Who We Are:
Board of Directors
Ann Werner, President worked as a backcountry Ranger on the Wallowa Whitman National Forest from 1976 to 1978. She fell in love with NE Oregon and made lasting connections to the land and people. She holds an MS in Natural Resource Geography from Oregon State University. Ann worked as a project manager for regional government from 1978 – 1998 and keeps strong affiliations in Wallowa County. Ann likes nothing better than walking a trail with a pack on her back.
Pete Sandrock, Vice- President Pete is a an experienced backpacker, former Benton County District Attorney, former Chief Operating Officer of the Metro regional government, advisor to the Heinz Center for Science, Economics, and the Environment, and a retired Navy Captain. He lives in Portland, OR.
Catherine Dickson, Secretary Catherine is an archaeologist for the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation and a vegetable gardener with a lot of garlic. She enjoys hiking, rafting, and improving conditions for wildlife on her Grande Ronde Valley property. She has a B.A. from Pomona College and an M.A. in Anthropology from Oregon State University.
Jennifer Schemm, Treasurer Jen is an environmental attorney, mother of two, a graduate of Lewis and Clark College, and University of Oregon School of Law. Jen is a practicing attorney in La Grande, OR, and regularly represents HCPC in litigation.
Brock Evans Brock is the President of the Endangered Species Coalition and past officer of several national conservation organizations. He played an instrumental role in convincing the Supreme Court to reject the plan for damming HellsCanyon in the landmark case Udall v. PFC (1967). A prolific writer and public speaker, Evans has received numerous awards for his work, including Lifetime Achievement Awards from the League of Conservation Voters and the Natural Resources Council of America, and the John Muir Award, the Sierra Club’s highest honor. He did his military service with the United States Marine Corps.
David Johns is Adjunct Professor of Political Science, Portland State University, Portland OR. He is a professional volunteer and long time HCPC supporter, has hiked the back country of the Wallowa Mountains for decades, co-founded the Wildlands Network and Yellowstone to Yukon Initiative. He specializes in place-based ecosystem conservation on a continental scale. David received the 2007 Denver Zoological Foundation Conservation Award for his contributions to large-scale conservation efforts and his writing. He lives in the mid Willamette Valley.
Charles Jones Charlie is a local high school teacher and retired Navy commander with a B.S. in Chemistry and Mathematics from College of Idaho. He grew up in Ontario, OR, (where his grandpa speared salmon in the Malheur River) and has hiked, biked, or skied all over N.E. Oregon. He live.s in La Grande, OR.
Al Josephy Growing up outside of NYC, Al was fortunate to have parents who developed a life-long love for the Inland Empire and especially Wallowa County in Eastern Oregon. His father spent the last half of his life immersed in the history, culture and politics of this area, and along the way he acquired a property outside of Joseph where they spent all their summers as teenagers in the mountains and rivers of this magical area. Al currently works at the Washington State Department of Ecology and spends his “free” time either in or somewhere within a few hours of Wallowa County. His wife, Melissa and he have five kids, five grandkids, two yorkies, nine chickens and ambitions to help maintain all those things that have made their lives so full into the future.
Marina Richie is a freelance nature writer. She enjoys running, hiking, birding, and writing a weekly blog (https://beltedkingfisher.wordpress.com). She holds an undergraduate degree in biology from the University of Oregon. For her master’s degree in journalism at University of Montana, she wrote and investigative thesis on environmental issues in Hells Canyon National Recreation Area. She lives in La Grande.
Mike Higgins Mike is a local landowner, based in Halfway, Oregon. He played a key role in the reformation of HCPC in the late 80’s. As a former high school and junior high school science teacher, Mike has continued to marvel at the wonders of the natural world, especially those waiting to be discovered in the deserts and mountains of northeast Oregon. As strong supporters of these dedicated defenders of this corner of the state, Mike and Donna have continued to support Hells Canyon Preservation Council through their estate plans.
David Mildrexler David is a terrestrial ecosystem scientist and formerly served as Ecosystem Conservation Coordinator for HCPC. He is currently pursuing a PhD with Oregon State University’s College of Forestry. His research interests include the ecological applications of remote sensing data, natural disturbance ecology, vegetation-climate interactions, biodiversity and landscape connectivity, and the management and conservation of eastside forested ecosystems and wildlands. David loves hiking, especially exploring roadless areas, camping with his family, traveling, breweries, live music, farmers markets, bike riding, wild salmon, old growth forests, wildlife tracking, and the diversity of the Pacific Northwest’s people and places.
Becky Strickler Becky is a landscape architect living in Portland, Oregon. She was born and raised in La Grande, Oregon. Her father was a research botanist for the Forest Service, and both parents were conservationists. She spent her growing-up years floating the Minam/Grande Ronde rivers, backpacking in the Eagle Cap Wilderness, camping in the Imnaha Canyon, and exploring the Blue Mountains in NE Oregon. She has a BLA from the University of Oregon. Becky promotes HCPC in the Portland area by helping with various events in Portland, such as the Portland fall event and Willamette Week’s Give!Guide.