Future of Our Salmon Conference Speakers and Presenters
The speakers, presenters, and moderators for the Future of Our Salmon Conference have been carefully selected to represent a full range of expertise from federal, tribal, state, and local governments; academia; NGOs; and elected officials. The many issues that face floodplain functions and management are vast and cross political borders. A successful plan to address these issues will require all these groups to collaborate, pool resources, and share research. The variety of presenters that has been assembled will provide a broad spectrum of ideas, perspectives, and focuses that is necessary to formulate such a comprehensive plan.
Tim Abbe, PhD, PEG, PHG
Principal, Natural Systems Design
Presentation: Fundamental Element of Integrated Flood Hazard Reduction and Water Resource Management, Day Two
Ph.D., Geology, Univ. Washington, 2000; M.S., Geology, Portland State Univ., 1990; B.S., Geology, Univ. of Vermont, 1984; Registered Geologist, CA, 1992, #5500; Registered Geologist, OR, 1992, #G1351; Professional Engineering Geologist, WA, 2002, #1151; Professional Hydrogeologist, WA, 2002, #1151
Dr. Abbe is an internationally recognized geomorphologist and licensed professional engineering geologist and hydrogeologist with 28 years of applied science and research experience in geomorphology, environmental assessment, habitat restoration, risk assessment, self-mitigating flood and erosion protection, sustainable land management, and water resources. Dr. Abbe has led over 100 restoration projects in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, California, and Alaska. He conceived and pioneered engineered logjam technology for river restoration. He has repeatedly been instrumental in establishing industry standards for evaluating and designing land use and self-mitigating flood protection measures. Dr. Abbe’s work is cited and used all over the world to better understand and restore rivers.
Jeannette Armstrong, PhD
Asst. Professor and Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Okanagan Philosophy, UBC Okanagan
Panel Moderator: Cultural Values of Floodplains, Day One
Jeannette Armstrong is Syilx Okanagan, a fluent speaker and teacher of the Nsyilxcn Okanagan language and a traditional knowledge keeper of the Okanagan Nation. She is a founder of En’owkin, the Okanagan Nsyilxcn language and knowledge institution of higher learning of the Syilx Okanagan Nation. She currently is Assistant Professor and Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Okanagan Philosophy at UBC Okanagan. She has a Ph.D. in Environmental Ethics and Syilx Indigenous Literatures. She is the recipient of the EcoTrust Buffett Award for Indigenous Leadership and in 2016 the BC George Woodcock Lifetime Achievement Award. She is an author whose published works include poetry, prose and children’s literary titles and academic writing on a wide variety of Indigenous issues. She currently serves on Canada’s Traditional Knowledge Subcommittee of the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada.
Commissioner, Multnomah County, District 1
Executive Panel: Regional Policy Challenges and Solutions, Day Three
Multnomah County Commissioner Jules Bailey, a Portland native, has spent his career tackling issues that matter to the Portland community. In 2014 he was elected to represent District 1, which includes the areas west of the Willamette River and the inner eastside of Portland. District 1 includes floodplains on Sauvie Island and along the Willamette River. Prior to serving as a Multnomah County Commissioner, he served three terms in the Oregon House of Representatives.
In 2014, Jules was appointed by the Governor of Oregon to convene a collaborative effort focused on protecting Multnomah County from flooding and ensuring the long-term resilience of the levee system along the Columbia River. Jules helped this effort take shape as Levee Ready Columbia, a multi-stakeholder partnership with full-time, professional staff and financial support from local governments and the state. As the Convener of Levee Ready Columbia, Jules has led an inclusive and collaborative process that considers all the interests at stake while remaining focused, action-oriented, and forward-looking.
As a County Commissioner, Jules has also been an advocate for Multnomah County’s most vulnerable residents, working on housing and homelessness, crisis mental health services, and public safety reform.
William K. Barquin
Attorney General, Kootenai Tribes of Idaho
Panel Moderator: Policy Law: Challenges and Opportunities, Day Three
Mr. Barquin is Eastern Shoshone and Oglala Lakota and was raised on his father’s ranch on the Wind River Indian Reservation in Wyoming. He earned his B.A. and J.D. degrees from Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington. He has been a member of the Oregon bar since 1998 and the Idaho bar since 2005.
Mr. Barquin is the Attorney General of the Kootenai Tribe of Idaho and oversees all legal aspects of Tribal operations. Mr. Barquin’s work concentrates on negotiated problem solving on behalf of the Tribe in a variety of contexts. That work includes ongoing representation of the Kootenai Tribal Fish and Wildlife Department regarding the interrelationships of the Northwest Power Act, Endangered Species Act, National Historic Preservation Act and other legal authorities in the protection of Kootenai natural resource utilization.
Prior to joining the Kootenai Tribe staff, Mr. Barquin represented tribal governments as a member of two separate firms. He was the principal negotiator for one tribal client in a complex problem solving effort involving tribal, state, federal and private parties to cleanup decades of pollution in Portland Harbor. He also worked extensively with tribal social services, including enforcement of the Indian Child Welfare Act in state courts and child protection and family reunification in tribal courts.
Mr. Barquin works primarily out of the Kootenai Tribe’s Portland Office.
Executive Director, Earth Economics
Presentation: Restoring Ecosystem Function and Value in the Columbia River Basin, Day One
David Batker is a renowned expert in Ecological Economics and an acclaimed speaker, leader, educator, and advocate. Dave co-founded Earth Economics to improve investment locally and globally to secure ecological health, sustainable economies, and prosperity. His work has been quoted in over 300 newspaper, radio, and television stories. His projects span over 40 countries and 35 US states. David’s path-breaking studies show natural systems’ value for providing food, water, flood risk reduction, climate stabilization, recreation, and other benefits. Being from Tacoma, much of his work has surrounded water quality issues, salmon populations, and land management choices throughout the Puget Sound and Washington State. His pragmatic work has been used to establish the value of watersheds for providing water, by FEMA to estimate the value of floodplains for flood risk reduction, and to establish funding mechanisms for maintaining natural capital. David is working with the Earth Economics team on a practical web-based tool to establish consistent values for nature’s benefits and new funding mechanisms for conservation.
