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Remembering Betty Petersen / Recordando a Betty Petersen 1943 – 2013

Betty bins_0960Betty Petersen

The ABA family and the entire birding community lost one of its leading lights on the morning of June 4th when Betty Petersen of Hanson, Massachusetts, passed away. She had suffered a heart attack on May 20th.

La familia de ABA y toda la comunidad de observación de aves perdimos una de las grandes luminarias en la mañana del 4 de junio, al fallecer Betty Petersen de Hanson, Massachusetts. Ella sufrió un ataque al corazón el 20 de mayo.

Betty Petersen had been an ABA member since 1980, and joined our staff in 2000 to lead the Birders’ Exchange program she pioneered at Manomet Bird Observatory. Over her more than a decade here, Betty brought endless reserves of intelligence, care, and enthusiasm to her work, building Birders’ Exchange into one of the ABA’s most effective and beloved programs.

Betty Petersen se asoció al ABA en 1980, y se unió a nuestro equipo en 2000 para dirigir el programa Birders’ Exchange, lo cual se inició en el Observatorio de Aves Manomet (Manomet Bird Observatory). Por encima de su más de una década aquí, Betty añadió reservas infinitas de inteligencia, cuidado y entusiasmo a su trabajo, elevando Birders’ Exchange a ser uno de los programas más eficaces y más queridos del ABA.

969653_536718483057639_1128845828_nBetty and Edson Endrigo in Brazil / Betty y Edson Endrigo en Brasil

Betty’s impact on the birding and conservation communities and the pain of her loss are hard to overstate. Her generosity, good humor, and love for the people, birds, and wild places the world over are legendary. Her vision for encouraging the study, appreciation, and conservation of those birds and wild places was elegant, simple, and effective. And as it was with all things Betty did, it was rooted in a spirit of great generosity and a delight in helping others.

No se puede exagerar el impacto de Betty en la comunidad de observación de aves y en su conservación o en nuestro dolor de su pérdida. Su generosidad, buen humor, amor por las personas, las aves y todos los lugares silvestres del mundo son legendarios. Su visión para fomentar el estudio, valoración y conservación de las aves y los lugares silvestres era elegante, simple y eficaz. Así fue todo lo que hizo Betty, arraigada en un espíritu de gran generosidad y gozo en ayudar a otros.

Our sympathies and thoughts are with Wayne R. Petersen, Betty’s husband of more than 40 years. Wayne directs the Important Bird Areas program for the Massachusetts Audubon Society and is a former Vice President of the ABA. Together, Wayne and Betty have been a major force in birding, in Massachusetts and around the world. We look forward to working with Wayne to honor Betty’s memory and keep her legacy alive and growing.

Nuestras condolencias y pensamientos están con Wayne R. Petersen, esposo de más de 40 años de Betty. Wayne dirige el programa AICA (Áreas Importantes para la Conservación de Aves) de la Sociedad Audubon de Massachusetts y es ex vicepresidente de la ABA. Juntos, Wayne y Betty han sido una fuerza importante en la observación de aves, en Massachusetts y en todo el mundo. Trabajaremos con Wayne para honrar la memoria de Betty y mantener vivo y siempre aumentando su legado.

Wayne and the rest of Betty’s family have asked that, in lieu of flowers, donations in Betty’s memory be made to the ABA’s Birder’s Exchange. Please use our special online donation form to make your gift. You are also welcome to call us at 800-850-2473 or 719-578-9703 during business hours, or to send donations by mail to 1618 W. Colorado Ave., Colorado Springs, Colo. 80904.

Wayne y el resto de la familia de Betty han pedido que, en lugar de flores, las donaciones en memoria de Betty se pueden hacer a Birders’ Exchange. Por favor, utilice nuestro formulario especial de donación en línea para hacer su regalo. También te invitamos a llamarnos al 800-850-2473 o 719-578-9703 durante horas de oficina, o enviar donaciones por correo a 1618 W. Colorado Ave., Colorado Springs, Colorado 80904 USA.

946984_10152562372693538_926467985_nPhoto by BEX recipient Patricia Gonzalez of Argentina / Foto de BEX destinatario Patricia González, de Argentina

Please read Betty’s obituary and sign an online guest book for Betty here. We also hope you’ll leave your memories and sentiments about Betty, her life, and her impact here in the comments section as a memorial to her. We’ll be featuring extended coverage of Betty’s life and work in the July/August issue of Birding and elsewhere.

