Lauren Rust; Board president
Lauren is the founder and executive director of LMMN.
Christine Beddia; Board vice-president
Christine Beddia has nearly 15 years of fundraising and strategic communications experience with a variety of nonprofit organizations in the Southeast and Pacific Northwest. Currently, she is the Director of Development at Pacific Northwest Research Institute in Seattle, WA where she leads philanthropic efforts to support genetic research and bioinformatics to improve health. Previously, she was Development Director at Savannah Music Festival raising nearly $2M to support education programs for youth and a 17 day world-class music festival in downtown Savannah. After earning a Masters in Public Administration at the College of Charleston, Christine spent over eight years working at Coastal Community Foundation, a public grant making foundation in SC. There she was responsible for strategic communications and marketing related to grantmaking, philanthropic services, and program initiatives. Christine is a Certified Fund Raising Executive and has served on the board of LMMN since 2016.
Robert Young; Board secretary and treasurer
Dr. Rob Young is a professor of marine science and the director of undergraduate research at Coastal Carolina University. He received his bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Virginia and his doctoral degree in oceanography from the University of Rhode Island. He has served as the department chair for marine science and the associate provost for grants and sponsored research at CCU and as the president of the South Carolina Marine Educators Association. He is currently the state coordinator for the South Carolina Marine Mammal Stranding Network. His research and publications have focused primarily on the ecology of bottlenose dolphins in the southeastern United States and on the behavior, ecology and population biology of fishes in the southeastern U.S. He has also developed and directed or co-directed numerous marine and environmental education programs for 2016 students and teachers at all levels.
Cheryl Munday has more than 25 years of experience in marine science and environmental education. After more than a decade as a Marine Mammal Outreach Specialist with NOAA Fisheries Southeast Regional Office-Protected Resources Division, Cheryl founded the Conservation Marketing Group in 2019. At NOAA, Cheryl contributed to the success of marine mammal education and outreach programs and was recognized as the 2009 NOAA Fisheries Team Member of the Year. She is known for her work on the Dolphin SMART program, the Don’t Feed Wild Dolphins/ Protect Dolphins Campaign, SEE & ID Dolphins & Whales and Dolphin & Whale 911 smartphone apps, and founded the Right Whale Festival. Additionally, Cheryl led the development of the Dolphin Conservation Education Program on the beaches of Kiawah and Seabrook Islands. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Long Island University-Southampton and a Master of Science degree in Environmental Education from Florida Institute of Technology.
David Pumphrey (retired)
David Pumphrey has been a full-time resident of Kiawah Island since 2014. He is an active member of the Dolphin Education program, the Kiawah Island Photography Club, and the Turtle Patrol. He is a member of the Town of Kiawah’s Environmental Committee and worked on both the Town’s 2018 Sea Level Rise report and the Adaptive Management Plan Task Force, which developed a framework for addressing sea level rise on Kiawah. His 40-year working career focused on domestic and international energy and environment issues. He was a Senior Fellow and Co-Director of the Energy and National Security Program of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) where his research focused on global energy issues, US energy security and climate change. He served as a Senior Executive with the United States Federal Government working on energy market analysis, energy and climate change policy, trade and relations with key countries. He earned a B.A. in Economics from Duke University and a M.A. in Economics from George Mason University.
Yearly visits to Seabrook Island over 25 years lead up to Sue moving here full time in 2018. Over the years, she’s been active in the Seabrook Island Ladies Golf Association where she served two terms as President, as well as Seabrook Island Club committees including Activities, Golf & Greens and Membership. She is a member of the Seabrook Island Photography Club, a tour leader with the Seabrook Island Natural History Group, and happily volunteers with LLMN. Prior to retirement, Sue enjoyed a varied career in both non-profit and for-profit sectors of the health care industry -- as an independent consultant to the Health & Hospital Corp. in NYC, and as project director for executive retirees with the National Executive Service Corp. In Connecticut, she served as marketing executive and grant-writer for several hospitals and managed care organizations, and as operational director for a stock corporation serving several private physician practices. The remainder of her working career was spent in the insurance industry where she held various marketing, account and strategic planning positions with MetLife and then UnitedHealthcare — responsible for large national account and group retiree health benefits business. Sue became active with LMMN in 2021 - attracted to the organization’s educational focus - and committed to it’s goal to preserve the habitat and habits of these amazing mammals.
Kate Allen is originally from Buffalo, NY, but now a resides in Mount Pleasant, SC. Kate has been an active LMMN volunteer, donor and ambassador for the last 5 years. In the mid-2000's, Kate worked with marina mammals in a variety of settings such as SeaWorld San Antonio, the Georgia Aquarium and Dolphins Plus in Florida. She's an active community member within her church, women's groups and a Young Executive Member at the Harbor Club. Kate has worked in sales for the last 12 years and is currently an area sales manager at Cytrellis Biosystems and was recently voted one of Charleston's 40 Under 40. Kate brings a wealth of experience within the marine mammal world, communications and marketing.