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REBECCA RAMSEY

Executive Director

Rebecca is originally from St. Louis, Missouri, and first came to Montana in 1984 with her grandparents when she declared "I'm moving to Montana!" She moved to the Ruby Valley in 1998, and is excited to be fulfilling her dream of living among the trees in the Swan Valley.

She has a Bachelor of Science in Mass Communications with an emphasis in Public Relations and minors in Journalism and Equestrian Science. Her professional experience is wide ranging, including the last nine years as the Ruby Watershed Coordinator, Volunteer Coordinator for the Red Ants Pants Music Festival, and Executive Director of the Virginia City Area Chamber of Commerce.

Rebecca is passionate about conservation of natural resources and preservation of rural life, live music, and being an ambassador of love. She enjoys hiking, cross country skiing, fly fishing & horseback riding with her pack of standard poodles, as well as great local food and fine local spirits. She is a dedicated traveler, and has volunteered with the Montana Dental Outreach Team to provide services in rural Jamaica and the Nakivale Refugee Settlement in Uganda.

rebecca@svconnections.org


Luke Lamar

Conservation Director

Born and raised in the Swan Valley, Luke has developed deep roots and personal connections with the landscape. He has spent most of his life learning the land, people, and wildlife of the Swan, and studied its interconnected processes and relationships. In addition to serving as a wilderness ranger in the Mission Mountains Wilderness for 12 years, his career within the Swan Valley has entailed a wide spectrum of field biology projects that have focused on wildlife species such as grizzly bears, wolverines, and Canada lynx. Since 2014, Luke has directed conservation programs that include: assisting private landowners to restore and conserve wetland and riparian habitats, maintaining and improving water quality, helping people and bears coexist, monitoring of wildlife and native fish species, wilderness management, and promoting responsible forest stewardship.

luke@svconnections.org


Jonathan Bowler

EDUCATION PROGRAM ADMINISTRAtor

Following a passion for the landscapes, communities, and wildlife of the West, Jonathan has worked in a variety of outdoor pursuits including as a researcher for the National Park Service and a field instructor for the Colorado Mountain College.  Professional experiences across the West led Jonathan to pursue graduate education at the University of Wyoming where he earned degrees in Environment and Natural Resources, Planning, and Water Resources focusing on the human dimensions of resource use and management. Jonathan brings his experience in collaboration, social-ecological systems, and natural resources to SVC and the Crown of the Continent where he and his family look forward to engaging in a simple, sustainable life among the human and non-human members of the community.

jonathan@svconnections.org


jOHN Ingebretson

stewardship forester

 

John's Professional Land Management career has included work in the states of Washington, Alaska, and Montana. John retired from the US Forest Service after 30 years in the Swan Valley, with experience in Wild Fire and Fuels Management, Timber and Silviculture Management, and Stewardship Forestry. Throughout his career John has worked with multiple agencies and diverse collaborative groups. John also enjoys traveling and hiking throughout the western United States with his wife Jane, a retired Forest Service biologist.

john@svconnections.org


Adam Lieberg

Conservation Practitioner

Adam began his career in the Swan Valley after completing the Landscape & Livelihood Field Semester in 2004. Since then he has immersed himself studying the ecology of the northern Rockies, with a special emphasis on interpreting wildlife tracks and sign. Adam is the field coordinator for the Southwestern Crown Carnivore Project, an assessment of Canada lynx, wolverine, and fisher populations in our region. He is also one of the founders of Swan Valley Bear Resources, a cooperative that works to reduce bear-human conflict. Adam brings a wealth of ecological literacy from the field into Biogeography, Field Ecology of Threatened and Endangered Species, and our tracking classes. When he isn't teaching or working in the field, you can find Adam in the woods maintaining our remote wildlife cameras.

adam@svconnections.org


Sara Halm

Education Program COORDINATOR

Sara has worked as a field technician for Swan Valley Connections' Rare Carnivore and Native Fish programs. With a background in environmental science and wildlife biology, Sara works in the field as well as teaching courses, coordinating evening programs, adult workshops and elementary programs. She is passionate about connecting people to their environment and cultivating enthusiasm for nature. Before moving to Montana, Sara spent time in elementary school classrooms, nature centers and aquariums working with all ages to facilitate an appreciation for the natural world. Sara first came to Montana as a Wildlife in the West student in 2011, and has been enamored with the Southwest Crown and the Swan Valley ever since.

