Chris Perez
Chair

Chris Perez is President of The Perez Group, a highly successful team of agents specializing in Paradise Valley, Scottsdale, and the Northeast Valley luxury home market.

Dan Kimball
Vice Chair

Dan Kimball recently retired after a 30-year career with the National Park Service (NPS). From 2004 to 2014, Dan served as Superintendent of Everglades and Dry Tortugas National Parks. In that position, Dan led Everglades National Park’s involvement in restoration of the Everglades, the largest ecosystem restoration project in the history of the planet. His work in Everglades restoration focused on water quantity and quality; endangered species; non-native species; assuring compatibility with South Florida’s built environment; and building a coalition to sustain Everglades restoration. Dan previously served as Chief of NPS’s Water Resources Division. Dan also held positions with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Office of Surface Mining, and environmental consulting firms. He also served for 10 years on the Jefferson County Open Space Advisory Committee in Colorado. Dan is a recipient of a number of awards, including the Presidential Rank Award and the National Parks Conservation Association’s Stephen Tyng Mather Award. Dan is a graduate of Denison University and the University of Arizona.

Mary Alexander
Treasurer

Mary Alexander is the Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Phoenix, AZ-based DMB Associates, Inc.  Among her diverse responsibilities, Ms. Alexander directs corporate governance and legal services for DMB, in addition to overseeing the Company’s talent resources, information governance, risk management and insurance programs. Mary Alexander’s background in real estate includes extensive planned community development and public homebuilder experience. Her accomplishments have included land acquisition and entitlement projects, infrastructure planning and finance, public lands transactions, community governance structuring and documentation, sales contracting and regulatory approvals, employment matters, litigation management, construction contracting and warranty enforcement.  Ms. Alexander recently was named a Fellow in the American College of Real Estate Lawyers. She serves on the Association of Corporate Counsel, Arizona chapter, Board of Directors and Arizona Chamber of Commerce, Legal, Regulatory and Financial Services Committee. She is a member of Commercial One, an organization of women executives in commercial real estate. Ms. Alexander is a graduate of The Ohio State University with a BA in Journalism, and she received her J.D. from Arizona State University College of Law.  Community Involvement: Arizona Center for Nature Conservation (Phoenix Zoo) Board of Directors, past Chair; Arizona State University Women & Philanthropy; Valley of the Sun United Way Board of Directors; Community Impact Committee Chair; Tocqueville Society BUILD Arizona initiative task force for early childhood education and Ready Nation, international advocacy group for early childhood education.

Laurinda Oswald
Secretary

Laurinda Oswald was born in Tucson, Arizona, but grew up in Italy, living in Florence for three years and Rome for nine. Her parents purchased the ranch in Amado, Arizona which she has now managed for 25 years. For the past ten years, she has raised cattle on an eight-pasture grazing rotation system enjoying the wonderful benefits of the watershed along four miles of the Santa Cruz River. Laurinda has two children, and when not at her ranch, she enjoys visiting her family both in New York City and Italy.

Andrew Downs
Board Member at Large

Andrew is a third generation Colorado native who currently splits his time between a home in Colorado Springs and a career as a Chief Administrative Officer with a financial services company in Chicago. Prior to taking that role, he led a business within that company that supported mergers and acquisitions activity in the residential real estate sector. He has been with his employer since 1997, and prior to that was involved in commercial and corporate lending with Wells Fargo, Security Pacific and United Bank of Denver. Andrew has served on the Board of Trustees of his alma mater, Claremont McKenna College. His senior thesis there was on the economics of water law in California, and his B.A. degree in economics was awarded Magna cum Laude.

Joe Kalt
Board Member at Large

Joe is the Ford Foundation Professor (Emeritus) of International Political Economy at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. He is also co-director of the Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development. Joe is a native of Tucson, Arizona and holds PhD and Master’s degrees in economics from UCLA, and a Bachelor’s degree in economics from Stanford University. He specializes in the economics of natural resources, economic development, antitrust, and regulation, and serves as a senior economist with Compass Lexecon, an FTI Consulting company. He serves on the boards of trustees/directors of the National Institute for Civil Discourse and the Chickasaw Nation Community Development Endeavor, LLC. Joe also serves as chairman of the board of the White Mountain Apache Tribe’s Fort Apache Heritage Foundation. He and his wife now reside in Tucson and the Pryor Mountains of Montana.