Director, Willamette Strategic Partnerships, Bonneville Environmental Foundation
Presentation: Partner-driven Floodplain Restoration on the Willamette River, Day Two
Dan joined Bonneville Environmental Foundation as the Willamette Strategic Partnerships Director in the summer of 2016. In this capacity he works to advance collaborative initiatives that increase the scale and effectiveness of conservation efforts focused on the Willamette River and its large tributaries. Dan’s experience includes more than a decade with The Nature Conservancy in both Oregon and North Carolina, including seven years as the Willamette Basin Conservation Director. While there, he oversaw projects ranging from the purchase and restoration of the 1,300-acre Willamette Confluence site, to providing key leadership on a 6-year, $7 million strategy to restore the mainstem Willamette through OWEB’s Focused Investment Program. He has also worked extensively with land trusts, serving as Executive Director of the Sandhills Area Land Trust (Southern Pines, NC) and as a board member with the Coalition of Oregon Land Trusts. Dan grew up outside Denver, has an affinity for southern hound dogs, and holds a B.S. in Forest Sciences from Colorado State University and a J.D. from North Carolina Central University. He was admitted to the North Carolina State Bar in 2003.
Reporter, The Seattle Times
Presentation: Overview of Public Perception, Social Behavior and the Media and Need for Regional Outreach Strategies, Day Three
Hal Bernton has been a staff reporter with The Seattle Times since 2000, where his reporting has included coverage of the western Washington floods of 2008, salmon restoration and other fisheries issues. He also was part of The Seattle Times staff that was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for breaking news for coverage of the 2014 Oso Landslide.
Bernton previously worked for The Oregonian and The Anchorage Daily News, where he was part of a team that won the 1989 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service. He was born in Washington, D.C., and started his journalism career as an intern for the late columnist Jack Anderson. Bernton, is married to Ann Hodgson Bernton and they have two children.
United States Entity Secretary, Columbia River Treaty, Regional Coordination/Power Group, Bonneville Power Administration
Presentation: Columbia River Hydrosystem Today, Day One
Jen Boyer is the U.S. Entity Secretary for the Columbia River Treaty at Bonneville Power Administration, where she serves as an advisor to senior leadership of BPA and the Army Corps of Engineers on issues concerning the Treaty and its related agreements. She coordinates between the Canadian Entity, the U.S. Entity, the Department of State, and other federal agencies regarding the Treaty, and analyzes, plans, negotiates and implements long-term operations under the Treaty. She began her career at BPA about five years ago as a hydro-project modeler, analyzing Treaty implementation operations. She has done extensive work modeling and analyzing operations of the Pacific Northwest region’s hydropower projects to determine the current and potential future Downstream Power Benefits from coordinating operations with the Canadian Treaty projects. Jen served as a subject matter expert on the Sovereign Technical Team to determine potential effects on water quality from modernizing or terminating the Treaty after 2024. She also has been in charge of determining the power delivery obligations of the five Public Utility District hydro-projects located between the Chief Joseph and McNary dams on the Columbia River, as according to an agreement associated with the Treaty, and of modeling the power impacts from various Biological Opinion operations scenarios put forth by the Corps of Engineers for the Willamette River projects. Jen is a rare Oregon native and has her Master of Science degree in Environmental Science (water quality). She has previously done extensive research and environmental education and outreach for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Washington State University Vancouver, the U.S. Forest Service, the City of Portland’s Bureau of Environmental Services, and the City of Vancouver. In her spare time, Jen enjoys being outside – hiking, camping, cycling, kayaking, skiing, riding motorcycles on- and off-road, and gardening. She has also (begrudgingly) become a DIY home remodeler.
Vice-chairman, Spokane Tribe of Indians
Presentation: Cultural Perspective of Floodplains, Day Two
David Browneagle is the vice-chairman of the Spokane Tribe of Indians. He has a Masters Degree in Education and is a retired educator. David is enrolled Spokane from his mother’s side and is Ho-Chunk on his father’s side. He is a father, grandfather, and a great-grandfather.
Strategic Partnership Director, The Nature Conservancy
Presentation: Floodplains by Design: Reducing Risk, Restoring Rivers, Day One
Bob Carey has over 20 years’ experience in the field of conservation, with a particular focus on river and coastal management. He currently serves as the Strategic Partnerships Director for The Nature Conservancy in Washington state. He leads the Floodplains by Design partnership – an ambitious public-private partnership focused on integrating and accelerating efforts to reduce flood risks and restore habitats across Washington’s major river corridors. Previous to that he developed and managed The Nature Conservancy’s conservation work in North Puget Sound and the Skagit River basin in Washington State. In 2013 he served as a Global Fellow in Colombia, working as a strategic advisor helping The Nature Conservancy develop a strategic vision and business plan for its Magdalena River Basin Project. Bob has an M.A. in Political Science and Environmental Studies from Western Washington University and a B.A. in Economics from Rutgers University.
Timothy Corey continues to break new ground using methodologies that touch multiple senses. He attentively listens, internalizes the information at hand, reads between the lines, and graphically communicates a vision. The end result is the ability to offer intuitive insight that his clients find uncanny while helping individuals and organizations create more responsive strategies for communication and support.
With an international reputation, Tim has provided his creative and innovative approach to facilitation to over 1200 teams. He’s provided organizational development services for over 140 companies both for-profit and non-profit organizations, including community groups, governmental organizations, schools and forward-thinking companies.
Tim has been working as a graphic facilitator for the Coast Salish Gatherings and the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission gatherings for several years . He captures the discussions in images, words and colors on large sheets of paper. His work tells a powerful story of the gatherings. He is currently working with Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium and The Aleut Pribilof Island Association, helping them strengthen their service delivery to Alaska Natives and Aleut people.
He is also a facilitator/executive coach through the Center for Leadership Formation at Seattle University. Offering his coaching support to mid level and senior level leaders working in Seattle area companies.
