Caleb Dardick, Executive Director, (530) 265-5961 ext. 207
Caleb Dardick returned to Nevada County in 2011 from the Bay Area with over 18 years experience in community outreach and advocacy to serve as the South Yuba River Citizens League’s (SYRCL) executive director.
Raised in Nevada County with a love for the Yuba River, Caleb is pleased to lead SYRCL in fulfilling its mission to unite the community to protect and restore the Yuba River watershed. Whenever possible, Caleb, his wife Carolyn, and their puppy, Roxy, head down to the Yuba to hike, swim and picnic.
In the mid-1990s, Caleb moved to Berkeley and served as acting chief-of-staff and legislative aide in the Berkeley Mayor’s Office. He then worked in UC Berkeley’s Office of Community Relations before starting his own consulting firm in 2000.
For nearly a decade, Caleb provided public relations and public affairs consulting to a broad range of clients in business, government, the nonprofit sector and politics, and earned a reputation for integrity and diplomacy. Caleb secured political and community support for a diverse array of community-serving projects including the Ed Roberts Campus, a community center for people with disabilities, and the David Brower Center, a center for environmental nonprofits.
From 2009-2011, Caleb served as Director of Local Government and Community Relations for UC Berkeley’s Office of the Chancellor, where he facilitated positive community engagement in what has frequently been a challenging town-gown environment.
Caleb earned a B.A. in History with honors at the University of California, Santa Cruz.
Gary Reedy, River Science Director, (530) 265-5961 ext. 208
Gary was raised in the Bay Area with a creek in the backyard. He’s always been inspired by the Sierra Nevada and considers that he may have “peaked” at 22 while guiding in Desolation Wilderness. After graduating from UC Davis in Dec. 1989, the young biologist sought knowledge in Alaska (after a celebrated full-winter at Squaw Valley). As a field ecologist, he cut his teeth while working for the University of Alaska investigating impacts of the Exxon Valdez on intertidal communities. He began to turn “fishy” while studying stream ecology at Oregon State. With a salmon icon on the shingle (and paddle), his interest focused. Gary lived on the Smith River for five years, conducting a variety of research to understand California’s healthiest salmon and steelhead populations, and obtaining an MS in Fisheries from Humboldt State. Gary has always enjoyed a mix of scientific study and citizen involvement. Before coming to SYRCL, he consulted for a variety of watershed groups and developed an information system for publically sharing watershed and fisheries data. He’s taught at College of the Redwoods and founded an ongoing volunteer-based fish survey program on the Smith River. Gary met his wife, Katrina, while kayaking. He also loves to swim, ski, climb and play with his kids. Give a wave if you see him biking around Nevada City.
Melinda Booth, Director of Development and Wild & Scenic Events, (530) 265-5961 ext. 202
Melinda Booth spent her early years growing up in Texas exploring the nearby woods and catching crawdads. A move to the Bay Area at age 9 and subsequent exploration of the vast natural diversity of California had her hooked on nature. A graduate of UC Davis in Environmental Biology, Melinda began her career with Defenders of Wildlife and became a passionate advocate for wildlife conservation. Interested in exploring other spectacular regions of our country, Melinda headed to the University of Montana, Missoula where she received an M.S. in Environmental Studies and completed her thesis on public attitudes toward management of black bears in an urban-wildland interface. The development component of her expertise began in earnest during grad school organizing fundraising events as a means to an end, and has since continued full-force. After grad school and prior to joining the SYRCL team, Melinda worked for the California Wolf Center (Julian, CA) raising funds for wolf conservation, research and education; and for the Sequoia Park Zoo Foundation (Eureka, CA) furthering the education and conservation mission of a 21st Century zoo. While in Humboldt County, Melinda concurrently taught environmental grant writing at Humboldt State University. When not working, Melinda enjoys extreme tubing, hiking with her husband and two dogs, home improvement projects and dreaming of the garden she will have one day soon.
Miriam Limov, River People Manager, (530) 265-5961 ext. 201
Miriam Limov is a Chicagoan but while working in Yosemite National Park, she discovered her passion for the wilderness. She graduated with a degree in water quality engineering from Humboldt State University and taught for 10 years fitness, Nordic skiing and backpacking courses for Sierra College. After 17 years of volunteering for SYRCL, she is now enjoying the opportunity to put all of her energy into SYRCL’s efforts. As the River People Manager, she is busy organizing SYRCL’s events and coordinating the marvelous volunteers that SYRCL is lucky to have. Miriam’s favorite place to be is outdoors with her husband, Joe, and daughters Hannah and Abby, dog (Tucker), and friends either hiking, backpacking, fishing, or skiing! You will likely find her in the office listening to music with a plate of pumpkin chocolate chip, butterscotch chip cookies for you to enjoy!
