Trustees & Staff


  • Craig Thompson | Board Chair
    Craig Thompson | Board Chair

    Craig Thompson has established himself as a leader in conservation. He has served in such capacities as a founder of the Wyoming League of Conservation Voters and the Wyoming Environmental Education Association; as president of the Wyoming Wildlife Federation; and as Chair of the Board of Directors for the National Wildlife Federation, America’s largest conservation organization. As a researcher and writer, Mr. Thompson was named a National Science Foundation fellow in stressed stream analysis, and has been widely published on a variety of topics ranging from glacial melt-waters to arid-land streams. His work as Professor of Engineering and Earth Science at Western Wyoming Community College earned him the honor of Wyoming Professor of the Year (2015) from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. Mr. Thompson graduated from Colorado College with a BA in chemistry and Stanford University with an MS in environmental engineering, and he is a licensed professional engineer.

  • Shelley Sahling‑Zart | Board Secretary
    Shelley Sahling‑Zart | Board Secretary

    Shelley Sahling‑Zart is a native of Wood River, Nebraska and has worked for Lincoln Electric System since 1988 and has served as LES Vice President & General Counsel since 2011. Prior to her current position, she served as vice president and assistant counsel. She is responsible for legal affairs, government relations, strategic planning, customer and corporate communications and records, and corporate policy analysis. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Doane University and a law degree from the University of Nebraska‑Lincoln College of Law. Ms. Sahling‑Zart has directed the work of the Nebraska Power Association since 1988. She has been engaged at the national level through service on the American Public Power Association Board of Directors, the federal Surface Transportation Board’s Rail‑Shipper Transportation Advisory Council, and the Freight Rail Customer Alliance. She has also served on a number of church, civic and charitable boards in the Lincoln community.

  • Brad Korell | Board Treasurer
    Brad Korell | Board Treasurer

    Brad Korell brings distinguished background in business and community service. He had a 27-year career at National Bank of Commerce in Lincoln, Nebraska, serving the last ten years as president and CEO. After Wells Fargo Bank purchased NBC, Mr. Korell became regional market president. In 2004 Brad joined Olsson in Lincoln working first as CFO then in business development and community relations. In his community service career, Mr. Korell has served in board leadership positions for such organizations as the Lincoln Chamber of Commerce, St. Elizabeth Regional Medical Center and Nebraska Wesleyan University. Currently, he is active on the boards of Amfirst Bank, Nebraska Bank of Commerce, the University of Nebraska Foundation, NUtech Ventures LLC, CenterPointe and the Cooper Foundation. Having grown up in Culbertson, Nebraska, Mr. Korell received his Bachelor of Science from the University of Nebraska College of Business Administration and he is a graduate of the Stonier Graduate School of Banking at Rutgers University.


  • Brice Krohn | President & CEO
    Brice Krohn | President & CEO

    Originally from Treynor, Iowa, Brice now lives in Kearney, Nebraska, with his wife and four children. He obtained his Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology with an emphasis in wildlife management from the University of Nebraska at Kearney. Before joining the Crane Trust, Brice worked as a land manager in the Rainwater Basin for eleven years. He gained extensive knowledge and experience managing prescribed burns and wildland fires from working all risk management details in 22 states, including the B.P. oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. His field experience extends to heavy machinery used to improve and maintain a variety of habitats. As a steward of the land, Brice enjoys restoring and preserving a functioning prairie landscape so that his children and others can experience the pure beauty and importance of Mother Nature’s role in our lives. Contact Brice at bkrohn@cranetrust.org.

  • Wendy Bailey | Director of Finance and Human Resources
    Wendy Bailey | Director of Finance and Human Resources

    Wendy Bailey lived in Southwest England for 36 years prior to moving to the US in 1999. She has worked in Business Administration since 1980, starting her career in the legal field in England. Wendy was educated in Great Britain and attended Secretarial College there. She majored in Psychology at college and Administration for her Bachelor’s Degree. She has been a Paralegal and legal advocate for people in need and diverse populations. Since joining the Crane Trust in 2011, Wendy has worked as Director of Finance, Admin, and Human Resources and oversees the daily operations of the Nature & Visitor Center. She was appointed General Notary Public through the State of Nebraska in 2013. Her hobbies include travel, photography, and wildlife. Contact Wendy at info@cranetrust.org.

  • Matt Fong | Director of Fundraising and Outreach
    Matt Fong | Director of Fundraising and Outreach

    Matt has cherished and lived near the Platte River his entire life, growing up near Lexington, NE. His work focuses on connecting with the donors and supporters of the Crane Trust who support our mission. Whether it's a donation of $10, a sponsorship, or a legacy gift, Matt can ensure that your love of wildlife and habitat conservation makes a difference. Matt received his bachelor's degree from Hastings College and an MBA from the University of Nebraska, Omaha. He and his wife live in Hastings with their daughter and English bulldog. Contact Matt at mfong@cranetrust.org or 402-332-7090.