P.E., Certified Floodplain Manager, Senior Ecoengineer, cbec, inc. eco-engineering
Presentation: Overview of Floodplain Policies, Day One
Kevin Coulton has academic degrees in hydraulic engineering and landscape architecture and this led him onto floodplains early in his career. He began performing riverine and coastal flood studies for FEMA in the 1980s and helped to develop new methods and guidelines for these investigations and he has participated in national flood policy development for FEMA Headquarters. He has a special interest in the conservation and restoration of the natural and beneficial functions of floodplains. Kevin is a Senior Project manager for cbec eco-engineering here in the Portland area and will be giving this presentation on the behalf of ASFPM, where he has been a member for over two decades.
Executive Director, Columbia River Treaty Review Team, British Columbia
Executive Panel:Regional Policy Challenges and Solutions, Day Three
Kathy Eichenberger is the Executive Director, Columbia River Treaty Review, Electricity and Alternative Energy Division, BC Ministry of Energy and Mines. Since October 2011, she is responsible for leading all aspects of the Columbia River Treaty (CRT) review, including technical, legal, environmental and economic studies, as well as First Nations and public consultation. Kathy is also leading a provincial team which is undertaking preparations for potential negotiations with Canada and the United States improve the CRT within its existing framework. Kathy is a hydraulic engineer by profession.
Deputy Assistant Secretary, Policy & International Affairs, U.S. Department of the Interior
Morning Keynote Address, Day Two
Lori was appointed as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and International Affairs on January 3, 2011. She manages and coordinates the Department’s international activities while addressing complex pressing policy issues, especially those of a cross-cutting and multi-stakeholder nature. A veteran of both state government and nonprofit organizations, Lori joined the Department’s Office of Intergovernmental Affairs, in 2009 where she served as the Deputy Director and then as Director until her appointment as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and International Affairs.
Lori came to the Department after serving for six years as a senior advisor to Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano. She advised the governor on a broad range of issues including agriculture, energy, natural resources, and the environment. She worked on broad policy issues including forest health, climate change and water management and represented Arizona on the Western Governors Association Staff Advisory Council and the Western Interstate Energy Board. Previously, she spent more than ten years at The Nature Conservancy as part of the national government relations team, ending her tenure as the Director of Government Relations for Arizona.
Lori counts the people and the issues touched by the department as the key reasons why she enjoys her work at the Department of the Interior.
She has grown sons and a rescue dog named Mack. She enjoys taking Mack on long walks, working out, hiking and running as well as spending time on the beach.
Laura Lo Forti
Co-Founder and Co-Director, Vanport Mosaic
Panel Discussion: Flood Perceptions, Day 3
Laura Lo Forti is a multimedia producer, community engagement practitioner, and a “story midwife”. Through her work supporting others through the transformative journey of bringing their personal narratives to life, she’s become a strong advocate of engaging marginalized communities and vulnerable individuals in self-representation, and including them in the decision-making process affecting their lives.
She is the Executive Director of A Fourth Act, an interdisciplinary agency that merges technology and participatory practices to unleash the full potential of stories for social impact.
Laura is the co-founder and co-director of Vanport Mosaic, a collective of artists, historians, educators and media makers seeking to engage the public in remembering silenced histories of The Pacific Northwest to better understand the present.
Since 2014 she’s been facilitating a community-based oral history project capturing the memories of those who lived in Vanport and those who survived the 1948 Vanport Flood, Portland’s Hurricane Katrina-like disaster.
Water Resources Manager, Nooksack Indian Tribe
Panel Discussion: Innovative Floodplain Restoration Initiatives and Partnerships, Day Two
Oliver Grah, Project Manager/Administrator, Principal Investigator, Water Resources Program Manager, Nooksack Indian Tribe. BS – geology and botany, MS – watershed science. Oliver has 39 years of professional experience in the fields of water resources, soils, physical habitat, wetlands, restoration, environmental project management, IDT leader and coordination on over 600 projects including SEPA, NEPA, CWA, FSA, and ESA. Oliver is a Certified Professional Wetlands Scientist (#00556).
Oliver manages and administers several projects for the Nooksack Indian Tribe under various grant programs including Clean Water Acts Section 106 and 319, Indian General Assistance Program, portions of the EPA-Puget Sound Partnership Capacity Building Grant, as well as a grant from the BIA, Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission, NEP-WA Ecology grant, and North Pacific Landscape Conservation Cooperative. These grants sum to over $800,000 per year. More recently, Oliver has developed a comprehensive climate change project that ranges from glacier monitoring and modeling on Mt. Baker, temperature, sediment, and turbidity monitoring and modeling in the tributaries and streams of the Nooksack River watershed, assessing impacts of climate change on the hydrologic system of the Nooksack River and salmon habitat, and developing a comprehensive watershed conservation plan that addresses the cumulative impact of legacy impacts and climate change impacts, vulnerability assessment, and adaptation plan focus on salmon survival and habitat restoration.
Prior to his appointment to Manager of the Water Resources Program for the Tribe, he served as Director of the Habitat Restoration Program at Institute for Applied Ecology in Corvallis, Oregon, an NGO. Oliver also recently served as the Natural Resources Division Manager for Whatcom County, Washington.
Branch Chief Floodplain Management and Insurance, FEMA Mitigation/Floodplain Management and Insurance
Panel Discussion: Executive Panel: Regional Policy Challenges and Potential Solutions, Day Three
John is currently the Chief of the Floodplain Management and Insurance Branch of the Mitigation Division at FEMA Region X. In this role John is responsible for supervising the work of six individuals who provide information regarding the National Flood Insurance Program to community officials, individuals, and various other stakeholders throughout the region. The branch chief oversees the workloads, budgets, and performance of the staff as well as oversees grants that are provided to each state to help administer the NFIP. He also works closely with FEMA Headquarters, other regions, and other Federal agencies with regards to developing policy and guidance regarding the implemention of the NFIP. John currently sits on the Steering Committee of the Puget Sound Federal Caucus.
John previously served as the Senior NFIP Specialist for FEMA Region X. In that role, John was the team lead for the floodplain management specialists in which he provides advice on difficult compliance issues. The Senior NFIP Specialist also elevates issues to the Branch Chief for decisions or additional elevation. John has also been the project manager leading the effort to integrate the Endangered Species Act (ESA) into the NFIP within Puget Sound and the State of Oregon. John has also held positions with FEMA Region X as a Map Modernization Specialist and a Floodplain Management Specialist.