Mark Reiner, Film Festival Producer, (530) 265-5961 ext. 215
Mark is a California native who is known for his positive personality and entrepreneurial spirit. For the past decade he has found himself creating and running complex events for intimate groups and entire communities. It is one of the most rewarding ways he’s found to participate in and contribute to life. Creating event experiences and seeing them through has become one of his greatest strengths.
He is most recently the Founder and Ride Director of ‘Cycle The Sierra’. An annual 5 day, 300 mile cycling adventure that starts and finishes in Nevada City. He has guided and managed whitewater trips throughout the Sierra’s, lead sea kayaking expeditions in the Sea of Cortez, organized trips to Patagonia and a three week whitewater expedition to the Himalaya. He has been an outdoor educator, instructed team building programs, taught high school and also a class on documentary filmmaking about sharks in the Galapagos Islands. He comes to us with 6 years past experience in Boulder, CO inspiring audiences through film as a producer in the adventure and environmental film festival world.
Beyond his professional experience producing film festivals and other large scale events, he is drawn to the work SYRCL does and its mission to protect the Yuba River and its greater watershed. He earned a degree in Geography from CSU Chico that introduced him to (among other things) working in the field with Salmon and understanding the importance of healthy rivers in our communities and greater environment.
He is a percussionist and ‘didgeridoo-er’. During his free time he enjoys fly fishing, landscape photography, mt. biking, skiing and is looking forward to making some mead this fall with honey from his bee hives.
Rachel Hutchinson, M.Sc., River Programs Manager, (530) 265-5961 ext. 205
Welcome to Rachel Hutchinson, SYRCL’s new River Programs Manager. Rachel will be responsible for managing SYRCL’s conservation, restoration, monitoring, and education programs. She joins SYRCL from the UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences where she has worked as a riparian ecologist for almost ten years. Rachel received her master’s degree in Water Resources from The University of Idaho. Her thesis focused on how plant communities on restored river floodplains responded to invasive plant species removal in the lower reaches of the Cosumnes watershed. Her time at UC Davis allowed her to work on multiple, complex grant-funded projects as a project manager, vegetation ecologist and GIS Analyst on rivers throughout California. When not on the river, Rachel can be found in any number of her favorite yoga poses, botanizing the hillsides and cracks in the pavement, or trying to fill her passport.
Jane Theobald, Administrative Assistant, (530) 265-5961 ext. 210
Jane arrived in Nevada City just in time for the last film festival and has been involved with SYRCL ever since. She is absolutely delighted to be a part of this great organization and it has made her feel even more welcome in this community.
Jane comes from Cornwall, England, and both she and her spaniel are still making the transition from living by the ocean to living amongst trees! She has previously been a jeweler and a teacher and is mum to three fabulous extraordinary children.
As a jewelry and silversmithing teacher she always encouraged her students to be particularly aware of the negative effects of mining for precious metals and gems, so she feels that working with SYRCL has brought those interests full circle.
Sari Hale-Alper, Membership Coordinator, (530) 265-5961 ext. 212
She attended Wellesley College in Massachusetts where she danced Ballet Folklorico, worked for Wellesley’s Board of Trustees, and graduated with majors in Anthropology and Spanish. She also spent a year living in Córdoba, Spain, taking classes at the local university and volunteering with a Red Cross needle exchange program. After college, Sari worked for two years as the Development Associate at the Carter Burden Center for the Aging, a social service agency in New York City. She then continued her academic training at Arizona State University and earned a Masters in Anthropology. After several years teaching courses on gender, ethnicity, and cultural diversity at various colleges in the Phoenix area, she decided it was time for a change and moved to Grass Valley, CA.
Her current pastimes include experimenting with permaculture techniques in her in-laws’ backyard, learning how to knit, and training for a 10K. She will make you the best potato latkes this side of the Mississippi, and as a former canoe instructor, can show you how to tell the bow from the stern (hint: you ‘bow’ forward).
Jenni Toedtemeier, Associate Director of Development, (530) 265-5961 ext. 214
Jenni was born and raised in Nevada County, and learned how to swim, slide on rocks and avoid poison oak at the Yuba River. She has worked in the non- profit sector since 2000. Her experience ranges from grant writing and stewardship; fundraising, outreach, and event planning; project coordination and marketing, and more. One of her most eventful non-profit experiences was waiting on a hospital helipad for Ronald McDonald to arrive via CALSTAR medical helicopter, and keeping up with him and his giant red shoes all day as he visited with sick children.
