Honors Society Amanda hopes to earn her Masters degree in composition and rhetoric. She eventually hopes to achieve a Ph.D. in her field of study with an emphasis in working with non-profit organizations. Supporting and contributing to her local community through the Ecological Reserve of the Cañada de los Osos, comes from a special passion for the outdoors and enjoying the wonders of the natural world. First contributing to the Reserve as a volunteer with habitat restoration projects, she has since come to be more involved in seeking out and applying for funding for the projects she has participated in and seen grow over the years.
Jeff Honda is a native San Josean who parlayed his early passion for insects into a career as an entomologist. As a faculty member at San Jose State University, Jeff teaches a number of courses in the biology department including General and Forensic Entomology. His research interests include insect systematics, ecology, and behavior.
With an active research laboratory Jeff has numerous students who conduct research at Los Osos. In his spare time Jeff mostly enjoys couch potato activities including reading and watching sports. Occasionally he has been known to travel and enjoy the outdoors hiking with his family.
David Jessup was the first wildlife veterinarian hired by the California Department of Fish and Game and served that agency for 34 years, half that time working on game species and half working on marine and sensitive species. Although now retired from CDFG he still works independently on marine ecosystem health issues in the Central Coast region and is executive manager of the Wildlife Disease Association, an international non-profit scientific society and publisher of wildlife health research. Dr. Jessup has done wildlife veterinary work in several other Western States, Africa, India and Mexico, has adjunct research appointments at U.C. Davis and U.C. Santa Cruz, and has written several hundred scientific papers and popular articles. Dave has been coming to Cañada de los Osos and has worked there on deer, turkeys, wild pigs and other species for over 20 years.
Lee Kirk has been an avid outdoorsman his whole life. He grew up in San Jose and started his love for the outdoors with his father and grandfather, hunting deer every year in San Benito County then later going out of state with his cousins. Lee also enjoys fishing, hiking and other outdoor activities. He is a life member of the California Deer Association and ran the youth hunting program for Cañada de los Osos for three years. Lee has also worked many weekends being involved in many of the projects at Cañada de los Osos since it was purchased.
Rey Morales graduated from UC Davis with at B.S. in Physiology in 1992 and earned his M.S. from Cal State University East Bay. His emphasis was in comparative anatomy and physiology and has published peer reviewed articles in neurophysiology and biochemistry. His current emphasis is in ecology and conservation biology. He has helped develop the Service Learning program here at Gavilan and continues to find new collaborative studies with neighboring colleges and not-for profit organizations. He serves as the advisor for a service based student run organization here on campus that focuses on habitat restoration.
Rodney Myatt recently retired from San Jose State University, where he was a botanist in the Department of Biological Sciences. His fields of interest are plant taxonomy, ecology, biogeography, and natural history, particularly of southwest deserts and New World tropics. He also teaches in the SJSU Field Studies programs in Death Valley each Spring and has traveled, taught, and done research in Costa Rica, Guatemala, Puerto Rico, Brazil, and Madagascar. He was one of the instructors in the Youth in Science program (through SJSU) that brought about 60 under-privileged 5th and 6th graders each summer (for 8 years) for a week of science camp in the Sierra Nevada.
His work as a field botanist has spurred an interest in outdoor photography, in which he is devoting more time photographing the plants and scenes of the central coast foothills, especially Cañada de los Osos. He lives in Gilroy with his wife Joyce, a bunch of animals, weeds, kids, and grandkids,
Martha Schauss has been doing wildlife work in the Mt. Hamilton Range since her graduate studies launched her work with wild pigs. Over the last 30 years she has conducted research on population characteristics, movements, and mortality factors of black-tailed deer in Central California. For 17 years she worked for the California Department of Fish and Game, with duties including commenting on environmental documents, conducting wildlife surveys, working with landowners on Private Lands Management and other hunting programs, responding to public and agencies' questions and problems regarding wildlife issues, identifying local conservation priorities, managing CDFG land in the unit, and serving as regional wildlife lead in CDFG's Resource Assessment Program. Both with the CDFG, and as an independent researcher, consultant, and volunteer, she has worked with issues regarding both game and special status wildlife in the central coast area of California. Martha wrote the Land Acquisition Evaluation, Management Plan, and regulations for the Cañada de los Osos Ecological Reserve while she was with CDFG. Since retiring from CDFG, she volunteers for the Reserve when her two horses give her some time off.