Por favor, lea el obituario de Betty y firme el libro de visitas en línea para Betty aquí. También esperamos que ustedes compartan sus recuerdos y sentimientos sobre Betty, su vida y su impacto aquí en la sección de comentarios en memoria de ella. Presentaremos más sobre de la vida y la obra de Betty en la revista Birding de julio/agosto, así como en otros lugares.

To Betty, from all us, thank you for bringing so much good to this world. We, and the birds, will miss you dearly.

Querida Betty, de todos nosotros, te agradecemos por haber traído tanto bien a este mundo. Nosotros, y las aves, te extrañaremos mucho.

2 BEX kids trail

Betty's generosity and hard work brought joy to so many /La generosidad y el trabajo de Betty traían alegría a mucha gente.

Many thanks to Jennie Duberstein, Robert Mortensen, and Alvaro Jaramillo for providing a Spanish translation. This is now a bilingual tribute at least, but to reach all that Betty did, it would have to be translated into Portuguese, French, and many other languages.

Muchas gracias a Jennie Duberstein, Robert Mortensen y Alvaro Jaramillo por traducir esto al español. Ahora tenemos al menos un homenaje bilingüe, aunque para alcanzar a todos los que Betty impactó, tendríamos que traducirlo al portugués, francés y muchos otros idiomas.


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Jeff Gordon

Jeff Gordon

Jeff Gordon is the president of the American Birding Association. There's very little about birds, birding, and birders that he doesn't find fascinating, though he's especially interested in birding culture and the many ways we all communicate our passion for birds, including this Blog.
  • Ricky Perez

    Betty, we´ll always remmember you from El Salvador, thank you a lot for your kindness and support by helping young birders and hawkwatching projects in this country.

    Betty, te recordaremos desde El Salvador, muchas gracias por tu gentileza y apoyo para ayudar a jóvenes observadores y proyectos para la observación de aves rapaces en el país.

  • Betty’s contribution to the world of birding is truly immeasurable due to the far reaching impacts she was able to obtain through Birder’s Exchange. Not only did she touch the heart and soul of all she met, her tireless efforts continued to bring joy, excitement and a whole new world to all of the recipients fortunate enough to benefit from her generosity and dedication to birds, conservation and most importantly, other people. I have been lucky enough to work with Betty this past year as a new ABA staff member and have benefited greatly from her support and encouragement. Betty and I shared similar habits; early to rise, grab a cup of coffee and get going on our ABA tasks at hand. Countless mornings I would receive an e-mail from her at 7:00 AM with the query “Can you talk for a few?”. Many of those mornings, Betty’s voice was the first of the day for me and I would leave those phone calls feeling brighter, stronger and even more energized. I am SO grateful for having the opportunity to work with Betty, strive and struggle together, and become friends. Her talents and loving person will be dearly missed but her legacy will continue to impact our birding world for generations to come. As Betty oftentimes said at the end of our phone calls, “You take care Bill”…………………You take care too Betty, you were remarkable…………….

  • Ashley Dayer

    In addition to her many other contributions to bird conservation, Betty made the last two Bird Conservation Conferences in the Northeast a success. She calmly, quietly, and generously donated many hours to running the registration table and organizing a group of competent, friendly volunteers. As conference co-chair, I surely would’ve pulled my hair out if it weren’t for Betty!

    I am so glad I got one last hug from her at the Mass Audubon Birders’ Meeting in March. Betty – we miss you!

  • May we all endeavor to similar fingerprints on the world around us. Great work Betty. I love the picture of Betty with Edson Endrigo. The similarities in the facial features and smiles are such that Edson looks like he could be Betty’s son. Providing the Spanish translation is a nice touch.

  • Betty provided such inspiring assistance in helping us train indigenous guides here in the Lacandon forest of Chiapas, Mexico. She lent us remarkable insight and encouragement during her time with us in San Cristóbal de las Casas and La Selva Lacandona, along with the equipment she helped us acquire through her work with Birders Exchange. All of us here in Chiapas are deeply saddened by her passing, but are just as grateful for the connections she has helped us forge with the American Birding Association and other birders across the United States. Betty and the ABA-Birder’s Exchange definitely have played a big part in advancing birdwatching in Chiapas, Mexico. In so doing, she has helped greatly in the struggle to protect our forests.

    – Brock Huffman for EcoLogicLatinAmerica, Inc, a Texas non-profit corporation (ELLA,Inc) and Chiapas Birding Adventures, LLC.

