Ryan Houston: Executive Director
Ryan has been leading the Watershed Council since 2001. During this time, Ryan has carried the organization through a five-fold expansion of its programs, developed more than $7 million in community-based restoration and managed over 20 habitat restoration projects. Before joining the UDWC, Ryan was a Senior Associate with Sycamore Associates LLC, focused on restoration and management of wetlands and endangered species in Northern California. Ryan has also worked as a Field Ecologist for The Nature Conservancy, and as a Research Assistant at the Smithsonian Institution of Natural History in Washington, D.C. Ryan holds a M.S. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Arizona and a B.S. in Environmental Science, Policy and Management from the University of California, Berkeley.
Email Ryan | P: 541.382.6103 ext. 32
Kolleen Miller: Education Director
Kolleen has taught environmental education courses throughout Alaska, Washington, and Oregon, and worked as the program manager for the Alaska Center for the Environment prior to joining the UDWC in 2002. Kolleen has trained and managed staff and volunteers within the context of watershed education, and has coordinated riparian restoration projects, water quality monitoring studies, and collaborative conservation education programs. She was the editor for UDWC’s Upper Deschutes Subbasin Assessment (2003) and The Place We Cross the Water: Whychus Creek (2007). Kolleen holds a B.A in English from the University of California, Santa Barbara and a M.A. degree in English Studies with an emphasis in Ecocritical Analysis from Western Washington University. As the Education Director for UDWC, Kolleen develops and directs the environmental education programs for the Watershed Council in addition to providing leadership for many community-based watershed education projects in Central Oregon.
Email Kolleen | P: 541.382.6103 ext. 33
Mathias Perle: Project Manager
Mathias has a diverse background in project management in environmental and water resource consulting. Before joining the UDWC in 2008, Mathias worked with Newton Consultants, Inc. concentrating on forming strong ties with Deschutes Basin stakeholders and implementing projects in water resources, conservation and groundwater. Mathias holds an M.S. in Hydrologic Sciences and an M.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering both from the University of California, Davis and a B.S. in Geology from the University of Delaware.
Email Mathias | P: 541.382.6103 ext. 37
Lauren Mork: Monitoring Coordinator
Lauren came to UDWC from Flagstaff, AZ, where she collaborated with the Grand Canyon Trust and Kaibab National Forest to study the effects of post-fire livestock grazing and management in southwestern forests. Lauren previously worked extensively in outdoor and environmental science education, including seven years with Outward Bound as a course director and instructor, where she facilitated staff and participant groups to develop and achieve common goals and objectives in wilderness, workplace, and family settings. She also worked as a field technician for the Institute for Bird Populations. Lauren holds a M.S. in Environmental Sciences and Policy from Northern Arizona University and a B.A. in French Language and Literature from Earlham College.
Email Lauren | P: 541.382.6103 ext. 39
Kelly Beck: Field Instructor
Kelly has been working in the education field for over 15 years as a classroom teacher, tutor, reading specialist, and art instructor. Kelly received her BA in Art Education and her K-12 teaching endorsement from Humboldt State University and has taught in California, Oregon, and Montana. She served as the Early Childhood Art Educator at the Art Station in Bend, Oregon for two years and joined the Upper Deschutes Watershed Council in August 2012. She combines her love of art, nature, and teaching while inspiring students to learn about and connect with the world around them.
Email Kelly | P: 541.382.6103 ext. 35
Erin Barnholdt: Program Assistant
Erin has worked for conservation non-profits in Oregon since 2002; including The Nature Conservancy, Oregon Natural Desert Association, and Trout Unlimited. Whether it is managing a 14,000 acre nature preserve, counting steelhead redds, or removing barbed wired from wilderness areas, Erin is passionate about connecting people to nature and preserving natural areas. She joins the UDWC to assist in event planning, grant support, and partnership building. Erin has her B.A. in Art and Environmental Studies from St. Olaf College and her M.S. in Rangeland Ecology and Watershed Management from the University of Wyoming.
Email Erin | P: 541.382.6103 ext. 36