Board of Directors

Executive Board/Board of Directors


David Rose is the President of the EIF Board of Directors. Dave (shown here at left with the Mayor of Easter Island) is a retired attorney; he and his wife, Gail (on the right), became enchanted with Easter Island while on Georgia Lee’s Millennium Tour to Easter Island. They enjoy adventure travel and scuba-diving (Dave calls his scuba experience off Motu Nui “spectacular”). Gail Rose is a retired science teacher and coordinates EIF educational activities. 

Kay Sanger is the EIF’s First Vice-President. She fell in love with Rapa Nui while working there with Georgia Lee’s research project in 1983. She has returned to the island many times, and works to promote education, research and preservation. Kay has an MA in Archaeology from UCLA and is the author of several books on travel, archaeology and rock art, including the EIF’s best-selling 2011 guidebook, Easter Island. The Essential Guide, which is now out of print.  She is currently working on an updated edition of the guidebook, to be published in early 2015. Her latest book, Write Your Memoir in Ten Steps, was published in 2013 and was interviewed in the La Jolla Light. To read the story, please click on the link below:

Kay Sanger in the La Jolla Light, January 2014

Mike Chamberlain is Treasurer of the EIF. He is a retired project manager for an energy company, and has an M.B.A. degree from the University of Southern California. Mike has worked extensively with archaeologists in the field documenting Native American rock art sites across the southwestern United States.

Elaine Dvorak is the Secretary of the EIF. She and her husband Don have conducted amazing kite-aerial photography projects on Easter Island and in Hawaii. Their aerial photos showing archaeological sites have provided valuable information to archaeologists on the ground.

Mara Mulrooney is the Editor of the Rapa Nui Journal. She completed her Ph.D. in anthropology at the University of Auckland, focusing on settlement and land use in the Hanga Ho’onu sector of Rapa Nui. Mara is the Assistant Anthropologist at the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum in Honolulu, Hawai’i and she has conducted archaeological research in Hawai’i, New Zealand, Fiji, Guam, and Rapa Nui.

Mara has published an important article in the December 2013 issue of the Journal of Archaeological Science that challenges the theory that Rapa Nui society was on its way to collapse prior to European contact in 1722. Click on the links below to learn about Mara’s research that sheds new light on this subject.

Journal of Archaeological Science abstract and info

KITV 10 Dec 13 article text

Mara was also interviewed for NPR’s Sunday Weekend Edition on 12/22/13. To listen, click on the link below:

NPR Interview with Mara Mulrooney



Georgia Lee is one of the founding members of the EIF. Her Ph.D. dissertation dealt with the rock art of Easter Island. She also has worked on extensive rock art documentation projects in Hawai’i and California. Her publications include the bestselling Spirit of Place, Petroglyphs of Hawai’i; Rock Art of Easter Island. Symbols of Power, Prayers to the Gods; Te Moana Nui. Exploring the Lost Isles of the South Pacific; An Uncommon Guide to Easter Island;  A Day with a Chumash; The Portable Cosmos: Effigies, Ornaments, and Incised Stones from the Chumash Area; The Chumash Cosmos : Effigies, Ornaments, Incised Stones and Rock Paintings of the Chumash Indians; and Rock Art and Cultural Resource Management. She initiated the Easter Island Foundation’s publishing program and is the founding editor of the Rapa Nui Journal.

Joan Seaver Kurze’s interest in anthropology led her to UCLA where she earned her doctorate. Her fieldwork on Rapa Nui focused on the modern woodcarvers of the island. Joan was the founding President of the EIF and is the author of Ingrained Images, Wood Carvings from Easter Island, which accompanied an exhibit at the Maxwell Museum at University of New Mexico in 1997. Joan is currently working on a book detailing the creation of the woodcarving in church on Easter Island known as Maria, Madre de Rapa Nui.


 Marla Wold became intrigued with Rapa Nui during her first college class at the University of Wyoming in 1969. It was taught by William Mulloy and she did her Master’s thesis in Anthropology on the subject of the Rapanui language. Marla is the chairperson of the Scholarship Committee.

