Meet our Team

Leadership counts

Our volunteer board of directors and leadership staff form a robust team that is defined by an unwavering commitment to public lands through public service. We have our distinct roles, but we are united by our passion for the mission.

Interested in Joining Our Team?

We are currently hiring for 2024 seasonal positions. View our Jobs page for my information.

  • Dave Brennan | President

    Dave Brennan first discovered a passion for hiking as a teenager roaming the northern California Coast Ranges. He retired in 2008 after a 28-year career as a national park ranger, protecting park resources, providing emergency services, and managing visitor use. Dave finds adventure and inspiration in exploring the backcountry of southern Oregon and northern California, and connecting people to those wildlands as an SMC trip leader. He lives in Ashland, Oregon with his wife Kate Kennedy and their adventure dog Kelsey.

    Dave is known for his excellent camp cooking and enjoys leading hiking and backpacking trips.

  • Haley Cox | Treasurer

    Haley Cox has lived in the Rogue Valley with her husband John and their three cats since 2017. She serves on the Jackson County Bicycle Committee and is currently the Parks Planner for the City of Medford. Haley grew up in the Willamette Valley on a farm outside of McMinnville, and spent many summers hiking through the Cascades, Coast Range, and Columbia Gorge. She has also traveled far and wide on various study and leisure trips, from Monterey Bay to Madagascar, and from the Wallowas to the Alps, Andes, and Himalayas.

    Haley is an avid adventurer, and feels at home among the tall trees or wandering the city streets. She has an undergraduate degree in Natural Resources from Oregon State University and a Master of Science in Urban Environmental Systems Management from the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York.

  • Roxanne Tenscher | Secretary

    Roxanne Tenscher has spent most of her adult life exploring wild places, either by boat, by ski, by bike or on foot. This has led to her love of the places she has explored and a life-long passion to share the knowledge and skills she has acquired.

    Tenscher has made her living teaching outdoor skills and helping other people get outside through her 30-year career working at REI. She also enjoys teaching Wilderness First Aid through NOLS Wilderness Medicine.

    Roxanne lives in Talent, OR with her husband, Max. In addition to many other projects and adventures they do together, they are working to complete hiking all of the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail together.

  • Edem Gomez | Director

    Edem Gomez joined the Siskiyou Mountain Club board of directors in February 2021. Edem grew up on a small farm on the Southern Oregon Coast and at a young age developed a passion for outdoor recreation as well as a deep respect for the value of public lands.

    After graduating from the University of Oregon in 2014, Gomez moved to the Rogue Valley to start his career as a Transportation Planner at Rogue Valley Transportation District.

    As a first generation American and son of immigrant parents, Gomez has an interest in expanding outdoor recreation opportunities and access to diverse communities, particularly helping connect underrepresented groups to their public lands. In his free time, you can find Edem hiking with his partner Nicole, exploring new areas of the Siskiyou backcountry, and foraging for wild mushrooms. 

  • Maria Katsantones | Director

    Maria Katsantones has lived in Southern Oregon for three decades and joined the SMC board in January 2023. She is author of the guide book Hiking in Ashland, helps care for our senior community, writes nature essays, and participates in hiking, trail running, and backpacking experiences.

    Katsantones raised her two sons in Ashland where she volunteered for the schools and helped build multiple trails in the Ashland watershed. She loves being outside breathing fresh air and quietly honoring the grandeur of the wilderness and says she’s grateful for the work of SMC interns and staff.

  • Justin Hymas | Director

    Justin Hymas has lived in the Rogue Valley with his family since 2019. He has had a deep love for the Klamath-Siskiyou bioregion since he was a kid when he would horse-pack trail supplies into trail crews, hunters, and researchers with his grandfather.

    Between working in the wilderness as a wildland firefighter and getting to play there as a trail runner, the wilderness areas of the Klamath-Siskiyou hold a special place in his heart.

    He is the founder and owner of the remodeling company Ashland Builders and joined SMC because he wants to be part of an organization that is making a difference in the local wilderness areas. With three kids all ready to explore the beauty of our rugged mountains, he needs good trails as much as anyone.

    He joined the board of directors in March 2023.

  • Amalie Dieter | Director

    Amalie grew up in Seattle and has always enjoyed spending time outdoors, especially in the Pacific Northwest.She graduated from Southern Oregon University with a  BA in English & Writing and a BS in Environmental Science & Policy.

