The Oldman Watershed Council Board of Directors is comprised of 19 people bringing diverse perspectives from many sectors and 4 Members At Large, with elections held for each position.
Individuals and organizations nominate someone from their sector to bring that perspective to the OWC Board of Directors. The nomination forms for these Board positions are available in early spring.
The current Board includes the following members, each serving a 2-year term:
City of Lethbridge
City of Lethbridge
Doug Kaupp is currently the General Manager of Water and Wastewater for the City of Lethbridge, Alberta. He holds a degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Alberta (1986), and a Master of Business Administration from Athabasca University (2003).
After relatively brief assignments as a consulting engineer and technical sales representative, he joined the City of Lethbridge in 1990. Originally, Doug worked as a process engineer at the wastewater treatment plant, and later served as the manager of the water treatment plant prior to advancing to a general utility management role. He is a member of the Western Canada Water - Alberta Provincial Council and the Alberta Environment Municipal Water and Wastewater Guidelines and Standards Advisory Committee.
Doug is a long-time member of the Oldman Watershed Council and has participated on the Urban Team, the State of the Watershed Team, and the Core Team for the Integrated Water Management Plan. He also served on the Oldman River Basin Advisory Committee for the South Saskatchewan River Basin Water Management Plan.
Municipal Districts & Counties
M.J. (Jim) Bester
Reeve, Cardston County
Jim is a recently retired Civil Engineer with a consulting background in Water Resources. He currently serves as the Reeve of Cardston County and had previously served as a Municipal Councillor in the Crowsnest Pass. Jim has a keen interest in preserving the quality and quantity of water for the sustainability of the environment, our communities, and our legacy.
Jim and his wife Carolyn both come from 4th generation farm and raching families located within the Old Man River Watershed boundaries. They currently live between the Waterton and Belly rivers near the communities of Hill Spring and Glenwood.
Jim has achieved national and international certification in project management, mediation, and contract negotiation. His professional career has taken him throughout western and northern Canada. Among numerous projects within the Oldman Watershed he worked for five years as the Resident Engineer on the Oldman River Dam project, seeing the project through environmental and geotechnical exploratory, design, and construction phases.
Towns & Villages
Mayor, Municipality of Crowsnest Pass
Blair was born and raised in the Crowsnest Pass and received his journeyman’s electrical certification after attending both LCC and SAIT.
He and his wife Cathy have two sons, and own and have operated a Home Hardware Building Center, since 1995. He has always been actively involved in the community and was on the Board of the Pass Powder Keg Ski Hill. Blair also spent 21 yrs as a volunteer fire fighter and is Captain of the Blairmore Fire Department.
In 2013, Blair won the Mayor's seat in the Crowsnest Pass and attends as many community functions as possible. It is his goal to promote the Crowsnest Pass and encourage new developments, both industrial and commercial, and to continue to keep providing clean water to the community and neighbours downstream.
Alberta Health Services
John Younger is a Public Health Inspector for Alberta Health Services in Lethbridge. He holds a B.Sc. in Biology and Earth Sciences from the University of British Columbia and B.Tech. in Environmental Health from the British Columbia Institute of Technology. In June 2017, he will also finish his M.B.A. from Heriot-Watt University.
During John’s 12 year career in Environmental Health in Lethbridge, Northern BC, and Victoria/Gulf Islands, he has worked on many issues involving drinking and recreational water including being a Drinking Water Officer, conducting recreational water monitoring programs, and participating in storm water surveys on Vancouver Island.
John loves wildlife and to be in the outdoors and believes that the Oldman Watershed should be preserved and protected to ensure it can continue to be enjoyed in the future.
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Claudia Sheedy is a research scientist in environmental chemistry with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in Lethbridge, Alberta. Her main scientific interests consist in water quality and trace residue analysis of agricultural contaminants such as pesticides, veterinary antibiotics and natural estrogens in water. Her current projects focus on the presence of pesticides in irrigation waters of southern Alberta, the development of novel analytical methods for determining the impacts of agriculture on water quality and modelling of the fate and transport of pesticides in surface waters across Canada. She loves the outdoors and activities such as paddling, climbing, hiking and skiing.
