Bruce Elfström

Bruce Elfström, professional biologist, expedition training expert, and field logistics coordinator; it was in 2004 while filming an IMAX film in Mongolia when he first became aware of the environmental challenges the nomadic herders of Mongolia face on a daily basis.  The interconnection of pastoral nomads, predator prey relationships, and how this all affects desertification fascinated him.  Ever practical, Bruce began talking to herders and researching livestock protection dogs as a missing link in the complex conservation puzzle. He realized that this was a historical solution to a highly modern problem. Discovering several families still using the original Bankhar dogs in remote areas of Mongolia, Bruce founded Mongolian Bankhar Dog Project in 2011 to put this research into practice.

Batbaatar Tomorbaatar

Project Manager. Batbaatar is a former Hustai National Park biologist and now heads up our project’s Mongolia operations. Native to central Mongolia, Baatra is a true born naturalist. Since joining the project in 2014, Baatra’s knowledge and relationship with the herders combined with his almost limitless experience with the nature and wildlife of Mongolia ensures the project stays focused on its goals to help herders and as a byproduct protect predators for the health of the grassland steppe. To state that he is passionate about the well being of Mongolia’s wildlife and ecosystem is a massive understatement. Baatra is a proud father of three amazing children.

Soyolbold Sergelen

Soyolbold Sergelen grew up in the Altai Mountains of Southwestern Mongolia where he had first hand experience with sheep herding and the traditional nomadic use of dogs. Since moving to the capital city Ulaanbaatar and graduating college with a degree in American Studies, he has worked as a translator across a variety of fields. After three successful years with Oyu Tolgoi, Mongolia’s world-class copper mine, he decided to pursue his passion of photography and literature translation while engaging in interesting projects as a translator like the Mongolian Bankhar Dog Project. Follow Soyolbold, our official Photographer and Translator on Flicker HERE

Daniel Dolgion

Daniel Dolgion:   Assistant Project Coordinator.  Daniel is native to the outskirts of Ulaanbaatar.  Educated in Ulaanbaatar with a keen interests in the sciences Daniel’s sought out employment in the MBDP project through the construction of the enclosure facilities on which he worked as a welder.  Consistency and initiative ensured a place on the project.   He has work with and around MBDP for years and shown great aptitude for wildlife conservation and logistical organization.  Daniel is assistant to Batbaatar Tumurbaatar, but in addition plays a critical role in ensuring the breeding and dog care is organized hand in hand with the field and research aspects of the project.  His ability to work on both aspects of the project combined with his hard won street experience makes him a valuable member of the team.  Daniel is a born “fixer” as well as a quintessential gentleman.

Baska Purev-Ochir

Baska Purev-ochir:   Fund Raising Lesion and assistant social media coordinator.  Native of Ulaanbaatar, Baska interest center of bringing the business community of Mongolia in to contact with the environmental community of Mongolia as a whole.  Bachelor of Science in Business Management, Finance With a minor in the Hospitality and Tourism Management Brigham Young University – Hawaii, Oahu, HI (graduation 2021).  Baska’s experience as a teacher and interpreter in Manila Philippines (The Teacher’s Training Center) are key to MBDP bilingual social media posting as well as the translation of the MBDP website to Mongolian.   Baska’s experience in working with tourists and running logistics as an ambassador of The Polynesian Cultural Center are of great value to our public relations work within the Mongolian community itself.  Baska is the MBDP projects intern for 2019.


Miigaa Breeding Facilities Manager.  Miigaa is a former enforcement park ranger for Hustai National Park, Miigaa joined the project in 2015 when the breeding facilities were renewed and moved to an area near Hustai park.   From 90 degrees to -55 degrees, rain, snow, wind or sunshine Miigaa is always there to feed and care for our clan of dogs.  “Ever-present, always honorable”, best sums up his dedication to the project.   Spending more time than anyone with the dog clan, Miigaa can tell you which dog is mad or happy with another dog or person and why.   Our guardian dog and canine spiritual leader, Black Khuuter, can be touched by only three people, but Khuuter has chosen to protect and love one person above all others.  We at the MBDP trust Khuuter’s choices; he chose Miigaa, enough said.

Petra Elfström

Petra Elfström Community Outreach Coordinator, Education Advisor and Digital Media Manager.  Born to field work and adventure; Petra’s has worked with or been involved in the MBDP project from its conception in 2003.   A graduate of highest honors from Hamilton Collage, double major in archaeology and creative writing, her experience as a Research Assistant with the Archaeology Department and a CLASS Fellow with the Digital Humanities Initiative (DHi) has only added to her value in the field and otherwise. Working with the DHi and the Slocan Narrows Archaeological Project she was part of a team in the process of creating an educational film about the Slocan Narrows site.  An outstanding writer, skilled film maker, and a trained archeologist, Petra heads up our community outreach endeavors.  Her experience managing archeological digs and years of field experience enhances her skill set to our advantage.  Petra’s future will always involve the MBDP project