Dave Downing District Manager

Dave was born and raised in Lane County and has been with the Upper Willamette SWCD since April of 1998. Prior to joining the District as the Watershed Technical Specialist, he was an owner/operator of a family farm north of Eugene. Up until 2017, Dave provided technical assistance and project impl… Read more

Lily Leitermann Conservation Programs Manager

Lily joined the Upper Willamette SWCD in September 2015. Her work focuses on developing the UWSWCD programs of natural resources, environmental education, partnership collaboration, and grants. During her tenure with the UWSWCD, Lily also fulfilled the role of Sr. Conservation Specialist and conduct… Read more

Jared Pruch Grant Management Specialist

Jared joined the Upper Willamette SWCD in 2023. His work focuses on advancing District priorities by facilitating grant funding to local partners and projects. His professional background includes leadership roles with school garden and environmental education nonprofits, managing grantmaking and co… Read more

Victoria Fischella Conservation Technician

Victoria joined the Upper Willamette SWCD in 2021. Victoria works with agricultural producers to improve water quality and natural resource concerns. Her work focuses on agricultural operations within the Bear Creek and Camp Creek Strategic Implementation Areas. Victoria received her BS in Forest Ec… Read more

Daniel Dietz Senior Restoration Specialist

Daniel joined the Upper Willamette SWCD in 2021.  He has worked in natural resource management for almost 25 years having done everything from running a no till drill in restoring native prairies with the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center to working on a prescribed fire crew with The Nature Conse… Read more

Meridith McClure Restoration Specialist

Meridith joined Upper Willamette SWCD in May 2022. Originally from Tennessee, Meridith has worked with nonprofits and federal agencies in New Mexico and Oregon doing seed collection, vegetation monitoring, and restoration work. Meridith has a B.S. in Organismal Biology from University of Tennessee a… Read more

Alec Spencer Restoration Specialist

Alec joined the Upper Willamette SWCD in October 2022. He holds a BS in Environmental Science from Western Washington University, where he pursued his long-standing interests in ecology. Alec has always known the Pacific Northwest as home and has worked regionally in support of invasive vegetation m… Read more

Clarissa Berndt Fiscal Manager

Born and raised in the heart of the Willamette Valley wine country, Clarissa joined the District in November 2017. After attending Lane Community College and University of Oregon with a major in Accounting, she moved to the Midwest with her husband. While there, she began working for the local soil … Read more

Leslie Owens Administrative Specialist

As a 6th generation Oregon native, Leslie has a love for exploring the beautiful PNW. She is passionate about community outreach and spends her free time volunteering for local animal rescue groups. She recently joined the Upper Willamette SWCD in September 2021 in an administrative capacity and is … Read more

Cricket, Outreach

Cricket DeLoe Media & Outreach Specialist

Born in Southern Oregon, Cricket moved to the Willamette Valley the moment she had any say about it. Cricket has degrees in cultural anthropology and graphic design from the U of O and PSU respectively, and years of experience with social media and public outreach. She has been interested in conserv… Read more

Support Team

Maple Bacon Snuggle Enforcement Officer

Maple Bacon is a rescue mix from Phoenix, OR with expertise in treat gobbling and squirrel tracking. She wears a variety of bandanas and is surprisingly active despite her short stature, although she does enjoy a good nap. Maple ensures that any passersby pet her without exception and is a big fan o… Read more

Baloo Anti-Squirrel Defense Coordinator

Baloo is a black & tan Australian Shepherd Mix from Dallas, Oregon. He graduated at the top of his class with a Master of Science in Fluvial Geomorphology from Yale University. Baloo specializes in food crumb prevention, butt wiggles, and squirrel chasing. He is happy to provide technical assist… Read more

Hestia Assistant to the Associate Director of Goofball Activities and Othersuchisms

Hestia is a Great Dane mix who thrives in her role of supporting goofball activities. She feels that being a goofball is not so much a profession as much as it is a calling. Hestia usually works from home, but can occasionally be found in the field, working with landowners in the McKenzie watershed…. Read more

Toby Good Boy

Toby is revered around the office for being a great listener and is even nicknamed “The Therapist”. It’s hard not to be inspired by his incredibly relaxed approach to life. His super-warm nature has been found to lower stress and boost morale. He has never met a stranger and instan… Read more