Conservation District Board of Supervisors
Vicki Heater, Chair, Appointed 2009
Background - Water Quality
Vicki has been associated with the San Juan County Conservation District since 1994. She is an environmental health specialist with the SJC health department and is lead staff for the county’s drinking water program. She is also watershed lead for WRIA 2 and developed the San Juan County Watershed Action Plan under the Non-Point Rule (400-12 WAC) and is currently working on water resource planning under RCW 90.82. She has been actively involved with the San Juan County Pony Club since 1986 and teaches riding and horse management. She and her husband live on 24 acres on Waldron Island, which includes a small farm and 20 acres of forestland.
Lynn Bahrych, Secretary/Treasurer
Background - Land Use and Environmental Law
Lynn Bahrych has served on the Washington State Conservation Commission, appointed by Governor Gary Locke in January of 2004, and for two further terms by Governor Chris Gregoire in 2007 and 2011. She graduated with Honors in Humanities from Stanford University and received a Masters Degree in English Education from the University of Texas. Lynn received a Ph.D. in Medieval and Renaissance Literature and a law degree from the University of Washington Law School. Lynn practiced Maritime and Admiralty law in Seattle for ten years before focusing exclusively on land use and environmental law. Lynn resides on Shaw Island where she manages a native tree nursery and works independently as a certified permaculturalist.
David Bill, Vice Chair
Background - Renewable Agriculture Resources
David Bill brings to the board a passion for climate change mitigation and adaptation measures, energy efficiency, wildfire risk reduction, and maintaining and strengthening the agricultural/aquacultural resources and economy of San Juan County. With is wife Faith, he owns and operates Midnight’s Farm on Lopez, where they turn agricultural waste and other islander’s yard debris and wood waste into compost and mulch, raise beef and pigs and are committed to providing public benefit through reducing burn piles, providing locally made organics, exceptional local food and education. He has environmental engineering degree in water resources and has been an island resident for over thirty-five years.
Background - Forester and Restoration Ecologist
Carson Sprenger is a forester and restoration ecologist with a deep passion for trees and conservation. He is the co-founder and director of Rain Shadow Consulting as well as the newly formed Orcas Biomass, LLC. He has a B.S. from The Evergreen State College in natural resource management and sustainable agriculture and an M.S. from the University of Washington in forest ecology. His research focused on historic stand structures and the fire history of Garry oak and Douglas-fir woodlands and he is a local expert on pre-contact forest structure. Carson recently taught a Tree Worker Basics class through the San Juan EDC and was elected to the San Juan Conservation District’s board of supervisors in May of 2020. Carson previously served two terms on the Waldron Community Land Trust board and was the resident caretaker at Cedar Rock Preserve on Shaw from 2007 to 2012. He grew up on Waldron and currently lives on Orcas where he enjoys gardening, hunting, mountain biking, and trail running.
Background - NRCS Planner, 6th Generation Farmer
Angie Freeman Shephard is a 6th generation farmer and rancher transplanted to San Juan Island five years ago. She farms and consults full time with her husband Phil and their family (Levi, Sammie and Elizabeth) on San Juan Island raising beef, hogs and sheep and angora goats for meat and fiber. She earned her undergraduate degree in Range Management from Oregon State University and then ranched on properties in five western states for 12 years. She returned to University of Idaho to complete her master’s degree in Range Management with a specialty in riparian grazing. She applied her education and experience managing grazing for The Nature Conservancy and as Superintendent of the University of Alaska Experiment Farm. She gained skills and confidence in grant writing and fundraising serving as the statewide grants officer for the Providence Foundation for more than three years. Once on San Juan, she served as a certified USDA-NRCS Farm Planner for a year and submitted 5 successful grants for the Conservation District. She then worked as the WSU Ag Program Director for two years allowing her to meet with and support farmers and agencies working on all the islands. Angie and her family volunteer for their Island Grown Farmers Cooperative, the food bank and enjoy working with 4-H, the extension office and the Family Resource Center mentor program to connect more of the community with agriculture. Having seen first-hand the benefits of the Conservation District programs for farms and the environment motivates Angie to lend her support to the SJI Conservation District!
Background - Farmstead
Deanna Eltinge is a 6th generation San Juan Island resident, returning in 2010 with her husband, Adam and their two daughters. She earned her Bachelor of Science at Washington State University in Natural Resources Management in addition to a minor in Business Administration. Deanna worked for public ports for 11 years, first at the Port of Edmonds and recently at the Port of Friday Harbor. Deanna has volunteered for the Families and Neighbors Support Island Rec (FANS) Board, the San Juan Island Service Scholarship Board, as a 4-H parent and various school activities. She feels very fortunate to be able to live and work on her family’s historic farmstead in the beautiful San Juan Valley and looks forward to promoting the efforts of the SJI Conservation District to the island community.
Background – Natural Resource Management
Linda served as the Executive Director for the San Juan Islands Conservation District from 2013-2018. She is currently the Executive Director of the Snohomish Conservation District, and still has ties to the islands. Linda serves as vice-president for the Madrona Institute, supporting outdoor youth education, stewardship, and climate resiliency in the San Juan's. Linda holds an MPA in Natural Resource Management and Environmental Policy and a PhD in Leadership and Change.
Background - Civil Engineering
Jerry and his wife Patty own and operate Longhouse B&B on San Juan Island. He holds a B.S. in Civil Engineering from the University of Washington, and a Masters from Oregon State. He has taught Civil Engineering at the University of Delaware and Water Resource Engineering at Seattle University. Jerry has served as the Head of Engineering Studies for R.W. Beck and Associates, Director of Engineering for EMCON Engineering, and Senior Engineer for King County Public Works. In San Juan County, Jerry served as the County Engineer from 1999-2005, and as a member of the San Juan County Water Resources Committee from 2005-2008.