Rowene Aguirre-Medina
Board Member

Rowene Aguirre-Medina was born in Calexico, California, on the California Mexican border, and spent her formative years living in both California and in Mexicali, Baja California, Mexico. Her families were early pioneers of both the Mexicali Valley and California’s Imperial Valley. She is a graduate of the University of Arizona, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree, with a major in Speech Communication / Secondary Education. In 1981 Rowene became a founding partner of Polydrive Industries, Inc., a firm involved in the engineering and manufacturing of precision urethane products. She serves as the corporation’s financial officer. Other professional experiences have included marketing and sales. Her lifelong avocation has been working for equity and education for women and girls, as well as concerns for water conservation and cross border issues.  To address these interests she currently serves on the University Of Arizona College Of Social and Behavioral Science Advisory Board and the UA Foundation National Leadership Council.

Henri Bisson
Board Member

Henri retired after more than 34 years of service with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).  He began his BLM career in 1974, a tenure that involved positions in Colorado, Arizona, California, Alaska (as BLM State Director) and Washington, DC. Henri served as the BLM’s Deputy Director for Operations in Washington, DC from 2006 until retirement. During this time, he also served as Acting Senior Advisor for Alaska Affairs for Department of Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne. Bisson received numerous leadership awards throughout his career, including two Meritorious Presidential Rank awards and several Secretarial Executive Leadership Awards. He is the President of the Public Lands Foundation; a nonprofit dominated by retired BLM employees. Henri has a BS in Forest Resources from the University of New Hampshire and an MS in Watershed Management from the University of Arizona. Henri’s passion is making things happen!

John Case
Board Member

John Case was born and raised in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, beginning his career as a high school history teacher and coach. He then became president and later chairman of the various Longyear companies (founded in 1874), which manage his family’s forest lands and mining properties in Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Canada. John and his wife Patricia are longtime supporters of the National Parks through the National Park Foundation, as well as having served as trustees of the Glacier National Park Fund (1999-2011) and members of the National Park Conservation Association’s Northern Rockies Regional Council (2003-2012).

Barbara JB Green
Board Member

Barbara is a founding partner in the law firm Sullivan Green Seavy L.L.C. where she practices environmental law and land use law. She was admitted to the Colorado Bar in 1985, and is admitted to practice law in the State of Colorado, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals and the United States Supreme Court. In addition to her law degree from the University of Colorado, Ms. Green holds a B.A. from Northwestern University, an M.P.A. from the University of Colorado in Boulder, and a Masters in Humanities from the University of Colorado in Denver.   Ms. Green serves as General Counsel to Northwest Colorado Council of Governments, General Counsel to Rocky Mountain Low-level Radioactive Waste Board, and as Town Attorney for the Town of Silver Plume. She is a member of the University of Denver Water Law Review Advisory Council. Ms. Green has served several terms on the Colorado Mined Land Reclamation Board, and served on the first Governor’s Task Force on state and local regulation of oil and gas development. Ms. Green also serves on the Board of Directors of Conservation Colorado. Prior to attending law school, Ms. Green served as Town Administrator for the Towns of Oak Creek and Yampa, and was Assistant City Manager for the City of Steamboat Springs.

Ann Hunter-Welborn
Board Member

Ann Hunter-Welborn started her career in teaching, then joined the family business (Hunter Industries), and is now acting as Chair of the Board. Hunter Industries is made up of about 1000 employees and manufactures irrigation equipment which is sold all over the world. As the innovation leaders, Hunter holds more than 250 product patents and 40 trademarks, starting with the Hunter PGP® in 1983 – the pop-up gear-driven rotor that revolutionized the irrigation industry. Since then, Hunter has developed more than 100 innovative products that meet the needs of professional installers worldwide, including the new ACC Controller that was voted the most significant new product at the 2005 International Irrigation Association Show. She is somewhat of a perpetual student, having a BA in Political Science, an MA in Special Education, and a PhD in Mythological Studies.

Lee Leachman
Board Member

Lee is the CEO and owner of Leachman Cattle of Colorado. Leachman Cattle markets over 1,500 bulls per year and is currently one of the five largest seedstock breeders in the US. Lee graduated from Harvard University with an Honors BA in Economics in 1988. Lee also completed graduate level work in animal breeding at Colorado State University. Lee currently serves on the board of directors for the Beef Improvement Company in York, UK. Lee frequently speaks to cattlemen both in United States and internationally. Lee, Lisa, and Graham Leachman reside in Fort Collins, Colorado. Together they enjoy a wide variety of family activities and also are active in their church community through small groups and marriage ministry.

Louise (Lollie) Plank
Board Member

Lollie Plank divides her time between her Lek Ranch near Sheridan, Wyoming, family and business obligations in Minnesota, and her home in Tucson, Arizona. In addition to the Sonoran Institute, her board interests include the Wyoming Community Foundation, the Center for a Vital Community at Sheridan College in Wyoming, and the Wyoming Chapter of The Nature Conservancy. Past board tenures include the Animal Human Society of Hennepin County (MN), the Science Museum of Minnesota, Pheasants Forever, the National Wildflower Research Center, the Yellowstone Art Center and the Yellowstone Association.

