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Board Members

Council Chair- Katrina Poydack

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Katrina Poydack – 
Katrina was born in Southern Oregon and has lived here on and off her entire life. She has served on the board for many years and is interested in forest health, fire restoration, salmon, biodiversity, hiking and fishing.

Secretary- Patricia Downing

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Patricia Downing

Patty came to the Watershed Council because of her deep concern for the ecology of the Illinois Valley. She brings a wealth of experience in non-profit management and was instrumental in drafting our Strategic plan. Patty also serves as the Executive Director for Rusk Ranch Nature Center. 





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Jim Gurley

Jim Gurley –  
Jim has lived in the Illinois Valley for 28 years and was elected to the board for zone 5 in 2016.  He is retired from the tech industry and has been a volunteer firefighter for 10 years. Jim owns ½ mile of creek frontage and is hoping to apply good science to the SWCD’s decision making process.



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Bob Schmidt –
Bob has lived in the valley since 2011 and has served on the board for years. . His main interests include salmon, healthy forests, beaver, bringing more beaver to the valley, and ensuring water quantity and quality.


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Carol Crawford

Carol Crawford: 
Carol has lived in the Illinois Valley for over 30 years, many of which she has spent on this board.  She is a part of the Back Country Horsemen, Sourdough Chapter and loves spending time on a trail. She is an animal lover and takes pleasure in the simple farm style life. Her interests include horses, trails, farming, and ranching.

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Don Young: 
Don has lived in the Illinois Valley for over 30 years and was appointed to the board as an  Director in 2002. He has a background in natural resource management, geography, environmental studies and mining. He is an active member of the Sierra Club and his interests include riparian restoration, mining, and forestry.

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Gene Merrill

Gene Merrill: 
Gene was born and raised in the Illinois Valley and has served on the board since 2016 as Associate Director.   He is passionate about outdoor recreation, sustainable farming, and our Valley’s natural resources.


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Janice Denney

Janice Denney:

After working for a variety of agencies and spending time in the Illinois Valley decades ago, Janice moved back in 2019. She worked in New Zealand for the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, as well as for Greenpeace, and on many community initiatives. Some of the projects she contributed to include river clean ups, school gardens, teaching about reducing plastic waste, worm composting, and advocating against the use of toxic pesticides and herbicides, and for the use of native plants and goats to restore healthy ecosystems. We are grateful to have her as a Director.