Our People

Robert Penner

Avian Conservation Manager, Kansas

Ellinwood, Kansas

Robert Penner stands with crossed arms, looking to his left and laughing.

Robert Penner Cheyenne Bottoms and Kansas Avian Programs Manager for The Nature Conservancy © Nick Krug

Area of Expertise

Managing grasslands for shorebird habitat

Media Contact

Laura Rose Clawson
ph. 785-233-4400


Robert has been interested in birds since the age of fifteen. That interest led to degrees in Wildlife Management and Environmental Studies, both with an emphasis on ornithology. He has worked as The Nature Conservancy’s Cheyenne Bottoms Preserve manager since 1996, increasing habitat for migrating shorebirds and nesting grassland birds at the world-renowned wetland. He oversees avian monitoring on other TNC preserves across the state and is author of The Birds of Cheyenne Bottoms.

Currently, Robert serves as chair of the Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network’s United States Committee, which allows him to work on shorebird conservation issues on national and international scales. He also co-leads a Flint Hills shorebird conservation program with Monica Iglecia of Manomet.

- Collapse biography
Crazy about birds Robert Penner discusses how his lifetime love of birds started.