WHO ARE WE??
WBU Fort Collins Official Store Cat Since 2011
Sora joined us in June of 2011 after being introduced to us by the Fort Collins Cat Rescue Spay and Neuter Clinic in Fort Collins. We went there hoping to find a new addition to our staff and do our part to keep a kitty off of the mean streets of Fort Collins, thereby endangering the songbirds of this great city. She jumped right out of her kennel and into our hearts on that fateful day and we've never regretted a moment. When you visit the store, she might be sitting on a garden bench soaking up the sun in the afternoon by the front door, or even sitting on the checkout counter to greet you. She's a wonderfully friendly little cat and will be happy to cuddle her way into your heart as well. We've been asked many times why her name is Sora. It was suggested during a naming contest. A Sora is a little brown water bird and her coloring is somewhat reminiscent of that.
Lauren DeRosa, Owner, CEO, President
Certified Bird Feeding Specialist Since 2006
Lauren made the wonderful transition from “booze” to birds in April of 2006 when she sold the Loveland liquor store that her Dad and her were partners in for 16 years and bought WBU in Fort Collins. She had been feeding birds in her own backyard for 4 years before turning her hobby into a career. Her favorite part about owning a WBU franchise is that each day presents new challenges and she loves to spread her passion for the hobby to anyone that’s interested. While her favorite bird is the American Goldfinch, she is interested in “birdies of another feather” on her days off. You’ll find her golfing or on any body of water either paddle boarding, kayaking or boating at Horsetooth Reservoir whenever the store will allow for time off and the weather on the Front Range will permit. In 2019 she took time off at work to have her very damaged knees replaced (yep, both at the same time), and looks forward to a wonderful, pain-free year with all of you!
Jeff Nelson, Store Manager
Certified Bird Feeding Specialist Since May 2018
Jeff left "Big Box" retail management to join our team in October of 2017. He is enjoying his new surroundings and getting to know all of the friendly customers that frequent the store. He enjoys visiting with customer and is looking forward to meeting all of you. His educational background is in Natural Science which brings him to us with a strong interest in learning as much about the hobby as possible. He grew up loving the outdoors and is exited about adding bird expertise to his knowledge base. He lives with his wife and family west of Loveland near the Devil's Backbone trails, allowing him lots of opportunities to observe all the wildlife in our area. When he's not at the store, you might find him out hiking with his family and dogs or riding his motorcycle.
Susan Mathis-Lilley, Team Member
Certified Bird Feeding Specialist Since 2013
Originally from Dubuque, Iowa, Susan moved to Fort Collins from Michigan 10 years ago to get closer to family in the west. After teaching preschool for five years, she “semi-retired” to pursue other interests such as getting her Master Gardener certification with CSU Extension. She’s been a backyard bird feeder for over 25 years and her birding claim to fame is having won the rookie division spring birding title at Chippewa Nature Center in 1999.
Tom Larsen, Team Leader
Certified Bird Feeding Specialist Since January 2017
Tom was born and raised in Fort Collins! When he isn't working or studying to be a personal trainer, he enjoys playing tennis, working out and hanging out with his cat! He also makes time for DC Comics, of which he is a big fan!
Barb Seibert, Team Member
Certified Bird Feeding Specialist Since October 2017
Barb is a veterinarian, happily retired from a 30+ year career in the Animal Health Industry. She recently returned to Fort Collins after several years in the Midwest, and is avidly pursuing her passion for birds, wildlife, photography, hiking and fishing. When not assisting bird lovers at WBU, she enjoys spending quality time with her grandson, and relaxing days at her cabin in Red Feather Lakes. On Mondays she volunteers at the Visitor Information Center for the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests. Barb provides many of the beautiful bird photos we feature on our Facebook page!
Kristen Jackson, Team Member
Certified Bird Feeding Specialist since January 2018
Kristen comes to us born and raised in Fort Collins, CO! She lives in Loveland, married with one child, one dog and one cat. She has a passion for creating and designing art and has her own business, Needful Things, which she promotes in local craft fairs and the Maker's Markets. She came to us because of her passion for feeding birds in her own backyard, and is especially fond of the hummingbirds that visit each year. Her most favorite sound on earth when camping in the foothills is the wind blowing through the pine trees with hummingbirds buzzing all around. She decided to leave the corporate world to work with and support a locally-owned business. We are so happy to welcome her to our team and invite you to come in and say hello!
Certified Bird Feeding Since August 2018
Jeff comes to our team by way of Wisconsin but has been a resident of Northern Colorado for the past 30 years. He was formerly a Fisheries Biologist and Software Engineer but found his way to us with a passion for birds and birding. He brings a wealth of birding knowledge and bird identification skills that make our team even stronger as a source of information when you have a bird that you just can quite identify. Stop in and say hello and he will be happy to share his knowledge of the hobby with you!
Aubrey Davis - Bio COMING SOON!
Certified Bird Feeding Specialist Since August 2018
A J Frankson
Certified Bird Feeding Specialist In-Training
AJ is a recent graduate of CSU and loves living in Fort Collins. It's her happy place because of the awesome wildlife and proximity to nature. When she is
not at WBU FoCo chatting with you about our local birds, you can probably find her camping deep in the Colorado back country. Stop in and meet one of our newest team members!
Katie Swiontek - Photo and Bio COMING SOON!
Certified Bird Feeding Specialist In-Training