Elaine Placido, DPA
Elaine joined the Estuary Partnership in the summer of 2020. She comes to the Partnership with twenty-plus years of local government and non-profit experience, Elaine is also a veteran of the US Coast Guard. Her family has a farm in Columbia County where they specialize in Boer goats. In her free time, she likes to travel and spend time outside. She is also a dedicated volunteer and leads a 4H livestock club, serves on her local school board and on her local planning commission. Elaine has a BA in Criminal Justice from Park University, a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of Nebraska-Omaha, and a Doctor of Public Administration degree from Valdosta State University.
Communications and Development Manager
Erinne joined the Estuary Partnership in 2014. She leads organizational communications, event planning, and relationship-building with individuals and corporate partners. Erinne focuses on expanding understanding and recognition of the Estuary Partnership, its programs, and diverse partners along the lower river to a range of partners. She also serves on the steering committee for the Clean Rivers Coalition. Erinne has 16 years of experience in nonprofit development and communications, and previously worked at Sisters Of The Road and NAYA Family Center. Erinne has a B.S in Liberal Studies with a focus on Peace and Social Justice from Oregon State University.
Cost Accounting Coordinator
Connor began working for the Estuary Partnership in 2018. He assists the Finance & Operations Manager with bookkeeping, accounting reporting, and annual audit. He comes to the Estuary Partnership, after 30 years as the Accounting Manager for LOI Environmental & Demolition Services and 24 years of teaching acting at the Portland Actors Conservatory. In his free time, he writes novels and plays and runs his own non-profit, a theatre company called Quintessence: Language & Imagination Theatre. He has a Master's of Fine Arts in Theatre-Directing from the University of Portland, Bachelors of Arts in English and Theatre, and an Associates Degree in Business from Carroll College.
Public and Legislative Affairs Specialist
Jasmine focuses on developing public support for and increasing awareness of Estuary Partnership programming, as well as amplifying the work of partners. Jasmine has over a decade of experience working for conservation nonprofits. In her free time, she is an elected board member at the East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District and a lieutenant with the Corbett Fire District. Jasmine has a B.A. in General Science from the University of Oregon and a Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Portland State University. Jasmine joined the Estuary Partnership in 2021.
Financial Accounting Coordinator
Jana became the Financial Accounting Coordinator at the Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership in spring of 2023. Arriving to Portland from the Midwest a decade ago, she has primary focused on nonprofit accounting with various organizations. Working for an organization that is passionate for water and ecosystems is in her DNA, her family worked in the natural resources field for several decades. In her free time, she loves camping, hiking, traveling, watching baseball, playing kickball, reading and swimming. She and her husband have 2 dogs that take as many camping and snowshoe trips as possible. Jana has a BA in Marketing Communications from Columbia College in Chicago.
Catherine joined the Estuary Partnership in 2008. She leads the Science Team and manages the habitat restoration, data management, and monitoring programs. She led the Estuary Partnership to develop a strategic prioritization that improves regional investment in restoration and established an effectiveness monitoring program to evaluate project success. She facilitates the Science Work Group and coordinates monitoring and restoration activities with numerous partners in the lower Columbia River. She served as the Senior Scientist for the Charlotte Harbor NEP where she developed resource-based water quality targets and managed an interagency monitoring network. Prior to that Catherine was a wildlife biologist in a national park in Morocco's Middle Atlas Mountains. She has published multiple manuscripts on seagrass in southwest Florida. In 2018, Catherine received an Honorable Mention in the 2018 Climate Adaptation Leadership Awards for Natural Resources, presented by the Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies. Catherine holds an M.A. in International Development and Natural Resource Management from Clark University, Massachusetts and a B.S. in Zoology and a Physical Geography Minor from Miami University.
Restoration Program Lead
Joining the Estuary Partnership in 2009, Chris identifies, designs, and implements habitat restoration projects. Chris has taken the lead on extensive floodplain restoration projects at Horsetail Creek and Steigerwald Lake National Wildlife Refuge. Both projects involve coordination with multiple partners. He is a fisheries biologist with 18 years of professional experience in the Rocky Mountains and Pacific Northwest, including managing restoration projects in the Columbia River Gorge. He has extensive experience managing all phases of natural resource projects ranging from stream restoration to stormwater management. Prior to joining the Estuary Partnership, Chris was a Project Manager for Parametrix. Chris holds an M.S. in Water Resources from Duke University and a B.S. in Biology from the Citadel, Charleston, South Carolina.
Principal Restoration Ecologist
Jenny joined the Estuary Partnership in 2016. She identifies, develops, and implements stream and wetland habitat restoration projects. She works in the beautiful floodplains of the Columbia River Gorge, in tributary tidal wetlands, and upper watershed creeks and habitats. In addition to in-stream restoration project management, she leads revegetation, monitoring, research, and stakeholder engagement efforts on projects. Prior to joining the Estuary Partnership, Jenny was Project Manager at the Clackamas River Basin Council. She holds a B.A. in Environmental Science and Geography from the University of South Florida and is currently pursuing a Fisheries Management Graduate Certificate from Oregon State University. In her free time, she enjoys crafting, drinking coffee, spending time with her family, and going hiking, camping, and foraging near PNW rivers and beaches.
