Council Operations: Council Staff
The Council system is composed of Council members, Council staff, and advisory bodies who advise the Council. Members of the public participate by commenting on Council decisions and processes, serving on advisory bodies, and attending Council and advisory body meetings.
The Council has 14 voting members and five non-voting members. See the Council roster.
Council staff support the Council by providing information for management decisions, informing the public about Council activities, helping the public participate in the process, coordinating the process and meetings, creating fishery management documents, and assisting advisory groups.
Donald McIsaac is the Executive Director. Don is responsible for overseeing all operations of the Council, including managing the Council staff and implementing the actions and policies of the Council. He received his Bachelors degree from Humboldt State University and Masters and Doctorate degrees from the University of Washington. Prior to coming to the Council, Don worked for 25 years for the Washington and Oregon State fishery management agencies, concentrating on interjurisdictional fishery management matters in the latter years. Little-known fact: Don coached youth baseball teams extensively, and twice managed teams to the State Tournament where they placed second each time.
Chuck Tracy Chuck Tracy is the Deputy Director. He supervises the staff officers and is responsible for managing various scientific, budgetary, and administrative aspects of Council obligations. Chuck has a degree in Biological Oceanography from Humboldt State University with additional graduate level work in estuarine ecology. He has been with the Council since 2001, following several years of service with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife focusing on interjurisdictional fisheries issues, including Columbia River sturgeon research and salmon management. Before becoming the Deputy Director, Chuck was responsible for Council salmon fishery management matters. Little-known fact: Chuck’s hobbies include cooking and wine tasting.
Carolyn Porter is the Executive Specialist. She supervises the administrative staff and is responsible for managing various administrative and operational aspects of Council obligations. Carolyn worked for the Council in the early 1980s, then for Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife in rulemaking, budget tracking, and inter-jurisdictional coordination until her return to the Council in June 2000. Little known fact: Carolyn is a first time participant in the 2010 Knitting Olympics and, while not in medal competition, hopes to complete her event (knitted hand warmers) successfully and with a decent finish time.
John Coon is our part-time Operations and Transitions Specialist. He is responsible for providing assistance with managing various budgetary and administrative aspects of Council obligations. John earned his Doctorate degree from the University of Idaho, researching the white sturgeon population in the middle Snake River. He has been with the Council for over 25 years, following several years of service as a research biologist, environmental coordinator, and anadromous fishery manager for the State of Idaho. Before becoming the Operations and Transitions Specialist, John served as Deputy Director, and prior to that he was responsible for Council salmon fishery management matters. Little-known fact: John is an avid dancer and is involved with the Portland Country Dance Community.
Kelly Amesis the staff officer responsible for groundfish fishery analysis as well as staffing the Groundfish Management Team, and handling Pacific halibut issues. Prior to joining the Council, Kelly worked for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife as the groundfish management program leader working with both commercial and recreational fisheries. During this time, she served on the Groundfish Management Team. Additionally, Kelly spent six years as the stock assessment survey coordinator for the International Pacific Halibut Commission. Kelly has a bachelor’s degree in biology and master’s degree in environmental policy and management. Little known fact: Kelly wore XTRATUFs on her wedding day.
Mike Burner is the staff officer responsible for salmon fishery analysis, developing the Ecosystem-Based Fishery Management Plan, and staffs the Salmon Advisory Subpanel, Salmon Technical Team, Model Evaluation Workgroup, Ecosystem Advisory Subpanel, and the Ecosystem Plan Development Team. Mike has a degree in biology from Lawrence University, and has completed graduate level work through the Boston University Marine Program. Mike started with the Council in 2002 after working nearly ten years on salmon management issues for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. Little known fact: Mike has a passion for vintage Volkswagens and is currently working on the preservation of a 1963 Dormobile Camper.
Christopher “Kit” Dahl is the staff officer in charge of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process and highly migratory species (HMS). Kit also works on other staff officer assignments and projects. Kit has an extensive background in fisheries management, including work with the Western Pacific Council in Hawaii. Little-known fact: Kit once dined on yak stomach while trekking in Nepal.
