About Us

Friends of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge promotes conservation and appreciation of natural and cultural resources at Malheur Refuge through education, outreach, advocacy and on-the-ground stewardship.

About Us


Conserving, enhancing, and restoring fish and wildlife habitat and cultural history in the Harney Basin in southeast Oregon through the support of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge staff and programs.


Advocating for support of the Refuge and the National Wildlife Refuge System.


Assisting the Refuge in providing wildlife-dependent educational and recreational opportunities while enhancing public knowledge and appreciation of the Refuge mission.

WE ARE COMMITTED TO: Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Our public lands belong to everyone. The Friends of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge support appropriate access to Malheur National Wildlife Refuge for all people, regardless of race, age, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity or cultural background.

The Friends of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge strive to accomplish this through:

  • Working toward environmental equity so that all cultures present within the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge community are recognized, honored and fully included in all Friends of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge activities and programs.
  • Ensuring cultural inclusion within our Board of Directors and staff.
  • Utilizing a diversity of volunteers to accomplish a broad range of organizational activities consistent with the management of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

Friends of Malheur Refuge was founded in 1999 to promote the conservation and appreciation of natural and cultural resources at Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in southeast Oregon. From our office at Refuge Headquarters, we proudly assist Refuge staff with interpretive programs, habitat restoration, visitor services and other Refuge projects. In addition to partnering with the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service in supporting the Refuge, we work toward continued recognition of the environmental, spiritual and economic value of our nation’s public lands, lands that belong to all of us.

Malheur Refuge is an oasis in Oregon’s high desert, providing crucial resting, feeding and breeding habitat for hundreds of species of wildlife. The Refuge is popular with birders, hunters, and outdoor enthusiasts, particularly during spring and fall migration.

As a Friends group partnering with a remote Refuge, we’re constantly looking for ways to engage visitors. This year, we’re expanding our Nature Store at Refuge Headquarters into a Nature Center with interpretive materials, wildlife viewing areas and a pollinator garden featuring native plants. We’re looking forward to hosting and participating in more outreach events both at the Refuge and beyond. As always, we continue to work with Refuge staff and partners to identify projects in the Harney Basin that we and our dedicated volunteers can help bring to fruition.

Even if you can’t make it out to volunteer with us or attend Refuge events, there are other ways you can support this Friends group and Malheur Refuge.


Learn more about our passionate and dedicated Board of Directors and staff.
Director, Janelle Wicks, is an educator, a naturalist, a lover of fiber arts and a dog mom newly moved to Burns from Klamath Falls, OR.
For more than 20 years, Gary worked with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in the National Wildlife Refuge System.
​Alice has been visiting Malheur National Wildlife Refuge since the 1960s, first birding and then volunteering.
Jerry first visited Malheur Refuge in 1971 as student on an Eastern Oregon University Biology Department field trip.
Rick is a retired biologist, following a diverse 35-year career with BLM, FWS, and USFS as a range specialist, fish and wildlife biologist and wildlife refuge manager in California, Utah, Idaho, Hawaii, Washington and Oregon.
Linda is a graduate of Oregon State University and a retired Landscape Architect in Colorado and Idaho. Growing up, her family often visited eastern Oregon and Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. Those trips created a lasting fascination for Oregon’s geology, history, and wide open spaces and the animals and plants that call it home.
Kenn didn’t start to notice birds until the age of six, but this interest soon developed into a lifelong passion that has never let go. He burst onto the national birding scene as a teenager in the 1970s, hitch-hiking all over North America in pursuit of birds, an adventure later chronicled in his cult-classic book Kingbird Highway.
Mark was born in Salt Lake City and has lived in Utah, Montana, Minnesota, Alaska and Oregon. He enjoyed growing up in Corvallis with two younger brothers, attending school there from elementary through college at OSU.
A native Oregonian, Suzanne has been a birder/nature watcher all her adult life, and holds the honor of being a life member of Portland Audubon. Suzanne has been visiting Malheur Refuge since the 80's, has attended many Scharff Fests, and has been a member of Friends of Malheur Refuge for many years.
Carl Woodward has been practicing law for over 40 years. He has a broad integrated practice with specializations in environmental, municipal, zoning and planning, real estate, insurance and criminal law, and litigation in state and federal courts.