1227 W 9th Ave, Suite 300
Anchorage, AK 99501
Leanna holds a PhD from University of Rhode Island in Oceanography where she worked with other scientists, coastal managers, and community members to develop solutions to watershed pollution and climate change adaptation. For her post-doctoral work, Leanna was part of an interdisciplinary team of designers, engineers, and scientists at Louisiana State University’s Coastal Sustainability Studio tackling the land loss crisis on the Mississippi River Delta. Upon her arrival in Alaska in 2016, Leanna worked as the Science Communications Coordinator for the Western Alaska Partnership, a similar organization based in western Alaska that is also part of the Northern Latitudes Partnerships. Leanna stepped into her leadership role with the Northwest Boreal Partnership in 2018, and has immensely enjoyed her work with a wonderful group of partners, all of whom are dedicated, passionate, and genuinely interested in collectively creating positive change from the ground up. Leanna enjoys hiking, rock climbing, teaching and practicing yoga, and spending time with her husband Larry, two dogs Khody and Kush, and her two black kitties Luna and Loki. Leanna is based in Anchorage, Alaska and originally hails from the beautiful desert lands of Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Conservation Programs Specialist
Ducks Unlimited Canada
Jamie is originally from British Columbia, spending time in numerous towns throughout his youth. He attained his B.Sc. in biology from Simon Fraser University in 2000. After a couple of years as a field biology technician he began an internship at Canadian Wildlife Service. He received an M.Sc. in behavioural ecology at Simon Fraser University studying great blue heron nesting colony dynamics. He then went on to a number of contracts with Canadian Wildlife Service and Ducks Unlimited Canada working on varied projects including determining conservation priorities for B.C.’s coastal estuaries, leading authorship of a pelagic seabird atlas, and analyzing marine bird areas of interest to aid conservation planning and emergency response. In 2007, Jamie accepted a position with Ducks Unlimited Canada in Whitehorse, Yukon as a Conservation Program Specialist. His experiences here include working with land use planning processes, protected area management plans, conducting waterfowl surveys, wetland mapping and relationship building. Jamie has been involved with the Northwest Boreal Partnership since 2012. In his spare time, he enjoys getting out in the wilderness or spending the winters playing hockey and broomball.
Retired, Kanuti Refuge Manager
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Mike Spindler is currently the U.S. Co-Chair and lives in Fairbanks. He previously lived and worked in bush Alaska, at Northway, Kotzebue and Galena. Presently retired, Mike spent most of his career working at seven of Alaska’s 16 National Wildlife Refuges: Alaska Maritime, Arctic, Selawik, Koyukuk/Nowitna/Innoko, and lastly at Kanuti. He was first employed as a biological technician, later advancing to wildlife biologist, airplane pilot, assistant refuge manager, and finally refuge manager. Prior to starting with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Mike earned his MS in Wildlife Management at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks in 1977. His research included a study of landbird habitat preferences in the boreal forest of the Tanana River Valley. Prior to that he earned his BS from Louisiana State University, studying forestry. Mike led the initiation of the Northwest Boreal Partnership in December 2010, which eventually led to the charter meeting of the Northwest Boreal Partnership at Yukon University in Whitehorse, May 2012. Mike is passionate about conservation of the subarctic and the boreal forest, having worked and lived in this ecosystem for nearly his entire career. He is also an experienced bush pilot with several thousands of hours logged in flight.
Canada Vice Co-chair
Canada's BEACONs Project
Yukon University & University of Alberta
Kim is the project manager of the BEACONs Project at the University of Alberta and Yukon College. Kim's primary interest is the development of creative solutions for sustainable management of Canada’s boreal regions, and has led multi-party protected areas planning across the boreal from Alaska to Newfoundland. Prior to joining BEACONs, Kim studied and coordinated research on the effects of industrial development on the ecology of boreal wildlife. She is also passionate about finding solutions to address climate change, not only using scientific tools and local knowledge, but also working with various partners at local and international levels to inform policy. Kim is also an avid hockey player and enthusiast, and has helped to organize and host tournaments, that - much like her work with the Northwest Boreal Partnership - brings together Alaskans and Canadians over a shared passion.
U.S. Vice Co-chair
Alaska Research Office of the Cold Regions Research
and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL),
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
For the past 30 years, Gary Larsen has managed natural, cultural and environmental resource programs at Fort McCoy, Wisconsin, and Fort Richardson and Fort Wainwright, Alaska, emphasizing environmental stewardship while sustaining training lands to support the military mission. A background in forest ecology combined with practical experience as a combat engineer officer contributes to interests in landscape ecology, terrain maneuver analysis, National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) analyses and applied research to support natural and cultural resource management. Currently serving as the Operations Manager for the Alaska Research Office of the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL), Gary is responsible for supporting engineering and scientific research in permafrost and other cold environments to better understand and predict effects on maneuver support, materials, materiel systems, and tactics and procedures unique to polar regions. As facility manager for the Permafrost Tunnel Research Facility, he promotes education and understanding of permafrost in the changing sub-arctic environment. Serving on a number of NATO Science and Technology Organization panels, Gary works with multiple Arctic nations to characterize fate and transport of potential contamination resulting from military training. Gary has represented the Army on the Northwest Boreal Partnership Steering Committee since 2014.