Meet the Board

Craig Hayes
is a native of South Dakota who lived and worked as a physician in the Black Hills for 24 years.  In 1981, he and a couple of friends started a flats fishing lodge in Belize known as Turneffe Flats.  Craig now spends most of his time overseeing Turneffe Flats and working on conservation issues in Belize. As the founder of Turneffe Atoll Trust, formerly known as Friends of Turneffe Atoll, Craig is a longtime conservationist with a passion for protecting coastal marine habitat. 

George Myvett is the Senior Fisheries Officer and the Deputy Head of fisheries and aquaculture development for  Belize.  A former Justice of the Peace in Belize, George has a degree in Aquaculture Production and Fisheries Management from Stirling University U.K. and a degree in Marine Science and Chemistry from the University of the West Indies in Jamaica.  George makes his home in Belize City.  Geoge has been a leader in promoting sustainable commerical fishing in Belize and has taken on the lead role for the Fisheries Department in developing the Turneffe Atoll Marine Reseve.

Dale Fairweather was primarily raised in Placencia, Belize where his father worked as the projectionist for the local cinema.  For the past 25 years, Dale has worked as a fisherman at Turneffe.  Dale and his son, Dale Jr., fish the entire Turneffe Atoll for lobster, conch and finfish from their fishing camp located in the Grassy Caye Range. Although he utilizes a variety of fishing methods, he still enjoys free diving for lobster and he is now expanding his operation to off-shore fishing.  Dale has been involved with the Feberation of Fishers in Belize and is an advocate for a Turneffe Atoll Marine Reserve.

Eden Garcia is the former Director of the Institute of Marine Studies on the Turneffe Atoll.  Eden was raised in Yo-Creek Village in Orange Walk District, Belize where he attended high shool.  He then received a Bachelors Degree in Biology from the Universiy of Belize followed by a Masters Degree in Environmental Biology (concentration on Marine Fisheries) from East Carolina University in Greenville, NC.   Eden is currently a lecturer in Marine Biology at the University of Belize where he teaches Fish Biology & Fisheries as well as other courses.   Eden was involved in the Turneffe Islands Coastal Advisory Committee from 2001-2003.

Al Zale is the Unit Leader of the Montana Cooperative Fishery Research Unit and a Professor in the Fish and Wildlife Management Program at Montana State University—Bozeman. Al is a certified fish geek who grew up exploring the lakes, estuaries, and beaches of New England and has degrees in fisheries science from the University of Massachusetts, Virginia Tech, and the University of Florida. Technical areas of special emphasis include restoration of native fishes, sportfishery management, effects of exotic fishes, and regulated river management. He has served as dissertation or thesis advisor for 32 Phd and MS graduate students and will be adding Alex Anderson to that list soon.

Jim Klug is the Founder and Director of Operations for Yellow Dog Flyfishing Adventures. Jim graduated from Dartmouth College in 1991, and promptly moved back to the west. He is current President of the Board for Montana-based Big Sky Youth Empowerment Project, Chairman of AFFTA, and an active member and supporter of The Freshwater Trust.  Jim has been involved in Belizean and Caribbean conservation for years, and travels to the region on a regular basis. Jim lives in Bozeman, Montana with his wife Hilary, daughter Carson, sons Finn & Gus, and dog Boone.

Will Maheia
lives in Punta Gorda, Belize where he is actively involved in politics and a vareity of conservation efforts.  Will was born and raised in Southern Belize and traveled to the United States to receive a degree from the University of Idaho.  Will has worked as a commerical fisherman and was one of the founders of TIDE (The Toledo Institute for Developement and the Environment) which was instumental in forming one of Belize's most successful Marine Reserve, the Port Honduras Reserve.

Craig Mathews, along with his wife Jackie, is owner and founder of Blue Ribbon Flies, a retail fly-fishing outfitter based in West Yellowstone, Montana. An ardent conservationist, Craig and Patagonia's Yvon Chouinard co-founded 1% for the Planet. He has been awarded many environmental and conservation awards including The Nature Conservancy's Business Conservation Award, the Greater Yellowstone Coalition Business Award, and The Lee Wulff Award by the International Federation of Fly Fishermen. Formerly the police chief of the West Yellowstone community, Craig has authored five books on fly-fishing.

Rich Paini is a founding partner and the general manager of TroutHunter, a fly fishing retailer, lodge and guide service on the Henry's Fork of the Snake River.  He lives in Island Park, Idaho with his wife Millie, daughter Ella, and labrador Mischief.  Rich graduated with a degree in Anthropology from Washington & Lee University and is currently the Governance chair on the Board of the Henry's Fork Foundation. A well traveled angler, he has made at least annual trips to Belize for over a decade.  According to Rich, "there is nowhere more special than, and few places with such great opportunities to protect as, Turneffe Atoll".

Cindy Morton
is a native southerner residing in Sevierville, Tennessee with her husband, Steve, and their two weimerauners, Taz and Gracie.  A graduate of the University of Tennessee, she is an avid college basketball and football fan.  Cindy's interests include adult literacy, the Boys and Girls Club, Douglas Cooperative (a program for mentally challenged adults) and her church.   A scuba diver for over 35 years, Cindy has had the opportunity to dive throughout the World but her favorite, by far, is Turneffe Atoll.  Having seen the disastrous results of development, dredging and over-diving in other areas, Cindy is very interested in protecting the Turneffe Atoll.

Whitney W. McDowell is a passionate angler who has been fortunate to travel throughout much of the world in pursuit of fish. She notes, "Turneffe is an incredibly unique and rich resource with a glaring lack of formal protection from mounting threats. The time is ripe to take action."  Whitney graduated with a B.A. in Politics from Princeton University. Her professional background has been focused on marketing and public relations, most recently as Marketing Manager for Simms Fishing Products. When she's not fishing, Whitney can be found on the golf course or exploring Bozeman with her black lab, Henley.

Dirk Reinhardt lives in New York City and is currently Managing & General Partner of Marea Capital Management LLC.  A graduate of Yale and Harvard Business School, Dirk is an active proponent of environmentally sound investing practices.  Dirk is a Board member of the Henry’s Fork Foundation, a Sustainer of Jazz at Lincoln Center, active in the Utah Stream Access Coalition and he helps lead the New York City fund-raising effort for the Marine Corps Law Enforcement Foundation, the nation’s largest college fund for children of fallen U.S. Marines.  Whenever possible Dirk enjoys fly fishing at Turneffe Atoll with is favorite guide, Mike.