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Looking to visit Butterfly Pavilion during the week? Come in after 1:00 p.m. for a quieter experience!

Patrick Tennyson, President and Chief Executive Officer

Patrick Tennyson is the President and CEO of Butterfly Pavilion in Westminster, Colorado. Patrick has been with Butterfly Pavilion since June of 1999 and has been the organization’s President and CEO since 2010.

Patrick is the President and CEO of Butterfly Pavilion in Westminster, Colorado. He has been with Butterfly Pavilion since June of 1999 and has been the organization’s President and CEO since 2010. Patrick has a master’s degree in Nonprofit Management from Regis University. His extended Graduate level coursework focused on business and operational plan development to create long-term, vested partnerships for sustainable development and social equality in developing nations. He also has a B.S. in Zoology and a Minor in Chemistry from Metropolitan State University. Patrick has been involved in environmental education and conservation since 1987, including over five years as an Interpretive Naturalist and eight years in non-formal education program management. Patrick has dedicated over 25 years to professional leadership, administration and strategic planning. His leadership contributions include board and staff development, cultural and organizational innovation, responsible financial oversight, and sustainable growth through fundraising and community collaborations. 

Patrick is actively involved with a number of environmental conservation awareness groups. He served on the board of the Colorado Alliance for Environmental Education (CAEE) for over eight years, including a two-year term as Board President. In 2010, Patrick was appointed by City Council as a member of the Broomfield Sustainability Task Force to create the City and County of Broomfield’s Sustainability Plan; in addition, he was appointed to a committee that updated the City and County of Broomfield’s Comprehensive Plan from 2015-2016. Currently, he serves on the Broomfield Open Space and Trails Advisory Committee. 

Mary Ann Colley, Chief Operating Officer

Mary Ann Colley is the Chief Operating Officer at Butterfly Pavilion in Westminster, CO. She has been with Butterfly Pavilion since May of 2002 and began her work as COO in 2020 after holding the position of VP of Science, Conservation and Operations for 10 years.

Mary Ann grew up in south Texas where she found her love for invertebrates and received a Bachelor of Science in Bioenvironmental Sciences and Entomology in 2001 from Texas A&M University, College Station. In 2010 she received her master’s degree in Education – Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment from Regis University, Denver, CO. From 2010-2022 Mary Ann oversaw the growth of Butterfly Pavilion’s science, research, and conservation programs focused on invertebrate breeding with an emphasis on welfare and sustainable populations, as well as Butterfly Pavilion’s Pollinator Awareness through Conservation and Education (PACE) initiative, which focuses on habitat restoration, monitoring and pollination work. She oversees the Leading Environmental Action for Sustainability (LEAFS) program and is dedicated to bringing a unique perspective to sustainable business by supporting habitat and invertebrate conservation through innovative concepts like butterfly farming and beekeeping. Mary Ann has consulted on three NASA space shuttle missions, 2008-2011, for life science experiments with butterflies and spiders on the International Space Station. She led Butterfly Pavilion through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums accreditation process, awarded in 2014 and 2019; Butterfly Pavilion is the only standalone AZA-accredited invertebrate zoo in the world. She collaboratively formed the Colorado Pollinator Network in 2016 and continues to chair this state-wide network, now supporting an annual Pollinator Summit. Mary Ann spearheads the consultation, design and planning for permanent butterfly houses and exhibits nationally and internationally.  She serves as affiliate faculty and mentor to graduate students in the Department of Biology at CSU.


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Janet McFarland Burlile, VP of Donor Relations

Janet McFarland Burlile has nearly 30 years of experience in nonprofit leadership and fundraising, working for some of Denver’s most notable cultural institutions

Janet has nearly 30 years of experience in nonprofit leadership and fundraising. Janet has proven experience in securing major gifts and has a successful track record of designing and implementing successful high-level development programs.  Janet has had the good fortune to work for some of Denver’s most notable cultural institutions, including the Mesa Verde Foundation, History Colorado, Denver Botanic Gardens, Denver Art Museum, and Denver Zoo, where she led the successful campaign for Toyota Elephant Passage.