Principal Restoration Ecologist
Kari joined the Estuary Partnership as a Science Team member and will be implementing floodplain, wetland, and stream restoration projects. She is a Certified Professional Wetland Scientist and has managed all aspects of ecological restoration projects including design, permitting, and monitoring. Prior to joining the Estuary Partnership, Kari worked on wetland projects in Texas, Kentucky, and California and has extensive experience conducting vegetation surveys and mapping desert dry wash, riparian, and wetland habitats. She earned an M.S. in biology from Eastern Kentucky University and a B.S. in biology from Texas Tech University.
Research Scientist III
Ian joined the Estuary Partnership in 2021 and is currently a Research Scientist II. His expertise includes Tableau, data analysis, field work, lab work, biomass sampling, and data collection throughout the lower Columbia River. Ian co-manages and implements the Ecosystem Monitoring Program and Action Effectiveness Monitoring Program and provides vital support for our CH4C project and Water Quality Monitoring program. Ian's past experiences include a geohydrology-based modeling investigating the effects of forecasted climate change on the salmon populations of the Nooksack River Basin. He graduated from Western Washington University with a Bachelor of Science in Geology and a minor in Computer Science.
Principal Restoration Ecologist
Curtis joined the Estuary Partnership in 2019. He works with the Science Team on implementing wetland, floodplain, and stream restoration projects; his primary focus is on the Steigerwald Floodplain Restoration Project. He has extensive experience working on all aspects of ecological restoration, from design through permitting and including construction management. With a background in forestry, he has managed invasive plant species eradication, habitat restoration and replanting, and site maintenance projects. Prior to joining the Estuary Partnership, he worked as a Senior Project Manager at Amy S. Greene Environmental Consultants, Inc. in Flemington, New Jersey and for Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, Ecosystem Management team. Curtis holds a M.S. from Rutgers University in Forestry/Ecological Restoration and a B.S from Cook College in Forestry.
Andrea Anderson Hurzeler
Andrea (Andi) is originally from Vancouver, Washington where she grew up swimming and boating on the Columbia River. She holds a MS of Environmental Science Management and a Graduate Certificate of Hydrology from Portland State University. She has also earned a Wetland Delineation Certificate through the Environmental Professionals Program (PSU) as well as GIS and UAS Certificates from Portland Community College. While working on her Hydrology Certificate, Andi became intrigued by wetlands and their role in groundwater recharge and the carbon sequestration. This interest led her to pursue a career in river and wetland restoration. Andi has experience in riparian vegetation/shade monitoring in Washington County and wetland delineation. She has also participated in mapping projects for river restoration and water allocation projects in the John Day and Klamath Basins. Before her current role as Research Scientist, Andi worked with the Estuary Partnership as a GIS intern.
Technical Contracts Specialist
Erica joined the Estuary Partnership in 2022. She supports the Science Team with contract and grant development, reporting, and project administration. Erica has over 10 years of experience evaluating, managing and negotiating greenhouse gas emission reduction projects with The Climate Trust. She serves on the Grout PTA Board, and volunteers promoting garden education and sustainability in schools. She enjoys exploring the outdoors with her family, getting crafty, and gathering with friends to enjoy seasonal foods. Erica holds a B.A. in Economics with a focus on Environmental Studies from St. Olaf College.
Sarah Kidd, PhD
Senior Scientist and Manager of Estuary Research and Monitoring
Dr. Sarah Kidd (she/her) joined the Estuary Partnership in 2017 and leads the monitoring team – a team of five full-time scientists and technicians responsible for the Ecosystem Monitoring Program (EMP) and Action Effectiveness Monitoring and Research (AEMR) Programs. Dr. Kidd also directs the Estuary Partnership's research program related to the carbon and methane flux of wetlands in the Columbia River estuary and serves as the primary project manager for the Estuary Partnership's Columbia County Water Quality Monitoring Program. Dr. Kidd has conducted wetland ecological and restoration effectiveness research in the Columbia River Estuary since 2008 and has earned both an M.S. and Ph.D. from Portland State University. Dr. Kidd's master's and dissertation research focused on restoring and managing tidal wetland native plant communities, wetland soil conditions, and invasive species in the Estuary. As a National Science Foundation GK12 and IGERT fellow, she has also worked on several national and international projects focused on urbanizing estuaries.
Restoration Program Lead
Paul joined the Estuary Partnership in 2010. He provides advanced technical support to the habitat restoration and monitoring programs. Paul provides modeling expertise to a range of projects and partners. He is leading restoration projects on the East Fork Lewis River in Washington. Paul was a senior scientist with HDR Engineering where he helped lead restoration efforts in the Pacific Northwest. Prior to that, he was the director of the Dayton Valley Conservation District. Paul also worked with Rivers Unlimited, Inc. to restore watersheds in Pennsylvania and New York. At the University of Oregon and at the University of Colorado, Paul worked with first-generation low-income students to improve academics. Paul received an M.S. in Watershed Science from Colorado State University, an M.Ed. from the University of Colorado, and a B.A. in History from Colorado College.