Prior to joining FEMA John worked as a contractor at Dewberry and Davis, producing Letters of Map Change and in the FEMA Map Assistance Center as a Senior Map Specialist. John has been a Certified Floodplain Manager (CFM) since 2002 and has received several awards for his work on the integration of the ESA into the NFIP.
John has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Geography from the University of Maryland. He lives in Marysville, Washington with his wife Jessi and their 2 children, Josselyn and Jaxon. When not at work John enjoys hockey, listening to music and watching a good movie.
Dr. Stan Gregory
Emeritus Professor and Distinguished Professor of Fisheries, Department of Fisheries & Wildlife, Oregon State University
Panel Discussion: Influence of Floodplain Processes on Cold Water Habitats, Day Two
Dr. Stan Gregory has been a faculty member in the Oregon State University Department of Fisheries & Wildlife since 1981 and has been a leader of the Stream Team at Oregon State for more than three decades. He has studied streams, rivers, and lakes in the Pacific Northwest, and has been leading studies of the Willamette River for the last 20 years. He has taught undergraduate and graduate courses in the study of limnology and freshwater ecology at OSU for more than 30 years. His fields of expertise include stream ecosystems, landscape perspectives for stream ecosystems, influence of human activities on ecosystem structure and function, and development of restoration perspectives and practices that are consistent with natural stream processes. His research with David Hulse produced a book titled “Willamette Basin Atlas: Trajectories of Environmental and Ecological Change” in 2002 and a special issue in Ecological Applications in 2004. He was co-chair and member of the Independent Multidisciplinary Science Team for the state of Oregon and currently serves on the Independent Scientific Advisory Board for the Northwest Power and Conservation Council.
Senior Policy Advisor, Bonneville Power Administration
Executive Panel: Regional Policy Challenges and Potential Solutions, Day Three
Lydia Grimm has been the Senior Policy Advisor to the Administrator of the Bonneville Power Administration, with a focus on salmon and environmental issues, since May of 2015. She started her Bonneville career in 2003 as an attorney working on fish and wildlife protection and mitigation matters, and was part of the federal team that negotiated the historic Columbia Basin Fish Accords signed in 2008 between federal agencies, tribes and states addressing hydro system operations, off-site habitat and other actions to benefit salmon and other fish and wildlife species. Lydia has also served as the manager of BPA’s environmental planning (NEPA) organization, responsible for most of the environmental and cultural resources analysis and compliance work for projects and programs in all BPA program areas. Prior to coming to BPA, Lydia was the Executive Director of the non-profit Low Impact Hydropower Institute. She has also served as an attorney for the US Forest Service in San Francisco, and for the Office of the Solicitor (Division of Indian Affairs) at the US Department of Interior in Washington DC, working on a wide variety of federal natural resource and Indian law issues, with a particular focus on resource protection in non-federal hydropower licensing proceedings. She earned an undergraduate degree in anthropology from UC Berkeley, and her law degree from Northwestern School of Law at Lewis and Clark College, with a certificate in environmental law.
Adjunct Professor, System Science Program & Psychology Dept, Portland State University
Presentation: Overview of Public Perception, Social Behavior and the Media and Need for Regional Outreach Strategies, Day Three
As a Systems Psychologist, David’s interests and background span broadly within psychology and across disciplines, including systems thinking, ecopsychology, perception, cognition, consciousness, neuroscience, sleep and dreams, group and organizational dynamics, change processes and social movements, dialogue, concept mapping, the use and misuse of psychometrics, the interplay between human and ecological health, Indigenous Knowledge systems, permaculture and bioregionalism. Integrating these interests, he has largely invested his studies, advocacy, and professional work towards developing a deeper understanding of the concept of sustainability and practical strategies to embody such a concept. This focus included his dissertation, which led to the creation of the community-based multi-media project, Native Perspectives on Sustainability: Voices from Salmon Nation (see www.nativeperspectives.net). David earned his Ph.D. in Systems Science: Psychology and M.S. in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from PSU, and his B.S. in Psychology from the University of Oregon. He still has a lot to learn. David is currently an Adjunct Professor in the Systems Science Program and Psychology Department at Portland State University. Outside PSU, David is a facilitator and organizational consultant and continues to be active in community-based efforts to cultivate holistic sustainability. He is grateful for the opportunity to live in the extraordinary bio-cultural region of Salmon Nation and is humbled by its stories.
Presentation: Columbia River Basin Interests: Panel Discussion, Day Two
Gary’s dad and uncle started the farm which he joined in 1976, originally growing row crops. Over the last two decades he has been farming along side his son Steve. Their crops have evolved to hazelnuts, grass seed, squash, and garlic. Gary has also served on multiple Ag related boards.
Fish and Wildlife Department Director, Kootenai Tribe of Idaho
Presentation: Kootenai River Habitat Restoration Program: A Tribal Approach to Large-Scale Ecosystem-Based River Restoration, Day Two
Ms. Ireland received her undergraduate degree from University of Idaho and her M.S. in Fish and Wildlife Management from Montana State University. She has had the honor of working for the Kootenai Tribe of Idaho since 1996 as their Fish and Wildlife Department Director. She is involved in the restoration of the endangered Kootenai River white sturgeon, burbot, and other native fish and wildlife populations and their habitats in the Kootenai drainage, a transboundary system that crosses international, state and provincial borders with multiple jurisdictions.
Chairman, Cowlitz Indian Tribe
Presentation: Welcome and Introductions of Tribal, First Nation, and Intertribal Organization Conference Hosts, Day One
Elected to the Tribal Council in 1993, Vice Chairman in 2006, Chairman in 2008, Re-elected as Chairman in 2009 to present. Economic Development Committee Chair, Professional engineer, structural design, project management, personnel management and operations management of public utilities and public works facilities such as roads, bridges, sewers, buildings, parks, and other municipal facilities, also specializing in environmental regulations.
