Dr. Thomas Kaplan

Born in New York City, Dr. Kaplan was raised in Florida where he formed a strong passion for wildlife conservation. The iconic Florida panther inspired his dream to one day become a wildlife biologist. Though by his own admission his scholarly pursuits better suited him for the study of history – which he studied at Oxford — he always dreamed of one day working to conserve the world’s great felids. Those dreams informed and inspired Panthera. Alongside his wife, Daphne Recanati Kaplan, they founded Panthera in 2006 to meet the global challenges of protecting the world’s wild cats and their habitats. They subsequently endowed the Recanati-Kaplan Center at Oxford University’s Wildlife Conservation Research Unit, or WildCRU, creating the leading university-based felid conservation program. The Kaplans also founded The Orianne Society, named after their daughter, to preserve eastern Indigo snakes and their habitat, the long-leaf pine forests of the Southeastern United States. Dr. Kaplan is active in community and family philanthropy. He is the former President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the 92nd Street Y, a world-renowned, New York-based Jewish community and cultural center, and serves on the Advisory Board of New York’s Mount Sinai Hospital Department of Internal Medicine. The Kaplans have also funded the Lillian Jean Kaplan Renal Transplantation Center at the University of Miami as well as a variety of prizes and grants for medical science research. In March 2014, Dr. Kaplan was awarded the rank of Chevalier in the Ordre national de la Légion d’honneur of France – the country’s highest civilian distinction – by the French Ambassador to the United States, François Delattre. In March 2017, Dr. Kaplan was decorated as a Commandeur in the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by France’s Minister of Culture, Audrey Azoulay, in recognition of the Kaplan family’s contribution to the arts in France as well as globally. Thomas Kaplan holds Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctorate degrees in history from Oxford University. He presently serves as Chairman of the Electrum group of companies.

Dr. Robert Beard

Mr. Ross Caphton

Ross specializes in investment management at Morgan Stanley. He is a holder of the Chartered Financial Analyst® designation and a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™. Ross obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Finance from the Langdale College of Business at Valdosta State University. In addition, Ross holds the Certified Portfolio Manager designation from Columbia University. He enjoys fishing, skiing, contributing to conservation efforts and herping.

Ms. Jane Fraser

Jane Fraser serves as the president of The Stuttering Foundation of America, a position she has held since 1981. The oldest and largest nonprofit organization for the prevention and treatment of stuttering, the Foundation has grown tremendously in size, scope and outreach under her leadership and direction. The daughter of Stuttering Foundation founder Malcolm Fraser, Ms. Fraser received a degree in Russian and Linguistics at Bryn Mawr College, and continued graduate work in both subjects at the Universite de Strasbourg, France. As an avid student of language and speech, Ms. Fraser is fluent in French and lived in that country for 20 years. An experienced editor, translator and interpreter, she previously worked for the Institut Gustave Roussy and for the Assemblee Nationale in Paris. Among her many professional affiliations, Ms. Fraser lists: Member, NIDCD Advisory Council of the National Institutes (1996-2000); Vice President, Action for Stammering Children in London; President, The Malcolm Fraser Foundation; Member, Societe Francaise de Phoniatrie; and Member, International Association of Logopaedics and Phoniatrics; Board Member, The Alexander Hamilton Institute for the Study of Western Civilization. Other affiliations: Member, Advisory Council, National Institute on Deafness and Other Communicative Disorders (1996-2000); Member, Board of Trustees, Hamilton College, Clinton, New York (1991-1997); Board member, The Orianne Society; Co-Chairman, Regional Campaigns, Hamilton College; Co-Chairman, Parents Association, Pitzer College, Claremont, California; Board Member, National Association for Hearing and Speech Action (1984-1987); Member, Board of Trustees of The Alexander Hamilton Institute. Personal honors and awards include a past Carnegie Foundation grant for Russian studies in Russia in 1963 and the Distinguished Alumnae of the Century Award, Hutchison School Centennial, 2002; the Outstanding Contribution Award from the International Stuttering Association at their World Congress in Dubrovnik, Croatia, on May 9, 2007; was chosen Nonprofit Executive of the Year by the Nonprofit Times in 2008; received an honorary degree from the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists in 2014.

Dr. Christopher Jenkins

Dr. Chris Jenkins is Chief Executive Officer of The Orianne Society. As CEO, Chris is responsible for providing strategic direction and overseeing day-to-day operations of the organization. Chris’ primary interests are in nonprofit management, land protection and stewardship and biodiversity conservation. He received a B.S. and M.S. from the University of Massachusetts in wildlife biology and wildlife conservation, respectively. Chris received his Ph.D. in biological sciences from Idaho State University. Chris has also worked with Wildlife Conservation Society, the U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, University of Massachusetts, University of British Columbia and National Geographic. Chris’ current projects include land protection in Longleaf Pine ecosystems, ecology and conservation of Timber Rattlesnakes and the conservation of wildlife in the Great Northern Forests. Chris founded and chairs the IUCN Viper Specialist Group and has served on many board and committees including the National Committee for Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation. Chris has contributed to multiple scientific papers and has written multiple book chapters, including Modeling Snake Distribution and Habitat in the recently published book titled Snakes: Ecology and Conservation. Chris is currently writing a book titled, The Indigo Snake: A Complete Guide to their Biology, Behavior and Conservation.

Dr. Thomas McKee

Mr. William Natbony

Mr. Natbony was a senior partner at the international law firm of Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP. From July 1997 through 1998, Mr. Natbony served as President and Chief Operating Officer of Croesus Capital Management, an emerging markets money management firm.Mr. Natbony has written and lectured extensively on legal and business issues relating to securities, commodities and tax law. He was named to Lawdragon’s 3000 Leading Lawyers in America (2006), New York Super Lawyer (2007, 2008 and 2009), and was listed in Best Lawyers in America (2009). Mr. Natbony serves on the Advisory Board of the Mount Sinai Department of Medicine and is a member of the strategic planning committee of the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine Transplantation Center. Mr. Natbony also serves on the Boards of Directors of Panthera Corp. and Project Orianne, charities that support wildlife conservation. Mr. Natbony earned his B.A., cum laude, from Queens College of the City University of New York (1972), his J.D. from NYU School of Law (1975) and his LL.M. (in Taxation) from NYU School of Law (1976). He was a research fellow at Yale Law School (1977) and a professor at New York Law School (1984-1995). He is admitted to the practice of law in New York.

Dr. Lloyd Newberry

Dr. Lloyd Newberry received his Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctorate degrees from the University of Georgia in zoology, science education and research design. In 1968 he was the youngest graduate ever to receive the doctorate from the University.  From 1968 to 2000 Lloyd held the positions of Professor and then Dean of Faculty in the University System.  During his tenure in academics he made over 100 national and international presentations and received over 50 grants from federal, state and private sources.  He is widely published in both magazines and research journals and has authored four books.  Lloyd has served as President or Board Member of many civic and conservation organizations including:  Savannah Science Museum; The Georgia Conservancy; Advisory Board, Georgia Department of Natural Resources; Leadership Georgia; Georgia Education Council; The Nature Conservancy; Georgia Ducks Unlimited; Southeastern Wildlife Exposition and the Coastal Georgia Foundation. Dr. Newberry presently resides in coastal McIntosh County, Georgia, where he is a land conservationist and President and CEO of Newberry Loans and Fiduciary.  He enjoys herpetology and the outdoors, and hunting and camping.  He has been married to Martha for 52 years and they have traveled and hunted in 68 countries.

Mr. Vance Serchuk

Mr. Jack Whalen