CWC Staff

This Could Be YOU!

This Could Be YOU!

Development and Communications Manager

CWC is hiring! In a newly created position, the Development and Communications Manager will join the CWC team in January and own the river community’s storytelling and take a leadership role in developing fundraising relationships, including cultivating and stewarding donors and seeking grants from private foundations, state and federal agencies and general donations and major gifts from community members and companies. Want to shape the future of Santa Cruz and work at what we’re crafting as the very best workplace in this town? Learn more here and apply.

Job Description and Application Instructions
Greg Pepping

Greg Pepping

Executive Director

As the Executive Director of the Coastal Watershed Council, Greg Pepping has brought stability and growth to the organization since 2009 by working with the board of directors, donors and partners to wisely implement organizational strategy and manage all programs and staff. Greg’s drive to make sustainable improvements to healthy watersheds stemmed from his work as a Peace Corps volunteer working on water and sanitation in Uganda and carried into his graduate work in water chemistry at the University of Wisconsin at Madison. Greg won a local NEXTie award in 2014 for his leadership in the formation of the San Lorenzo River Alliance. He served on the City of Santa Cruz’s 2014-15 Water Supply Advisory Committee, is currently Vice Chair of the City of Santa Cruz Planning Commission and serves on the County of Santa Cruz’s Commission on the Environment.

Laurie Egan

Laurie Egan

Programs Director

Laurie’s passion for connecting communities to nature drives her to ensure that CWC’s youth empowerment, community engagement, habitat enhancement and water quality programs meet their strategic objectives. Laurie leads CWC’s programs, grant writing and communications. Prior to joining CWC in 2013, Laurie worked on a statewide campaign to reduce toxic flame-retardant chemicals with Physicians for Social Responsibility Los Angeles and the Center for Environmental Health. Laurie serves on the Board of Directors at United Way of Santa Cruz County, is co-chair of the Emerging Leaders Circle of Santa Cruz County and was recognized as 2016 Emerging Leader of the Year. She earned a B.S. in Environmental Analysis from Harvey Mudd College. 

Mollie Behn

Mollie Behn

Education Manager

Mollie directs CWC’s Watershed Rangers education programs for Santa Cruz County schools inspiring youth to connect with, learn about and protect their local watersheds in collaboration with city and county partners. Prior to joining CWC Mollie managed experiential learning programs in the Pacific Northwest and worked for the National Park Service for seven years including serving as an Interpretive Park Ranger, in research and development for National Park Service-wide education programs and as Special Assistant to the NPS Deputy Director. Mollie holds a Masters of Education in Environmental Education from Western Washington University and a B.A in Public Policy from University of California at San Diego.

Whitney Reynier

Whitney Reynier

River Scientist

As the River Scientist, Whitney coordinates and leads CWC’s community-based water quality monitoring and river restoration programs along the lower San Lorenzo River. Her love of local watersheds stems from a childhood spent rafting various rivers around the Pacific Northwest, and exploring the rivers in her “backyard”, including the majestic Columbia River. Whitney graduated from Santa Clara University with a dual degree in Biology and Environmental Science. Prior to joining CWC, she worked as a climate change adaptation specialist, helping natural resource managers evaluate climate change risks and develop appropriate management responses. She also spent several years conducting ecological field work in the Sierra Nevada, and leading student habitat restoration and conservation efforts.

Sam Adelson

Sam Adelson

Environmental Educator

Sam works with Santa Cruz County schools and community organizations to educate local youth on water conservation, nature exploration, stormwater management, pollution prevention and water quality monitoring. Sam supports the development of CWC education curriculum and leads in-class lessons, field trips, after-school activities and summer environmental education programs. After graduating from California State University, Monterey Bay with a degree in Environmental Science, Technology, and Policy, Sam has worked in the fields of watershed science and environmental education since 2009. Prior to joining CWC, he worked to implement salmon education, habitat restoration and population monitoring projects along California’s Lost Coast region and most recently held the position of naturalist and science educator with an outdoor science school based in Santa Cruz County. He is thrilled to be continuing his trajectory of empowering the youth to make a difference for their watershed.
Armand Ruby

