The reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone and memories of a childhood vacation to Jackson Hole inspired Heather Mathews, originally from Cleveland, Ohio, to move to the area in 1997.
Mathews has worn many hats in the valley, including baker, restaurant manager, program director, bookkeeper and office manager. She has small business and non-profit experience.
With a desire to protect the valley and its wildlife, she was involved at the Jackson Hole Conservation Alliance during most of her time in Jackson, first as a volunteer and member; almost five years as a part of the staff until she joined The Cougar Fund in the summer of 2011.
Heather bikes, hikes, skis and snowshoes as much as she can, enjoying the outdoors with her husband and dogs near their home in the Hoback Canyon.
She has seen only one cougar in the wild, although a couple have spent time in her neighborhood. “I could not be more honored to join The Cougar Fund team to help protect these amazing animals that are such an important piece of the ecosystem."
Lisa returned to her chosen profession of nursing in April, 2013 after making major strides with The Cougar Fund for two years. Her most notable accomplishments include developing the Cougar Posse program in Wyoming, jump-starting an anti-cougar-hunting campaign, publishing four newsletters and multiple electronic newsletters, bringing national attention to the removal of a family of cougars from Jackson Hole, working to publish a children's book about cougars by Jean Craighead George, reminding people on a daily basis of the importance of cougars in the ecosystem, and making The Cougar Fund known as a force for protecting America's Greatest Cat. She will continue to volunteer with Cougar Posse and see through the publication of the children's book.
A cat-lover since she was two years old, Lisa became a staff member for The Cougar Fund in April 2011 after more than six years as the Development Director for The Jackson Hole Conservation Alliance. While on staff at the Alliance, she initiated their planned giving program and endowment fund. Before that, she served on the Alliance board of directors for two years and was chair of the development committee.
Originally from Aurora, Indiana, Lisa obtained her Bachelor of Science degree in nursing from Eastern Kentucky University. Many of her 16 years working as a nurse were spent as a traveling nurse. Her travels brought her to Jackson, Wyoming in 1988.
Her other past non-profit involvement includes four years as a staff member at St. John's Episcopal church, three years on their vestry and three years on the board of their fundraising thrift store. Currently she is the regional volunteer coordinator for Heifer International, member of the board of directors for Habitat for Humanity of the Greater Teton Area and serves on the Run Committee for The Community Foundation of Jackson Hole's largest fundraising event.
In her spare time she enjoys hiking, floating the rivers of Jackson Hole, cross-country and skate skiing, and otherwise experiencing the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.
Lisa looks forward to putting her Certificate in Fund Raising Management, earned from The Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University, to good use for the America's Greatest Cat.
Your purchase of Cougar Fund caps, mugs, books and artwork will help support our mountain lion outreach and education initiatives.