  • Alberto Martínez-Fernández

    Hola a todos, la vida me permitió conocer a Betty en un viaje que tuvo en Chiapas, México. Siempre la recordare como una mujer que dio todo por la conservación de las aves y sus hábitat. Una persona muy amable y sonriente, disfrutando siempre de cada momento de la vida, del sonido de la naturaleza, del canto de las aves. siempre te recordaremos Betty…gracias por todo.

  • Karen O’Neil

    Having just been away for a few days and not checking email, I am so saddened to hear of Betty’s transition. For me she was a beacon of light with her warmth, dedication and passion for what she loved–the Birder’s Exchange Program. I only knew her in that context, but visited with her at some past ABA conventions. She was always so gracious. Her efforts have done so much good in this world for people and birds. Because of Betty my husband and I have been regular contributors to BEX for some time. I will miss just knowing she is no longer with us (at least in person). But, perhaps she was always a special envoy from the Universe encouraging us all to give back something meaningful to this planet! Betty certainly did!

  • Betty was the change we want to see in the world.

  • Bonnie Mulligan

    Betty was such a delight, and a true light in the world. It was always such a treat to catch up with her at ABA conventions, and learn more about Birder’s Exchange from Betty.

  • Nils Navarro

    Nunca olvidaré a esa gran amiga que fue Betty Petersen, su dulzura, nobleza, sencillez y amor a los demás seres humanos y a la conservación de las aves la hacen única e insustituible.
    Betty fue de aquellas personas que siempre estuvieron presentes para ayudar y brindar su amor y apoyo en todo momento. Le debo a Betty Petersen lo que hoy he llegado a conseguir en mi profesión de artista, ilustrador científico y conservacionista, ella fue inspiración junto a su proyecto BEX, estuvo siempre ahí, siempre detrás de cada idea y proyecto que llevé adelante, sin su apoyo nunca lo hubiera conseguido.
    Soy uno de esos muchos que recibieron ayuda del programa Birder´s Exchange y también de esos tantos que soñaron junto a ella con nuevos proyectos. Betty fue un ejemplo de ser humano, una persona con una calidez y generosidad increíbles, una nobleza extraordinaria y una rectitud ejemplar.
    Hoy ha sido un día triste para todos, nuestras condolencias para su esposo Wayne y para los miembros de su familia, quisiera expresar nuestro enorme agradecimiento a Betty Petersen en nombre de todos los ornitólogos cubanos que tuvimos el gran honor de conocerla y de recibir su ayuda solidaria a través de su proyecto Birder´s Exchange.
    Solo siento no haber podido estar para darle el último adiós a esa gran amiga, Gracias por existir Betty Petersen, te vamos a extrañar!

  • Wayne, I’m so sorry to hear about Betty. She was one of my favorite people, and I’ll always remember her smile, which was always there. Her heart was in her work, which was one of the most important jobs in the birding community. Thank you, Betty, for all you did for us and the birds of the world. Love to you, Betty, Henry Turner

  • Diane Silverstein

    It has only been in the last year that I got to interact with Betty through my involvement with the Cape Cod Bird Club. She and Wayne have been extremely supportive with our efforts in holding the first Cape Cod Bird Festival this coming September. Betty would email me from time to time with comments and suggestions and when I saw her at the CCBC meetings she’d give me a hug and words of support regarding the Festival. She was dynamic and I feel blessed in having known her. May she soar with the birds!

  • Lina DiGregorio

    Betty Petersen was a conservationist of birds, admirer of all things lovely, shopper extraordinaire, and friend of many. Her grace and charm came from her winning combination of warmth, kindness, determination, and focus. Betty’s tireless enthusiasm was the engine of Birders’ Exchange, a bird conservation program that collects donations of optics from the US and sends them to people working to save birds in Latin America. It’s a simple concept, but a laborious process: Betty made it work. For decades. I had the pleasure of working with Betty on Birders’ Exchange when I worked at ABA in the early 2000s. We would connect by phone every day, and she always had new ideas and endless energy to make the program successful. It’s impossible to quantify, but it’s safe to say: Betty helped save birds. Yet it was more than the birds—Betty was perfectly suited for Birders’ Exchange because it was about helping people. Betty helped people help birds. Through her years of dedication to Birders’ Exchange Betty made a difference in bird conservation. And through her instant but lasting connections with those she met, Betty created an immense circle of friends the world over. We all grieve her passing.