    After graduation she became a WCC 2017 Intern for Siskiyou Mountain Club. She had her first experiences backpacking, doing trail work, and being in Wilderness, while helping to clear thousands of logs off of the Rogue Wolf Loop in the Sky Lakes Wilderness.

    Working for SMC changed her life and led her to careers with REI and the USFS. Amalie is excited to have become a board member in April 2023 and is looking forward to helping further SMC’s mission to “Restore, maintain, and promote primitive trails in the Siskiyou backcountry and beyond.”

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  • Gabe Howe | Executive Director

    Gabriel Howe started exploring the Siskiyou backwoods in 2005 and moved to the Rogue Valley from Portland in 2008. Howe received his B.A. in English-Writing from Southern Oregon University in 2012 and lives in Ashland with his wife, Jill, and their two children, Carter and Azalea.

    He enjoys the most remote reaches of the Siskiyou backcountry, lonely lap swim sessions, and hiking at night. Howe volunteers at his children’s school.

    Email Gabe 
  • Karly White | Lead Program Manager

    Karly White came out west from Pennsylvania in 2017 as a Wilderness Conservation Corps Intern. She was promoted to a crew member position in 2018 and has had a permanent position with the Club since that fall. She has been instrumental in streamlining administrative systems, bookkeeping, graphic design, newsletter composition, and development of our growing volunteer program. Karly was responsible for the design of our maps and other products.

    She works on an array of field projects, manages volunteers, and works with the community to deliver stewardship results.

    Email Karly 
  • Nick Hodges | Program Manager

     Our second-most senior employee, Nick Hodges came to SMC as an intern in 2016 and has spent each summer since then working in the backwoods, climbing the ranks to Program Manager. He helps orchestrate our field operations and his specialties include tool care, trail scouting, and trip planning. Hodges also helps maintain our facility and supervises our Wilderness Corps.

    Hodges enjoys pack rafting, long runs, and is well known for his spoons.

    Email Nick 
  • Alex Relph | Stewardship Coordinator

    Alex Relph worked as a 2014 intern on our Wilderness Corps, and served as a crew leader in 2016 where she led our first trips through the Red Buttes and Siskiyou wilderness areas. Then she went on to work for the Appalachian Mountain Club and also worked for a few years as a tree climber.

    She’s now back as our stewardship coordinator, responsible for helping run the day-to-day operations of our Corps, interns, and staff activities. Relph also helps maintain our facility, provides leadership in the field, and assists with events and outreach. Relph is also attending Southern Oregon University and she lives in Grants Pass, OR.

    Email Alex 
  • Vincent DiFrancesco | Communications Associate

    Originally from Ohio, Vince joined SMC as a Wilderness Corps intern in the summer of 2022. After his stint on the crew, he produced a photo essay that became “50 Days in Dirt,” a special edition of the Siskiyou Hiker. Vince returned the following season as Communications Associate. He helps manage social media, captures content in the field, and assists with the newsletter. In 2023, he filmed a documentary, titled “A Long Way to Nowhere,” that follows interns on a traverse of the Kalmiopsis Wilderness.

    Vince enjoys ultramarathons, bike rides, and long days in the mountains. 

    Email Vince 
  • Austin Klopstein | Donor & Retail Associate

    Austin Klopstein is our donor and retail associate responsible for maintaining strong relationships with donors, visitors, vendors, and the community through delivering professional service.

    He and his wife moved to the Rogue Valley from Coopers Landing, Alaska, last fall and when we advertised the position, he applied and was hired shortly thereafter.

    Among a slurry of duties, Austin staffs the Siskiyou Outdoor Store for current operating hours and acts as a community resource. He has access to our trails database, so is able to offer the most up-to-date information on conditions and work plans.

    Email Austin 
  • Trevor Meyer | Operations Deputy & Saw Program Coordinator

    Trevor Meyer grew up in the Rogue Valley and attended University of Oregon to earn an undergraduate degree in Environmental Studies. He came on as a Wilderness Corps intern in 2017, kickstarting a permanent field position that he fulfilled through 2021. He returned to the Club in a part time administrative position in 2023, and is now working full time in development, finance, and administration.

    He is an outstanding photographer and loves all things Southern Oregon. You can find him providing visitor services at our brick-n-mortar location Wednesdays 12p - 5p and Thursdays and Fridays from 10am to 6pm.

    Email Trevor 
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