Alberta Environment and Parks
Linda Cerney is an Integrated Resource Grasslands Planner with Alberta Environment and Parks, for the Red Deer and South Saskatchewan Regions.
Her current work is implementing grassland strategies within the South Saskatchewan Regional Plan, including the development of a management plan for the Pekisko Heritage Rangeland and Special Management Area, grassland conservation tools and the Twin River Heritage Rangeland Natural Area designation. She has assisted her team members working on the recreation and footprint planning and will be further assisting the footprint work in the grassland areas.
Born and educated here in Lethbridge, she spent most of her childhood up in the mountains of the Crowsnest Pass and eastern B.C, but developed a passion for the prairies. Working throughout the watershed, Linda has been employed with Alberta Fish and Wildlife, Alberta Conservation Association and Alberta Parks. She worked under contract as an assistant planner with the OWC during the development of the Priorities document and now sits on the Integrated Watershed Management Plan team. She holds a BASc in Geography and Psychology, and when not working, also assists with a bird banding project in Waterton.
Alberta Agriculture and Forestry
Janna Casson is an Agri-Environmental Stewardship Specialist who works at the Farm Stewardship Centre in Lethbridge, Alberta. She has been working with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry for almost 13 years. Janna’s education and career focus has been on assessing agricultural land management practice effects on soil, air, water quality, rangeland and riparian health. She has helped design and develop agricultural watershed monitoring programs and has led and been involved with numerous on-farm and watershed-scale beneficial management practice (BMP) applied research projects.
Janna holds a B.Sc. in Agriculture Biotechnology from the University of Lethbridge and a M.Sc. in Natural Resource Sciences from McGill University. She is a member of the Alberta Institute of Agrologists and has authored a number of peer-reviewed publications. Janna and her family live on a coulee that overlooks the Oldman River valley. She has always had a love of the southern Alberta Rocky Mountain and native prairie landscapes that she has called home for most of her life.
University of Lethbridge
Andy is a retired Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Lethbridge where he had taught and conducted research since 1991. His research interests involve two areas - animal behaviour and ecosystem ecology. Andy has served on the Board of the OWC for many years in various capacities.
Andy's interests in ecosystem ecology concern the health of bird and plant communities and how they are affected by activities such as cattle grazing and alterations to river flow.
Andy and his wife live on the banks of the Oldman River near Fort Macleod, and thus he is interested in maintaining healthy and economically viable ecosystems for his family and his neighbours.
Environmental Non-Government Org
Water Conservation Trust
Maureen was inspired to create the Water Conservation Trust of Canada during her studies for a Masters in Law from the University of Calgary where her thesis focused on water management in Canada. She has worked doggedly since 2006 to bring the Water Trust to fruition. Maureen has over 40 years of legal practice, including intellectual and property law. It was during her Masters that she pursued water law. In addition to being the Executive Director of the Water Trust, Maureen currently runs a water law practice with Water Rights Inc., is a member of the Alberta Water Council and has served as a board member on the Bow River Basin Council.
Water Conservation Trust (Alternate)
Arlene Kwasniak is a Professor in the Faculty of Law at the University of Calgary. She also is Associate Dean Research and Graduate Program Director. Arlene’s main teaching and research areas are public lands and natural resources law (in particular regarding water), municipal and planning law (in particular regarding economic instruments such as conservation easements and transfer of development credits), environmental law (in particular regarding environmental assessment) and generally, legal and policy issues concerning environmental sustainability. Her books include Alberta Public Rangeland Law and Policy (1991), A Conservation Easement Guide to Alberta (1997), Reconciling Political and Ecosystem Borders: A Legal Map (1998) and Alberta Wetlands: A Law and Policy Guide (2001). She has published numerous scholarly articles in her research areas. Her committee work includes serving on the Alberta Water Council Wetland Team, and the federal Regulatory Advisory Committee under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, and having served on the Alberta Water Management Review Committee, which was instrumental in developing new water legislation for the province.