Kathi Merritt, shown here with Sonia Haoa and Melinka Cuadros Hucke, first visited Rapa Nui on an Earthwatch expedition in 2007; she returned to volunteer for Earthwatch in 2009 and 2010 and is eager to assist with future research.   With over 30 years as a classroom teacher and school library media teacher in a K-8th grade school, her students have been an integral part of Kathi’s various past Earthwatch projects.  She has a special interest in the Foundation’s Scholarship program.


Elaine Crumpley is a retired science teacher. She recently went to the island and taught science classes to Rapanui students, an amazing experience.

Paul Horley, Ph.D. from Yuri Fedkovych Chernivtsi National University (Ukraine), started his research of Rapa Nui history and culture after visiting the Island in 2002. His scientific interests include rongorongo script, study of rock art and 3D computer modeling of archaeological sites. Some of these topics are represented in his contributions to the Rapa Nui Journal.

Hilary Scothorn, whose Masters’ degree concerns Polynesian and non-Western art history, lives in New Zealand. She is the treasurer of the Pacific Arts Association.

 Charles Love is a geologist and archaeologist. He teaches at Western Wyoming College and can often be found on Easter Island, excavating the old moai roads and other features.


Brett Shepardson received his B.A. in Mathematics from Claremont McKenna College in 2000, his M.A. in Anthropology from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa in 2002 and his Ph.D. in Anthropology (with a focus in Archaeology) from UH in 2006.  His research interests and expertise include GIS, monumental architecture, quantitative analysis, and the Pacific Islands.

Since receiving his Ph.D., Brett has held Adjunct Professor positions at the University of Hawai‘i, University of New Mexico, Vanderbilt University, and Northern Arizona University. In 2003, he also founded the Archaeological Outreach program—a volunteer organization devoted to cultural awareness, archaeological conservation, and educational outreach on Rapa Nui.  He continues as the program’s Director to develop curriculum, organize yearly projects, and raise funds.

Brett currently resides in Flagstaff, Arizona, where he works full-time as a seventh- and eighth-grade math teacher.  He also teaches an archaeology course at Northern Arizona University and develops/maintains websites part-time. His latest book, Moai. New Light on Old Faces, is available through the Easter Island Foundation (see our Publications).

Program Officers/Technical Advisors

Ana Betty Haoa Rapahango, of Easter Island, has an MA from the University of Chile. She is the Librarian at the Biblioteca Rapanui, Fonck Museum, Viña del Mar and is an Editorial Assistant for the Rapa Nui Journal.

Board Chairman Emeritus William Liller received his Ph.D. in Astronomy from the University of Michigan and taught at Harvard University from 1960-1983. He moved to Chile where he now lives. He has carried out extensive archaeo-astronomical studies on Easter Island. Bill is shown here with Kathi Merrit, signing a copy of Speak Rapanui!, an EIF publication that he co-authored with Ana Betty Haoa Rapahango. Bill also authored the The Ancient Solar Observatories of Easter Island.

Jut Wynne is a Science Advisor for EIF. He is a Research Ecologist and PhD Candidate at Northern Arizona University (NAU).  He has studied the caves of Rapa Nui since 2008, and is investigating community dynamics and invasion ecology of cave-dwelling insects of Easter Island caves. Jut is currently developing a field school on the island that will train both U.S. college students and Rapa Nui high school students in field science techniques. He has a M.S. in Environmental Science and Policy from NAU, and a Graduate Certificate in Ecotechnie from the Free University of Brussels.  Jut has published papers on a range of topics including wildlife-habitat modeling, cave biology, NASA education programs, and cave detection techniques for Earth, the Moon, and Mars.  He is a fellow of both the Explorers Club and Royal Geographic Society, and serves as Vice Chair of the Southwest Chapter of The Explorers Club.  When he’s not studying caves, Jut is training for, and participating in, numerous endurance races across the southwestern U.S.