Who Are We?
Board members see themselves as “responsible advocates” for the resource. We view the North Umpqua Foundation as a river-focused organization that informs and educates, distills ideas, provides analyses, and serves our donors, the community, and the river. We work to involve people in river appreciation and protection by offering hands-on activities, but also work on behalf of those members living elsewhere who cannot participate directly.
Directors of The North Umpqua Foundation have a set of values that influence how they view the river. Collectively those values help to shape how the Foundation defines itself and conducts its work. Values include:
- Appreciation of the unique, wild nature and extraordinary landscape of the North Umpqua River, especially compared to experiences living and working in urban areas.
- The need to tread lightly in choices we make about recreating and living on the river.
- The experience and belief that river lovers are wonderful people.
- Emphasis on working collaboratively to seek workable solutions.
- Belief that there is more to life than economic activity; that nature is food for the soul, and we are diminished without its contact.
- Education is essential, and media involvement is critical.
- Belief that rivers should function as naturally as possible.
- Belief that the North Umpqua River is a national treasure, and greater protection will come from letting more people know about it.
Board of Directors
The North Umpqua Foundation has assembled a talented, multi-disciplinary board of dedicated conservationists who live in the Umpqua Basin or have strong connections to the watershed. Board members include:
Jon Kurtz, President - Jon has lived and fished on the North Umpqua for over thirty years. He has owned and operated a plumbing & mechanical contracting business in Roseburg since 1977. A contributing member of TNUF since its inception, he is also a member of and supporter of the following: Oregon Trout, Trout Unlimited, The Steelhead Society of British Columbia, Pacific Rivers Council, Greater Yellowstone Coalition, The Nature Conservancy, The Trust for Public Lands and myriad other environmental and conservation organizations.
Rich Grost, Vice President - Rich is an Aquatic Scientist and North Umpqua Resident. He was born and raised in Michigan but has migrated through Wyoming, Alaska, and Washington on his way to settling on the North Umpqua River in 1997. He has a Master’s Degree with an emphasis on fisheries research and management, work experience throughout the Northwest, and currently is employed by PacifiCorp Energy at the North Umpqua Hydroelectric Project where he helps to improve passage, flows, and habitat for native fish. An active Life Member of the American Fisheries Society, he also supports many other conservation groups but especially appreciates the emphasis of TNUF on his home river. Rich is an accomplished underwater photographer specializing in images of trout and salmon from his backyard, many of which have been published nationally. He and his wife Karen manage several vacation rental houses along a secluded, wild reach of river in Idleyld Park (NorthUmpquaRetreat.com).
Michael Morrison, Secretary – Mike is a 1976 graduate of the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, and a partner in the Eureka, California law firm of Janssen, Malloy, Needham, Morrison, Reinholtsen, Crowley & Griego, LLP, with a litigation practice in the state and federal courts throughout Northern California. Mike is an avid fly fisher and river enthusiast. He is also a past member of the California State Bar Standing Committee on the Environment, and a current member of CalTrout, Pacific Rivers Council, and KS Wild (Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center). He also serves on the Board of Directors of Legal Services of Northern California.
Garry Kenny PhD, Treasurer – Garry has been fishing the North Umpqua river since he taught himself to swim below his Grandparents home near Idleyld Park when he was six years old. He holds a PhD in Physics and was founder and President of MSS, Inc. a recycling equipment development and manufacturing firm. He has served on three Boards and currently serves on the TNUF Board, as well as on the Board of a large US recycling system manufacturing firm.
Karl Konecny, Board Member - Karl is an engineer and founding partner of Northwest Motion Products. His love of rivers and wild lands has its roots in a lifetime of fishing, backpacking, and canoeing. Karl lives in Glide, Oregon.
Peter DeLuca, Board Member – Since 1996, Peter has served as Administrator of the Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Division, overseeing a staff of 250. For 29 years, Peter's career has centered on management/labor relations and workplace issues, mostly in government. He spent five years as Attorney-in-Charge of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the Oregon Department of Justice. Pete is a life-long fly fisher, having fished the North Umpqua for 20 years. He is a member of Federation of Fly Fishers, Oregon Trout, American Rivers, the Nature Conservancy and a host of other environmental concerns.
James Ratzlaff, Board Member
John Kober, Board Member - John is the executive director of Pacific Rivers Council. He has spent much of his life advocating for the protection and restoration of native fish, wildlife and their habitats. Over the last 15 years his professional passion has focused on the protecting native fish and wild rivers. Prior to joining PRC he worked for the National Wildlife Federation and was chair of the Save Our Wild Salmon Coalition board of directors. John's passion for river and watershed protection emanates from his lifelong experience as an angler. For over 15 years he worked as a fly fishing guide and outfitter in his home state of Montana. John has worked for the Montana State Legislature and has worked on a number of political campaigns and initiatives. In 1997 he went to work for the Montana Wildlife Federation, retired his outfitting business and has dedicated his career to protecting the environment.
Jim Van Loan, Board Member – Jim has been the owner of Steamboat Inn for the past 36 years, (as well as dishwasher). He was appointed to the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission in 1987, serving for eight years. He was a founder of The North Umpqua Foundation, Oregon Trout, Wild Steelhead Magazine, and has been a member of The Steamboaters for 30 years. He has served as a board member for the Wild Salmon Center and Pacific Rivers Council. He is a lifetime member of Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and the Oregon Hunters Association.