Spray Lake Sawmills
Wade was born and raised in the Crowsnest Pass and has lived there all of his life. Some of his most cherished memories are of times spent with family and friends in the headwaters of the Oldman River Basin. His passion for hunting and fishing in the Oldman Watershed continues today and he is passing on these cherished values to his daughter so that she understands and appreciates the value of a healthy and diverse landscape.
Wade holds a diploma in Forest Technology and is a registered Professional Forest Technologist (RPFT) with the Association of Alberta Forest Management Professionals. He currently works as the operations supervisor for Spray Lake Sawmills in the C5 Forest Management Unit, which includes the headwaters regions of both the Crowsnest River and the Oldman River. Previous to that, he had been involved in trail planning and construction for various recreational groups, forest management / silviculture planning and operations, mountain pine beetle suppression, as well as wildfire suppression.
Wade also serves as Vice President of the Hillcrest Fish and Game Protective Association and is a member of the Oldman Watershed Council’s Headwaters Action Team. In the past he was a volunteer fire fighter for the Municipality of Crowsnest Pass for 15 years and he served on the executive board for the Crowsnest Pass Quad Squad Association.
Dwayne Rogness has been working for Lethbridge County as the Rural Extension Specialist for the last 10 years. Dwayne is a member of the Association of Alberta Agricultural Fieldman, as well as a Soil Conservation Officer and Pest Control Officer with Lethbridge County. Working for Lethbridge County has helped Dwayne understand the systems approach needed to sustain an agricultural operation in today’s world.
Dwayne has been an active OWC member for the last 10 years and is a past Rural Team member/chair. He currently helps approve OWC Watershed Legacy Program applications, and enjoys being involved with the OWC Holding the Reins Workshop. Dwayne has been actively working with producers in the Oldman Watershed to educate them on their responsibilities to establish beneficial management practices, (BMPs) to reduce the footprint that is associated with the agriculture industry. He coordinates 3 watershed groups in Lethbridge County and has experience working on various agriculture committees.
Lethbridge Northern Irrigation District
Alan Harrold is currently the General Manager of the Lethbridge Northern Irrigation District. He commenced his career in 1973 with The Office of the Auditor General which involved the Financial Statement audits of four Irrigation Districts, various Government of Alberta Solicitor General offices and Government institutions.
In 1978, he became the LNID Secretary-Treasurer and in 2006, he became the General Manager of the LNID. He mentors staff and advances the District with current technology and infrastructure improvements, constantly reviewing and improving water conservation in the District. He has a great opportunity to help protect the Oldman Watershed and contribute to a safe and reliable supply of water for people living in southern Alberta; for irrigation, agriculture and the economy of Alberta.
He is a member of the Water Quality and Invasive Species Steering Committees working with Alberta Agriculture to monitor water quality within irrigation districts and return flows to rivers - in addition to helping protect southern Alberta waterways from the invasion of Zebra and Quagga Mussels and other invasive species.
Wildlife and Habitat Conservation
Southern Alberta Group for the Environment (SAGE)
Lori Goater has deep roots in the Oldman Watershed. She was born and raised in southern Alberta, and earned her Bachelor and Masters degrees in Biology from the University of Lethbridge. She is well informed on watershed science, having been employed as an academic and government researcher along the theme of river health & ecology. Her research focused on the effects of regulated flows on vegetation, particularly on riparian forests. Lori assisted Alberta Environment to develop environmental flow requirements (targets) for aquatic and riparian environments of the South Saskatchewan River Basin.
Lori is married to a professor of biology, whose research involves local aquatic systems, and they have made their home on 20 acres of native prairie along the Oldman River. Here, they enjoy raising their two children, surrounded by the great outdoors.
She has actively contributed to various environment-minded non-profit projects & organizations including the Southern Alberta Group for the Environment (SAGE), Alberta Native Plant Council (ANPC), Mountain Bluebird Trails Conservation Society (MBTCS), and Helen Schuler Nature Centre. Lori has represented SAGE on the Milk River Species at Risk Recovery Team since 2008 and has acted as an occasional SAGE representative at OWC workshops.
Retired (Wildlife & Habitat Alternate)
Anne was born and raised in the Trout Creek watershed, in the Porcupine Hills, west of Claresholm. She and her husband now ranch 17 miles S.E. of Pincher Creek, within the Waterton watershed.