Armand Ruby

Technical Director

As CWC’s Technical Director, Armand provides guidance and oversight for CWC’s monitoring programs and other science-based activities. Since 1992, Armand has provided water quality consulting services as a contractor to public agencies and non-profit organizations throughout California. He also served on the AB 982 PAG (which developed the state’s 303(d) Listing Policy, the TMDL Policy, and SWAMP) and as Chair of the CASQA Monitoring and Science Subcommittee, and currently sits as the municipal stormwater agency representative on the CA Water Quality Monitoring Council. Together with staff of the CA Water Boards and others, he’s also working on developing a statewide pesticides and toxicity monitoring framework under “STORMS”, the new statewide stormwater strategy. Armand has worked with CWC for over 10 years as a board member, interim director and today as an independent contractor to the organization.

Board of Directors

Greg Larson
Greg Larson
Chair

Greg Larson is a civic entrepreneur whose personal mission statement is “To Promote the Shared and Ethical Use of Power (and Be a Great Older Dad).” Greg wrote a career day paper on being a city manager in the 9th grade and retired 35 years later as Los Gatos city manager. Today, he supports local government leaders throughout California as a Partner with Management Partners.

While serving as San Jose Deputy City Manager, Greg created the Environmental Services Department, combining all environmental programs into the City’s single largest non-sworn department to ensure a holistic systems approach to environmental protection, including nationally recognized recycling, conservation and toxics management programs.

Having grown up in Seattle before attending Stanford, Greg relishes the proximity of the Santa Cruz mountains to the ocean, with beautiful rivers tying the redwoods to the Bay. Greg joined the CWC Board to strengthen our rivers as precious environmental assets that can join and connect our community and all of its diversity. You can find him most weekends with his young kids out and about in Santa Cruz.

Randy Widera
Jonathan Hicken
Secretary

Jonathan serves as the Director of Development & Partnerships at the Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History (MAH). Before joining the MAH, Jonathan was an executive at a successful Silicon Valley tech business and an academic who wrote about undocumented migration along the U.S.-Mexico border.

He brings a unique approach to development and marketing: one part traditional fundraising, two parts Silicon Valley with an academic’s twist. Also an avid recreational outdoorsman and passionate community builder, Jonathan says, “CWC is poised to transform how our community connects with the San Lorenzo River.”

Tim Carson
Tim Carson

Tim is the Program Director at the Regional Water Management Foundation, a subsidiary of the Community Foundation Santa Cruz County, where he supports integrated regional water management planning and projects. His background is in environmental science and water resources management and prior work includes environmental consulting and environmental/outdoor education in the Santa Cruz mountains and elsewhere. He was inspired to join the Board to support CWC’s efforts to improve the condition of local watersheds, in particular, CWC’s alliance with local agencies, organizations, and community members to revitalize the San Lorenzo River.

Mike Rotkin
Mike Rotkin

Mike, a former five-time mayor of the City of Santa Cruz, works part-time as an organizer for the University Council of the American Federation of Teachers He played a major role in the creation of the greenbelt around the City of Santa Cruz and other environmental legislation and City programs during his six terms of City Council service between 1979 and 2010. Mike recently retired from both the City Council and his 42-year teaching career in Community Studies at UCSC, where he served as Director of the Field Studies Program, supervising student interns working on social and environmental issues in Santa Cruz and around the globe. Mike, an avid ocean kayaker, has decided to dedicate his retirement to protecting and enhancing the Santa Cruz environment and has a particular passion for the CWC’s San Lorenzo River project.

Randy Widera
Cindy Rubin
Vice Chair

Cindy has extensive experience as a public affairs professional in government and in the high technology industry. A good part of her career was spent at IBM San Jose as the manager of the company’s California state and local government affairs programs. In 2003, Cindy established a public affairs consulting business advising government organizations on community outreach, economic development, and campaign communications.

Cindy’s passion for the environment was inspired by living in Los Angeles for 15 years and returning to the SF Bay Area where she experienced the joy of being able to hike among thousands of acres of protected open space within easy access of the metropolitan area. This inspiration led to decades of volunteer work in leadership roles with regional environmental organizations including the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County, Committee for Green Foothills and Greenbelt Alliance. Cindy views the Coastal Watershed Council as a critical player in ensuring the overall health of the region.

