WHO WE ARE
Stephen Repasky joined BurghBees back in 2008 with the intent of looking for a place to put some city hives but instead got wrapped up in the energy, the mission and dreams of BurghBees. He is an EAS Certified Master Beekeeper and currently serves as the President of Burgh Bees as well as the Second Vice-President of the PA State Beekeepers Association. Steve is a second generation beekeeper who grew up on a small farm in Armstrong County and considers himself a Sideliner beekeeper – keeping hives in many areas in around the city. Steve keeps busy with everything from mentoring new beekeepers, teaching classes, collecting swarms and extracting feral honeybee colonies from structures as well as working with local communities developing regulatory code to allow the keeping of bees in urban areas. He is a member of the Eastern Apicultural Society, Beaver Valley Beekeepers Association and the PA State Beekeepers Association. Steve is also involved in raising local mite resistant queens. Stephen has a B.Sc. degree in Wildlife Management from Penn State and has recently written a book entitled “Swarm Essentials: Ecology, Management and Sustainability” – to be released in January 2014.
Philip Bauerle has been a Penn State Extension Master Gardener since 2012 and has given local programs on how gardeners can support pollinators by the choices they make in their gardens. He is currently the Interim Master Gardener Coordinator and is working with the Master Gardeners to certify the pollinator garden at the Burgh Bees Urban Apiary as ‘pollinator friendly’–A statewide initiative of the Master Gardeners. Beyond honeybees, Philip has also taken interest in native pollinators and wrote an article for the Pittsburgh Post Gazette entitled: “Be kind to bees: they pollinate” (2011).
Jeff is a third-generation beekeeper who currently manages 20 hives and mentors beginning beekeepers. He is passionate about promoting healthy colonies through natural beekeeping practices and sustainable integrated-pest-management techniques. Jeff has worked closely with Burgh Bees since 2009 in various capacities to increase community awareness and support for the organization. Elected to the board in the Fall of 2013, he will serve as the apiary director for our Homewood apiary and will mange corporate interest for our hive leasing and management program, with accounts such as Whole Foods Market and The Porch at Schenley, an Eat’n Park hospitality group restaurant. Jeff is an avid environmentalist and sustainable business owner. He created and runs SEEDS Green Printing and Design, a green printing and design company located in Pittsburgh that serves clients worldwide.
Bob Tatro was born in Pittsburgh and raised in North Fayette Township where he currently lives with his wife Renee. Bob and Renee are both retired Civil Engineer Officers from the Air National Guard/US Air Force after serving over 26 years. Bob joined Burgh Bees in 2014 after seeing a steady decline in the number of honey bees pollinating his garden. Bob is also a member of Beaver Valley Area Beekeepers Association and the PA State Beekeepers Association. Soon after joining Burgh Bees, Bob became an active volunteer supporting the efforts of the organization at the apiary and other educational presentations. While relatively new to beekeeping, Bob joined the Board of Directors to use his leadership and organizational skills to help the organization fulfill its mission. .
Ted started keeping bees in the spring of 2016 at his home in Ellwood City, Pa. with the help of his wife,Jeanne. Ted has always been an avid outdoorsman and fisherman, acting as an Assistant Scout Master during the time his son, Raymond, progressed through the ranks from Tiger cub to Eagle Scout. He also served as a Venture Crew Leader when his daughter, Sadi, became the president of that coed branch of the Boy Scouts of America. He has an undergraduate degree in communications from Clarion State University and an MBA from Duquesne University. He co-owns two businesses: Cat-in-the-bag Co. and StarShine Soaps. He is also Board Secretary/Treasurer for The Allie Foundation, A charity dedicated to providing aid for abused and neglected animals. He is employed as a project manager by Gillece Services.
Felix L. Yerace grew up in Washington County and has always loved the outdoors. He is in his third year of active beekeeping, but has been interested in bees and their behavior for many years. Felix enjoys hunting and fishing (especially fly fishing) and is a member of the Carrick Sportsmen’s Club. He volunteers as a mentor with Family Tyes, which is a group organized to help families become involved in fly fishing. Felix recently retired from teaching but is still active working with students, and remains the Head Track & Field Coach at Keystone Oaks High School. Felix has a B.S. in Education and a M.Ed. in Educational Administration from California University of Pennsylvania.
Paul is a lifelong resident of the Pittsburgh area. During the late 60’s and early 70’s, Paul spent 4 years in the US Navy as an “Aviation Electronics Technician Petty Officer 2nd class.” He was deployed with his squadron for 3 cruises in Vietnam, 2 on the USS Constellation and 1 on the USS Kitty Hawk aircraft carriers. After leaving the Navy He attended Penn State’s ‘School of Forestry”. Paul is a retired landscape contractor of 26 years. After retiring from his landscaping business he spent 5 years working at the non-profit Manchester Bidwell Corporation in the Drew Mathieson Center greenhouses growing orchids and seasonal plants on Pittsburgh’s North Side. His interest in bees began when he and his wife Ruth moved into their present home in 1996 which is 120 year old farmhouse on 8-1/4 acres just 7 minutes from downtown Pittsburgh. Circumstances weren’t right at that time for bees, but the interest was there. Finally, after full retirement, having bees became a reality. Paul and his wife Ruth’s hives at the time of this writing are numbered at 9. In addition to Burgh Bees Paul is also a member of the PA State Beekeepers Association.(PSBA) My goal is to assist Burgh Bees & its members in any way that I can to help new and other beekeepers to be successful in this wonderful hobby.
Anne is a Pittsburgh native, born in Wilkinsburg and raised in the North Hills. Anne started keeping bees in 2016 and hasn’t stopped worrying since. She first became interested in beekeeping while living in Northern California (in two stints totaling 17 years) but every class or workshop she took out west scared her off. She wanted to join the board because she appreciated how welcoming and helpful everyone affiliated with Burgh Bees was during her first year of beekeeping, and she wants to take a more active role in the local beekeeping community. Anne went to Pitt for her undergrad and has a Master of Divinity from Starr King School for the Ministry (Unitarian Universalist), a member school of the Graduate Theological Union, in Berkeley, California. Anne works for the RAND Corporation as a Research Support Manager, likes to cook, bake, garden and knit, is known to binge watch TV shows from time to time, loves being outdoors when the weather is nice, and finally finished her first novel – a post-apolcalytic adventure romance, with zombies – in 2016.
Kyle works as an urban farmer, conservation photographer, graphic designer and is a second year beekeeper. He has a passion for bringing the farm to the city and is set to launch Hazlewood Farms in spring of 2015. Kyle says he was drawn to bees for their non-stop work ethic and instinctual know how. He says that he was drawn to the Burgh Bees organization for the same reasons. Kyle is a graduate of The Art Institute of Pittsburgh and when he is not digging in the dirt or attending his hives you may find him banging a drum for the Pittsburgh based Scottish pipe and drum corp. Balmoral Pipes and Drums.
Carlos grew up in Houston, Texas and moved to Pittsburgh in 2013. He lives in Highland Park with his wife Mary and son Diego. Carlos works in the medical IT field supporting EMTs, Firefighters, and other first responders. Fulfilling a childhood fascination, Carlos signed up for the Beekeeping 101 class taught by Burgh Bees and never looked back. He now has bees at the Homewood Community Apiary. As part of Burgh Bees, he has been an active volunteer and enjoys educating the community on the importance of bees. Carlos is also a member of the PA State Beekeepers Association.