Anne is keenly aware of the importance of water to agriculture, and sat as an Alberta Beef Producer delegate on the Environment and Animal Welfare Committee. She has also served 9 years on the Pincher Creek Chamber of Economic Development, and the Cowboy Poetry Committee of the Agricultural Society, and has worked on the “Blueweed Pull” put on by the Pincher Creek Watershed Group. Anne has her B.Sc. in Zoology and worked as a Park Interpreter in Waterton Park, before taking on her lifelong passion of ranching. After dispersing her purebred herd of cattle, Anne worked for the Nature Conservancy of Canada for five years in the Waterton area. She and her husband are now semi-retired on their ranch in the MD of Pincher Creek.
Randall Wolf Tail
Indigenous, Piikani Public Works
Randall Wolf Tail graduated as a Civil Engineering Technologist from the Lethbridge Community College in 1999. He works with the Piikani Public Works Department on the Piikani Nation as the Maintenance Management Officer. Randall is a Level One Water operator and is a member of the Alberta Water/Waste Water Association.
Alternate - Noreen Plain Eagle
Mike Bruised Head chief bird
Indigenous, Ninaa Piiskii
2012 - present Chairman - KEPA (Kainai Ecological Protection Agency)
1994 - 2011 Kainai Board of Education
Mike previously was a councillor on the office of Blood Tribe Chief and Council and has been involved in Environmental issues in southern Alberta for many years. He holds a B.A / B. Ed Degree from the University of Lethbridge and a Masters Degree from Gonzaga University, Spokane Washington.
Mike has served on numerous committees and board at the tribal, provincial and federal level. He lives on the Blood Reserve where he raise horses and cattle, and practices Blackfoot ceremonies.
Members at Large
Erik is an aquatic environmental scientist with experience working in consulting, provincial government, academic and volunteer capacities. Having lived in two western provinces and the NWT, Erik has experience with a wide range of climates and watersheds. Specializing in hydrology and fisheries work over the past decade, Erik offers a breadth of experience along with sharing opinions from a wide variety of clients and groups that he has dealt with in his career.
Erik has made a career of his passion for maintaining the health and recreation of the habitat in which he lives, so provides a passionate energy to discussions about the watershed. While living in this watershed for the past two years, he has grown a network of contacts from the foothills of the Rocky Mountains to the confluence of the South Saskatchewan that range from land owners, colleges/universities, regulators, conservation groups, and industry professionals. He has begun to get more involved with his community now that feels he has enough of a connection to this region to understand the wants and demands of the people living in the area.
Jana MacKenzie is a lifelong southern Albertan who has a strong connection to the places and spaces within the region that depend on a healthy watershed. She is a recent graduate from the Urban and REgional Studies program at the University of Lethbridge where her understanding of these places was enhanced from coursework in environmental science and human geography, which expanded her awareness of ecostystem services and the application of adaptive management practices. Jana has spent a great deal of her professional career working within the arts community of Lethbridge, where she continues to maintain strong connections and will utilize these connections in her work on the board of the OWC.
She is currently a proud employee with the Government of Alberta in the Parks division, where she provides administrative support to employees within Castle Provincial Park, Writing-on Stone/Aisinai’pi Provincial Park, and throughout southern Alberta’s parks systems. Jana has a great deal of experience sitting on boards and volunteering with not-for-profit organizations. She currently sits as a member-at-large on the Community and Social Development Committee with the City of Lethbridge and is also the Treasurer on the board of the South Country Fair Association.