Scott Goodwin, Board Member – Scott has been an associate at his family-owned dairy business most of his life. He is a life-long fly fisherman including close to 30 years fishing the North Umpqua. Scott is a life member of the Federation of Fly Fishers and a member of the Native Fish Society.
Patricia Lee, Board Member – Pat has extensive background in business and accounting and is a partner in Steamboat Inn on the North Umpqua River. In addition Pat is an avid fly-fisherman, birder and has a small letterpress print shop. She has served on several boards and committees involving natural resource issues and currently serves on the boards of The Family Development Center and Cooking for Charity in addition to doing extensive fundraising in her local community.
Charles Spooner, Board Member – Retired from University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, Charles is an active consultant in medical research and education as Professor Emeritus and Associate Dean Emeritus. He is a member of American Fisheries Society, charter member Federation of Fly Fishers, and board member of The Steamboaters. He has participated in a number of river and salmonid spawning surveys.
Peter Tronquet, Board Member – Peter is currently a board member of the Native Fish Society and The Steamboaters. He is involved on an advisory committee to establish the Jefferson Nature Center in Medford, and volunteers for the Oregon Trout Salmon Watch educational program.
Brian Light, Board Member – Brian is a chef in Portland, Oregon who has many years of experience in the hospitality business. In his off time he enjoys traveling to new locations to fish for many different species of fish. Closer to home, Brian spends much time fly fishing for anadromous fish. Brian has been past president of the Flyfisher’s Club of Oregon, member of The Billfish Foundation, Native Fish Society and Trout Unlimited.
Pat McRae, Board Member – Pat graduated with an electrical engineering degree from Oregon State University. In 1971, he joined the Bonneville Power Administration. He retired as an executive in 2001 after helping BPA reorganize to deal with the deregulation of the power industry. Pat grew up in a baseball family and played and coached for years. He is a board member of The Steamboaters, a member of The Native Fish Society and several other conservation organizations. Pat has fished the North Umpqua for 40 years and in 1993, he and his wife, Becky, purchased their home on Lone Rock Road in Glide, Oregon which allows him to fish the river for approximately 130 days a year. Pat has authored several fly fishing magazine articles and has published two books, The North Fork Redemption and The North Umpqua Chronciles…The Secret Diary of a Year on the River. He hates meetings.
Becky McRae, Board Member – Becky received a BS degree in Education from the University of Washington and is currently a mostly retired insurance agent. While they were living in Eastern Oregon, she served on a variety of boards including a hospital advisory board. In 1998-1999, she served as the Oregon State president of the P.E.O. Sisterhood. She is a board member of The Glide Wildflower Show Council, a member of The Steamboaters, the Native Fish Society and several other conservation organizations and is a summer fly fisherman. She and her husband, Pat, have two kids and four grandkids.
Rita Kenny, Board Member – Rita is a retired midwife/teacher. She is involved in a number of environmental groups including The Nature Conservancy, Ospirg, League of Conservation Voters, American Rivers Council, and The Wildlife Foundation. She feels the healthy balance of wildlife, fish and human interaction is a critical issue that depends on our diligence and commitment to skillful and educated action.
Jim Lichatowich, Science Advisor – Jim is recognized international for his work to restore wild salmonid populations and is helping to provide the vision and scientific underpinnings for the Foundation's big-picture, long-term strategy to protect and restore the river. He is the author of Salmon Without Rivers, which received the Washington State Governor's writers award for 1999.
Chris Frissell – Chris earned his BA in Zoology at The University of Montana, and MS and PhD Degrees in Fisheries Science at Oregon State University. After 15 years of published research on the ecology and conservation biology of streams, rivers, and watersheds of the West, he joined the staff of the Pacific Rivers Council, where he now serves as Director of Science and Conservation, with an office in Polson, MT. He hails from a forestry family, and the need to illuminate and revitalize the connections between people, land and water management, and freshwater life, including fishes and amphibians, remains at the heart of his work.
Lee Spencer, Fish Watch volunteer – For the past fifteen years, Lee has served as the fish guardian at Big Bend Pool on Steamboat Creek. In his past work as an archeologist, Lee participated on digs as far away as Peru. In 1991, he authored the archeological paper, Pacific Salmon and Environmental Change in the Rogue Basin. As Fish Watch volunteer, Lee uses the observation skills of his profession to keep a detailed natural history journal, recording steelhead behavior and other wildlife activity he witnesses during his many hours at Big Bend Pool.
Tim Purvis, Web Master – Tim is the resident code monkey in charge of making sure you can read this web site. He spends way too much time messing with computers and not nearly enough time as he'd like fishing the North Umpqua.
Chris Santella, Writer – Chris is a freelance writer and principal of Steelhead Communications, a marketing communications firm based in Portland, Oregon. His feature work has appeared in the New York Times, the New Yorker, Travel & Leisure, Field & Stream and Fly Rod & Reel, among other publications. Chris is the author of the "Fifty Places..." series of books including Fifty Places To Fly Fish Before You Die, Fifty Places To Play Golf Before You Die and The Fifty Greatest Fly Fishing Stories published by Stewart, Tabori & Chang. Chris lives in Portland with his wife Deidre and daughters Cassidy Rose and Annabel Blossom.