Principal Restoration Ecologist
Doug joined the Estuary Partnership in 2019. He works with the Science Team on implementing wetland, floodplain, and stream habitat restoration projects. He works primarily on the Steigerwald Floodplain Restoration Project. He brings a range of skills and experience to the team in native revegetation, invasive species management, ecological monitoring, prescribed fire and volunteer engagement. Prior to joining the Estuary Partnership, Doug was a Restoration Project Manager at The Nature Conservancy where he designed, managed and implemented riparian and tidal wetland habitat enhancement projects in northwest Oregon. He holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin - Madison.
Sneha Rao Manohar
Research Scientist III
Sneha joined the Estuary Partnership in the summer of 2019 and is currently a Research Scientist III. Her role with the partnership involves implementing and co-managing the Ecosystem Monitoring Program, the Action Effectiveness Monitoring Program, the CH4C project, and our Water Quality Monitoring program. She previously worked as an Environmental Consultant in Dubai, with a major focus on environmental permitting and marine projects. Sneha is interested in studying the ecosystem functions of the Columbia River Estuary. Her other endeavors include studying the effect of topography on blue carbon stores in seagrass beds of Zanzibar and building artificial reefs to aid the improvement of reef fish in UAE. Sneha holds an M.S. in marine science from Bangor University, UK.
GIS & Data Management Specialist
Keith joined the Estuary Partnership in 2008. Currently, he manages and constructs GIS databases that support Estuary Partnership monitoring, restoration, and education programs. Keith’s projects address data gaps including the acquisition of recent land cover and bathymetric data, and an analysis of habitat changes that have occurred in the lower Columbia River throughout the past century. He also maintains an inventory of over 250 regional restoration projects. Previously he worked as a microwave electronics engineer. Keith earned an M.S. in Marine Environmental Sciences at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. He holds a graduate certificate in GIS from Portland State University and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Vermont.
Research Scientist I
Derek joined the Estuary Partnership Monitoring Team as a Research Technician during summer 2022 and was promoted to Research Scientist in fall 2023. Derek’s past academic work includes the development of shoreline management guidelines for private property owners in Burlington, Vermont. Originally from Salem, Massachusetts, he attended the University of Vermont and received a degree in Natural Resources Ecology with a minor in Physical Geography. Since moving to Portland in March, Derek is excited to experience the various activities of the city, as well as explore the natural areas of the Pacific Northwest.
Community Programs Team
Community Programs Director
Chris joined the Estuary Partnership in 1998 and now serves as Community Programs Director. Chris manages our community programs, including classroom and field programs with students, community volunteer plantings, and the Lower Columbia River Water Trail stewardship and advocacy. He also manages and implements stormwater and land use projects, including work with schools and communities who are retrofitting large expanses of impervious surface area. He plays a major role building and maintaining partnerships to ensure we are including and working with multiple sectors throughout our study area. Chris was instrumental in establishing the Lower Columbia River Water Trail and the Estuary Partnership Schoolyard Stormwater projects. He also represented the organization on the West Hayden Island Advisory Committee and serves on the Oregon Watershed Enhancement North Coast Review Team. He is active in grants development and project management in both the technical and education programs. Chris holds an M.S. in Water Resources Management from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a B.S. in Political Science and a B.A. in English from the University of Oregon.
Education Programs Manager
Valerie joined the Estuary Partnership in 2022 as our Education & Community Program Manager. She brings extensive background in group facilitation, outdoor education, river and land-based expedition programming, risk management, classroom teaching, fundraising, coaching and team development.
Prior to joining the Estuary Partnership, Valerie spent a decade as a classroom teacher and created and led a cross-curriculum expedition outdoor and service-learning program for the Portland Waldorf School. From 2017-2022, Valerie was the Program Director and Executive Director for a non-profit Life Expanding Adventure Programs (LEAP), where she led, visioned, and facilitated river-based programs on the Salmon River in Idaho for many communities with limited access to outdoor experiences, specifically individuals who have experienced trauma. Valerie has led over 250 weeks of outdoor programming for youth and adults; and has enjoyed many personal outdoor endeavors, including rowing thousands of river miles and navigating big whitewater all over the US, cycling 850 miles of the Pacific Coast, and running an ultramarathon in the Utah desert. She is currently learning how to paint landscapes and enthusiastic to explore and help protect the Lower Columbia watershed. Valerie continues to be humbled and honored to teach and lead in the natural world with amazing and resilient people.
Andy Bauer joined the Estuary Partnership in 2013. He engages students in a wide range of classroom and field programs and volunteer tree plantings. Andy has introduced videography to our education programs, capturing our students in action so we can share their stories better. He has added drone piloting and 360 degree videography to his tool kit and is always exploring ways to increase interactive opportunities for students and teachers. Prior to joining the Estuary Partnership, Andy was a high school science teacher in Brooklyn, New York for over two years. For many years, Andy has served as a volunteer at OMSI and the Oregon Zoo and worked at Outside In, providing homeless youth with career and college guidance. Andy has a M.A. in Teaching from S.U.N.Y. Empire State College and a B.S. in Biology from the University of Oregon.