Appointed by Governor Gary Locke to the Lewis and Clark 200 Year Commemoration Commission, representing Western Washington Tribes at the White House Celebration, July 4, 2002. Helped achieve federal Recognition of the Tribe and served as the Economic Development Committee Chair, providing leadership in the tribes? economic development project on its Initial Reservation. Responsible to the General Council for the tribal operations in Administration, Natural Resources, Cultural Resources, Financial Operation, Tribal Gaming Authority and Health and Human Services. Attended Tribal White House Conferences in 2009 and 2010, testified before the Congress on Tribal Land issues. Worked at the national and local level with the US Congress, House and Senate, Department of Interior, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the National Congress of American Indians, The National Indian Gaming Association, The Indian Gaming Regulatory Commission, the Washington Indian Gaming Association, The Indian Health Service, HUD, EPA, DOC, DOJ, the Governor?s Office, the State Legislature and many others on many Cowlitz Tribal issues needed to improve services for tribal members, restoration of the tribe, to provide self-sufficiency leading to economic independence for the tribe.
Andrew K. Johnsen
Assistant Vice President – Community Affairs, BNSF Railway
Panel: Columbia River Basin Interests, Day Two
Andrew Johnsen was named Assistant Vice President – Community Affairs in May 2014. In this role, he is responsible for leading BNSF Railway’s initiative to strengthen ties at local and regional levels across the railway’s network. This includes a first-in-the-industry Tribal Relations team. Andrew joined BNSF in January 2005 as Director of Government Affairs, for the Pacific Northwest. In February 2007, he was promoted to Assistant Vice President – State Government Affairs.
Prior to BNSF, Andrew served in positions in state and federal government. He was Executive Policy Advisor to Washington Governor Gary Locke (1999-2005), serving as the Governor’s transportation advisor and managing his transportation agenda, which included passage of landmark reforms and a $4.3 billion transportation improvement act. At the federal level, Andrew was policy analyst and project manager at the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Volpe National Transportation Systems Center, in Cambridge, Mass (1990-1999). He began his career in the office of U.S. Congressman John Miller (R-WA), serving in key roles including senior legislative assistant for budget/appropriations, transportation and infrastructure (1986-1990).
Research Forester, Office of Research and Development, Environmental Protection Agency
Presentation: Climate Resiliency and Salmon Recovery in the South Fork Nooksack River, WA: A Tribal Partnership, Day Two
Steve Klein is a Research Forester with the U.S. EPA Office of Research and Development (ORD) in Corvallis, OR. His current research focus is Climate Change Adaptation, Water, Forests and Natural Resource Planning. Steve has a B.A. in Forest Management from Mississippi State University (1978), completed post-graduate studies at the Silvicultural Institute; Oregon State University – University of Washington (1984) and holds a certificate in Strategic Planning; American Management Association (1990). He worked for the U.S. Forest Service from 1979 to 1986 on the Umpqua and Winema National Forests in Oregon. Steve has also worked for EPA in various technical and management positions including, Superfund Washington D.C., ORD Washington D.C. and ORD Newport, OR. He is an active member of the Society of American Foresters (SAF) and the American Society of Adaptation Professionals (ASAP).
Deputy Associate Director, Drought and Conservation, White House Council on Environmental Quality
Morning Keynote, Day Three
Steven Kopecky has over 17 years of experience working on large scale ecosystem restoration efforts including Puget Sound, Chesapeake Bay, Great Lakes, and Everglades Restoration. He currently serves as the Deputy Associate Director for Drought and Conservation at the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ). In his current role, Steve has helped advance initiatives to restore Salmon Habitat in Puget Sound, reduce nutrient runoff from Chesapeake Bay farms, and help prevent the spread of invasive species. He also represents CEQ on the National Drought Resilience Partnership. Prior to working at CEQ, Steve served as the Deputy Chief of the Northwestern Division?s Regional Integration Team at the Headquarters, Army Corps of Engineers. In that role, Steve was responsible for coordinating numerous Civil Works activities along the Missouri and Columbia River Basins. Highlights included major Army Corps initiatives to improve fish passage along the Columbia and Missouri Rivers, several major environmental restoration efforts in the Puget Sound watershed, and a variety of actions to help maintain navigation and flood damage reduction in these waterways. Prior to this role, Steve spent 8 years as the Everglades Restoration Program Manager, charged with implementing the Army Corps $13.8 billion restoration effort in Central and South Florida. During his tenure, he was instrumental in initiating construction on several major projects throughout the program, as well as developing the $1.8 billion Central Everglades initiative. In addition, he has served in a variety of contingency efforts, including deployments to Afghanistan and Hurricane Katrina response. He holds an undergraduate degree in Geography from Colgate University, and a Master?s Degree from the Pennsylvania State University.
Manager, Science, Fish and Wildlife Division, City of Portland Bureau of Environmental Services
Panel Discussion: Innovative Floodplain Restoration Initiatives and Partnerships, Day Two
Since 2007, Kaitlin has managed the Science Integration Division for the City of Portland Bureau of Environmental Sciences, which provides ecological, biological and water quality technical assistance on watershed policy, projects, and planning efforts, including watershed monitoring; and oversees the City’s efforts under the Endangered Species Act. Kaitlin is currently a co-lead for the FEMA BiOp and is a co-author of the recently adopted Climate Change Preparation Strategy and its companion, the Climate Change Risk and Vulnerabilities Assessment. Kaitlin has a B.S in Environmental Science from Bucknell University and a J.D from Cornell Law School and is currently licensed to practice in Oregon and New York.
Executive Director, Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission
Paul Lumley is the Executive Director for the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission (CRITFC) and a citizen of the Yakama Nation, which is located in central Washington State. Mr. Lumley worked at CRITFC from 1987-2004 under several capacities. He returned to CRITFC after 5 years in Washington DC to begin his tenure as executive director on July 1, 2009. Mr. Lumley has an extensive history working with Northwest Tribes on salmon issues, particularly in the Columbia River Basin. Paul Lumley received his Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Western Washington University in 1986.
Matthew J. McKinney, Ph.D.
Adjunct Professor, University of Montana, Universities Consortium on Columbia River Governance
Presentation: Options for Better Columbia River Basin Governance, Day Three
Matthew McKinney is Director of the Center for Natural Resources & Environmental Policy at The University of Montana. He is an Adjunct Professor at the School of Law and Chair of the university-wide graduate program on Natural Resource Conflict Resolution. During the past five years, he co-founded the Practitioners’ Network on Large Landscape Conservation, the Roundtable on the Crown of the Continent, and the Universities Consortium on Columbia River Governance. He also served as a senior advisor to the Secretariat, 6th World Water Forum during 2011-2012.
