Columbia Land Trust strives to employ great people. Our scientists, stewardship staff, conservation practitioners, and advancement team are among the best in their fields. More important, they are connected to their communities and deeply invested in the future of the Northwest. Our staff is committed to working with integrity and listening to many points of view, even those that differ from our own. We believe that it’s only by coming together, by finding common ground with the wonderfully diverse people who live and work in our region, that we all can create a Northwest that will endure.
Steve CookEmail Steve Cook
As our general counsel, Steve brings trenchant legal insight to every aspect of our stewardship and conservation work. He also works closely with our Board of Directors and is responsible for maintaining accreditation. Steve has worked in land conservation for over 15 years, and joined our staff in 2013 after many years of private law practice. Steve loves to hike, grow his own food, cook, and write.
Amy CostelloEmail Amy Costello
Amy has worked for nonprofits since 1998, and has been with Columbia Land Trust since 2010. Amy oversees our organizational systems and employee programs. Outside of the office, she likes to spend time with her family.
Cherie KearneyEmail Cherie Kearney
As one of the Land Trust's first employees, Cherie's thoughtfulness and experience infuse our work. Today, Cherie is our forestry conservation director, where she puts her collaborative spirit toward conserving working forestland and large landscapes. She's our go-to person for heading up conservation projects that initially seem complex—or even impossible. Cherie is a runner, boater, hiker, sailor, and all-around lover of life.Read Stories by Cherie Kearney
Glenn LambEmail Glenn Lamb
Part of the all-volunteer board that founded Columbia Land Trust in 1990, Glenn became its first executive director in 1998, a position that he still holds. Glenn has led the Land Trust through 26 years of growth and currently serves on the Land Trust Alliance's National Council. Glenn is a believer in the land’s ability to uplift the human spirit.Read Stories by Glenn Lamb
Dan RoixEmail Dan Roix
Dan has spent the last eight years leading the Land Trust’s conservation work in the Portland-Vancouver area and moved into the role as our conservation director in 2016. Before joining us, he spent three years with the Sierra Foothill Conservancy. He plays both basketball and bluegrass.
Ian SinksEmail Ian Sinks
Ian is charged with the care and management of all of Columbia Land Trust’s lands—no small job. From conducting site evaluations to exhaustive long-term management plans to executing complex habitat-restoration projects, Ian makes sure our lands are the best they can be. A Land Trust employee since 2000, he lives with his family in a wooded retreat along Gee Creek in Washington.
Mitch AttigEmail Mitch Attig
After spending nearly five years as a stewardship assistant and land steward at Columbia Land Trust, Mitch transitioned into the role of GIS Coordinator in April of 2020. Growing up in Oregon, Mitch garnered a strong appreciation for the Pacific Northwest and the ecosystems that we are all lucky to experience here. A lifelong fisherman and sports fan, Mitch tries to spend as much time as possible in the outdoors.
Adam BaekEmail Adam Baek
Adam Baek grew up in Portland Oregon with his twin brother and two sisters, always playing games and spending time with friends and family. He enjoys rollerskating, riding motorcycles and (attempts) DJ’ing. Traveling is something important to Adam, and it was because of his trip to Peru that he found a strong interest in conservation. He remembers being in the Amazon rainforest and learning about tradition, culture, and environmental inequity. Outside of work, Adam engages and educates youth as a mentor for the Blueprint Foundation.
Chris BeanEmail Chris Bean
In March of 2020, Chris brought his passion for fundraising to the Land Trust. He collaborates with the Advancement team to help build revenue that advances the mission of the entire organization. As a Pacific Northwest native, Chris has an affinity for its vast greenery, fresh air, and remarkable mountains.Read Stories by Chris Bean
Debbie BertholdEmail Debbie Berthold
Debbie joined the Land Trust in 2015 with 20 years of experience in non-profit accounting and a passion for the health of our wonderful earth. She's thrilled to work alongside like-minded folks doing work she cherishes. Outside the office, Debbie loves to walk with her dog, Hannah, and tend to the mini-forest on her apartment balcony.
Mary BushmanEmail Mary Bushman
Mary has worked with the Land Trust over the course of the last 12 years across several programs. She provided technical assistance to launch the Backyard Habitat program; she is the guardian of a beautiful bit of oak habitat in the east end of the Columbia Gorge under the guidance of a conservation easement; and in 2018 she came on board as the coordinator for the East Cascades Oak Partnership out of the Hood River office. Her weekends have been fully engaged with building a strawbale house for the last 6 years!
Kate ConleyEmail Kate Conley
A true champion of collaboration, Kate came to the Land Trust in 2013 after five years leading the Wasco County Watershed Councils. Based out of our Hood River office, Kate stewards our Oregon-side gorge properties, from rolling hills near The Dalles to Hood River’s Powerdale Corridor near her own backyard. Hula hooping makes Kate happy.Read Stories by Kate Conley
Lindsay CorneliusEmail Lindsay Cornelius
Since 2002, Lindsay has headed up a wide array of restoration and land-management projects in the East Cascades, including the (ongoing) removal of eight miles of road from the Klickitat River floodplain. A writer and storyteller at heart, Lindsay enjoys exploring with her family and her llamas from her home base in White Salmon.Read Stories by Lindsay Cornelius
Dan FrieszEmail Dan Friesz
Dan rejoined Columbia Land Trust in 2016 as a natural area manager, where he works closely with our Vancouver Lake lowlands project. For nearly 26 years, Dan has studied Washington's plants and animals from alpine forests and meadows to desert shrub steppe, and even coastal estuaries. Undoubtedly, his passion in life is restoring degraded habitats—especially wetlands. Either on land or water, he enjoys exploring nature with his son and friends.Read Stories by Dan Friesz
Helen GavrilovEmail Helen Gavrilov
Helen started her career at Columbia Land Trust in 2019 as the Administrative Assistant. In 2021, she joined the Stewardship Team as a Stewardship Assistant. She is passionate about conservation and loves helping her team care for and restore our conserved lands. Helen is currently pursuing an undergraduate degree in Fisheries and Wildlife Science and aspires to be a restoration ecologist. When not working or studying, she loves adventuring outdoors with her family, watching native plants grow in her tiny backyard habitat, and enjoying the phenomenal food and drinks of the Pacific Northwest.