Samantha joined the Estuary Partnership in 2010 as an environmental educator and now coordinates volunteer programs. She works with project partners and land managers to plan and lead fun and educational events for volunteers. Samantha organizes multiple volunteers weekend plantings, including an annual National Service Day and works with students throughout the region engaging them in a wide range of classroom and field programs. She taught outdoor education to at-risk students at an alternative high school in Tigard, Oregon and she served in AmeriCorps. She is a Certified Interpretive Guide. Samantha earned an M.A. in teaching from Concordia University and is a licensed teacher in Oregon. She holds a B.S. in Communication Studies from the University of Texas at Austin.
Stormwater Project Manager
Aaron (firstname.lastname@example.org) joined the Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership in 2022. He works with partners and lower Columbia River communities to identify, develop, and manage stormwater projects that detain stormwater and improve water quality. Prior to joining the Estuary Partnership, he worked for the East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District. He has 15 years of experience in natural resource conservation, designing and implementing projects to protect water quality by managing agricultural runoff and controlling soil erosion. Aaron also served in the Peace Corps in Honduras, where he aided in the construction of potable water systems. Aaron holds a BSE in Civil Engineering with Environmental Emphasis from the University of Iowa and is a Certified Professional in Erosion and Sediment Control. In his free time, he enjoys camping, gardening, cycling, and spending time with his family. Speaks Spanish, habla español.
Principal Restoration Ecologist
Marci joined the Estuary Partnership in 2021. She works with the partners on planning and managing riparian restoration projects to provide hands on opportunities for diverse groups of students and community members to engage in land stewardship. Marci brings a range of skills and experience to the team in restoration project management, native revegetation, ecological monitoring, fostering partnerships, and volunteer engagement. Prior to joining the Estuary Partnership, she was a Restoration Program Manager for Willamette Riverkeeper where she designed and implemented landscape-scale restoration projects on public and conserved lands adjacent to the Willamette River to assist in the recovery of native fish species. She also worked for Project YESS at Mt Hood Community College leading youth conservation crews. She holds a M.S. in Educational Leadership and Policy with a focus on Sustainability Education from Portland State University and a B.A. in Latin American Studies from the Colorado College.
Environmental Education Coordinator
Tonya McLean joined the Estuary Partnership in 2012. She delivers classroom education, on-river programs, applied learning field programs, service learning projects, and weekend volunteer tree plantings. As a freshwater biologist, Tonya helped expand our curricula in this area and shows students another career related to environmental education. She manages the database that helps us track volunteers, students, and teachers who participate in our programs, and allows us to stay in communication with them. Tonya brings to the team extensive experience in the environmental field including biological research, public outreach, and communication for programs that seek to balance human needs with environmental health. Tonya earned an M.S. in Conservation Biology from the University of Maryland and has a B.S. in Environmental Science from Portland State University.
Environmental Education Coordinator
McKenzie joined the Estuary Partnership in 2006. She delivers classroom education, on-river programs, applied learning field programs, service learning projects, and weekend volunteer tree plantings. McKenzie leads the Estuary Partnership’s Summer Canoe Program and expanded community paddles significantly over the last nine years. She also manages our student on-river program; often the on-river trip we provide is the first for many of our students. Prior to joining the Estuary Partnership, McKenzie worked for West-Linn/Wilsonville School District’s Center for Research in Environmental Sciences and Technology as a Watershed and Garden Education Coordinator. She has also worked as an educator for the Oregon Zoo, the Glacier Park Institute, and the New Canaan Nature Center. McKenzie holds a B.A. in Environmental Studies from Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Oregon.
Alex Rhodes joined the Estuary Partnership in 2021. He delivers classroom education, on-river programs, service-learning projects, and volunteer plantings. As an environmental sociologist, he believes in Environmental Justice, bringing a culturally responsive lens to curriculum and place-based learning. In the past, he's facilitated programs for BIPOC and low-income youth to become inspired by nature and realize their potential to close the opportunity gap in the environmental sector. Furthermore, he has experience in the Reuse and Waste Management Sector and a passion for equitable housing. Alex has liberal arts education from Eckerd College with a B.A. in Environmental Studies and Coastal Management.
Alvey Seeyouma was formerly a Crew Leader and Program Coordinator at Wisdom of the Elders's Wisdom Workforce. He is Hopi-Tewa (Tobacco Clan/Sand Clan), a veteran, a painter, a drawer, and a maker of jewelry. We have much to learn from Alvey and are lucky he has agreed to work with us. Alvey has extensive experience leading plantings, in addition to his other talents, and leads Estuary Partnership volunteer plantings and performs fieldwork at various sites.
James Sterrett joined the Estuary Partnership in 2012. He delivers classroom education, on-river programs, applied learning field programs, service learning projects, and weekend volunteer tree plantings. James led the 2013 summer camp with the National Park Service at Ft. Clatsop. Each year, a few dozen students get this unique outdoor experience, honing their nature survival skills. He has been teaching experiential, place-based programs for the past 20 years. James previously worked at Earlham College for the Wilderness Program. He earned an M.A. in Teaching from Lewis and Clark College and is a licensed elementary teacher in Oregon. He holds a B.A. from Earlham College in Geology.