Jan is a professor of Anthropology at the University of Lethbridge. Her early training was as a cultural ecologist and archaeologist. She worked for nearly a decade as an archaeologist in Cultural Resource Management in Wyoming. This work included survey and excavation work in advance of oil, gas, and mineral development on public lands. Jan’s Master’s degree is in International Studies, and the focus was agricultural development in the Global South. As with her work as an archaeologist, her studies considered local environments, cultural resources and their management. Her interests in international development continued through her Ph.D. studies which concerned the role of local communities in Indonesia in the management of their own social welfare such as health. Her work at the University of Lethbridge has included building the Institute for Child and Youth Studies and a continuing collaboration with Opokaa’sin Early Intervention Society.
henk de vlieger
Henk was born in the Netherlands and he and his wife, Janny have three children. Henk grew up on an island below sea level, which experienced a terrible flood in 1953, claiming 1,835 lives. Throughout his professional career, he regularly had to deal with keeping sea water off of the land and was involved in building storm surge barriers for public safety to comply with newly implemented government laws - put into effect by the Dutch government after the 1953 flood. These safety barriers where designed to harmonize with the natural environment and ecology and also secure fresh water for human consumption. This was a great experience for Henk, he gained a lot of knowledge and appreciation about the importance of maintaining a balance between technology, safety, the natural environment and water management.
Henk and his wife immigrated to Canada in 1983, and have a small irrigation farm just outside of Taber, and a beautiful property in the Crowsnest Pass area, which helps them to appreciate and understand the importance of fresh clean water, and being a responsible watershed steward.
Recognizing OWC Board members over the past 10 years
Founding Members who signed the 2005 Bylaws to form the OWC Society:
Ian Dyson, 2004-2014, Provincial Government
Andrew Hurly, Vice Chairman, 2004-2017, Academia
Barbara Lacey, Chair, 2004-2009, Municipalities
E. Duncan Lloyd
Ron Renwick, 2004-2011, Irrigation Sector
Our Past Members:
Josh Markle, 2017-2018, Environmental Non-Govn't Org
Mark Wolfe, 2017-2018, Academia
Robert Rippin, 2015-2017, Health
Cheryl Fujikawa, 2015-2017, Environmental Non-Govn't Org
Shane Porter, 2015-2017, Member at Larage
Christina Lam, 2015-2017, Member at Larg
Loreena Brave Rock, 2015-2017, Member at Large
Martin Van Diemen, 2014-16, Agricultural Producers
LeRon Torrie, 2012-2016, Agricultural Producers
Keith Francis, 2004-2015, Member at Large
Shane Petry, 2004-2013, Federal Government
Anne Stevick, Treasurer, 2007-2015, Member at Large
Gerhardt Hartman, Chair, 2004-2011, Member at Large
Richard Burke, 2010-2015, Environmental Non-Government
Bruce Konynenbelt, 2006-2011, Agricultural Producers
Robert Rippin, 2010-2015, Health
Duane Climenhaga, 2004-2008, Member at Large
Bill Dolan, 2009-2013, Provincial Government
Brian Hammond, 2004-2008, Municipalities
Andrea Kalischuk, Treasurer, 2007-2011, Provincial Government
Terry Kerkhoff, Chair, 2008-2014, Municipalities
Shirley Pickering, Chair, 2011-2015, Member at Large
Sean Robison, Treasurer, 2006-2010, Health
Jeff Carlson, 2009-2012, Muncipalities
Cheryl Dash, 2006-2009, Provincial Government
Lorne Fitch, 2006-2009, Member at Large
Paulette Fox, 2012-2015, First Nations
Glen French, 2007-2010, Member at Large
Ryan Kasko, 2010-2013, Agricultural Producers
Greg Nikles, 2004-2007, Industry
Brent Paterson, 2004-2007, Provincial Government
Don Watson, 2006-2009, Environmental Non-Government
Ron Axelson, 2004-2006, Agricultural Producers
Vic Brown, 2004-2006, Federal Government
Jeff Coffman, 2011-2013, Municipalties
Rodney Cyr, 2010-2012, Member at Large
Brian Dalshaug, Treasurer, 2004-2006, Health
Reed Davis, 2009-2011, Member at Large
Henry Doeve, 2004-2006, Member at Large
Tony Bruder, 2012-2013, Member at Large
Adam Judd, 2010-2011, Industry
Robert (Bob) Tarleck, 2013-2014, Member at Large
Brian Valgardson, 2011-2012, Member at Large
Antoine Gendron, 2017-2019, Member at Large
Terry Kerkhoff, 2015-2019, Member at Large
Claudia Sheedy, 2014-2019, Federal Government
John De Groot, 2017-2019, Member at Large