Cindy has a B.A. from UCLA in Political Science and a Masters from USC in public administration.

Hilary Bryant
Richard Beach

Richard, a resident of Santa Cruz County for 45 years, has worked in Silicon Valley startups, multinational companies and local real estate, utilizing his knowledge and experience in engineering, marketing and sales, finance and business management. He holds a BS in Engineering from SF State University, MSEE and MBA from Stanford University. Now mostly retired, Richard enjoys time focusing on his interests in environment, education and water projects and “paying it forward” to the next generation as they embark on their careers. CWC combines these interests and as a Board member, Richard uses his business background and love of community to sustain and grow the organization as it works to transform the lower San Lorenzo River. Richard also serves as the Chairman of the Scholarship Committee for the Santa Cruz Rotary and supports projects with Cabrillo College through the Presidents Circle and the Engineering Abroad Programs, the Ventana Wilderness Alliance and water and educational projects in Uganda.

Drew Meyer
Emily Chung

Emily is a proud resident of the Lower Ocean neighborhood. She truly embraces her love of the San Lorenzo River – you’ll find her walking, running, or skateboarding the Riverwalk with her dog nearly every day. She earned her Master in Public Health at UCLA and undergraduate degree at UC Berkeley. Emily brings to the CWC Board nearly a decade of experience working for government health agencies, promoting public and population health. She shares her breadth of experience working for and supporting non-profits through grant-writing, policy advocacy, fundraising, and community organizing. She currently works for the County of Santa Cruz, Health Services Agency. Emily is passionate about contributing positively to this community that she’s proud to call “home”. She has a great love of nature and outdoor adventures, from local hikes to backpacking mountains and jungles of foreign countries. Serving on the CWC Board is a culmination of her commitment to service and the environment.

Stuart White
Stuart White
Treasurer

Stuart is an active Certified Public Accountant licensed in California with over 25 years of experience in the areas of corporate treasury and tax. Stuart is eager to help revitalize the San Lorenzo River in an effort to increase its use for recreation and public education, as well as improve the quality of the main water source for the city of Santa Cruz. He holds a Master in Professional Accounting from the University of Texas in Austin and Bachelor’s Degree from Rice University. Stuart lives in the Happy Valley area of Santa Cruz with his wife and two children. One of his favorite activities is to go for a run along the Riverwalk.

Hilary Bryant
Hilary Bryant

Hilary is the Chief Marketing Officer and Co-Founder of Calliope Waterworks, a local tech company that is working to optimize the way we all use water. As a former Mayor and Santa Cruz City Councilmember, Hilary has taken a leadership role in many initiatives and projects to strengthen the local economy, protect our environment and improve public safety, including the activation and management of the Santa Cruz Riverwalk. In addition to CWC, she serves on the board of the Digital NEST, Santa Cruz Chamber of Commerce and is a member of Santa Cruz Sunrise Rotary. Hilary and her husband, local veterinarian, David Shuman, own Westside Animal Hospital. As a CWC Board Member, Hilary strives to make the Riverwalk a place where we all feel connected to nature and to instill in her children the value and importance of our watersheds.

Drew Meyer
Drew Meyer

Drew leads cloud storage product marketing for Amazon Web Services, a subsidiary of Amazon.com that makes cloud computing services. An Idaho native and former professional whitewater guide in the US, Central and South America, Drew has lived firsthand the impacts of ecotourism, resource extraction and seen the delicate balance between use and abuse of river communities. He was appointed to two terms on the Santa Cruz Historic Preservation Commission, where he advised on the controversial La Bahia project, numerous private development projects and advocated the City adopt a Mills Act ordinance.

Drew holds a BA in Political Science with minors in French and English from the University of Puget Sound, and lives in a historic house with his wife (wedding confection artist Edith Meyer) and their twin boys in Santa Cruz, California.