As a Program Assistant for the Community Programs department, Adam provides essential administrative support for a diverse portfolio of projects ranging from green stormwater infrastructure projects to youth environmental education. He brings over fifteen years of administrative experience in the non-profit sector to the Estuary Partnership. Adam graduated from the University of Portland with a B.A. in Psychology and Spanish, and a minor in Environmental Science. In his free time, he enjoys hiking, birding, and making music.
Matthew A. Jones, Ph.D., Chair
Matthew has been engaged in public and non-profit sector management consulting for over 15 years. He has extensive experience in organizational assessments, leadership development programming/training, executive coaching, emotional intelligence, strategic planning, and meeting facilitation.
He holds a Ph.D. in Public Administration and Policy, with an emphasis in organizational development and applied research methods. He formerly held academic appointments as an Assistant Professor of Public Administration at the State University of New York- Brockport and Assistant Professor of Practice at Portland State University's College of Urban and Public Affairs. His community service includes serving as a Commissioner for the Clark County, WA Clean Water Commission, where he chairs the outreach subgroup.
Rian Sallee, Vice Chair
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
Rian Sallee leads the Vancouver Field Office for the Washington State Department of Ecology. Rian is responsible for managing the field office, with a focus on environmental justice and diversity, equity and inclusion efforts at the agency. Rian represents the Department of Ecology as a member of Governor's Interagency Council on Health Disparities. She also serves as Board representative for the Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Steering Team. Rian holds a Master of Environmental Science degree from Miami University.
Jane Bacchieri, Secretary/Treasurer
Jane Bacchieri is the Executive Director for the Elakha Alliance, a nonprofit focused on sea otter reintroduction and marine ecosystem restoration in Oregon. She has over 25 years of experience in natural resources management, including 11 years with the City of Portland's Bureau of Environmental Services leading the Watershed Services and Integrated Planning groups. Her previous experience also includes working with the National Policy Consensus Center at Portland State and serving as a natural resources policy advisor for Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski, where she worked on watershed and water quality issues and Oregon's implementation of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). Jane has worked on coastal, river, and watershed management issues for the Oregon Coastal Management Program, South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve, and the National Park Service, and spent two years as an environment volunteer with the U.S. Peace Corps in the Kingdom of Tonga. Jane holds a Master of Environmental Management degree from Duke University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology from the University of Vermont. She lives in Portland with her husband, Kip, and their dog, Bella, and spends her free time training for marathons, traveling and enjoying the outdoors in Oregon, and learning to play the piano.
Barbara was born and raised in Portland and grew up camping in the most remote places her dad could find. Luckily this led to her love and respect for nature and to appreciate the beauty of the Pacific Northwest. In high school, a science teacher invited the students to spend their Saturday mornings removing invasive species and planting native trees in the Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge, and her love of planting trees began. After volunteering with many other local non-profits, the search was on to find an organization that had a wider vision and a mission that aligned with hers. Over 10 years ago Barbara discovered LCEP, began volunteering with us, and never looked back.
Professionally, she works as an accounts manager for a local interior design firm and has worked in the accounting field for 23 years, but her true passions lie outside in nature.
In her spare time, she enjoys paddling/steering an outrigger canoe on the Willamette, kayaking at Scappoose Bay, biking, hiking, and of course spending time with her husband enjoying all the delicious food Portland has to offer!
Port of Longview
Amy has worked for local governments in the lower Columbia and Oregon for the past 18 years. These roles included county planning, salmon restoration, public works, tribal natural resource policy, and conservation district management. Most recently she has been an Environmental Manager with the Port of Longview. Amy’s particular strengths are in policy and project management, focused on aquatic and lower Columbia River ecosystems.
She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature, Bachelor of Science in Natural Resource Policy, and a Master of Studies in Environmental Law. Amy is particularly proud of her past work with the Columbia River Estuary Study Taskforce (CREST) and the Cowlitz Indian Tribe. In 2011 she completed the Fort Columbia Tidal Reconnection Project as the project manager. This project opened up 96 acres of tidal wetland habitat in Reach A of the Columbia River by installing a 12’ by 12’ box culvert under US 101. Amy is also particularly proud of setting up the Gathering Program with the USFS for the Cowlitz Tribe. Amy now enjoys working on the Port team building sustainability programs and obtaining and maintaining environmental clearances. When Amy is not at work, she enjoys working on her hobby farm and traveling with her family.
Founder & President, Soul River, Inc.
Chad Brown is an accomplished documentary-style portrait and adventure photographer, creative director, film director, and conservationist. He is also the founder and president of two non-profit organizations and a veteran of the US Navy.
Chad’s current work focuses on outdoor adventure travel and documenting threatened wild spaces. He connects the public to endangered areas by showing the true spirit of the indigenous people of these lands and telling stories focused on social justice and environmental justice tied to BIPOC communities connecting to outdoor spaces.
He is deeply interested in capturing moments of passion and the human spirit. He advocates for social and environmental justice through his striking documentary portraits and photographic exhibitions. His photos are intense, raw, stylized images with bold approaches, unique angles, and dramatic lighting.
