About Us | Leadership

The Center for Honeybee Research is volunteer-driven and managed.

The Center’s highly qualified members of the Board of Directors are no exception. Following is a list of the Board members, each of whom performs an active role in the leadership of the organization:

Carl Chesick Executive Director

Role: Visionary

Beekeeper, geologist, and environmentalist, Chesick founded the Center for Honeybee Research in his search for the definition of normal, healthy bee colonization. With a mission to sustain pollinator survival, the Center prioritizes the quest for this knowledge as a critical component to understanding bee decline.

Tricia Johnson, Vice President

Role: Education

An educator for Asheville City Schools, Johnson applies her experience in pedagogy to the education of youth, clubs, and the public on the importance of bees to the ecosystem and ultimately the world’s food supply. She helps to inform people about the part they can play in preserving bees and other pollinators.

Terri Lechner, Secretary

Role: Community Outreach

Business owner and experienced connector, as well as an adept beekeeper, Lechner performs a pivotal role in organizing and promoting the Center’s annual fundraiser, the Asheville HoneyFest, as well as representing the Center in other important events and functions.

Randy Lehman, Treasurer

Role: Finance

Experienced CPA and business leader, Lehman has provided fiscal guidance, management, and budgetary adherence for the Center since its inception.

Ellen Chelmis

Role: Worldwide Honey

For many beekeepers, the Black Jar International Honey Tasting Contest is synonymous with the Center for Honeybee Research. In addition to creating public awareness, the contest enables the Center to connect with Beekeepers throughout the world to share in studies and projects. Chelmis manages and maintains contest integrity and continuity.

Rebecca Robertson

Role: Stingless Bees

With more than 20,000 known bee species throughout the world, Robertson has the role of expanding the Center’s mission to include other bee species, particularly the stingless bees of the Mayan Melipona Sanctuary.

Learn more about our annual Black Jar Honey Contest