Richard Schaefer
Board Member

Richard Schaefer is the Senior Vice President-Branch Director for RBC Wealth Management. He has over 35 years of experience in the financial industry, specializing in individual portfolio development and management.

Kara Teising
Board Member

Kara Teising works with JobPlex, a DHR International company, as a Partner in the firm’s Nonprofit Practice.  She focuses on mission driven searches in the private and nonprofit sectors.  She has experience recruiting for a broad range of clients and has earned the respect of numerous notable national and international organizations working to affect positive change, including Earthjustice, BoardSource, KaBOOM!, and Make-A-Wish®.  Prior to joining JobPlex/DHR, Teising served as Partner and Practice Lead for the Nonprofit sector of ThinkingAhead Executive Search.  Her expertise lies in recruiting talent for C-Suite and executive-level roles in senior leadership, development, marketing, communications and program. Before ThinkingAhead, Teising spent six award-winning years as a sales person and sales manager with their parent company, Southwestern.  Teising is an honors graduate from James Madison University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Speech Communication, concentrating in Conflict Resolution. Actively involved in her Nashville community, Teising is an alumnus of the Young Leaders Council and a past Board member of the Nashville Repertory Theatre (formerly the Tennessee Repertory Theatre). She is a Certified Personnel Consultant (CPC) and a Certified Employee Retention Specialist (CERS) through the National Association of Personnel Services.  She is also a member of the American Society of Fundraising Professionals (AFP).

David Wegner
Board Member

David Wegner recently retired from a senior staff position on water, energy and transportation committees in the U.S. House of Representatives. In that position he worked on legislation that directly affected administration policy and federal agency actions related to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Department of the Interior, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy. Prior to serving in Washington, D.C. he worked for over 20 years for the Department of the Interior managing water and science programs in the Colorado River basin and the Grand Canyon. Currently he works as a part-time senior scientist to Jacobs Engineering and continues to provide input and strategic counsel to the National Academy of Sciences, several Members of Congress and international organizations focused on water and climate issues. He currently splits his time between Tucson, AZ and Durango, CO and the Colorado River.

Barton (Buzz) Thompson
Board Member

Buzz Thompson is the Perry L. McCarty Director and Senior Fellow of the Woods Institute for the Environment at Stanford University, and the Robert E. Paradise Professor in Natural Resources Law at Stanford Law School. He holds J.D., M.B.A., and B.A. (Economics & Political Science) degrees from Stanford University.  His scholarship and teaching focus on natural resource management, with a particular focus on western water.  He is a California trustee of The Nature Conservancy and serves on the boards of the Santa Lucia Conservancy as SI’s official representative, The American Farmland Trust, Resources Legacy Fund, and Resources Legacy Fund Foundation.

Emeritus
Ivan Aguirre
Maria Baier – Phoenix, Arizona
Patsy Batchelder – Snowmass, Colorado
María Elena Barajas – Hermosillo, Sonora
Fred Borchardt – Bonita, AZ
Kathy Borgen – Colorado
Donald Brackenbush
Walt Coward
Amy Slaven Crown
Donald Diamond – Tucson, Arizona
Chris Duerksen
Dr. Exequiel Ezcurra – La Mesa, California
John Fendenheim
Janet Gingold
Louise Glasser – Chicago, IL; Tucson, AZ
Andrew Gordon – Tucson, Arizona
Susan Heyneman – Wyoming
Martha Hunter – Phoenix, Arizona
Nyda Jones-Church – San Diego, California
Jim Kaple – Tucson, Arizona
Robert Keiter – Salt Lake City, Utah
Nancy Laney
Darlene Lavender – Calgary, AB
Jane Learner – Bozeman, Montana
Suzanne Lewis
Gil Lusk
Bryan Morgan – Boulder, Colorado
Dennis Minano – Tucson, Arizona
Carlos Nagel – Tucson, Arizona
Alan Nicholson – Helena, Montana
David Parsons
Fred Pease – Tucson, Arizona
Anna Hill Price – Tucson, Arizona
Lollie Plank – Tucson, AZ; Banner, WY; Long Lake, MN
Jane Ragle – Tucson, Arizona
Richard Thweatt – Helena, Montana
Karen Wade – Montana
Nan Stockholm Walden – Sahuarita, Arizona
In Memoriam

Fred Bosselman – Chicago, Illinois
Frank Gregg – Tucson, Arizona
Bill Jack
Jake Kittle – Patagonia, Arizona
Bill Mitchell – Vashon Island, Washington
Donald Shropshire
Emily Stevens – Wilson, Wyoming
Ervin H. Zube – Tucson, Arizona