Chad studied communication design and photography at American Intercontinental University. From there, he attended Pratt Institute in New York City where he earned his Masters of Science in Communication Design degree.
He has managed interdisciplinary teams as a creative director, art director, and photographer both as a freelance artist and for agencies. He is a former editorial photographer for the New York Times. His work has crossed into underground hip hop, fashion, and culture, where he worked with hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons (founder of PhatFarm) and Rasheed Young (VP of Run Athletics) to photograph and develop creative ad campaigns for national hip-hop culture magazines.
Chad moved from New York to Portland, Oregon in 2007, where his life and career path expanded beyond the traditional creative world. His adventure photography assignments now lead him all over the world to countries like Japan, Hong Kong, Vietnam, and Bangladesh, as well as into the Alaskan Arctic several times a year.
Mother Nature played a significant role in his healing from the war trauma he experienced as a Navy service member. A failed suicide attempt eventually led him to launch a non-profit organization called Soul River, Inc. in 2013.
This unique organization specializes in outdoor education and cultural expeditions that Chad calls deployments. It brings at-risk youth and Veteran mentors together and takes them into threatened wild spaces, providing mission-driven experiences where advocacy and outdoor education meet.
This work has led Chad to Capitol Hill, where he advocates for our public lands and wild places. He gives youth leaders of tomorrow the opportunity to interface with Congressional members.
In 2021, Chad founded Love is King, a non-profit organization that focuses on welcome access, safety, and healing in the outdoors for BIPOC communities and other under-served voices.
He is a board member of the National Wildlife Refuge Association and Alaska Wilderness League. He has been featured on BBC and CBS, including Good Morning America and NatGeo/Disney’s Called to the Wild reality TV show, and in national publications like Outside Magazine and The Drake. He has also been featured in regional publications across the Pacific Northwest.
Chad was the first recipient of the Breaking Barriers Award presented by Orvis, and the Bending Toward Justice Award from Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley.
Washington Department of Ecology
Rich Doenges (pronounced Den-jis) works as Ecology's Southwest Region Director, coordinating the activities and services for the agency in the twelve county region. Rich has worked in Ecology since 2014 and was previously managing water quality activities in the southwest region. He also represents Ecology at the Forest Practices Board and the Washington Coastal Marine Advisory Council. Rich has a diverse work experience. Prior to working for Ecology he was the manager for Washington Department of Natural Resources' Aquatic Resources Division. Rich has worked in county government in the fields of water resources and farmland preservation, directing farmland preservation programs in Washington’s Skagit County and in Lancaster County in Pennsylvania. He remains proud of his seven years working in East Africa in Kenya and Ethiopia on rural development and natural resource projects. Rich holds a B.S. in Natural Resources and a M.F.S. in Forest Ecology. Originally from Connecticut, he lives in Olympia exploring the outdoors on foot, bicycle and kayak, rooting for New England sports teams, and watching with pride as his two sons encounter adulthood.
Community and Tribal Engagement
Rosemary has worked for regional, federal, and international organizations throughout her career, specializing in watershed health, river protection and restoration, and salmon recovery efforts. Rosemary recently retired from NOAA Fisheries where she spent the last 20 years managing recovery of six Endangered Species Act (ESA) threatened salmon and steelhead in Washington, Idaho, and Oregon. Rosemary coordinated multi-year public processes resulting in NOAA's adoption of ESA recovery plans for: Lake Ozette Sockeye Salmon, Middle Columbia River Steelhead, Snake River Sockeye Salmon, Snake River Steelhead, and Snake River Fall Chinook Salmon, and Snake River Spring/Summer Chinook Salmon. Rosemary coordinated with NOAA's Science Center, tribes, state agencies, local governments, federal agencies, landowners, and local citizens to produce these plans. Prior to joining NOAA, Rosemary worked as a Principal Planner at Metro in Portland coordinating water resource planning and adoption of Metro's regional Stream and Floodplain Protection Plan (Title 3). Rosemary's international experience includes managing a rural development project in Sudan for CARE International with funding from the U.S. Agency for International Development. She was also a Peace Corps Volunteer in Botswana where she taught high school science. Rosemary has a B.A. in Biology from Kenyon College and an M.S. in Environmental Studies from the Yale School of the Environment. Rosemary enjoys backpacking, skiing, and cycling with family and friends throughout the Pacific Northwest.
Rainier School District
Joseph Hattrick is an educator of 23 years and has served in a wide variety of positions. He has had the great honor of serving in a wide variety of roles including instructional assistant, teacher, counselor, principal, and superintendent. In 2020, he returned to the Pacific Northwest, where he was born and raised, to assume the position of Superintendent of the Rainier School District. While he intended to serve students in a clinical capacity after receiving his masters in Social Work, he was provided the opportunity to step into a principal position early in his career. In 2019, he received his Doctoral Degree in Organizational Leadership in K-12 Education.
As part of his doctoral studies, Dr. Hattrick examined the impact of a positive climate on student learning and organizational change. Ensuring students and staff have a caring and nurturing environment remains one of his greatest passions. In 2012, Dr. Hattrick embarked on a journey to increase health and wellness in his community; providing community members with a 5K race and a training program to support those with no running experience to complete their first 5K. This interest was adopted after being one of 8 people in the world to complete all Rock n Roll Marathons in one calendar year. Now in running retirement, he enjoys reading, spending time with his partner and their dog Gus.
