Our Team

at Friends

Stephanie Buffum

Stephanie Buffum Executive Director

Stephanie’s background in public administration and planning informs her leadership on sustainable practices, cultural restoration, energy, and economic development. She has worked in the environmental protection sector for over 22 years throughout the West, including with the Center for Biological Diversity, focusing on federal endangered species protection, landscape management, and rural community development. As Executive Director since 2001, Stephanie manages all projects, staff, contractors, community outreach, research, fundraising and board development. Stephanie resides on Shaw Island with her husband and son.

Tina Whitman Science Director

Tina has managed shoreline research, restoration, and protection programs at Friends since 2002. Following her Master’s in Science, with a focus on the application of biological data to improved land management. She spent twenty five years in habitat conservation in the northeast and the northwest. Tina served eight years on the San Juan County Marine Resources Committee and is a current member of the County’s Salmon Recovery Technical Advisory Group. She lives on Orcas Island with her family and is happiest on a beach, for work or play.

Tina Whitman
Stephanie Buffum

Kyle Loring Staff Attorney

Kyle joined Friends in 2007. Kyle began his practice as a legal fellow for Alternatives for Community and Environment, a not-for-profit environmental justice organization in Boston, and then as an associate with the Seattle office of K&L Gates. Kyle earned his law degree, magna cum laude, from Boston College Law School in 2003, where he served as an executive editor on the BC Law Review. Kyle enjoys participating in our island community, currently serving in the mentoring program and as a board member for Families and Neighbors Support Island Rec.

Shannon Davis Grant Manager

Shannon works to safeguard the Salish Sea from the net zero home she and her husband built in Port Townsend. She holds a Master’s degree in Urban Planning with an emphasis on natural resource management and an undergraduate degree in Environmental Studies. As Grants Manager, Shannon is in charge of grant writing and grant management, she also assists with projects, education, and many other activities.She joined the Friends staff in 2003.

Shannon Davis

Jana Marks Program Assistant

Jana has 37 years of island residency during which time she has seen many changes. In of the early years she lived self-sufficiently on Stuart Island where she raised her two daughters. There, Jana was a fire commissioner, PTA representative, and volunteer at the local one-room schoolhouse. Now a San Juan Island resident, Jana provides Friends with backup support in all program areas. Jana joined the Friends staff in 2002.

Katie Fleming Community Engagement Director

Katie lives on San Juan Island with her family and is passionate about exploring, enjoying and protecting the Salish Sea ecosystem. Katie’s background is in sustainable community development and environmental education. She holds a Masters in Natural Science Education from Huxley College of the Environment at Western Washington University and a BA in Telecommunications from Indiana University. As the Community Engagement Director, Katie manages membership and community relations, marketing, media relations and special events.

Jennifer Boyden Development and Operations Manager

An author of poetry and fiction that takes its inspiration from wildness in all its forms, Jennifer makes her home on San Juan Island with her family. Her background teaching environmental literature in China and the US, and her work with a nonprofit dedicated to solving community issues at a grass-roots level, help support her work with Friends, which she joined in 2015. She is delighted to now explore the many island trails and local foods.

Lauren Platman Marine Policy Associate

Lauren comes to Friends after receiving her B.A. in Environmental Studies-Sociology from Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington this last spring. During her time at Whitman Lauren interned for the Wallowa Land Trust in Enterprise, OR and the Washington Water Trust in Seattle to learn the ins and outs of conservation. She also spent 4 months in Nepal studying sustainable development and researching restoration projects on the Bagmati River. Lauren is excited to work with Friends on the Particularly Sensitive Sea Area Project over this next year and explore, research, and protect the uniquely beautiful Salish Sea.

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friendsOur Team