Sanoe KeliinoiEmail Sanoe Keliinoi
Sanoe loves combining her love of conservation with building meaningful relationships with our easement landowners. Besides being outdoors, Sanoe enjoys pizza-ing, puzzling & petting puppies!Read Stories by Sanoe Keliinoi
Emily MatsonEmail Emily Matson
Emily has worked as a land steward since 2014. Before joining the Land Trust she worked on habitat restoration projects for watershed councils and a local stormwater utility. Her master's degree research took her to the Ecuadorian Andes, where she studied grassland plants at an elevation of 12,000 feet. When she's not traveling, Emily enjoys being home in the Northwest and caring for her flock of backyard chickens.
Keely McIntyreEmail Keely McIntyre
Originally from the green mountains of Vermont, Keely has called the Pacific Northwest home since 1999. She has spent much of her grant writing career as an advocate and fundraiser for the arts, and performed with local dance companies herself for a decade and a half. She is thrilled to join Columbia Land Trust in 2019 and looks forward to using her skills towards the advancement of conservation in the region. When she’s not exploring Portland’s culinary bounty, she enjoys camping, hiking, and kayaking with her family.
Lydia MendozaEmail Lydia Mendoza
Lydia joined the Columbia Land Trust in 2018 with a background in development for land conservation and a Master of Forestry degree from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Lydia leads the Land Trust’s conservation work in the Coast Range and Estuaries region. When not working, she is excited to explore her new home in Astoria and the greater Pacific Northwest.
Tanya MikkelsonEmail Tanya Mikkelson
A recent transplant from Minneapolis, Minnesota, Tanya started with Columbia Land Trust in 2016. Bringing over four years of fundraising experience, she loves using events as a platform to bring nonprofit’s missions to life. While she’s not planning the next great party, you can find Tanya hiking with her family, cooking, or cozying up with a good book.Read Stories by Tanya Mikkelson
Marian OharaEmail Marian Ohara
Born and raised in Okinawa, Japan, Marian moved around the Northeast, South, and Northwest before settling in the Portland area in 2015. She has worked at non-profit organizations in development since 1994, specializing in Raiser’s Edge database software. Marian spends her free time reading or checking out new places and foods to try with her husband.
Brieanna PanteleEmail Brieanna Pantele
Brieanna joined Columbia Land Trust in 2016. Originally from southern California, Brieanna worked in administration for six years and brings her passion for the work to our non-profit. Out of the office, she enjoys exploring her new home and everything the Pacific Northwest has to offer.
Susie PetersonEmail Susie Peterson
Susie is passionate about helping community members create vibrant and beautiful spaces in their yards and neighborhoods. Before joining the Land Trust she worked at Friends of Trees helping neighbors at community planting events. Susie loves nearly any outdoor activity, but especially enjoys hiking, camping, birdwatching, and looking for interesting flora and fauna.Read Stories by Susie Peterson
Dez RamirezEmail Dez Ramirez
Originally from Southern California, Dez has spent the last six years in Portland, growing, learning and fostering a diverse community. Prior to coming to Columbia Land Trust in 2018, she spent four years at Wieden+Kennedy, where she launched the travel website for women of color, On She Goes. Committed to diversifying conservation and outdoor recreation, Dez is out in the field, meeting people, storytelling, hiking, camping, road tripping, and whitewater rafting as much as possible.Read Stories by Dez Ramirez
Rachael LoomisEmail Rachael Loomis
Rachael joined the Land Trust in 2019 after moving to the Pacific Northwest from Southern California. She provides administrative support to her team at the Backyard Habitats Program. In her free time, she enjoys exploring outdoors, working on diy projects, and tending to her plants. Passionate about animals and nature, Rachael is dedicated to helping inspire others to care for the natural world.
Austin TomlinsonEmail Austin Tomlinson
Austin was raised on the northern Oregon Coast, where he returned after graduating from Humboldt State University with a degree in soil science. He has worked for various conservation organizations throughout the Northwest, many of which specialized in restoration of riparian, forestry, and wetland habitats as well as agricultural impacts to water quality. Austin enjoys surfing, fishing, and hunting.
Nate UlrichEmail Nate Ulrich
Nate manages our land acquisitions east of the Cascades out of the Hood River office. He has a Masters in Landscape Architecture from the University of Oregon with an emphasis on development of conservation tools that facilitate landowner and community priorities. He mostly gardens.
Ian WintersEmail Ian Winters
Born and raised in the woods of New Hampshire, Ian joined the Land Trust in 2019 bringing a passion for world-saving projects. He has managed fiscal & contract operations for various social service non-profits since 2002, most recently in Santa Cruz, CA. In his free time, Ian is a tax accountant, hot springs enthusiast and dance–party DJ.
Jennifer ZarnochEmail Jennifer Zarnoch
Since 2010, Jennifer has managed, monitored, and cared for our lands in our stewardship department, where she applies her keen mind in the management of our land-information systems. Her previous work includes consultant work with the Golden Gate National Recreation Area and natural area management with the Washington State Department of Natural Resources. She spends her free time marveling at her young son, growing food, and getting outside as much as possible.