Jenni is proud to be helping SYRCL in their efforts to protect and defend the natural beauty of our river and our community. She also enjoys music, photography, and writing actual letters to her actual pen-pal.
Jon Wilson, Wild & Scenic Film Festival On Tour Associate Director, (530) 265-5961 ext. 204
Jon was born and raised in northern California. He grew up exploring the Sierra Nevada mountains while fishing, camping, and skiing with his and parents and four siblings. He graduated from California State University, Chico, where he played four years of collegiate lacrosse. After graduation, his love of the mountains drew him to Nevada County, which he now calls home.
Throughout his professional career, Jon had the opportunity to focus on two areas that provided great professional satisfaction: development strategy and strategic planning. Prior to joining the Wild & Scenic Film Festival team, Jon developed and implemented successful marketing campaigns while creating profitable partnerships and forming strategic alliances.
Working for the Wild & Scenic Film Festival On Tour is a dream job for Jon. He loves film and is proud to be helping inspire activism across the country. Jon lives in Truckee with his wife, who he met while snowboarding in Lake Tahoe, and his two young children. On the weekends you will find him tinkering in the garden, sneaking off for a mountain bike ride, skiing, and/or playing with his two kids.
Jenna Brager, Wild & Scenic Film Festival On Tour Manager, (530) 265-5961 ext. 217
Jenna grew up in California, enjoying family trips to the Sierra Nevada Mountains from a young age. While attending UC Santa Cruz and receiving degrees in Environmental Studies and Photography, she became enthusiastic about ways that creative arts can encourage healthy human relationships with nature. It is Jenna’s love of wilderness and small-scale farming that recently brought her to Nevada County.
Jenna is passionate about making a positive difference in the world. She has been working with environmental non-profits for more than 10 years, focusing on open space protection, conserving natural resources and endangered species, and sustainable agriculture. Her most recent fun adventure involved starting an organic farm and apiary at a cheetah conservation center in southern Africa.
Jenna is delighted to be working with SYRCL, continuing her dedication to the planet and linking to environmental communities across the country through the Wild & Scenic Film Festival On Tour. In her free time, she enjoys hiking with her fiancé, spending time in the garden with her cat and honeybees, eating homegrown food with friends, and swimming in the Yuba River, of course.
Adele Rife, AmeriCorps Member: Restoration Coordinator, (530) 265-5961 ext. 218
Adele was born and raised in Texas. In Texas, she grew up exploring the outdoors while fishing and camping with her family. She recently graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Geography and the Environment, where her love of the environment and her professors spurred her in the right direction. Adele was lucky enough to study abroad twice during her undergrad, in Mexico and in Chile, and loves to travel and practice her Spanish. During her studies, she discovered her passion for rivers and focused on fluvial geomorphology and river science. She completed an honors thesis entitled “Deforestation Impacts on Fluvial Systems in the Amazon River Basin.” Adele plans to continue her studies with graduate school in the near future.
Adele is very excited for her introduction into the environmental and river science professional field at SYRCL. She feels truly fortunate to begin a new chapter as the Restoration Coordinator at SYRCL and be a SNAP member for the 2013 year. Adele is very enthusiastic to get outdoors and experience the Yuba River and Sierra Nevada first hand with like-minded people!
Jenn Tamo, AmeriCorps Member: Stewardship Coordinator, (530) 265-5961 ext. 211
Marianne Pott, AmeriCorps Member: River Monitoring Coordinator, (530) 265-5961 ext. 213
Growing up in Midwest made Marianne long for the mountains, forests, rocks, and streams that she glimpsed on family vacations to the Appalachian Mountains. She joined a venture crew in high school so she could return to those areas and camp, mountain bike, raft, and kayak. Such experiences instilled in her a deep connection to the natural world and an eagerness to learn all about it.
That eagerness brought her to Valparaiso University in NW Indiana. While not studying for her B.S. in environmental sciences, Marianne spent her time playing in the dunes along Lake Michigan and kayaking the remains of the Grand Kankakee Marsh. Summers afforded her the excitement of escaping the Midwest and working in other parts of the country. She researched brackish marsh communities of coastal Louisiana at the National Wetlands Research Center and tidal wetlands of the Hudson River Valley in upstate New York.
After graduating, she continued her track in the watershed field with a position as a water quality analyst for a county government outside Seattle. A job in Montana working with a citizen-based watershed group and a statewide water education organization allowed her to sustain her stay in the west.
Marianne is very excited to be serving at SYRCL as the 2013 SNAP River Monitoring Coordinator. She looks forward to learning about the area’s history, exploring the Sierra Nevada, and connecting people with the incredible Yuba River!