Jeff Bryant has been the Executive Director since January 2017. Jeff’s upbringing in Hawthorne, Nev. fostered a deep-rooted passion for the Walker Basin. Prior to his role at WBC, Jeff worked with the Great Basin Institute and lead conservation crews throughout the Great Basin, Mojave Desert, and the central Pacific coast of Mexico. After his time with the Great Basin Institute, Jeff worked to develop several nonprofits including Urban Roots, the Polygrarian Institute, and Truckee Meadows Parks Foundation. Working at the WBC combines Jeff’s nonprofit experience, knowledge of conservation and sustainable agriculture, and passion for the Walker Basin.
Joy Morris is the Water Conservation Director. Joy has a M.S. in Hydrology from University of Nevada, Reno and a B.S. in Geology from New Mexico Tech. Joy has worked in the Walker Basin for nearly a decade, with most of that time spent on various aspects of the Walker Basin Restoration Program. She enjoys working with the diverse stakeholders in the Walker Basin and identifying opportunities to work together to meet the various needs of people in the Walker Basin. Joy is constantly amazed that she gets to work in such a beautiful place to create a long-lasting impact through her work.
Mike O’Carroll joined Walker Basin Conservancy in 2018 as the Director of Finance and Operations. Mike has 13 years of experience in non-profit financial management at the highest level, and over 25 years of financial management experience in the for-profit sector. Mike is a certified public accountant and received a B.S. in accounting from the University of Nevada, Reno.
Steve Tomac has been with Walker Basin Conservancy since 2014. Steve grew up on his family’s ranch in Fallon, Nev. After high school, he attended UNR where he received a B.S. in Agriculture with major emphasis in Wildlife and Range Management. Steve spent 28 years working for the Nevada Department of Wildlife primarily as a game warden in Lyon and Mineral counties. In 2011, he began working in the Walker Basin Restoration Program on stewardship activities and helping to establish the Walker Basin Conservancy.
Caroline Ackerman started her position in Communications and Outreach in May 2017. Caroline graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno in 2018 with a B.A. in journalism. Caroline’s interest in non-profit communications and lifelong admiration for the Nevadan desert drew her to WBC’s work.
Silas has been the Water Manager for WBC since July 2017. Silas received a B.S. in bioenvironmental sciences, a second B.S. in environmental studies, and an M.S. in water management and hydrological studies from Texas A&M University. Silas joined WBC because of the unique opportunity to work in the water conservation field to protect natural resources.
Robert Biggs has been a part of the WBC team since May 2017. Robert has an A.A. in criminal justice and plans to pursue a B.S. in wildlife ecology and conservation. Robert joined WBC to gain field experience and acquire practical knowledge in land management.
Logan Cormany graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno in 2017 with a bachelor's degree in agricultural sciences. Growing up on a ranch in Portola, California gave Logan a passion for maintaining agriculture to benefit the environment.
Samantha (Sam) Essig has been a Conservation Technician for WBC since November 2016. Sam received three associate degrees at Green River Community College in Western Washington for Criminal Justice. Sam continued her education and received a B.S. in wildlife biology and a B.S. in biology from the University of Montana Western in Dillon. She joined WBC because of the opportunity to restore farmland back into native sagebrush habitat.
Amy Gladding has been the Operations Manager since March 2017. After spending over 20 years in the Denver area, Amy just returned to her Reno roots a few years ago. In 2005, Amy earned a Master’s degree in Communications from the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs. Since then, she has been working for various non-profits focused on health care and environmental conservation. Amy came to WBC because she felt close to the mission of conserving and restoring the native Nevada environment and the historic Walker Lake.
Miguel Gonzales has worked with the Walker Basin Conservancy since May 2018. Miguel received a B.S. from NC State University in 2009. Since then, he has worked in conservation across the U.S.—from Vermont to New Mexico. Prior experience with AmeriCorps programs and a dedication to working with like-minded individuals on meaningful conservation projects attracted Miguel to the Conservancy’s work.
Darren Hamrey joined Walker Basin Conservancy as a Youth Conservation Crew Leader in 2018. Darren has been an educator in Hawthorne since 2003. Darren received a B.S. in general studies with an emphasis in teaching from the University of Nevada, Reno. He enjoys spending his free time outdoors, either on Walker Lake or in the Walker Basin.
Carlie Henneman has been the Staff Accountant with WBC since February 2017. Carlie has worked in conservation for years as an ecologist and conservation scientist. She obtained an undergraduate degree in Biology from Whitman College in Washington State, and an M.S. in Wildlife Conservation from University of Minnesota. Carlie has had numerous positions throughout the country related to wildlife, conservation and the outdoors, including studying forest birds in Hawaii, an AmeriCorps position in Portland, Oregon and environmental education in Alaska. She is now enjoying a new role in the area of finance while maintaining her commitment to conservation.
Dash Hibbard has been the East Walker Stewardship Coordinator since October 2016. Dash has a B.S. in Biology from Bates College, and an M.S. in Natural Resources and Environmental Science from the University of Nevada, Reno. Dash has been in the Mojave Desert and the Great Basin for the better part of the last ten years, doing plant ecology research and restoration projects. He loves the opportunity to collaborate on restoring native plant communities to a river system that is both beautiful and uniquely challenging. Dash looks forward to seeing what the watershed looks like over the next decade or two.
Bynum Jackson started with WBC in October 2016. Bynum graduated from the University of Montana with two B.S. degrees. The first degree is in parks, tourism, and recreation management and the second in resource conservation. He also received a minor in climate change studies. Bynum came to work at the WBC excited for the opportunity to use his degrees and to expand his knowledge of restoration work. Working at WBC has allowed him to explore this unique state, which prior to moving here, he had only driven through.
David Lacey joined Walker Basin Conservancy in May 2018. David earned a Bachelor’s of Science in agriculture systems management from Texas A&M University. His passion for the natural world and experience in ecological restoration drew him to WBC.
Allan Ross joined Walker Basin Conservancy as a Youth Conservation Crew Leader in 2018. Allan has worked, lived and taught in Yerington for the past 30 years. He has a master’s in educational administration and supervision, along with a B.S. in elementary education. He is fond of the Walker Basin and his experiences hiking, fishing, motorcycle riding and hunting with his family.
Hannah Weber is a graduate from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Before joining WBC in February 2018, she worked as an Americorps member and as a research technician for a graduate student converting old agricultural fields to native vegetation. She is interested in restoring native plant communities as well as water conservation. She wanted to join the WBC crew because she believes in the mission and wants to develop skills to manage land in the future.
Terence Ruane has been WBC's field manager since November of 2017. Terence studied outdoor education at Sterling College in Craftsbury Common, Vermont. He has been working in conservation since 2003. Terence has worked on and managed projects all over North America, from Alaska to Florida and New Mexico to New Jersey. At WBC, Terence enjoys creating tangible projects and causing lasting changes on the unique and critical Nevadan habitat.
Carissa is going into her senior year at the University of Nevada, Reno, where she is pursuing a B.S. in environmental science with a minor in public administration. Carissa is the student body vice president at the University of Nevada, Reno.
Brianna is going into her senior year at Appalachian State University, where she is pursuing a B.S. in biology—emphasis in ecology, evolution and environmental biology—with a minor in geography. Brianna is working towards a GIS certification.