    It’s impossible to remember Betty without mentioning her tireless and real contributions to the world of bird conservation through Birders’ Exchange. Those are the things that made Betty the person we admired. I also want to remember the small things that made Betty the person we loved. She had a warm laugh, girlish and bubbling. Betty, ever-generous, delighted in sharing gifts, large or small. She loved to shop. She adored pretty things. Betty liked her French fries cooked until they were browned–she didn’t like what she termed “anemic fries.” Betty’s eyes twinkled when she laughed and smiled, which was most of the time. When you talked with Betty, one-on-one, there was no one else in the world—you had her undivided attention. Betty had a Boston accent. Each time we talked she asked, “how ARE you?” Betty shared confidences in a way that drew you in. She was supportive, encouraging, kind. When Betty laughed, we couldn’t help but laugh with her.

    In her passing, Betty left a big hole that no one of us can fill. But we can collectively do our best to do good work in this world, as Betty did every day. We’ll do our best, Betty, but we’ll miss you.

  • Norma Ferriz

    Betty you were light, brought a new world of wonder to so many people through ABA, but also through your fantastic personality. You are an inspiration and I will continue doing the best I can in life because that is what you did and inspired me so much. Now you are flying in heaven, and from there I hope you feel all the love of your friends and family. Muchas gracias y mucho amor siempre!

  • “I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.” Helen Keller.
    This quote fits perfectly with Betty: she never refused to do anything she could do to help dreams come true.
    Almost 2 years ago I received my binoculars from Carol Mackie de Passera, Causana Viajes, in the name of Birders’ Exchange. Carol made a request to BEX and she was heard! So.. I was so lucky!
    In this way Betty came to my life. She knew that in spite of being severely hearing impaired, as a tour guide in Patagonia I do my best to recognize the birds. She also knew that I had a very old and heavy pair of binoculars, sold to me by a friend who didn´t want to use them any longer. So, at the end of that season she sent me the Vortex Viper Binoculars.
    I wrote her an e-mail, the first one, telling her that happy, grateful, astonished, fascinated, pleased, surprised, cheerful, speechless, amazed, excited, stunned, were words unable to express my feelings… even all of them together. I had many other feelings than all those; I was indescribable moved!!!
    She laughed because of my excitement.
    No doubt: she was deeply committed to her project.
    Thanks to “amazing Betty” (as I use to name her) I realized that there are lots of sensitive people around, invisibly linked by binoculars, cameras, personal computers, and many other tools useful to preserve birds and their environment, thanks to her NGO.
    Providing tools to the ones who may need them is a cooperative way of sustaining our fragile environment. Plus, the fact of giving, donating, is a silent way of “moving” unknown people’s soul.
    Birds and souls soaring, isn’t it a clear and gorgeous image of freedom?
    We met only one time, for less than half an hour, in Buenos Aires last February. Once again thanks to Carol I had the chance of meeting Betty and Wayne. She was shining, smiling, laughing, touched by the extraordinary trip they were starting in the extreme south of America. It was a sunny noon.
    We hugged each other tightly for a while when we said “good bye, see you soon”.
    It was a sunny hug…
    Fly, Betty, glide with your wings wide open. So long!
    Learner and experienced birders of the whole continent will be watching this rainbow: the colorful feathers of every bird that are now printed in your soul.

    Marcela Colombini and Carol Passera

  • Es una pena la que siento, a pesar de no haberla conocido; es que yo tambien perdi a una persona muy querida. Da mucha tristeza, como es la vida!!!. Betty y su equipo de trabajo de Birders Exchange, también años atras nos hizo una donación de equipo importante. Solo nos escribiamos por internet. Esto a permitido que en Loja, gracias a este esfuerzo y apoyo de ABA con Birders Exchange haya sido posible incrementar la conciencia de protección a las aves aqui en Loja Ecuador. Gracias Betty. Dios la tenga en su Gloria.

  • Betty Petersen radiated warmth and love wherever she traveled on behalf of the Birder’s Exchange. Over the years in Cuba, I witnessed the value of the material contributions she facilitated on behalf of the established ornithological community as well as those who aspired to be part of that community. These contributions have made a huge impact over the years in the evolution of bird conservation in Cuba, helping field biologists, aspiring birding guides, and students from middle schools to universities.