Greg Larson
Greg Larson
Chair

Greg Larson is a civic entrepreneur whose personal mission statement is “To Promote the Shared and Ethical Use of Power (and Be a Great Older Dad).” Greg wrote a career day paper on being a city manager in the 9th grade and retired 35 years later as Los Gatos city manager. Today, he supports local government leaders throughout California as a Partner with Management Partners.

While serving as San Jose Deputy City Manager, Greg created the Environmental Services Department, combining all environmental programs into the City’s single largest non-sworn department to ensure a holistic systems approach to environmental protection, including nationally recognized recycling, conservation and toxics management programs.

Having grown up in Seattle before attending Stanford, Greg relishes the proximity of the Santa Cruz mountains to the ocean, with beautiful rivers tying the redwoods to the Bay. Greg joined the CWC Board to strengthen our rivers as precious environmental assets that can join and connect our community and all of its diversity. You can find him most weekends with his young kids out and about in Santa Cruz.

Randy Widera
Cindy Rubin
Vice Chair

Cindy has extensive experience as a public affairs professional in government and in the high technology industry. A good part of her career was spent at IBM San Jose as the manager of the company’s California state and local government affairs programs. In 2003, Cindy established a public affairs consulting business advising government organizations on community outreach, economic development, and campaign communications.

Cindy’s passion for the environment was inspired by living in Los Angeles for 15 years and returning to the SF Bay Area where she experienced the joy of being able to hike among thousands of acres of protected open space within easy access of the metropolitan area. This inspiration led to decades of volunteer work in leadership roles with regional environmental organizations including the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County, Committee for Green Foothills and Greenbelt Alliance. Cindy views the Coastal Watershed Council as a critical player in ensuring the overall health of the region.

Cindy has a B.A. from UCLA in Political Science and a Masters from USC in public administration.

Stuart White
Stuart White
Treasurer

Stuart is an active Certified Public Accountant licensed in California with over 25 years of experience in the areas of corporate treasury and tax. Stuart is eager to help revitalize the San Lorenzo River in an effort to increase its use for recreation and public education, as well as improve the quality of the main water source for the city of Santa Cruz. He holds a Master in Professional Accounting from the University of Texas in Austin and Bachelor’s Degree from Rice University. Stuart lives in the Happy Valley area of Santa Cruz with his wife and two children. One of his favorite activities is to go for a run along the Riverwalk.

Randy Widera
Jonathan Hicken
Secretary

Jonathan serves as the Director of Development & Partnerships at the Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History (MAH). Before joining the MAH, Jonathan was an executive at a successful Silicon Valley tech business and an academic who wrote about undocumented migration along the U.S.-Mexico border.

He brings a unique approach to development and marketing: one part traditional fundraising, two parts Silicon Valley with an academic’s twist. Also an avid recreational outdoorsman and passionate community builder, Jonathan says, “CWC is poised to transform how our community connects with the San Lorenzo River.”

Hilary Bryant
Richard Beach

Richard, a resident of Santa Cruz County for 45 years, has worked in Silicon Valley startups, multinational companies and local real estate, utilizing his knowledge and experience in engineering, marketing and sales, finance and business management. He holds a BS in Engineering from SF State University, MSEE and MBA from Stanford University. Now mostly retired, Richard enjoys time focusing on his interests in environment, education and water projects and “paying it forward” to the next generation as they embark on their careers. CWC combines these interests and as a Board member, Richard uses his business background and love of community to sustain and grow the organization as it works to transform the lower San Lorenzo River. Richard also serves as the Chairman of the Scholarship Committee for the Santa Cruz Rotary and supports projects with Cabrillo College through the Presidents Circle and the Engineering Abroad Programs, the Ventana Wilderness Alliance and water and educational projects in Uganda.

Hilary Bryant
Hilary Bryant

Hilary is the Chief Marketing Officer and Co-Founder of Calliope Waterworks, a local tech company that is working to optimize the way we all use water. As a former Mayor and Santa Cruz City Councilmember, Hilary has taken a leadership role in many initiatives and projects to strengthen the local economy, protect our environment and improve public safety, including the activation and management of the Santa Cruz Riverwalk. In addition to CWC, she serves on the board of the Digital NEST, Santa Cruz Chamber of Commerce and is a member of Santa Cruz Sunrise Rotary. Hilary and her husband, local veterinarian, David Shuman, own Westside Animal Hospital. As a CWC Board Member, Hilary strives to make the Riverwalk a place where we all feel connected to nature and to instill in her children the value and importance of our watersheds.