Susan Holveck, PhD
Susan was most recently the Program Administrator of K-12 Science Education with the Office of Teaching and Learning at the Portland Public School District. Susan received the 2018 Duane Marshall Special Service to Science Education Award and the Lower Columbia River Estuary Partnership Steward of the Year in 2009. She works with a team from the Oregon Department of Education, 12 other lead states, and the Council of State Science Supervisors on a project called Advancing Coherent and Equitable Systems of Science Education (ACESSE). This projects uses educational research and practice to improve equity in science education. Susan served for three years as the Oregon Science Teachers Association President and is currently their secretary. She actively supports science teachers in the Portland Public School District and loves getting students outside to learn. Susan has a B.S. in Genetics from Ohio State, an M.S. in Genetics and Cellular Biology from Washington State University, and a doctorate in Education from the University of Oregon.
Season Long, MS
Environmental Health Manger, Cowlitz County Health and Human Services
Season Long has worked in Environmental Public Health since 2010. For the past 6 years, she has been the Environmental Health Manager for Cowlitz County’s Health and Human Services Department. In addition to this role, she has also served on several committees including the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) and Technical Advisory Group (TAG), where she participated in drafting and finalizing on-site septic standards that will be utilized in the revised Washington Administrative Code (WAC). Currently, she serves on the Environmental Health Director’s Executive Committee, a group that works with state partners to prioritize, support, and promote environmental health programs across the Washington Public Health System. Season holds a M.S in Marine Resource Management from Oregon State University as well as a B.S. in Biology. She strongly believes in the mission of environmental public health and its role in protecting our environment for future generations. Season lives in Vancouver and enjoys hiking, disc-golf, camping, and canoeing with her family.
Magruder Farms, Local Watershed Councils, Columbia County Board of Commissioners
Margaret is the managing partner of Magruder Farms, producing sheep in Clatskanie, Oregon and the managing partner of Oregon Shepherd, LLC, a manufacturer of all-natural wool building insulation in Rainier, Oregon. She serves on several national, regional, and local agriculture, environmental, and policy groups. Margaret's career in production agriculture provides her a foundation in conservation and environmental issues and fosters a deep appreciation for the Lower Columbia River region. Margaret also serves as a Columbia County Commissioner. She is a graduate of Willamette University and obtained a Master’s degree from Syracuse University.
Port of Kalama
Tabitha has worked with lower Columbia River public and private ports for 18 years. She has been the Environmental Manager at the Port of Kalama for the past 8 years. Tabitha has extensive experience in managing environmental resources on the lower river. At the Port she aims to increase economic development and create jobs in an environmentally responsible manner and enhance recreational opportunities for all members of the public.
She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology, a Bachelor of Science in Biology, and a Master of Environmental Science and Regional Planning. Her previous employment was as a Senior Scientist at an engineering, planning, and natural resources firm in Clark County, WA, and prior to that she worked as a water resources science technician at the Clark County Clean Water Program. She served as a Board Member at Columbia Springs, an environmental education center in Vancouver, WA for 8 years. She served on the City of Vancouver Sustainability Task Force, as well as numerous technical advisory committees for local updates to critical areas ordinances, shoreline management programs, and comprehensive plan updates. In 2005 she received the Vancouver Business Journal's "Accomplished & Under 40" award. She is a 2005 graduate of Leadership Clark County. Tabitha has a passion for the outdoors and protecting the environment.
Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board
Courtney Shaff is the Monitoring and Reporting Program Manager for the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board. Courtney has worked at OWEB since 2006 and has worked in every section of the agency, most recently as the Business Operations Manager prior to becoming the Monitoring and Reporting Program Manager. Included in her portfolio is the development, management, tracking and reporting of federal funding through NOAA Fisheries PCSRF funding, USDA, Natural Resource Conservation Service, Bureau of Land Management, and other federal funds. Courtney also leads OWEB’s diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts and is passionate about engaging with local communities to achieve restoration and conservation outcomes. Courtney has a Masters in Environmental Science from Oregon State University and a Bachelor of Arts in Biology from Wittenberg University. When not working, Courtney enjoys supporting her two girls in their various athletic pursuits, and when time allows, camping, backpacking, and hiking the endless trails of the Pacific Northwest with her husband and two daughters.
Mary Lou Soscia
Retired, US Environmental Protection Agency
Mary Lou worked for state, federal, and tribal government for over 35 years, specializing in watershed and river protection and restoration efforts. Mary Lou was on the team that created EPA's National Estuary Program and worked to get Congressional authorization for the program in the 1987 Clean Water Act amendments. Mary Lou worked with the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission on loan from EPA and helped to create the Tribal watershed program, which is the basis for salmon restoration work efforts in the Columbia River Basin. Since 1997, Mary Lou has served as the Columbia River Coordinator for the US Environmental Protection Agency, Region 10. She leads the Columbia River Toxics Reduction Strategy, the Columbia River Toxics Reduction Working Group, and the implementation of the 2010 Columbia River Basin Toxics Reduction Action Plan. Mary Lou led the collaboration for the Oregon Water Quality Standards human health criteria, which led to the most protective state human health Clean Water Act criteria in the US and is currently leading the collaboration and Tribal fish consumption surveys with Idaho Tribal Governments to address Idaho human health criteria revisions to more adequately protect high fish consumers in Idaho. Mary Lou also provides senior EPA representation on Columbia River Treaty work efforts. Mary Lou has a B.A. in Geography from Virginia Tech and an M.A. degree in Geography from University of Maryland.
