Board & Staff

Board and Staff

The Board

Our Board of Directors is a “working board” that meets once a month, and each director is generally on at least one committee that meets either ad-hoc or on a monthly basis. The board is a diverse group of folks of all ages and walks of life – including foresters, college students, teachers, lawyers, accountants, and caretakers. All skills and viewpoints are welcome and necessary to represent our community and keep UPLC on track with our mission. Board meetings occur on the second Tuesday of each month, from 7-9 PM, and are held at various places in Marquette and occasionally in Munising as several of our board members are from Alger County.

If you would like to learn more about serving on the Board or joining a committee, the best way to learn more is to come to a board meeting and listen to what we’ve got going on. Call us at (906) 225-8067 to find out more!


President 

Dan Watkins

Dan first gained an appreciation of protected lands growing up in western Washington state. He continued to develop his love and respect for the outdoors as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Kenya, and later as a graduate student in Colorado and Idaho. Now, as a practicing physical therapist in the Marquette area, Dan works toward the betterment of his community by promoting fitness and functional independence. He feels privileged to work with the Board of Directors at UPLC to reinforce the connection between human health and the natural environment.

Vice President

Jean McLean

Jean grew up in Marquette and spent 36 years in California as a special education teacher. After retiring, Jean moved back to Marquette. She enjoys the outdoors while hiking, biking, kayaking and cross country skiing.

Secretary

Chelsea Bromley

Chelsea is a lifelong Michigander and outdoor enthusiast, currently residing in Marquette, Michigan. With a background and education in the arts from the University of Michigan (B.A.) and Eastern Michigan University (M.A.), it was her love of nature, wildlife, and conservation that lead her to service for the UPLC in 2016. Chelsea currently works as a creative professional, enjoys yoga, hiking, fly-fishing, and photography, and is rarely found without a book on hand, even while kayaking.

Treasurer

Adam Berger

Adam holds a PhD in social anthropology and an MA in educational psychology. He is interested in place-based education, and the connection between schools and environmental nonprofits in the Upper Peninsula. Professionally, he has worked in educational and the nonprofit sectors, including at a major foundation in NYC. Adam owns a cabin surrounded by the Ottawa National Forest, and has a lifelong interest in preserving the biological diversity of the Northwoods ecosystem.

Board Members (alphabetical)

Robb Ferguson

Robb became a permanent resident of the UP 34 years ago when he accepted the job of Munising City Attorney. He continues in that position, happily, but his practice focus is in land and real estate matters. The soft spot he has for wild land first began to develop when, as a boy, he hunted and fished with his father, uncles and cousins around his home town, Traverse City. But watching Traverse City develop and grow left him with the strong feeling that some land must be kept off the table, so far as development is concerned, so there will always be green places for trees to grow, wildlife to prosper, and people to recharge. He is a long-term believer in the goals and mission of the UPLC. He provides his rather deep experience with real estate law to the organization on a pro bono basis. He was very pleased to be asked to become a member of the Board of Directors and looks forward to also serving the UPLC in that capacity.

Lora Loope

After growing up in Traverse City Lora studied biology at Alma College (B.S.) and NMU (M.S.).  Now retired from Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore where Lora served as an aquatic ecologist, she values natural habitats and admires UPLC’s vision and efforts.  She participates in Alger Conservation District’s stream monitoring program and Michigan DNR’s frog-and-toad survey and enjoys cross-country skiing, hiking, reading, and singing with the Marquette Choral Society.

Jim Peck

Retired after 35 years as a DNR fisheries biologist conducting research mainly on the Great Lakes and tributaries, Jim currently does contract writing and editing for the Great Lakes Fishery Commission. He earned BS and MS degrees in fisheries biology from U of M and enjoys the outdoors, especially gardening, hunting, fishing, hiking, biking, and skiing.

Grant Petersen

Lives in Munising and is a retired National Park Service (NPS) manager who served throughout the United States over the course of 36 years before retiring in 2001 following 19 years as the Superintendent of Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. A native of northern Illinois he holds bachelors and masters degrees of science from Michigan State and Texas A&M respectively. His education and employment background is centered on park and natural resource planning and management with significant responsibility on property acquisition and land use monitoring. Grant is hopeful that his background will be useful in assisting the continued expansion of UPLC within the Upper Peninsula.

