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Our team

WDC has around 80 staff worldwide working in 6 locations. They are led by a team of directors overseen by volunteer trustees who are responsible for ensuring we meet our charitable obligations.

Executive Directors

International CEO: Chris Butler-Stroud
Director of Strategic Development: Chris Vick
Director of Finance: Jane Bryan
Director of Fundraising and Marketing: Helen Mitchell
Director of Policy: Vanesa Tossenberger
Director of Human Resources: Sian Davies-Hamilton
Executive Director North America: Regina Asmutis-Silvia
Executive Director Germany: Franziska Walter
Executive Director Australia: Declan Andrews

Program Leads

End Captivity: Cathy Williamson
Create Healthy Seas: Erich Hoyt
Prevent Bycatch: Sarah Dolman

WDC, Whale and Dolphin Conservation, is the leading international charity dedicated solely to the worldwide conservation and welfare of all whales, dolphins, and porpoises. WDC does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin. We embrace diversity and equal opportunity and are dedicated to forming a team that represents a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, and skills.

WDC-North America Staff


Regina Asmutis-Silvia, Executive Director - North America

Regina is our fearless leader. She has her USCG 100-ton near coastal Master's License and has been involved in whale conservation for over 20 years. Besides running the office, she is also responsible for a lot of our policy and advocacy work. She is a Massachusetts native, a walking encyclopedia of whale information, and obsessed with Keith Richards.

Regina looking at whale


Missy Walker, Deputy Director - North America

Missy first became part of the whamily when she collaborated with WDC on an education program in 2013. She came on board in 2014 and oversees all of the fundraising and communications for North America. Missy loves all of her bird and squirrel friends that visit the feeder outside her office window and she teaches us all about vegetables that we never knew existed!


Colleen Weiler, Jessica Rekos Orca Fellow

Colleen first joined our whamily in 2013 as a Policy Intern. Since then, she has taken on the role of Jessica Rekos Orca Fellow and has spearheaded WDC-North America's orca conservation program.  Colleen works from her home on the West Coast (#bestcoast), is a master of whale puns, and is always one step ahead when it comes to policy affecting orcas.



Monica Pepe, Policy Manager - Conservation & Education

Monica has been in the whamily since 2009 when she started at WDC as a Field Research Intern. She came back the following year to volunteer and has been here ever since. She currently is the intern coordinator and oversees our boater education programs. She is a grammar queen and a Friends fanatic.

Michelle Collins, Program Manager - Science & Communications

Michelle found her whamily in 2012 when she started as a Field Research Intern. She couldn't get enough of whale conservation and came back in 2013 and hasn't left yet. She manages communications for WDC-North America, but always loves going on the boat to look for whales. She is proud of her midwest roots and has a freakishly good memory.

Sabrina 2016

Sabrina Braunlich, Program Associate - Communications & Outreach

Sabrina fell in love with WDC and marine life in 2016 when she started as a Field Research Intern. She couldn't stay away and joined us as the Program Assistant in 2017. She is now our rockstar Program Associate who manages all the fun on social media. She has experience as a radio DJ and has never heard a corny joke she didn't like.

Stephen McCloskey, Education Coordinator

Stephen found his way to his whamily in the summer of 2019 when he joined us as the Program Assistant and then moved into our new Education Coordinator position. Coming from an environmental education background, he is a perfect fit and we are so excited to see how our education program grows. Stephen brings a laid back style to the office and shows us every day why geology rocks.

Program Associate Stephen McCloskey relaxing on top of a mountain

Autumn Hanscom, Philanthropy Officer

Autumn is the most recent addition to our team, joining us in January of 2021. She is excited to bring her years of experience in grant management and grant writing to provide new opportunities for WDC. When she isn't knee-deep in grants, she can be found talking local policy as an elected representative for her town of Groton, CT and is a quesadilla connoisseur.

All staff 4.10.18