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Lisa Giusti Joins Save Our Seabirds Board of Directors

DSC01476LISA GIUSTI earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh and then worked for over ten years in the Nuclear Technology and Services divisions of Westinghouse Electric. She then retired to raise her two children and became a community volunteer. She has over twenty-five years of fundraising and governance experience as a member of numerous non-profit boards, including Sewickley Academy, Summerbridge Pittsburgh, and the Western PA Humane Society. In 2014, Lisa was named a Trustee Emeritus at Sewickley Academy for her distinguished fifteen years of service.

Save Our Seabirds Forms Advisory Council

Save Our Seabirds is proud to announce the formation of its new Advisory Council.  As a separate entity from the Board of Directors, the Advisory Council’s goals will be to expand the organization’s reach in the community and to leverage the expertise and connections of highly respected community leaders.

Charter members of the Advisory Council are:

  • Scott Anderson, Senior Philanthropic Advisor, Gulf Coast Community Foundation
  • Ali Chokr, Founder, The Diamond Vault, Advisory Council Chair
  • Patricia Gardner, President, Sarasota Classified Teachers Association
  • Gayle Guynup, Style and Social Editor, Herald-Tribune Media Group
  • Jim Shirley, Executive Director, Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County
  • Nick Gladding, Board Chairman, Save Our Seabird
  • David Pilston, Chief Executive Officer, Save Our Seabirds

Jim Curtis Joins Save Our Seabirds Board of Directors

Jim Curtis

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, Jim Curtis graduated from Yale University with a degree in Chemical Engineering, and obtained a Masters in Industrial Management from MIT. He spent 33 years in various management positions within Exxon Corporation, retiring as President of Exxon’s International Shipping Company. Jim is also a Board member of People for Animals, a non-profit animal clinic in New Jersey.

Save Our Seabirds Sunset Soirée in the Herald Tribune

/ Saturday, March 12, 2016

 David and Ester Pilston. Photography by Wendy Dewhurst-Clark

David and Ester Pilston. Photography by Wendy Dewhurst-Clark

See gallery from Sunset Soiree.

For me, the Sunset Soiree benefiting Save Our Seabirds was an event that stirred so many memories … the Great Blue Herons (including one we named Charlie), the ibises, pelicans, seagulls and more that my father so loved watching from his porch overlooking Tampa Bay.
So many memories.
This evening’s event, however, was all about the future for all of those birds and ensuring that future generations would have a Save Our Seabirds whose mission is to rescue, rehabilitate and release (whenever possible) these beautiful creatures back into the wild.
More than 200 guests came out to Mote Marine for a truly delightful evening. They were greeted by a great horned owl, “Great Gatsby,” and an Eastern screech owl, “Bark.” The real star of the evening, however, was a sulphur crested cockatoo named “Kelly” who rode around on emcee Scott Anderson’s shoulder all evening.
Among guests were CEO David Pilston and his wife, Ester, Nick and Danielle Gladding, Ali and LaRue Chokr, Jeff Mayers, David Turner, Robert Gaglio, Jim Roque, Christine and John Brown, Marlene Liberman, Sandra Rios, Sally Yanowitz, Carol Sparrow and many more.
In 2008, Save Our Seabirds grew out of the Pelican Man Bird Sanctuary, which had to close its doors when Dale Shields (the Pelican Man) passed away. David Pilston became CEO in 2012, and has been working to establish sound business practices to ensure the organization’s survival for generations to come.
He shared that the three-acre center is home to, on average, 150 birds at any given time, 100 permanent residents and 25-50 birds in rehabilitation. The winter season is their busiest time, he said, as “More people in our area means more injuries to wildlife.” The leading cause of injury is nets and fishing rods, followed by car injuries and golf balls. “The Sandhill Cranes are so trusting and don’t know the meaning of the word fore,” he said.
Following a bountiful buffet generously donated by the Longboat Key Club, a live auction and raffle of a beautiful pearl necklace donated by Diamond Vault raised in excess of $15,000. An anonymous matching grant of $25,000 (which must be met by July 1) holds the possibility of adding another $50,000 to SOS coffers.
Save Our Seabirds answers 2,500 bird rescue calls per year, and 92 percent of its revenues go to mission-critical expenditures, in other words, saving birds. According to Pilston, of the 1,000 species of birds in the United States, 30 percent are threatened with extinction in the next 30-50 years.

Lisa Hartmann joins Save Our Seabirds Board of Directors


Save Our Seabirds is thrilled to announce the addition of LISA HARTMANN to our Board of Directors.

Lisa has been a valued member of the Save Our Seabirds family for several years. She started out volunteering in the Baby Bird Room, then got involved in the planning and execution of our annual Sunset Soirée fundraiser, which she chaired with great success this past year.

Lisa has a Bachelor of Science degree from University of Miami with an emphasis on Marine Biology and a Masters of Professional Accounting from Rutgers University.

She has been a dolphin and sea lion trainer at the Miami Seaquarium and a Zookeeper in the Marine Mammal Division, as well as a member of the Behavioral Enrichment Department, at the Taronga Zoo in Sydney, Australia. She has worked as an accountant for KPMG in both the United States and England.

Since moving to Sarasota, Lisa has volunteered at Save Our Seabirds, Mote Marine Aquarium, Southeastern Guide Dogs, and SPARCC.