Matthew has focused on land and water policy and conflict resolution in the U.S. American West for over 25 years. More recently, he works to transfer lessons from the American West to the international community and to harvest lessons from other regions throughout the world to the American West – particularly on issues related to the governance of transboundary land and water, the role of faith-based communities in fostering environmental stewardship, and the value of community-based collaboration in building livable communities, vibrant economies, and healthy landscapes.
From 1993 to 2003, Matthew served as the founding director of the Montana Consensus Council, a small organization embedded in the Office of the Governor to mediate agreements on natural resources and other public policy issues. During the past 25 years, he has mediated over 50 public processes on issues related to water, federal public lands, fish and wildlife, land use, regional planning, large landscape conservation, and other public issues. He has worked with local communities, watershed groups, state and federal governments, elected officials, Native Americans and First Nations, foundations, and a number of international organizations.
Matthew received a Ph.D. in Natural Resources Policy and Conflict Resolution from The University of Michigan; has published over 60 articles, books, and policy reports, including The Western Confluence: A Guide to Governing Natural Resources and Working Across Boundaries: People, Nature, and Regions; and teaches workshops, seminars, and courses on natural resources policy and conflict resolution. He frequently serves as a peer reviewer for the international journal Water Policy and several other journals focused on natural resource policy, conflict resolution, and the relationship of society and natural resources.
Matthew is a Senior Associate, Lincoln Institute of Land Policy; Senior Partner, Consensus Building Institute; Member, U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution; and Member, Board of Advisors, Rocky Mountain Land Use Institute. He was a research fellow at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University and is a member of the Association for Conflict Resolution, International Association for Public Participation, and the IUCN Transboundary Conservation Specialist Group.
When he is not working on natural resource and environmental issues, he can be found hiking, biking, fly-fishing, floating, skiing, golfing, and otherwise enjoying Montana and the West.
EPA Regional Administrator for Region 10
Day Two lunch keynote speaker
Dennis McLerran was appointed by President Barack Obama to serve as the Regional Administrator (RA) for Region 10, leading a staff of 525 employees, with responsibility for an annual budget of $350 million. He was sworn in on February 22, 2010. As RA, Dennis oversees the implementation and enforcement of the federal environmental rules and regulations in the states of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Alaska, including 271 tribal governments in the Pacific Northwest and Alaska.
Before moving to EPA, Dennis served as Executive Director of the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency, a state chartered regional agency that adopts and enforces air quality standards that protect the health of 3.5 million Washington residents. As executive director, he led the development of an innovative strategy to reduce emissions at the ports of Seattle, Tacoma and Metro Vancouver. Prior to that, he served as City Attorney for the City of Port Townsend and Director of the Seattle Department of Construction and Land Use. Dennis has over 25 years’ experience as an advocate, attorney and administrator. Dennis received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington and a J.D. from the Seattle University School of Law.
Senator Jeff Merkley
US Senator, Oregon
Day One lunch keynote speaker
As Oregon’s U.S. Senator, Jeff’s goal is to make Washington work for working Americans. He is fighting to create good jobs for working Oregonians, protect consumers from predatory practices, and ensure that all Oregonians have access to high-quality, affordable education.
Jeff is the son of a millwright and the first in his family to attend college. Born in the timber town of Myrtle Creek, Oregon, Jeff has spent his career fighting to increase opportunities for working families.
After earning an undergraduate degree from Stanford and graduate degree in Public Policy at Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Merkley worked as a national security analyst at the Pentagon and at the Congressional Budget Office.
In 1991 Jeff returned to Oregon to lead Portland’s Habitat for Humanity, a non-profit that empowers low-income families through homeownership. Jeff went on to serve as president of the World Affairs Council in Portland before entering the Oregon House of Representatives in 1998. He became Speaker of the House in 2007.
As Oregon’s House Speaker, Jeff led the most productive legislative session in decades. The legislature increased education funding, expanded access to affordable prescription drugs, passed landmark environmental and energy legislation, established domestic partnerships, cracked down on predatory payday and title lending, and created Oregon’s first ever Rainy Day fund.
In the U.S. Senate, Jeff continues to stand up for working families. He fights to create living- wage jobs and to push back on unfair trade policies that ship Oregon’s jobs overseas. He has worked to make college more affordable and make retirement more secure for seniors. A true reformer, he led an historic coalition to fix the broken Senate by breaking up the gridlock, making it more responsive to the concerns of working families.
Jeff serves on the Senate Committees on Appropriations; Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs; Environment and Public Works; and Budget.
Levee Ready Columbia Program Manager, Multnomah County Drainage District
Presentation: State Land Use and Flood Risk Reduction, Day Three
Sara Morrissey is the program manager for the Levee Ready Columbia (LRC) program at the Multnomah County Drainage District No. 1 (MCDD) in Portland, Oregon. As LRC program manager, Sara oversees a diverse portfolio that includes levee certification assessments and projects related to the Corps’ Rehabilitation and Inspection Program, all while aiming to create a transparent and accountable program office. Sara is also the main contact with the multiple jurisdictional and external partners and keeps a close eye on the pulse of the political climate related to the LRC. Sara helped shepherd and develop the multiple Intergovernmental Agreements between the project partners to fund the remaining elements of the investigation work and diligently identifies funding opportunities for future work at both the local, regional, state and federal level. Sara is a planner, holding a Masters of Urban & Regional Planning from Portland State University. Sara also holds dual B.A in Economics and Spanish from Williams University. Sara has professional experience as a consultant in transportation and natural resource planning and permitting.