Caden Reed

I grew up in Saginaw, MI with a large fascination in the outdoors and keeping it clean. I moved to Marquette, MI to attend Northern Michigan University and get closer to the wilderness. Since, I have received my Associate degree in Outdoor Recreation and Leadership Management and am currently working on my Bachelor’s in Biology. I found out about the UP Land Conservancy from the new Conservation Crew I joined on campus. My goal in life is to do whatever possible to benefit the preservation of diverse ecosystems globally, in hopes that the natural world can continue to thrive as it deserves.  

Andrew Rickauer

Andrew grew up in the mountains of Colorado where he enjoyed as much time as he could exploring and learning about the outdoors.  He left the mountains to attend school at Northern Michigan University where he studied Outdoor Recreation Leadership and Management.  After graduating, Andrew returned to the mountains to manage a ski area and eventually got his MBA before returning to Marquette with his wife to start a family.  Andrew now lives and works in Marquette at Thrivent Financial and is raising three adventurous girls.  He still enjoys spending as much time as he can outdoors, exploring, learning, and teaching his girls about the great outdoors.

Brock Robinson

I have been interested in the outdoor environment and in conservation since childhood spending summers wilderness canoeing.  I am now more than one year retired from nearly 30 years practicing medicine in Green Bay.  My specialty is Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, a diverse field that focuses on maximizing function.  In my earlier years, I worked as a hospital medical director and had lots of experiences working with groups.  However, I have had only minor experiences being on boards of directors.  In addition to outdoor activities, I enjoy woodworking, dancing and playing Irish drum, the bodhran.  Together with my wife, Jane Blameuser, and my two adult sons, I own property at AuTrain Bay which is under conservation easement with UPLC since 2007.

Other board members:  Sam Kapp and Marc LaBeau’s bios coming soon!


Staff

Executive Director

Andrea Denham 

A perennial outdoor adventurer, Andrea joined us in 2015 after years of traveling, environmental education, and guiding others in outdoor recreation.  She’s lived in Minnesota, Yosemite National Park, Alaska and has traveled many places in Europe-but keeps on feeling called back to Lake Superior and the wilderness of the Upper Peninsula.  With a degree in Outdoor Recreation Leadership and Management from Northern Michigan University, she brings her experience in outreach and education to join UPLC as we protect the land we all love for generations to come. Andrea also pursues painting and various forms of creative art when she’s not out exploring with her dog.

Lands Program Manager

Chris Burnett, Ph.D.

Ecologist and educator with over 35 years of experience in forest management, wildlife research, limnology, restoration ecology, environmental education, and geographic information systems. Chris has worked for several universities, local, state, and federal agencies, forest industries, and non-profit environmental organizations. His primary professional expertise is the management of family owned woodlands.

Office Manager

Adina Daar

A lifelong learner and ever-curious naturalist, Adina grew up in Florida where love and respect for nature and wildlife were cultivated at a young age. She moved to the Upper Peninsula in 2018 and quickly became involved with the UPLC as an ‘Enthusiastic Supporter’ before joining as the Office Manager. Prior to life in the UP, Adina traveled the world as a research consultant helping companies develop and improve many of the products and services we interact with every day. In 2016 she fell in love with the emerging discipline of Biomimicry (which is looking to nature for inspiration for solving big challenges) eventually receiving a degree and professional certification in the area. She brings a wide array of experience to work for the UPLC and is passionate about supporting mindful and future-focused conservation efforts.

Stewardship Intern

Elise Oswald

Hello! My name is Elise Oswald and I will be working as the UPLC summer Stewardship Intern. While growing up in Escanaba I loved camping with my family around the UP. My favorite spot to camp was Grand Marais, where I swam, picked blueberries (eating more than I saved) and started my agate collection. I received my bachelors in Environmental Science at NMU in 2017. Currently, I enjoy mountain biking, swimming and hanging out with my extended family members.