  • Timothy Smith | Director of Land Management
    Timothy Smith | Director of Land Management

    A native of Elm Creek, Nebraska, Tim spent 4 years in the Marine Corps before moving back home and pursuing a degree of Biology with an emphasis in wildlife management from the University of Nebraska at Kearney. Tim now lives in Grand Island, Nebraska, with his wife Casey and sons, Haydan and Sawyer. Before coming to the Crane Trust, Tim worked as a biological technician for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Funk, Nebraska, and most recently spent the last 4 years as the Habitat Specialist for the Rainwater Basin Joint Venture located in Grand Island. While with the Joint Venture, he dedicated his time to wetland restoration projects on private lands, worked with private landowners to secure easements and other private lands programs along with helping public land managers with land management activities throughout 21 counties in central and eastern Nebraska. He joined the Trust staff in 2014 and looks forward to working with others to preserve and maintain our critical habitat along the big bend reach of the Platte River. As an avid outdoorsman, Tim believes that this is a great opportunity to give back to future generations by preserving and managing our unique and critical habitat along the Platte River. Contact Tim at tsmith@cranetrust.org.

  • Amy Sandeen | Outreach & Special Events Manager
    Amy Sandeen | Outreach & Special Events Manager

    Amy grew up in Hastings, Nebraska, then lived and worked in St. Paul/Minneapolis for eighteen years before moving back to her roots in 2008. At Crane Trust, she helps design and implement activities that promote community engagement, education, outreach, and partnerships. Amy’s drive to create community connections is inspired and informed by more than 25 years of professional work in experiential education and nonprofit management. She serves on local and state boards and facilitates workshops to encourage nonprofit capacity growth. Amy is also a musician and photographer, and loves sharing outdoor experiences with others. Contact Amy at asandeen@cranetrust.org.

  • Sandy Douglas | Relationship Coordinator
    Sandy Douglas | Relationship Coordinator

    Sandy came to the Crane Trust with over 25 years in advertising, marketing, banking and sales experience, and has served in board positions for non-profit organizations such as Nebraska Educational Telecommunications (NET) and the American Marketing Association. Having moved to Omaha after graduation from the University of Michigan, she found a true home in Nebraska. The excitement of her first Crane experience years ago and her love of wild creatures and spaces has led her to the Crane Trust, where she employs her business and marketing experience to develop support for the Crane Trust and its vital mission. Contact Sandy at sdouglas@cranetrust.org.

  • Kristi Castillo | Membership & Database Coordinator
    Kristi Castillo | Membership & Database Coordinator

    A Kearney, Nebraska native, Kristi received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing from the University of Nebraska at Kearney. She worked as the Office & Shelter Manager for a local Domestic Violence agency for 6 years where she gained experience in the not for profit sector. Then she spent the next 12 years at Baldwin Filters, a Parker Hannifin Company, where she worked in Manufacturing and as a Researcher in Product Management. Contact Kristi at kcastillo@cranetrust.org or 308-293-2878.

  • Sally Miller | Office Assistant
    Sally Miller | Office Assistant

    Sally was born in Fort Collins and raised in Denver, Colorado. She attended Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri. Before working for the Crane Trust, Sally ran Miller Manufacturing in Stratton, Nebraska, and worked for the National Federation of Independent Businesses. She is one of the friendly faces you will see at our Nature and Visitor Center.

  • Joshua Wiese | Range Manager
    Joshua Wiese | Range Manager

    Josh, who is about as local as they come, grew up and graduated high school in Shelton, Nebraska, only 20 miles from the Crane Trust property. Flowers are Josh’s favorite thing in the world, next to his children and family. Josh earned a Bachelor's degree in wildlife biology at the University of Nebraska, Kearney focusing his studies on plants, ecology, and phylogenetics. Since his internship in 2015 he has filled several roles at the Crane Trust, including herbarium scholar, science technician, and habitat ecologist. Josh completed his Master's of Environmental Management degree through Western Colorado University in 2022, continuing his long-term commitment to the Crane Trust and studying, restoring, and protecting habitat in the Platte River Valley that he calls home. Contact Josh at jwiese@cranetrust.org.

  • Bethany Ostrom | Wildlife Biologist
    Bethany Ostrom | Wildlife Biologist

    Bethany is a native Nebraskan. She attended high school in Grand Island and now lives in Minden with her husband. Throughout her life she has had a passion and curiosity about the wildlife and natural world around her. Following her passion, she attended the University of Nebraska- Lincoln and obtained a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Fisheries and Wildlife and minors in Biology and Environmental Education. During college she worked at the Lincoln Children’s Zoo and with the Tern and Plover Conservation Partnership throughout Northeastern Nebraska. She started with the Crane Trust as an intern in spring 2019. Since then she has worked at the Crane Trust as a biologist science technician, completed her Masters at the University of Nebraska at Kearney, and returned full-time in 2022 as a wildlife biologist. Now Bethany leads the various wildlife surveys done at the Trust including her favorite, avian point-count surveys, and is growing in her statistical skills. While Bethany didn't imagine staying in Nebraska after college, she has grown to truly admire the native diversity Nebraska has to offer as she often says "Anyone can admire the mountains, but it takes a special soul to see the beauty of the prairies." Contact Bethany at bostrom@cranetrust.org.