sara@svconnections.org


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Laura Cannon

Archaeological Consultant

Laura has a Master's degree in Anthropology and Archaeology from the University of Wyoming. Her interests include prehistoric hunter-gatherer mobility patterns, behavioral responses to aridity, and the use of high-altitude landscapes. She conducts archaeological survey for various NEPA projects for the Flathead National Forest through Swan Valley Connections. Her projects have kept her very busy since since she moved here in July, but she is looking forward to spending more time hiking, fishing, and skiing in the valley.

laura@svconnections.org


Caitlin Mitchell

Seasonal Staff

Caitlin is extending her work on Aquatic Invasive Species monitoring into the Swan Valley as a seasonal SVC staff member. Her work is a part of Montana’s call to action in preventing the spread of invasive mussel species into our pristine lakes and rivers-- the headwaters of the Columbia River Basin. Caitlin received her BS from Virginia Tech in Environmental Science with a focus in Water Resource Science. After falling in love with Montana as a Landscape & Livelihood student in 2014, Caitlin returned and has been working with the Blackfoot Challenge and Clearwater Resource Council on stream health and AIS prevention monitoring. She is excited to join the SVC staff in their conservation efforts as well.


Jessie Thoreson

Resident Education Assistant for LAndscape & Livelihood

Jessie received her BA in Environmental Education at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington. She has worked on the Olympic Peninsula as a wilderness ranger, in the North Cascades as a fire effects monitor, and has helped trail crews in Washington. Outside of work she enjoys playing Ultimate Frisbee, jumping into cold bodies of water, playing the guitar and singing. Jessie was a Landscape & Livelihood student in 2015.  She is excited to be back in the area this season, to do more work and reconnect with this place!


Uwe Schaefer

Finance Director

Uwe tracks income, expenses, billing and match details for multiple grants. He prepares payroll information, pays bills and reimbursements, plus prepares financial reports for grants. Uwe prepares monthly reports for the Board of Directors and works with SVC's Board to prepare the annual budgets. He coordinates with the Treasurer to manage and track investments. In addition to his accounting responsibilities, Uwe helps with planning and fundraising.

uwe@svconnections.org


Kirsten Holland

Grants Manager

Kirsten secures grant funding to support SVC projects and program activities. In addition to grant writing, she’s responsible for all aspects of grants management including tracking and reporting to funders. She has a broad background in nonprofit fundraising and capital projects, public sector experience in land use planning and community development, and a lifelong passion for the natural environment.

kirsten@svconnections.org


Leanna Grubaugh

Office Manager and visitor services

As office manager, Leanna assists SVC's Executive Director and keeps office operations running smoothly. Leanna also provides visitor services for the thousands of people who come to the Condon Work Center every year.  She serves the public by providing information, answering questions and assisting visitors with obtaining maps, firewood and burning permits, and more.

leanna@svconnections.org


Grace Burgess

Financial Assistant

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Grace has worked in several capacities with military and government agencies in Virginia before moving to the Swan Valley in 2005. Grace provides financial and clerical support services to all of Swan Valley Connections programs.

grace@svconnections.org


Susan Novosel

Marketing Coordinator

Susan hails from the fast-paced world of advertising and throughout her career she has produced a myriad of print, television, radio and web projects. Susan manages the website and oversees our marketing and communications.

susan@svconnections.org


The Welcoming Committee

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Owen, Evora and Juice (from left to right) are full siblings who were born and raised in the Ruby Valley. They have been training their mom (Rebecca Ramsey) in the art of being an ambassador of love, and are highly skilled in visitor relationship building. They enjoy hiking, cross country skiing, and fly fishing and are particularly excited about meeting the chipmunk and squirrel population of the Swan Valley. Expect to meet one of them the next time you stop in the SVC office in Condon.


IMAGE: Top - Cori Stanek