Robert J. Naiman
Emeritus Professor, School of Aquatic & Fishery Sciences, University of Washington
Presentation: Importance of Floodplain Foodwebs for Sustaining Riverine Fisheries, Day One
Career highlights include being a research scientist and director of the Matamek Research Program of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, director of the Center for Streamside Studies at the University of Washington, a visiting scientist on numerous occasions with the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (Toulouse, France), and a professor at the Centre of Excellence in Natural Resource Management at the University of Western Australia for several years. My research addresses the structure and dynamics of riverine ecosystems – including riparian vegetation, and the role of large animals in influencing ecosystem dynamics. The research activities laid the foundation for ~10 books on aquatic ecology and watershed management and produced 230+ journal articles. I am an ISI Highly Cited Researcher. In 2008 I was awarded the title of Doctor Honoris Causa by the Université Paul Sabatier, in 2012 I received the Eminent Scientist award from the Ecological Society of America and in 2013 I presented the E. Baldi memorial lecture to the International Society of Limnology. Until recently I chaired the Independent Scientific Advisory Board for the restoration and management of the Columbia River (USA).
Associate Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Washington
Presentation: Columbia River Hydrologic Effects and Ecological Functions, Day One
Bart Nijssen is an associate professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Washington (UW), where he heads the UW Hydro | Computational Hydrology group. After he completed his PhD at the UW, he worked at the University of Arizona and in the private sectror, before returning to the UW in 2011. His research group builds tools to simulate and investigate the terrestrial hydrological cycle and uses these tools for a wide range of hydrologic research projects. He and his group investigate the effects of climate change on the hydrologic cycle, perform near real-time monitoring and forecasting studies for drought and streamflow, simulate the interactions between the various components of the climate system in coupled regional climate models, develop and analyze large datasets, and along the way write a lot of code that they are happy to share with others.
Director, Global Transboundary International Waters Governance Initiative
Panel: Policy and Law: Challenges and Opportunities, Day Three
Panel: Overview of Key Issues from the Workshop and Recommendations for the October Conference, Day Three
Richard Kyle Paisley is Director of the Global Transboundary International Waters Governance Research Initiative at the University of British Columbia, IAR, in Vancouver, Canada. He is also (part time) Advisor on Natural Resources / Wealth Sharing for the United Nations Department of Political Affairs (DPA) Standby Team of Senior Mediation Advisors.
Richard’s academic background includes graduate degrees in natural resources management, law and international law from the University of Washington, Pepperdine University School of Law and London School of Economics & Political Science.
His current research, teaching, graduate supervision and advisory interests include domestic and international water and energy law, negotiations, international business transactions and environmental conflict resolution.
Richard has directed a wide range of conferences, capacity building exercises, negotiations and applied research projects, and been an advisor, trainer and special counsel on these subjects to a wide range of governments, international institutions, non governmental organization; the private sector and aboriginal groups.
He has worked widely throughout Africa, Asia and the Americas and published extensively in the scholarly academic literature. Richard is an avid downhill and cross country skier, cycler, backpacker and kayaker.
Assistant Professor, Oregon Climate Change Research Institute, Oregon State University
Presentation: Overview of Climate Change Impacts to the Basin, Day One
David Rupp is an assistant professor, senior research, of climate science. He studies regional climate (largely, but not exclusively, of the northwest US) and how it is affected by human activity. He is particularly interested in how anthropogenic greenhouse gases impact the hydrological cycle and therefore the ecosystem and water as a human resource. David’s main research tools are global and regional climate models. “One of the exciting aspects of studying climate science is that I collaborate with many people with expertise in different disciplines: biology, forestry, fisheries, natural resources management, human health, hydrology, civil engineering, physics, math, etc.”
David holds a BS in Atmospheric Sciences from the University of Arizona, an MS in Forestry from Northern Arizona University, and a PhD in Water Resources Engineering from Oregon State University. He has held positions as a water resources scientist at the National Institute for Water and Atmospheric Research in New Zealand, water resources consultant for a private company in Portland, and research associate at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, among others.
Marlowe Sam, PhD
Indigenous Studies Faculty, University of British Columbia, Okanagan
Presentation: Cultural Values of Floodplains, Day One
Marlowe Sam is a Wenatchi/Lakes descendent from the Colville Confederated Tribes of Washington State (CCT). Marlowe majored in Indigenous Studies at the University of British Columbia Okanagan and received a B.A. and M.A. with distinction. He defended his doctoral dissertation “Oral Narratives, Customary Law and Indigenous Water Rights in Canada” to earn a Ph.D. majoring in Interdisciplinary Studies from UBC Okanagan. He is the recipient of the Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship. He is currently lecturer in the Indigenous Studies Faculty, Community, Culture & Global Studies, Barber School of Arts and Sciences at the University of British Columbia, Okanagan Campus.
Director, Washington State Department of Agriculture
Presentation: Floodplains and Agriculture, Day Three
Derek I. Sandison was appointed director of the Washington State Department of Agriculture by Gov. Jay Inslee in June 2015.
Sandison, a lifelong Washington resident, has worked in both the public and private sectors for more than 40 years. Before his current appointment, Sandison served as director of the Office of Columbia River within the state Department of Ecology. There, he was responsible for projects to develop water supplies vital for the state’s agricultural community. Previously, he led Ecology’s Central Region, an area composed of seven counties stretching from Canada to Washington’s southern border.
Other career experience includes 14 years as senior vice president of a Northwest consulting firm and 12 years in local government.
As state agriculture director, Sandison supports and promotes Washington’s rich and diverse agricultural industry both nationally and internationally.
Sandison has a master’s of science in natural resource management and a bachelor’s degree in biological science, both from Central Washington University. He has received many awards throughout his career, including the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation’s John W. Keys III Award for building partnerships and strengthening relationships and the Washington Governor’s Leadership in Management Award.
Program Analyst, National Marine Fisheries Service
Presentation: Oregon Reasonable and Prudent Alternatives (RPA): Opportunities and Obstacles, Day Three
Bonnie Shorin has been a Program Analyst with the National Marine Fisheries Service for 16 years. Prior to that, she had been an Environmental Planner with the Washington State Department of Ecology for 11 years, working on Shorelands and Coastal Zone Management, Water Quality, and Floodplain Management issues.
She has a J.D. from the University of Oregon, with certificates in Natural Resource Law, and Ocean and Coastal Law.
Her Undergraduate degree is from Whitman College.
