Catherine Wiechmann is a full-time scientist and project manager with Watershed Consulting focusing on ecological monitoring, water quality services, and floating treatment wetland technology. Catherine earned her M.S. in Environmental Science from the University of Idaho where she modeled environmental parameters in freshwater wetlands. Her expertise in ecosystem health and habitat assessment, limnology and stream ecology gives her a wide range of knowledge on how to manage our precious water resources in the Western U.S.. Catherine has led crews in large- scale wetland monitoring projects in Idaho and Colorado, and performed data analysis for large ecological datasets.
Marnie Criley is a Project Manager and the Business Manager at Watershed Consulting. She has been with the company since 1998. Marnie is experienced in proposal and report writing, project management, and on-the-ground restoration work. In 2010, Marnie took over the business management roll, including contracting, budgeting, finances and day-to-day operations. She has more than 10 years of experience assisting organizations, community groups and collaboratives build the capacity to carry out long-term planning and implementation for forest and watershed based projects. These skills – from meeting facilitation and strategic planning to assessment and implementation – help Marnie in her many roles at Watershed Consulting.
Lucas McIver is a Project Manager and Staff Forester at Watershed Consulting. Lucas has been with Watershed Consulting since 2006. He has been a forest worker for over 20 years, beginning by managing his family's tree farm. He has been assessing forests, thinning trees and leading thinning crews for that amount of time. He is an ISA certified arborist and tree climber and leads our urban arborist work, Arborworks. Lucas manages a complex, multi-year restoration project for a large ownership in the Bitterroot Valley. He also assists in the development of the Missoula Hybrid Poplar Plantation. Lucas is a skilled crew leader, tree feller, sawmill operator, nurseryman, and woodworker. He is a core member of our soil survey team.
Erik Samsoe is our Aerial Survey Specialist and Cartographer. Erik’s primary tools are Google Earth and a survey grade mapping drone (SenseFly eBee). The output from the eBee Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) produces point cloud data and high resolution imagery which can be utilized in a wide spectrum of proprietary and open-source GIS packages. Erik brings a background in aviation (private pilot), media development, computer programming and installation design to Watershed. He has experience working as an educator and professional with universities, museums, conservation groups, and startup and large technology companies.
Aaron Howard is our lead sawyer at Watershed Consulting. He has been with us since 2009 and has 17 total years of experience. He is adept at both commercial and pre-commercial work. Aaron is an expert tree feller and competent mechanic. As a crew leader he is well respected and often invited to teach forestry skills. In addition to his tree thinning experience, Aaron is also a certified timber cruiser and has completed Common Stand Exams and timber preparation contracts, including tree marking, for the U.S. Forest Service.
Patrick Hurley is an Ecologist and Restoration Specialist with Watershed Consulting and has been with us since 2014. Patrick came to Watershed Consulting with a technical background in constructed wetlands for waste water treatment and reuse and has since expanded his skill set to focus on wetland and riparian assessment & restoration. Patrick is trained to incorporate the ecological services of natural systems into perennial solutions, both in and out of the water. Additionally, his experience in plant ecology and soil-building allows him to span the gap from waterways to lead studies and operations around hybrid poplar cultivation and Superfund reclamation. Patrick is also a certified Wetland Delineator and Professional Wetland Scientist in training.
Jeff Copeland is our Biological Weed Control Specialist. He has been with Watershed Consulting since 2011. Jeff has over 18 years’ experience managing noxious weeds with biological control insects in Montana and surrounding states, as well as a background in natural resource management and planning, including GPS/GIS mapping and design, as well as vegetation monitoring.
Julian Colescott is Watershed Consulting’s Wetland Scientist, joining our team in 2015. Julian has over 17 years’ experience working in environmental consulting as a biologist, Professional Wetland Scientist (SWS No. 1920), and Project Manager. He specializes in preparing wetland delineations, wetland functional assessment, and wetland permit applications, but is well versed in survey methods for many different wildlife species. Survey data are incorporated into Biological Resources sections of National Environmental Policy Act documents.
Jeff Cahill is a Forestry Technician, Equipment Operator and Sawyer with Watershed Consulting. Jeff joined Watershed Consulting in 2015 with a background in landscape and environmental construction, having spent six years working on and leading landscape construction crews in Massachusetts and Western Montana. Jeff is currently in the process of transitioning his focus from commercial landscaping to environmental restoration, bringing his skills with earth works and equipment operation to the forestry crew at Watershed. As a member of the Watershed team, he is learning how to implement forest and land management prescriptions, and apply his knowledge in a new field.
Josiah Denham is a Partner at Watershed Consulting and the Lead Forester. Josiah has been practicing forestry his entire life. He grew up in New England and jumped at every opportunity to go into the woods to help his father with his forestry business. He moved from Massachusetts to Montana in 2005 to finish his degree in Forestry at the University of Montana. He graduated with a Bachelor’s degree, with honors, in 2007. He then went on to work as a forest technician throughout the Western U.S. with the Forest Service before he decided that he preferred to work in the private sector. He worked as a forester for Watershed Consulting for 2 years before becoming a partner in 2010. Josiah is a skilled sawyer. He specializes in restoration, planting, thinning and logging, as well as operating many different types of equipment. He is constantly updating his credits to maintain his forestry certification and enhance his knowledge of current research and issues throughout the country. Josiah prefers to spend his time in the field, working hands-on with landowners. He prides himself on the work that he and his team of sawyers complete. Josiah is a Certified Forester, has been certified in Wildland Hydrology, and is the Secretary Treasurer of the Missoula Chapter of the Society of American Foresters.
Christine Brissette is a Project Manager and Restoration Specialist at Watershed Consulting. She has been with us since 2009. Christine specializes in restoration design and project management in riparian areas, wetlands and streams. She provides leadership through all project phases, from assessment and design to field implementation, evaluation and reporting. Christine is a capable plant ecologist with additional training in stream ecology, soil science, geomorphology and hydrology. Her projects have included floodplain revegetation, bank stabilization, bioengineering and weed management. She also has extensive experience with ecological surveys and technical writing. Additionally, Christine manages our native plant nursery.
Watershed Consulting Staff
Mark Vander Meer is Principal Partner at Watershed Consulting and has been with the company since 1998. He is our senior restoration ecologist with more than 30 years of experience in ecologic restoration and bio-physical assessments. Mark is a USDA certified soil scientist and an ISA Certified Arborist. He works to mend severe disturbances such as degraded riparian areas or abandoned mine sites. Mark has developed many innovative revegetation and soil stabilization techniques. He is the lead author for three regional revegetation manuals. He owns and operates a native plant nursery for the company’s many revegetation projects. In the woods, Mark applies responsible forest practices that restore and sustain long-term forest use and vitality. His work encourages woodland health and appropriate ecologic trends. Recognizing the importance of the soil resource, Mark works to assess how past disturbances influence natural bio-physical resiliency and ecological trends of the above- and below-ground ecosystems; he then provides recommendations for soil rehabilitation and native plant revegetation. Mark is continually learning and teaching restoration and forest management techniques throughout Western Montana.