On October 17, 2019, the Seattle Audubon Board of Directors unanimously confirmed Claire Catania as the organization’s new executive director. After joining Seattle Audubon in 2014 as development manager and advancing to development director in 2015, Claire has been serving as interim executive director since June of this year.
A Midwest transplant to the Pacific Northwest, Claire owes her love of nature and birds to a fairly idyllic childhood spent wandering the southeastern shores of Lake Michigan. After an extended undergraduate career winding through studies in opera performance and wildlife biology—even a stint in Madagascar conducting fieldwork on lemurs—Claire earned her bachelor’s degree in linguistics from the University of Oregon. A “Double Duck” (sorry, Huskies!), she also completed a Master of Nonprofit Management at the University of Oregon in 2014.
Claire has significant experience with strategic planning and fundraising, both of which will serve the organization well as we move to sunset the current strategic plan and begin anew. She had this to say about her new appointment, “It’s a great honor and privilege to continue to serve our mission in this new role. Seattle Audubon has a conservation legacy spanning more than 100 years, and birds need us now more than ever. I’m excited to get to work with all of you to secure a better future for our feathered friends.”
A graduate of Seattle Audubon’s own Master Birder program in 2017, Claire is a self-professed “bird nerd.” When she’s not in the office, or out birding, Claire serves on the board of the Midwives’ Association of Washington State, co-leads a monthly support group for arthritis patients, and still sings every chance she gets. She shares her Shoreline home with her husband, Adam; their 2-year-old daughter, Edith; two, very frisky indoor cats; and five backyard chickens.