Janet holds a degree in history/political science from Colorado College and a master’s degree in history/museum Studies from Arizona State University. Janet enjoys spending as much time as possible in Colorado’s mountains with her family.


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Russ Pecoraro, VP of Marketing and Communications

Russ Pecoraro brings extensive experience in marketing and public relations to Butterfly Pavilion.

Russ previously served as Director of Mountain Communications for Vail Resorts and Director of Communications for Heavenly Mountain Resort at Lake Tahoe. He also managed high-tech accounts for The Hoffman Agency, a global public relations firm in San Jose, California. Pecoraro graduated from Santa Clara University with a degree in communications. Pecoraro, his wife, Lindsay, and kids, Mia and Dominic, have been Butterfly Pavilion members since 2013.


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Richard Reading, Ph.D., VP of Science and Conservation

Dr. Richard Reading, Ph.D., Vice President of Science and Conservation, has worked to develop and direct Butterfly Pavilion’s growing international portfolio of research and conservation projects over the past six years.

Rich oversees the Horticultural and Curatorial Departments, in addition to the Research and Conservation Department. According to Butterfly Pavilion President and CEO Patrick Tennyson, “Rich is a tremendous leader in conservation today. He is extremely well-versed, vastly knowledgeable, and passionate about developing the next generation of invertebrate scientists. Rich is shaping and reprioritizing the value of invertebrates in global conservation efforts, and, through his talents, magnifying their importance.” 

Rich serves as an Adjunct Professor within the Department of Biology at the University of Denver; Affiliate Faculty with the Department of Agricultural Biology at Colorado State University; and a Fellow with the University of Nebraska’s Center for Great Plains Studies. Prior to joining Butterfly Pavilion, Rich spent 19 years running the Conservation Biology program at Denver Zoological Foundation. 

Rich received a Ph.D. and three master’s degrees from Yale University in Wildlife Ecology and Human Dimensions of Wildlife and an Honorary Doctorate from the National Education University of Mongolia. In 2020, Rich was honored to receive the Order of the Polar Star, the highest honor from the Mongolian National Government for expatriates, for contributions to conservation. He has conducted or overseen projects in dozens of countries, working primarily on grassland and arid ecosystems on six continents, with a focus on the Great Plains of North America, the steppes and deserts of Mongolia, the savannahs and deserts of Botswana, and the Altiplano of Peru. Rich’s work focuses on developing pragmatic, effective, and interdisciplinary approaches to the conservation of wildlife and protected areas through research, capacity development, and working with local people and governments. Rich also serves on the board of directors or advisors for several non-profit organizations in the United States and overseas and as an associate editor for 5 scientific journals. Rich was also appointed to serve a four-year term on the Governor’s Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission. 


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Shartrina White, VP of Education

Shartrina White is the Vice President of Education at Butterfly Pavilion in Westminster, CO. She has been with the Butterfly Pavilion since January in 2023.

With a distinguished 23-year journey in the nonprofit sector, Shartrina White embodies a deep-rooted passion for crafting educational programs that champion the protection and reverence of all life forms. Shartrina steers a dynamic team of educators, interpreters, and volunteers, orchestrating enriching experiences tailored for a diverse audience. Her pivotal role includes creating and executing curriculum and outreach initiatives in sync with Butterfly Pavilion’s unwavering mission – the conservation of invertebrates and their respective habitats.

Shartrina has managed multifaceted responsibilities throughout her career spanning strategic planning, budgeting, fundraising endeavors, marketing, communications, operations, and team development. She has spearheaded several campaigns and events, further refining her skills in marketing communications, fundraising, and advocacy. Shartrina’s dedication and strategic approach stand as a testament to her contributions in elevating mission-driven organizations to new heights.


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