Management Team

Our people are retail professionals with a wealth of experience from prestigious venues such as Disney, SeaWorld and Universal. They are driven by excellence and dedicated to providing exciting and unique retail experiences for our partners. 


Gerry Ward


For 26 years, Gerry was the foremost visitor services consultant to zoos and aquariums, with a list of clients that included many of America’s distinguished wildlife institutions.

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James Ward

Chief Operating Officer

For the past 15 years, James has helped build Wildlife Trading Company into a world-renowned retail operation that continues to provide innovative thinking and solutions to the wildlife and cultural attractions marketplace.

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Taron Sutcliffe

Chief Financial Officer

As a qualified Chartered Management Accountant, Taron brings 17 years of international financial experience to our team.

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Marie Beeler-Kurtz

Vice President of Operations and Merchandise

Marie’s natural instincts as a merchant with a strong focus on customer satisfaction, team member training and store profitability help guide her at Wildlife Trading Company. A self motivated professional with a high energy level and proven track record of accomplishments, Marie serves as Vice President of Operations and Merchandise for Wildlife Trading Company.

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Christine Rice

Director of Merchandise

Christine joins Wildlife Trading Company with over 20 years of buying experience for iconic companies like L.L. Bean, Harley Davidson and Harcourt Publishing. 

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Mauri Carver

Director Store Design and Visual Merchandising

Mauri started her Visual Merchandising career in 1991 with JC Penny’s as a Merchandising Assistant and quickly moved into a Visual role by using her degree in art and design.  Mauri later joined Bass Pro Shops where she could couple her love of nature and conservation with her merchandising skills. 

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Kathy Wagner

Regional Manager

Kathy brings 30-plus years of retail management experience to Wildlife Trading Company. Before joining our staff, Kathy had an extensive career with Montgomery Ward. With outstanding people skills and training techniques yielding superior sales in all of her locations, Kathy oversees Wildlife Trading Company’s accounts in the Southwest.

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Wade Werner

Regional Manager

With ten years of retail experience in the attraction and entertainment industry, Wade brings passion and a drive to succeed alongside the growth and success of Wildlife Trading Company. 

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Bryn Nicholson

Regional Manager

Bryn’s working relationship with the Company began at Oregon Coast Aquarium as a sales associate. There he acquired a strong understanding of the organization’s operating philosophy and helped him refine his strong sales and customer service skills. 

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Lisa Baptista

Business Development Manager

Lisa brings 17 years of retail management experience to Wildlife Trading Company.  She spent 12 years with Work ‘N Gear where she held many roles, from Sales Associate to District Manager. She worked with the Business to Business Sales team where she was involved in organizing sales events with local hospitals and nursing homes

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Michael Hovis

Artistry Services Manager

Mike brings 11 years of Photography experience along with a strong understanding of retail operations to Wildlife Trading Company. 

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Drake Osgood

Merchandise Planning Manager

Drake comes to us with over 25 years of experience in retail buying, operations, budgets, inventory management, planning, product development and brand planning.  With a marketing degree from the University of Florida, Drake “grew up” in retail.   

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