    Just days before her heart attack, we had planned to discuss how BEX might help with an educational program we are supporting in San Diego de los Banos, near one of Cuba’s national parks and IBAs. Betty was eager to help with whatever was needed. Relatedly, I hope to include a photo from the inaugural Festivale de Aves (Festival of Birds), which occurred a few weeks ago.

    Of the many wonderful things said about Betty in this blog, I will add that she has been a very successful diplomat! Beyond the dozens of copies of Field Guide to the Birds of Cuba, binoculars, cameras, and spotting scopes donated by the Birder’s Exchange, perhaps the most valued gifts we have from Betty are her friendship, love, and sense of hope.

    I was looking forward to spending time with Betty and Wayne on their 4th trip to Cuba this coming November, as were many of her dear friends there. We are truly devastated to learn that this was not to be the case. Betty, we will always cherish our memories of you.


    Gary Markowski
    Executive Director
    Caribbean Conservation Trust

    Below are messages from some of Wayne and Betty’s Cuban friends who are not able to access this site from Cuba:
    Dear Gary
    Thanks a lot for your message, we are SO SORRY to know this news, we were in touch with Wayne and other friends there, I was trying to contact Wayne to know details about her state of health from two days without success and imagine bad news, we were very worried by her at this time.
    You cannot image how we loved Betty!! So, please pass to Wayne and her family our condolence. Yes I know about the visit, Betty told me about that, I was very happy and excited to meet with her again. Please pass the condolence to Wayne in the name of the Cuban ornithologist community.

    Best Wishes

    Nils Navarro
    Artist, naturalist

    I am really sorry …this is sad news for me. She was very important for bird conservation in Cuba and for people like Arturo and myself. It is a pity. I want to pass my condolences to Wayne.

    Best regards

    Dr. William Suarez
    Former Curator, National Museum of Natural History
    Thanks Gary. It is very sad. A great lady with a wonderful and sweet heart.
    Arturo Kirkconnell
    Curator, National Museum of Natural History
    Gary, I knew Betty personally and talked many times with her and Wayne. This is very sad news, she was a very good and compassionate person, we hope she rest in peace, please our condolences to Wayne.
    Dr. Giraldo Alayon
    Curator, National Museum of Natural History

    I am deeply saddened by the news – friends like Betty will be remembered with love for everything she did for all of us through Birders Exchange. It’s a sad, emotional loss, and our affection and sincere condolences to our friend Wayne. God rest her soul. R.I.P.

    Frank Medina,
    Director, Zapata Peninsula National Park

    Estoy profundamente triste con la noticia – amigos como ella se van queda recordarlos con mucho cariño y por todo lo que hizo por todos nosotros con su programa Birders Exchange. Es una sensible pérdida que sentimos mucho, nuestro afecto y condolencias sinceras para el amigo Wayne. Dios la tenga en su seno. R.I.P.

    Saludos amigo y muchas gracias

    Frank Medina,
    Director, Zapata Peninsula National Park

  • Tom Warren

    Remembering Betty Petersen
    For years I had known of betty Petersen’s contributions to the birding world through the Birding Exchange at Manomet and ABA.

    But last year Anne Marie and I travelled to Tanzania with Wayne and Betty on a tour with Mass Audubon. We both recall her calm and generous spirit throughout the entire trip. She was also so generous to lend my wife her binoculars many times (her binoculars arrived broken). This was so special of Betty to give up some sightings for my wife.

    I don’t know if Tolstoy was into birds, but a quote from War and Peace comes to mind, “One can live magnificently in this world if one knows how to work and how to love, to work for the people one loves and to love one’s work.”

    And from G.K. Chesterton, “The truly great person is the one who makes every person feel great” and this Betty certainly knew how to do wherever she went. She was a most special person with sincere love in her heart.

    This was Betty Petersen. Anne Marie and I will never forget her.

    Tom Warren

  • Jeanne Bowne

    I am so proud of Betty for all that she had achieved in her life. Knowing how much she was loved and held in the highest esteem brought tears to my eyes. She and I were friends for a very long time in this journey through life. We shared many laughs and tears together during her time on earth. I will always cherish our friendship and remember her. She was the warmest and most sincere friend I have ever had. Her willingness to always want to help people was one of many attributes she possessed that stands out in my mind. There was one time when I was hospitalized that she went to my home and decorated it for Christmas. I came home from the hospital on Christmas eve to see the “miracle of lights” she had adorned my home with and all the presents she had wrapped for my two sons.

    She was and will always be a very special friend. I consider myself very fortunate to have shared so many years with such a wonderful person.

