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The BG-BASE Team

Kerry S. Walter: (co-owner) Kerry is the original author of BG-BASE, developed in 1985 at the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University. He has been working in biological databases since 1973 and has a PhD in Systematic Botany from The University of Michigan. Before devoting full time to development of BG-BASE he was Director of Botany and Information Systems at the Center for Plant Conservation and later headed the Threatened Plants Unit of the World Conservation Monitor Center in Cambridge, England. He retains a strong passion for plant conservation and research collections. He is currently based at the Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Michael J. O'Neal: (co-owner) Mike has a degree in Horticulture from the University of Wisconsin but gravitated early on towards database design and data management, taking additional coursework at Northwestern University while working in the plant records office at the Chicago Botanic Garden. He has been developing and supporting BG-BASE with Kerry since 1989, working in that capacity at the Center for Plant Conservation, Missouri Botanical Garden, and The Holden Arboretum. He has a strong commitment to the public garden and non-profit communities and is currently based in Portland, Maine.

Combined, Kerry and Mike estimate they have worked with nearly 400 institutions in over 50 countries during the course of their careers. The development and support of BG-BASE is their life work and their one and only business interest.

Mary Byrne: Mary has been a part of the BG-BASE community since 2003 when she began working in the plant records office at the U.S. National Arboretum. She later took her skills to the Bureau of Land Management, where she became the National Collections Curator for the Seeds of Success program. She holds degrees in Biology (Kent State University) and Natural Resources (University of Idaho) and founded Bioloque, an ecological and collections management consulting company. In 2010 she became a regular member of the BG-BASE support and development team.

Mahir Akbalik: Mahir is the newest member of the BG-BASE team, having started in the BG-BASE (UK) Ltd. office in April 2015. His experience with BG-BASE dates from 2006 when he was working at Nezahat Gokyigit Botanic Garden (NGBB) in Istanbul, Turkey. Later he studied at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh and received an Honours degree in Horticulture and Plantsmanship from the University of Glasgow. He has also had an opportunity to experience BG-BASE being used in over 25 institutions on 4 continents. In addition to managing the Edinburgh office, Mahir will be focusing on extending the flexibility and configurability of BG-BASE to meet institution - specific expectations, especially for non - English speakers.

Bob Carten: Bob has been developing computer software since 1983 and has been working with the BG-BASE team since 2000. Since 1998 he has been a senior developer for WinWin Solutions Inc., the owner of Revelation Software. Bob specializes in developing interfaces between OpenInsight (the database platform upon which BG-BASE is built) and other software applications. He has developed interfaces in OpenInsight to SQL databases, web services, distributed databases, email, text messaging, biometric measurement and other components that extend the OpenInsight toolset. He holds degrees in both Physics (Grinnell College) and Engineering (Columbia University).

Kevin R. Fournier: Kevin is a senior developer and engineer of visual components at SRP Computer Solutions, Inc. Founded in 1991, SRP is a world leader in OpenInsight application development. Kevin has a degree in Computer Science from California State University, Sacramento and works closely with the BG-BASE team on technical enhancements. His specialties include user interface design and integration of external technologies.




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