Board of Directors

Matthew Reetz, Chair, Madison

Matthew Reetz received his B.S. in Biology with emphasis in Ecology, Ethology, and Evolution at the University of Illinois during which time he got his first taste of bird field work in the swamps of Southern Illinois. He then went on to receive his Master’s and Phd at the University of Florida where he worked on a variety of bird research projects in Australia, the Caribbean, Chile and the U.S. After graduating Matt worked as a Biologist for Florida’s state wildlife agency, served as a biology professor at a small Indiana College, and completed two postdocs with UW-Madison working on Sharp-tailed Grouse and California Spotted Owls. Volunteer experience with Wisconsin land trusts led him to pursue a career in non-profits. He ended up combining the best of both worlds with a job at Madison Audubon Society.

Kristine Euclide, Vice Chair, Madison

Kristine Euclide was a Madison Gas and Electric Company (MGE) Foundation Director and was the Vice President/General Counsel of MGE for 14 years. Kris has over thirty years legal experience, focusing on energy, environmental and local government law matters. From 1997 to 1999, Kris served as Executive Assistant to Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk. Kris has also long been active in many professional and civic activities at a state and local level. Married with two adult children, Kris and her husband, Doug, have long been supporters of energy efficiency and protecting natural resources and received national, state and local recognition in the late 1970s for building one of Wisconsin’s first solar-heated, highly energy-efficient homes.

Mike Koutnik, Secretary, Eagan, MN

Mike has been active in applying GIS (geographic information systems) to natural resource and environmental problems for over 25 years. As an account manager for Esri for over 20 years, Mike has helped state and local governments use GIS to improve operations and solve challenges. While serving as Great Lakes Habitat Coordinator for Wisconsin DNR he served on the Habitat Committee of the Lake Superior Binational Program. Mike also worked in product management, sales, and software development for Allen-Bradley, Control Data and the Trane Co. Mike is a volunteer GIS consultant for the Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve. He developed maps and conducted GIS analysis for the site election process and for the management plan. In 2009 he received an Environmental Stewardship Award for this work from the St. Louis River Alliance. Mike has developed and deployed GIS-based visitor center interpretive kiosks for the National Park Service, National Forest Service, the Great Lakes Aquarium, and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. Mike was born and raised in Manitowoc, and educated in Wisconsin, earning a BS in computer science from UW-La Crosse, and two MS degrees (marketing and environment monitoring) from UW- Madison. Mike and his wife Anne have two college-age children.

Penny Leder, Treasurer, Clintonville

Penny currently farms with her husband Bob in the NE corner of Waupaca County, near Clintonville. They sustainably raise lamb by rotational grazing of their flock of 300 commercial sheep on 80 acres of highly erodible land. Penny has been active in farm and forest land preservation since 2005 when she joined the Town Planning Committee to assist in writing their Comprehensive Land Use Plan. Shortly thereafter, she joined Waupaca County’s efforts to preserve agricultural land by helping to orchestrate the Land Use Study Tours, which brought busloads of Wisconsin citizens and government officials to Pennsylvania, Maryland, and New Jersey with the purpose of learning about successful methods of farmland preservation. Upon returning Penny helped form the Waupaca County Partners for Working Lands (WCPWL); a group of concerned citizens that advocate for farmland preservation. Bob and Penny have two grown children who now live out of state; both with careers in medicine.

Roy Thilly, Past Chair, Baileys Harbor

Roy served as president and CEO of WPPI Energy from 1992 to 2011. Before joining WPPI Energy, Roy was a partner in the Madison law firm of Boardman, Suhr, Curry & Field, where he focused on administrative and utility law power supply negotiations, and energy policy. He is currently chair-elect and vice chair of the Board of Trustees of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC). He is also a member of the finance and endowment committees of the Door County Land Trust. In the past, Roy served as chair of the Board of Directors of Cool Choices, Inc., a Wisconsin non-profit that fosters voluntary reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, and as president of the Ridges Nature Sanctuary in Door County, Wisconsin. He served as co-chair of Governor Doyle’s Task Force on Global Warming in 2007-2008 and is an active member of the Climate Change Coalition of Door County.

Susan Buchanan, Nashotah

Susan Buchanan is currently the Executive Director of Tall Pines Conservancy, an accredited land trust protecting farmland and water resources in and around lake country of Northwestern Waukesha County. Before joining Tall Pines in 2008, she served as Executive Director of WasteCap Wisconsin, a non-profit environmental organization that promotes waste reduction and recycling programs for businesses. Susan has ties to Waukesha County, having been the Executive Director for the Waukesha Business Improvement District for 7 years-an organization charged with revitalizing downtown. She is a licensed real estate broker, served on the Shorewood Plan Commission, and the board of directors for Town & Country RC&D. She is also active with “Friends of Farmland Protection,” advocating for farmland preservation initiatives in the State. She is chair of Gathering Waters' Land Trust Council. Susan and her husband own two farms, one on Washington Island and the other in Windsor, Connecticut.