  • Sue in Nome, Alaska

    Her light shone in NW Alaska as well, and she is remembered and missed by those of us with the opportunity to spend time with her and Wayne.

  • We have been supporters of Birder’s Exchange for a number of years and have thoroughly enjoyed spending time with Betty and having opportunities to experience first hand the long reach of Birder’s Exchange.

    A few years ago at Laguna de Cartagena in Chile, Spike noticed that a young naturalist leading a group of children was wearing a pair of binoculars with a Birder’s Exchange sticker. When he asked her about the sticker she explained that she had learned and was teaching about birds from a field guide but had never seen the identification details as she didn’t have binoculars. She said she had applied to Birder’s Exchange and that “the wonderful lady Betty Peterson and ABA sent her the binoculars”. They were her proudest possession, enhacing her career as a naturalist and the lives of those she taught.

    Betty had wonderful personal relationships with Birder’s Exchange recipients and supporters of the program She was warm fun and friendly and did whatever it took to make the program work — including providing a little chocolate, if necessary! Her legacy is Birder’s Exchange which deserves our continuing support.

    Spike and Judy Baker

  • Dr Peter Jones

    So sad and what a wonderful lady Betty was. I met her whilst she visited the Donana here in Andalucia Spain some while ago. She presented me with a book ‘Un Companero Neotropical’ signed by John Kricher and the illustrator William E. Davis JR. Her work with Birder’s Exchange was and is an inspiration to many. Thank you Betty and may your God welcome you with open arms.

  • Elizabeth Mei Wong,Pittsfield,Mass

    Dear Wayne,
    I met your wonderful,generous Betty through Birders’Exchange.She is Birders’Exchange.
    I understand and shared as many hugs as you can as you need.
    Beth Wong,Hoffman Bird Club, Pittsfield,Mass

  • I still can’t believe that she’s not with us. I keep thinking the phone will ring. Quite apart from all the tangible good that she did for birds, birding, conservation, habitats, Betty practiced, even embodied a spirit of loving-kindness that one finds so very rarely in others in a human lifetime. More than an exemplar of conservation ethics for me, she was living proof that our species can achieve the summit of real virtue in our treatment of ourselves and others. She will always be that light for me, that exhortation to try harder to be kind.

  • Matthew Sabourin

    I met her husband when he signed my copy of Birds of Massachusetts waaaay back in the mid 90s, when I was about 12 years old. I was always struck by how elders in this community are so great to the younger generation. RIP Betty, anyone that cares for the birds is a great person in my book

  • Abdel Abellard

    Loosing a person like her is more than sad. I’d say that a person like Betty will surely rest in PEACE. She has done little but has contributed sooo much to make our world a better place for future generations. She will very much be missed.
    The world will never forget about her, we will never forget her. She kept our hands when we were making our first steps toward conserving our natural environment here in Haiti.

    We will keep her in our payers.

  • Naylien Barreda Leyva

    Gracias Betty Petersen por la confianza que siempre tuvo en los jóvenes investigadores cubanos. Gracias a su ayuda, niños y adolescentes tuvieron la oportunidad de conocer bien de cerca a las aves; y muchas gracias además por todo el apoyo al trabajo de educación ambiental.

  • Joy Viola

    We were stunned to learn of the passing of our friend Betty in an ABA report received today and our heart goes out to Wayne as they were a team! I’ll never forget the day we brought a young Costa Rican Birder to Betty at Plum Island and the Joppa Flats Center. Betty started clearing the book shelves for this young man, who had been our birding guide at Savegre Mountain Lodge in Costa Rica. He was overwhelmed by her generosity, as were we. There’s a new star in heaven, but we’ve lost a bright light here on earth.
    Wayne, we send our love, Joy and Alfred Viola

  • Keith Hackland

    We remember Betty with reverence and awe for her work for birds accross the Americas. May Betty’s example continue to bring folks closer to birds and make us all better custodians of birdlife.

  • Jorge Estrella

    Dear Friends,
    I am, Jorge Estrella, from the beautiful country of Belize and had the opportunity to have met one of the most wonderful lady Mrs. Betty Peterson and her husband Wayne. I was the 2010 Birder exchange student. This was through a partnership with Mass Audubon and Programme for Belize. It’s a pity that we have lost Ms. Betty but we hope to continue getting the scholarships to study Birds and all the much needed equipment that has been donated to make a difference in birding. Where ever you are my most deep gratitude to YOU and ABA!

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