John DeVore is the staff officer responsible for staffing the Scientific and Statistical Committee and groundfish management issues, which includes staffing the Groundfish Management Team and the Groundfish Advisory Subpanel, and providing analytical documents for Council consideration. John grew up in a fishing community on the East Coast and graduated from Cornell University. Before working with the Council, John worked with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. There, he focused on Columbia River sturgeon and predator/prey issues, studied channel deepening, and was involved in salmon and smelt research and management. Little-known fact: John has served as a crew member on an East Coast bottom trawler, a Pacific halibut longliner, and a salmon troller.
Jennifer Gilden is the staff officer responsible for Ecosystem Fishery Management, Legislative matters, outreach and information, and the Habitat Committee. Jennifer currently works part-time. She develops outreach materials, tracks legislation and ocean energy developments, translates scientific information for general readership, edits the newsletter, contributes to social impact analyses and other social science efforts, and works on enhancing the council’s communication with constituents. Jennifer graduated from Vassar and has a MA in environmental anthropology from Oregon State University. Little-known fact: One of Jennifer’s less fortunate ancestors, Owen Coffin, was on the whale ship Essex when it was struck by a sperm whale and sank in 1820.
Kerry GriffinStaffs the Coastal Pelagic Species (CPS) Management Team and CPS Advisory Subpanel, and works on a variety of habitat-related issues included Essential Fish Habitat periodic reviews. He earned his Bachelors degree and a Masters in Marine Resource Management from Oregon State University, where he studied marine fisheries management and aquaculture. Prior to coming to the Council, he worked nine years with NMFS on a variety of habitat issues such hydropower, fish passage, gravel extraction, Essential Fish Habitat, and habitat restoration. Little known fact: In the late 1800s, Kerry’s great-grandfather started a sail-making business in Portland, and it’s still in business today.
Jim Seger is the staff officer for economic analysis and various specialized fishery management issues such as limited entry. He staffs the groundfish individual quota process and other ad-hoc groups. He has degrees in zoology and marine policy with additional graduate level work in economics. Little-known fact: In the 1980s, Jim was an observer on a Russian factory trawler in the Bering Sea and transited the Pacific on a Korean flying squid research cruise.
Sandra Krause is the Information Technology Specialist for the Council and has been with the Council since February 1993. She is responsible for all aspects of the Council’s computer network infrastructure, network administration, computer support services, website construction and maintenance, videoconference equipment, and a variety of other technical support functions. Interesting fact: Just about everything in Sandra’s office is purple.
Renee Dorval is an Administrative Specialist for the Council. She handles hotel and travel arrangements as well as other administrative tasks. She returned to Portland in 1987 after spending 14 years in Haines, Alaska. Little known fact: while growing up in Haines, Renee used to help her late father, the Harbormaster, patrol harbor and waterfront areas before and after school.
Kris Kleinschmidt serves as Administrative Specialist for the Council staff. He is responsible for document production and distribution functions, as well as other administrative activities. Kris graduated from the Edward R. Murrow school of Communication, at Washington State University, Pullman. Little known fact: Kris has traveled over half the U.S. and over eight countries abroad, where he was able to go snowboarding on the Swiss Alps and ride a Harley Davidson around the Big Island of Hawaii.
Kimberly Merydith serves as an Administrative Specialist for the Council staff. She is responsible for document production and distribution functions, as well as other administrative activities. She graduated from Oregon State University with a degree in Liberal Studies and an emphasis in pre-Elementary Education. Little known fact: Kim likes to decorate cakes in her spare time.
Patricia Crouse is the Fiscal Specialist for the council staff. She performs a variety of accounting duties and a range of budget preparation and analysis in support of the Council’s fiscal responsibilities. She has a Bachelors Degree in Business Management from Eastern Oregon University. Her background includes accounting for non-profits in Maine, Oregon and California. Little known fact: Patricia was a lifeguard in high school.