Wilbur Slockish, Jr
Klickitat Chief, Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation; CRITFC Commissioner
Presentation: Cultural Perspective of Floodplains and Climate Change, Day Two
Wilbur Slockish, Jr is the river chief of the Klickitat Tribe, one of the bands that make up the Yakama Nation. He grew up along the Columbia River, fishing there his whole life. He is actively involved in the traditional customs and ceremonies of his tribe and speaks as a voice for not only his people, but for the resources upon which their culture is based.
Mary Lou Soscia
Columbia River Coordinator, EPA Region 10
Presentation: A Vision for Sustainable and Resilient Floodplains, Day One
Mary Lou Soscia is the Columbia River Coordinator for the U.S. EPA Region 10 Office of Water and Watersheds. Mary Lou provides senior EPA representation on Columbia River forums including the Columbia River Federal Caucus and Columbia River Treaty. She led the collaboration for the Oregon Clean Water Act Water Quality Standards human health criteria, the most protective state human health standards in the US. Since 2013, Mary Lou has led the collaboration with Idaho Tribal Governments to address Idaho human health criteria revisions and develop the Idaho Tribal Fish Consumption Survey. Since 2015, Mary Lou has also been leading the development of the proposed Baseline Tribal water quality standards rulemaking. She is a past board member of the Association of State Floodplain Managers. Mary Lou has a B.A. and B.S., Virginia Tech (1975); and M.A., University of Maryland (1982)
General Manager of Development Services at the Regional District of Central Kootenay
Presentation: The Role of Local Government in Flood Management, Day One
Sangita Sudan is the General Manager of Development Services at the Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK). Sangita has been a planner since 2001, first with the British Columbia government and in 2010 joined the RDCK where she oversees several services including land use planning, park planning, GIS, Community Sustainability, Building Inspection, Bylaw Enforcement and the Kootenay Lake Local Conservation Service. Some notable achievements include her hands on experience working with First Nations and multi-stakeholder organizations to develop land use policies, partnerships and projects such as the Kootenay Lake Partnership and the Friends of Kootenay Lake. Sangita also happens to lives on Kootenay Lake where she loves to garden, cook, and is an aspiring writer currently working on her first novel about female pirates.
Executive Director, Okanagan Nation Alliance
Executive Panel: Regional Policy Challenges and Solutions, Day Three
Pauline Terbasket is a proud Syilx (Okanagan) woman and member of the Syilx Nation. Ms. Terbasket has led her community and her Nation as a elected Band council member of her member Band and most recently as the Executive Director of the Okanagan Nation Alliance. Ms. Terbasket has more than 25 years of experience working for a variety of First Nations organizations and government. In addition to her professional endeavors, she has sat as volunteer board member with numerous local and regional organizations and societies including the BC Native Women’s Society, En’owkin Centre, UBC Okanagan, Aboriginal Peoples Family Accord and the Ki-low-Na Friendship Society. Ms. Terbasket was also appointed to the Okanagan College Board of Governors. A strong advocate for social change, she has committed herself to tackling difficult issues confronting the prosperity and wellness of Indigenous people. Ms. Terbasket believes that the revitalization of Indigenous cultures and language is critical to self-determination and survival of Indigenous peoples. In recent years she also dedicated her volunteer efforts from 2007- 2011 as Chair of the First Peoples Cultural Foundation and has become an active member of Slow Foods International, advocating for Indigenous Food Sovereignty and Food Security efforts around the Globe.
Principal, Mountain Station Consultants, Nelson, British Columbia
Presentation: Riparian Response to an Alternative Arrow Reservoir Operational Regime in the Upper Columbia River, Day One
Alan Thomson is a licensed professional engineer in British Columbia and has over 25 years of consulting experience in water and environmental management in western and central Canada. He consults to all levels of government, First Nations, utilities and the private sector concerning water resources and environmental impact mitigation in hydrogenation, mining, forestry and fisheries sectors. Over the last three years he and a team of Canadian Columbia River Basin experts have studied Arrow Lakes Reservoir literature, data and operations to develop possible alternative Arrow Reservoir operations that may enhance ecosystem function while maintaining power generation and flood risk management functions.
Author and Speaker, President of the Lower Columbia Chapter of the Ice Age Floods Institute
Presentation: Historical Introduction of the Columbia River Basin Shaped by the Missoula Floods, Day One
A native Oregonian, Mr. Thompson loves to share the beauty and natural history of the great Northwest.
Being intrigued by the land formations, huge boulders and glacial erratics in this area he embarked on a 20-year study of the effects in NW Oregon and SW Washington of the largest ice age flood which propelled over 500 cubic miles of water, ice, rock and mud across eastern Washington, raced through the Columbia River Gorge, covered the Willamette Valley with up to 400 feet of water and left gravel bars miles wide and hundreds of feet high, giant current ripples, many flood channels and dotted the land with glacial erratics – rocks not indigenous to this area. Though geology is not his profession, the Lake Missoula Floods have become his passion.
Mr. Thompson is President of the Lower Columbia Chapter of the Ice Age Floods Institute which holds monthly public educational meetings in Tualatin. He was instrumental in identifying and securing signage for several significant glacial erratics in Washington County; has been interviewed for a number of newspaper articles and was twice featured on Grant McOmie’s “Grant’s Getaways” television program.
He has created self-guided driving tours based on his field trips and has authored two books: “The Hunt for Iceberg Erratics” and “GigaFlood – The Largest of the Lake Missoula Floods in Northwest Oregon and Southwest Washington” which is illustrated with his own photographs, maps and diagrams to show you the evidence still visible today from this catastrophic flood which so affected the Northwest.
Program Manager, Okanagan Nation Alliance Fisheries Department
Presentation: Okanagan River Restoration Initiative, Day Two
Howie Wright is the Program Manager at the Okanagan Nation Alliance Fisheries Department and provides policy/ program oversight and direction of the fisheries program. He has a Masters of Science in Resource Management and Environmental Studies program with the Institute for Resources and Environmental Studies at the University of British Columbia and is a member of the Canadian Okanagan Basin Technical Working Group. He is involved in project and contract management, staff oversight, participation in transboundary technical sessions and liaises between First Nations, Provincial and Federal fish agencies.