Ex Officio Board Members
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Irma is a Senior Policy Advisor with the West Coast Region of NOAA Fisheries. In this position, she provides strategic advice and support to salmon recovery through partnerships and innovative incentive approaches. Irma has over 28 years in the field of natural resource management and policy with a particular emphasis on the Endangered Species Act. She has worked with diverse coalitions including, federal and state agencies, Indian tribes, industry and conservation groups as well as private land owners to achieve mutual goals, and spent more than 13 years overseeing conservation programs in the Klamath Basin for NOAA Fisheries. She received her B.S. in Marine Biology from the University of California at Berkeley and an M.S. in Marine Environmental Science from the State University of New York at Stony Brook.
US Fish and Wildlife Service
John Netto has over 20 years of experience working with a diverse set of partners to conserve and restore fish populations and habitat throughout the United States. He currently serves as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Program Coordination Supervisor for the Pacific Northwest and Pacific Islands. In this role, he oversees the Fish Passage, Habitat Partnership, Aquatic Invasive Species, and Data Management programs for the Region. His 20-year career in the Service includes stock assessment and harvest management in the Great Lakes, river restoration and monitoring in California's Central Valley, and habitat restoration in the Pacific Northwest. Prior to joining the Service, he worked as a fish biologist for the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission and a data analyst at the Quantitative Fisheries Center at Michigan State University. He holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Idaho and Master of Science from Michigan State University in fisheries management.
US Environmental Protection Agency
Yvonne is an Aquatic Ecologist with the U.S. EPA. For the last 20 years, she has worked in EPA's Oregon Operations Office in Portland as the Oregon Wetland and Watershed Coordinator and the Lower Columbia River Estuary Program Manager for EPA Region 10. She previously worked with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Her work with EPA is focused on the technical and policy aspects of the Clean Water Act (CWA), including Section 404. Her practicable experience includes work in wetland delineation and assessment, 404(f) exemptions, enforcement, mitigation, CWA jurisdiction, 404 program assumption, and wetland restoration, as well development of wetland research projects and the management of wetland development grants for states, tribes, and local governments. Yvonne is a licensed wetlands biologist. She earned a B.S. in Wildlife Biology from Louisiana Tech University and an M.S. in Marine Ecology from Texas A&M.
Honorary Board Members
Bill Hutchison, Esq.
Corporate & Environmental Law
Bill has long been involved in environmental and natural resource issues. He participated in development of Portland’s downtown plan and was a leader of environmental organizations. He chaired the Environmental Quality Commission and served as a co-chair of the Pacific Northwest Hazardous Waste Advisory Council. During his EQC tenure, he advocated for the nomination of the Columbia as a national estuary and he was involved with the Lower Columbia River Bi-State Water Quality Program. Bill led the Commission in the formulation of Tualatin River TMDLs and in issuing the stipulated order that triggered Portland’s sewer system and big pipe projects. He co-chaired Portland’s Willamette River Stakeholders Task Force. He has served on the Board of Forestry. Bill was active in the formation of the Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership. He is a member of the Oregon State Bar, and his practice emphasizes cooperative, corporate, real property, and environmental law. He currently chairs Oregon Community Foundation’s Oregon Parks Foundation Advisory Committee. He received his J.D. from Willamette University and his B.S. from the University of Oregon.
Debrah served as Executive Director of the Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership from its inception in 1995 until July 2020. She led development and implementation of the first comprehensive plan for the lower 146 river miles of the Columbia River, employing a comparative risk process and extensive public collaboration to define the actions. She grew the organization to a highly skilled staff of 22 who restore habitat, provide restoration expertise, collect and analyze data, monitor ecosystem conditions, provide applied learning to students, engage volunteers in riparian plantings, and involve the community members in sustaining the work. Debrah worked with members of Congress and regional partners to develop and secure federal legislation that is now funding actions to reduce toxic contamination in the Columbia Basin. In 2017, she initiated a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion process to address the continued exclusion of people of color and women in environmental practices and positions of power and the environmental injustices inflicted on communities of color and low-income communities. Prior to moving to Oregon, she was Deputy Commissioner and then Acting Commissioner of the Maine Department of Environmental Protection. She was Planning and Community Development Director for the City of Lewiston (Maine) and Development Director for Greater Portland (Maine) Landmarks. Debrah holds a M.A. in Geography from the University of Oregon, a B.A. in Geography from the University of Maine, and certificates from the Confluence Center for Mediation and Training, (Portland, Oregon) and the M.I.T. - Harvard Program in Dispute Resolution and is member of the American Institute of Certified Planners.