John Merz
President  
John Merz, President and co-founder of Friends of Bidwell Park has served on its board since it’s inception. John is well known in northern California for his environmental advocacy and has served on the Bidwell Park and Playground Commission, the City of Chico Planning Commission, the boards of Sacramento River Preservation Trust, Big Chico Creek Watershed Alliance, Butte Environmental Council, and others.
 
Woody Elliot
Treasurer
Woody Elliott retired in year 2010 after 20 years as a natural resource manager for Calif. Dept. Parks & Recreation at San Simeon and northern Calif. Currently, Conservation Chair and Web Administrator for Mt. Lassen Chapter – Calif. Native Plant Society.
Lise Smith-Peters
Board Member
Lise Smith-Peters is Development Director for the College of Behavioral and Social Science at California State University, Chico. She is responsible for major gift fundraising for the College. Prior to joining Chico State, she served the City of Chico Park Division for eight years as Park Services/Volunteer Coordinator. She established the Park’s pro-active park volunteer program, wrote grants, raised needed funds for Bidwell Park and served as staff to the Bidwell Park and Playground Commission. Lise is a gardner, sailor, reader, mom of two and Bidwell Park advocate!
Michael Stauffer
Board Member
Michael Stauffer has been a resident of Chico for 23 years. Team leader for Bidwell Park volunteer program. Past board member of Streaminders and Big Chico Creek Watershed Alliance. Worked on multiple stream restoration projects on Big Chico Creek and Lindo Channel over the last 15 years.

Jeanine Rood
Board Member
Janine Rood has been a member of the Friends of Bidwell Park board since February 2018. Her priorities for Bidwell Park center around finding the balance between preserving the often fragile ecosystem of the park and providing appropriate access to community members and visitors of all ages and abilities. Janine is currently the Bike and Pedestrian coordinator for the City of Chico. Previously she was Executive Director of Chico Velo. Her interests include all types of bicycling, hiking and trail running, gardening and reading.
Heidi Gysin
Board Member
I have been a member of the FOBP Board of Directors since 2016. My interests include invasive weed control through community service and herbicide treatments. Heidi is employed by the California Conservation Corps (CCC) in Corpsmember Development. My past experience includes working as Volunteer Coordinator for the City of Chico and teacher for several outdoor education programs. Heidi loves to travel, learn new things, and be outdoors. Her favorite trails in Bidwell Park are the Yahi Trail and Guardian Trail.
Tom Barrett
Board Member
Tom Barrett has been a board member since July 2017. Tom was on the Bidwell Park and Playground Commission for 12 years in the 1990s and early 2000s. Tom helped developed the Bidwell Park Endowment Fund and the Bidwell Park Foundation and was the President of those organizations until they were folded into the Friends of Bidwell Park. Tom was also a board member of the Big Chico Creek Watershed Alliance, the Sacramento River Preservation Trust, the Butte Environmental Council and other local and statewide organizations. Tom has his Masters Degree in Environmental Planning and has worked in that field as well as a biologist. Mostly Tom has worked in the energy conservation, efficiency, and renewable industry for the past 30 years.
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Nancy Park
Secretary