Jeffrey Crawford, Milwaukee

Jeffrey A. Crawford has served the Forest County Potawatomi Community (FCPC) as an attorney since 1997, becoming Attorney General in 1999. Mr. Crawford served on the boards of Governor Doyle's Global Warming Task Force and the Menomonee Valley Partners. He is currently a board member of the Greater Milwaukee Committee and Gathering Waters. He is also President of the FCPC Renewable Generation LLC. He has been honored with the Milwaukee Business Journal's Best Corporate Counsel-Private Company Award and the National Tribal Environmental Council's (NTEC) Michael A. Frost Award for leadership in tribal environmental issues. Mr. Crawford received his undergraduate degree in 1985 from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, and his J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School in 1988. Crawford, a member of the Forest County Potawatomi tribe, is married and has three children.

Randall Lawton, De Pere

Randall is the Board chair of C.A. Lawton Co., a 137 year-old family-owned industrial machinery and iron components manufacturing company, located in De Pere, WI where he served as CEO for 35 years. Randall is also active as a Board member for numerous for profit and non-profit organizations, including Northeast Wisconsin Land Trust, Community Partnership for Children, Bay Area Community Council, Libertas , NPS Corp, and ProSolutions. Randall spends a great deal of his recreational time in nature and has both respect and appreciation for private and public conservation of our precious places, first in Wisconsin, then on Earth.

Patrick Marchese, Mequon

Pat has fifty years of diverse experience in the planning, design, construction, and management of major Public Works' organizations and facilities. His experience includes the top executive positions in both the public and private sectors. Since retiring from active professional employment Pat has served in government as an elected official, and is currently actively involved in several environmental and conservation organizations. Highlights from Pat's career include, Executive Director of the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District, the Director of Public Works and Development for Milwaukee County, and senior Vice President with two nationally ranked environmental and transportation engineering firms.

Eric Schumann, Racine

Eric is the former President and owner of Potala Corporation in Racine, and the past-president of Merit Gear and FAI, Inc. Eric and his wife live in Caledonia on a horse farm, where he serves as a board member of Caledonia Conservancy. Eric joined Gathering Waters' Board in 2008, and has served as the Treasurer. He is currently serving on the Development and Finance Committees. Eric’s goal is to help create a successful continuation of the Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Program before its legislative end in 2020. He believes the Program is of critical importance to Gathering Waters, Land Trusts, and every individual who believes clean air and water is important now, and for future generations of Wisconsinites.

Rebecca Smith, Verona

Rebecca directs The Nature Conservancy’s America’s Great River-Healthy Rivers, Healthy Gulf project. She works with private and public partners in the Mississippi river basin to improve water quality in the basin and to reduce gulf hypoxia. She directed The Nature Conservancy’s conservation programs in Wisconsin for 15 years. She has an undergraduate degree from UW-Madison and a graduate degree from the University of Chicago. She is a native Sconnie from Wausau and loves to spend lake time “up north” with her husband and two daughters.

Kevin Thusius, Cross Plains

Kevin has worked for the Ice Age Trail Alliance (IATA) since 2000 and manages their Lands Program, focusing on completing land transactions and easement acquisitions and assisting partners with land protection efforts for the Trail. He also manages the Alliance’s roughly 3,600 acres of land interests, including more than 70 easements and dozens of Alliance-owned preserves where he leads vegetative management efforts. Other key duties include leading the Alliance’s advocacy activities on issues like Wisconsin’s Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Program and the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and assisting with large-scale planning efforts led by IATA’s partner organizations. Kevin has served on the DNR’s Stewardship Advisory Council for many years and has been an active participant in helping to guide the administration of the program. He also currently serves as Vice-Chair of Gathering Waters’ Land Trust Council. Kevin lives in Wisconsin with his wife, Krista, and their two young children.

Vanessa Wishart, Madison

Vanessa is an associate in Stafford Rosenbaum's Madison office where her practice focuses on environmental law issues. Prior to joining Stafford Rosenbaum, Vanessa was a law clerk at the Wisconsin Court of Appeals. While in law school, Vanessa was a member of law review, and she interned at Clean Wisconsin. She was a summer associate at Earthjustice in Denver and the Environmental Law and Policy Center in Chicago.
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