Tim Carson
Tim Carson

Tim is the Program Director at the Regional Water Management Foundation, a subsidiary of the Community Foundation Santa Cruz County, where he supports integrated regional water management planning and projects. His background is in environmental science and water resources management and prior work includes environmental consulting and environmental/outdoor education in the Santa Cruz mountains and elsewhere. He was inspired to join the Board to support CWC’s efforts to improve the condition of local watersheds, in particular, CWC’s alliance with local agencies, organizations, and community members to revitalize the San Lorenzo River.

Drew Meyer
Emily Chung

Emily is a proud resident of the Lower Ocean neighborhood. She truly embraces her love of the San Lorenzo River – you’ll find her walking, running, or skateboarding the Riverwalk with her dog nearly every day. She earned her Master in Public Health at UCLA and undergraduate degree at UC Berkeley. Emily brings to the CWC Board nearly a decade of experience working for government health agencies, promoting public and population health. She shares her breadth of experience working for and supporting non-profits through grant-writing, policy advocacy, fundraising, and community organizing. She currently works for the County of Santa Cruz, Health Services Agency. Emily is passionate about contributing positively to this community that she’s proud to call “home”. She has a great love of nature and outdoor adventures, from local hikes to backpacking mountains and jungles of foreign countries. Serving on the CWC Board is a culmination of her commitment to service and the environment.

Drew Meyer
Drew Meyer

Drew leads cloud storage product marketing for Amazon Web Services, a subsidiary of Amazon.com that makes cloud computing services. An Idaho native and former professional whitewater guide in the US, Central and South America, Drew has lived firsthand the impacts of ecotourism, resource extraction and seen the delicate balance between use and abuse of river communities. He was appointed to two terms on the Santa Cruz Historic Preservation Commission, where he advised on the controversial La Bahia project, numerous private development projects and advocated the City adopt a Mills Act ordinance.

Drew holds a BA in Political Science with minors in French and English from the University of Puget Sound, and lives in a historic house with his wife (wedding confection artist Edith Meyer) and their twin boys in Santa Cruz, California.

Mike Rotkin
Mike Rotkin

Mike, a former five-time mayor of the City of Santa Cruz, works part-time as an organizer for the University Council of the American Federation of Teachers He played a major role in the creation of the greenbelt around the City of Santa Cruz and other environmental legislation and City programs during his six terms of City Council service between 1979 and 2010. Mike recently retired from both the City Council and his 42-year teaching career in Community Studies at UCSC, where he served as Director of the Field Studies Program, supervising student interns working on social and environmental issues in Santa Cruz and around the globe. Mike, an avid ocean kayaker, has decided to dedicate his retirement to protecting and enhancing the Santa Cruz environment and has a particular passion for the CWC’s San Lorenzo River project.

Environmental Leaders Fellows

Anna Maldonado

Anna Maldonado

Environmental Leaders Fellow 2019

Growing up in Santa Cruz, I was always aware of the San Lorenzo River running through town. After finishing my second year at UC San Diego studying Earth Sciences, I was interested in finding an opportunity for the summer where I would be able to develop my academic interests and work within my community. With CWC’s Environmental Leaders Fellowship, I was able to do just that while learning about the local efforts to protect our watershed. Through the course of the 12-week fellowship, I was challenged by situations and tasks that were new to me, but the support provided by CWC helped me grow in confidence. I could not have anticipated the many ways in which this fellowship has made a difference for me. Not only has it helped me develop professional skills and exposed me to the field of environmental restoration and enhancement, but it has also engaged me with the Santa Cruz community and our watershed in a way in which I had not previously been connected. I am extremely grateful to the Coastal Watershed Council and each member of the team having made this experience so positive, memorable, and motivating as I continue my studies.

