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Sustaining Bird Habitats & Rural Communities



Catherine Wightman

NGPJV Coordinator

Catherine Wightman

Catherine is passionate about the conservation of native systems for birds and for people; one of her top priorities for the NGPJV is to amplify the role of ranchers and working lands agriculture in bird conservation. She has experience with habitat and avian conservation programs and policy and experience researching wildlife-habitat interactions. Catherine lives in Clancy, Montana with her husband and daughter, and can often be found hiking, skiing, camping, trying to improve her birding skills, or anything else that takes her outside.



Conservation Programs Coordinator

Erin Fairbank

Erin has extensive experience working with habitat and bird conservation programs, agricultural operations and is partnership-oriented. She has worked in the Northern Great Plains region of Montana for years and is passionate about native grasslands and grassland-obligate bird species. Erin lives in Choteau, Montana and can be found hiking, birding and skiing along the Front.


Krista Erdman

Science Integration Specialist

Krista Erdman

Krista holds a Master of Environmental Management (M.E.M.), a Master of Forestry (M.F.), and a certificate in geospatial analysis from Duke University. She has experience working with habitat conservation programs and partners throughout western South Dakota. Krista lives in Rapid City, South Dakota and can be found hiking, camping, or knitting a blanket in her free time. 


Tayler Scherr

Science Integration Specialist

tayler scherr

Tayler holds an M.S. in Zoology & Physiology from the University of Wyoming and is passionate about the role of science in on-the-ground conservation. She has experience working with private landowners and partners in eastern Montana on voluntary conservation efforts to improve and restore grasslands. Tayler lives on a ranch outside of Glendive, Montana and spends her free time horseback riding, gardening, working on her photography and art, and, particularly in the cold of winter, reading anything and everything.


A color photograph of communications specialist Lisa Baril



Lisa is a science communicator and wildlife biologist. She began her career as a seasonal field technician working with birds in diverse habitats across the U.S. In 2009, Lisa earned a master’s degree in ecology from Montana State University. After completing her degree, Lisa spent eight years chasing birds and dodging bears in Yellowstone National Park. While she loved her work, Lisa’s passion for science communication led her to a position with Utah State University writing about natural resources for the National Park Service. As a communications specialist with the NGPJV, Lisa is working to elevate the voices of ranchers and other NGPJV partners in conservation.