  • David Baasch, CWB | Threatened and Endangered Species Specialist
    David Baasch, CWB | Threatened and Endangered Species Specialist

    Dave’s work in the Central Platte River Valley has focused on understanding the response of threatened and endangered species to habitat management activities as well as the ecology of species of conservation concern. He has authored scientific articles regarding a wide range of species including whooping cranes, interior least terns, piping plovers, sandhill cranes, white-tailed deer, mule deer, and elk as well as several river morphology and hydrology scientific articles and books. Prior to coming to the Crane Trust, Dave devoted 10 years serving as the Director of Biological and Ecological Research for a large-scale adaptive management program. Dave earned a BS and Master degree from the University of Nebraska-Kearney and a PhD from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Contact Dave at dbaasch@cranetrust.org.

  • Stu Dethloff | Maintenance Technician
    Stu Dethloff | Maintenance Technician

    Stu is a Grand Island native, growing up enjoying the Nebraska wildlife and outdoors. He is familiar with the community, scenery, and businesses of the area. After running a successful cleaning and handyman business for over 20 years, Stu wanted to find a job that helped him give back to the community. He has done just that as a maintenance technician for the Crane Trust, bringing with him a wide skillset to tackle the hard (and sometimes dirty) jobs that come up throughout the year.

  • Mallory Beckmann | Range Technician
    Mallory Beckmann | Range Technician

    Mallory Beckmann grew up on a farm 10 miles northeast of Grand Island. She grew up farming with her dad and grandpa, raised livestock, and participated in 4H and FFA. In 2023, Mallory obtained a Wildlife Biology degree from University of Nebraska Kearney. Mallory worked seasonally for two years with the Crane Trust bison program before joining the Range Management Team full time. She has a passion for the outdoors and loves to hunt and fish in her free time.

  • Adam Driver | Facility Manager
    Adam Driver | Facility Manager

    Adam Driver is a lifelong Nebraskan. He is very passionate about the outdoors and enjoys everything Mother Nature has to offer. Adam’s passion for the outdoors began from hunting expeditions with his father at a very young age, which has grown tremendously over the years. While growing up in Minden, Nebraska, with his parents and three siblings, he continued to grow in his appreciation of the Platte River Valley. Adam attended Hastings College where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and pole vaulted for the Track & Field team. His athletic background, as well as his love for the outdoors, will help Adam with future endeavors at the Crane Trust including; maintenance and hosting events of the new trail system, roles throughout the Nature and Visitor Center and land and science collaborations to strengthen the Trust’s mission. Adam hopes that his hard work and dedication will encourage everyone to get outside and enjoy what nature has to offer.

  • Abraham Kanz | PhD Student Researcher
    Abraham Kanz | PhD Student Researcher

    Abe is a graduate student currently working on his PhD at Oklahoma State University in the Natural Resource Ecology and Management program under the advisement of Dr. Craig Davis. He received his MS in 2019 from the University of South Dakota before moving to Oklahoma to continue his education. His current research is funded by the EPA and aims to fill knowledge gaps about wet meadow quality using the Nebraska Wetland Rapid Assessment Method (NeWRAM), wet meadow response to disturbance using invertebrate and plant community data, and relationships between wet meadow biotic and abiotic features. He hopes to move into a post-doctoral position after his PhD program. Eventually, he would like to take on a faculty position at a university.

  • Andrew Caven, MNR | Sr. Research Associate
    Andrew Caven, MNR | Sr. Research Associate

    Andy is the Vice President of North American Programs for the International Crane Foundation where his work focuses on conservation policy, delivery, and research regarding Whooping Cranes, Sandhill Cranes, and their habitats. He served as the Lead Biologist and then the Director of Conservation Research at the Crane Trust from 2015 to 2022. He continues to be an active collaborator with the Crane Trust. Andy's work in the Central Platte River Valley (CPRV) focused on understanding the response of ecosystems to managed and natural disturbances as well as the habitat ecology and natural history of species of conservation concern. Previous to coming to the CPRV, Andy worked in the Western and Southeastern United States conducting ecological research and advocating for conservation. He has worked for the U.S. National Park Service’s Inventory and Monitoring Program as well as the National Science Foundation’s Long Term Ecological Research program. Andy has a BS degree from North Dakota State University and Master’s degrees from the University of Georgia and Washington State University.

  • Jenna Malzahn | Research Associate
    Jenna Malzahn | Research Associate

    Jenna is originally from Royal Oak, Michigan where she obtained a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Michigan in 2017. Her interest in wildlife stems from a childhood obsession with Animal Planet and a love of exploring the wilderness. Through her experience working at wildlife rehabilitation centers and sanctuaries, she has come to further appreciate the importance of preserving habitat and biodiversity. Jenna joined the Crane Trust as an intern in 2018, and has held titles of Biological Science Technician and Jr. Wildlife Biologist. Jenna recently accepted a graduate school position at Auburn University in Alabama, where her research is centered on black bear reproductive ecology in Alabama with a focus on cub survivorship and den characteristics. Jenna will stay involved with the Crane Trust science team as a Research Associate regarding multiple studies of wildlife habitat use and community ecology.