Francisca Fazzio

Francisca Fazzio

Environmental Leaders Fellow 2018

After beginning my Environmental Studies degree at UC Santa Cruz, I soon found myself passionate about watersheds and freshwater management in the face of drought and pollution. This fellowship has allowed me to envision my future and gave me the confidence to challenge myself. I am now sure that I want to get involved with water management and study to get my masters degree in hydrology. This fellowship allowed for me to become more involved with the community and gave me the responsibility to choose what I learned about the process of protecting watersheds. From researching volunteer engagement and applying these best practices first hand, I was involved in each step of the way to inspire the community to engage with the San Lorenzo River watershed. I have most enjoyed listening to the community and hearing how people use the river now and what people want to change. I believe this opportunity motivated me to become actively a part of the community rather than merely a student in town. I now realize how much the San Lorenzo River and the city of Santa Cruz have to offer and how grateful I am to be living in a city that has organizations as passionate and determined as the Coastal Watershed Council.

Nicolette McGuire

Nicolette McGuire

Environmental Leaders Fellow 2017

This summer, I was privileged to have had the opportunity to become a part of the CWC team. I was immediately inspired by their work, the goals that they strive for, and the impact they have across the Santa Cruz community. I learned how to be a river scientist, to plan and execute projects, to reach out to the Santa Cruz community, how to design websites, and more. Working towards establishing a stronger group volunteerism program for CWC’s events was a new and inviting experience that allowed me to connect with diverse Santa Cruz community members. I became proud of my work at CWC as I began to witness new groups and individuals become aware of what CWC does, and become equally enthusiastic to make a difference. Even though the work was new to me, and learning how to operate in a new environment was challenging at times, I was always met with the perfect balance of mentorship and freedom to fully grow into my position. Throughout the summer, one of my daily thoughts was that I could not think of a better place, or people to experience such a fulfilling fellowship in every possible way. I would encourage every future Environmental Leaders Fellow to go above and beyond for the CWC team, and to absorb as much of their work ethic that revolves around intentionality and attention to detail. The fun, caring, and driven team has made CWC what it is today, and I am forever grateful to have been a part of it.

Volunteers

Amy Roget

Amy Roget

2016 Volunteer of the Year

“I first started volunteering for CWC because I was interested in careers in water quality, and I thought it would be a great way to gain experience in water quality monitoring and sampling techniques. In the past few years, I have participated in the Riverwalk Usage Study, First Flush, Snapshot Day, bacteriological monitoring and River Health Days. I also love to attend the community events put on by the CWC whenever I can, with some favorites being a birdwatching tour along the San Lorenzo River and a tour of the Santa Cruz Wastewater treatment facility. Volunteering for the CWC not only gave me the water sampling experience I was looking for, but even helped me get a job as a laboratory/field technician for the Water Pollution Control Plant of the City of Sunnyvale. Even more importantly, it has allowed me to befriend many wonderful, like-minded people, to appreciate the beauty of the San Lorenzo River, and to feel a deeper connection to the wonderful Santa Cruz community.”

Jula Pethes

Jula Pethes

2015 Volunteer of the Year

“Having finished high school in Germany, I joined my family on a half year visit to Santa Cruz to get experience and try out different things before deciding what to study in college. With CWC I had the chance to get to pursue a variety of projects related to protecting our environment and bringing the community’s attention to critical natural resources. I participated in events ranging from the collection and analysis of water samples from local creeks to a poetry reading by the San Lorenzo River. This experience showed me that we can really change our relationship with the environment for the better, step by step!”

Sean Crawford

Sean Crawford

2014 Volunteer of the Year

“I started volunteering at events with CWC to help promote watershed stewardship and to share news about the San Lorenzo River Alliance. I also worked with CWC to remove invasive species along the San Lorenzo River. My work with CWC helped me get a job with the Santa Cruz City Parks and Recreation Department where I now work to clean up and protect habitat along the San Lorenzo River and Branciforte creek. My goal is to become a Park Ranger and do more work to help protect and serve our natural world and help the public enjoy it as much as I do.”

LET’S STAY IN TOUCH!