Search form

Staff & Board


Kelley Tucker - Executive Director

Kelley has worked for nearly 30 years in the national, international, and local non-profit conservation sectors moving science and technical knowledge into public discussions and implementing innovative, locally-driven, on-the-ground solutions that protect freshwater and wildlife, sustain ecological diversity, and provide local communities with tools for economic and climate resilience. She served as Vice-President of Conservation for the International Crane Foundation working with staff in 22 countries to conserve cranes and their freshwater habitats. Earlier, at the American Bird Conservancy, she was director of the Pesticides and Birds Campaign and effectively advocated for pesticide regulations more protective of birds. Kelley holds degrees in economics and political science from Rice University, and pursued her doctoral work at the University of Chicago. Kelley leads AsRA's strong team of scientists and conservation professionals as they monitor the health of regional waters, identify threats, work with the community to find solutions, and monitor those solutions for success. She is a member of the Advisory Board of the NYS Centers of Excellence in Healthy Water Solutions. Kelley lives in Upper Jay with her husband three fine cats, a trusty dog, and two wonderful horses. 

Madison Stroud - Operations Director

Madison joined the Ausable River Association (AsRA) in 2022 as operations director. She is excited to bring her passion for the Adirondacks, animals, and communications together in her work at AsRA. She has lived within the Ausable watershed since 2007 and maintains a deep connection to the East Branch Ausable River, its tributaries, and the plants and animals who rely on them. Prior to joining AsRA, she worked for local nonprofit organizations, serving as the shelter director at Tri-Lakes Humane Society and the program manager & volunteer coordinator at North Country SPCA. She holds a BA in English from Skidmore College and an MST from SUNY Plattsburgh. In her free time, Madison enjoys walking in the woods with her dogs, hiking, foraging, painting, and learning more about the flora, fauna, and ecology in the Adirondacks.

Carrianne Pershyn - Biodiversity Research Manager

Carrianne has worked in many capacities for the Ausable River Association since 2014. In late 2018, she became a full-time research associate for the organization, supporting our Biodiverse Habitats program and monitoring brook trout and other native organisms that rely on Ausable streams. She holds an M.S. in Fish and Wildlife Biology and Management from SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse, NY and a B.S. in Ecology from Plattsburgh State University. Her masters thesis research focused on Brook Trout habitat use, recruitment, and population genetics in high elevation, groundwater-fed tributaries of the headwaters of the Ausable River. She is formally trained in natural history and ecology of freshwater habitats, with a variety of past research experience on terrestrial and aquatic wildlife. Her 2018-2019 field projects with AsRA include expanding and maintaining a network of temperature loggers across the watershed, designing and implementing eDNA field and lab studies to map the spatial distribution of brook trout and other salmonids, and planning future research projects that focus on Brook Trout ecology and conservation in the Adirondacks. She has worked in Adirondack conservation and lived in the Park for more than a decade, and when not working, can be found adventuring on Adirondack waterways and in wild forests.

Phil Snyder – Water Quality Research Manager

Phil joined the Ausable River Association (AsRA) in 2023 following the planned merger with the Adirondack Lake Survey Corporation (ALSC).  Phil had worked for the ALSC for over 23 years as a Chemist, Laboratory Manager, Field Researcher, and most recently as Program Director, studying the long-term effects of acid deposition on the Adirondack ecosystem.  During his tenure at the ALSC, Phil participated in the collection, analysis, and quality control of over thirty thousand samples as a part of the Adirondack Long-Term Monitoring Program. Some of Phil’s recent studies involved looking at chemical metrics to determine the success of brook trout reintroduction and spawning in acid-impacted lakes in a recovery environment.  In addition to his work with lakes and streams, Phil has also been involved in the Whiteface Cloud Monitoring Program, participating in site operation and design, as well as overseeing the analysis of cloud water samples. He holds an associate’s degree in Ecology and Environmental Technology from Paul Smiths’s College, and a bachelor's degree in Environmental Chemistry from SUNY Plattsburgh where he is also pursuing a Master's degree in Natural Resources and Ecology. In his free time, Phil can still be found in, on, and around the waters of the Adirondacks, hiking, paddling and fishing with his wife and two daughters.

Gary Henry – Stream Restoration Manager 

Gary has worked in the Earth and environmental sciences for over two decades. He holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in geology and is a licensed professional geologist in both New York and Texas. He first studied fluvial geomorphology in graduate school and worked on several geomorphic assessments of rapidly urbanizing streams throughout central and north-central Texas from 2002-2009. After graduate school, he held a full-time position managing complex environmental remediation projects as a project hydrogeologist at an environmental engineering firm for 5 years in Dallas, Texas. In 2009, Gary joined the faculty at SUNY-Clinton Community College in Plattsburgh where he developed two environmental degree programs and taught courses in environmental science/technology/engineering and geology. During his tenure at Clinton, he received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching. Since joining AsRA in 2020, Gary has led geomorphic surveys for culvert and bridge replacement and river restoration design and provided day-to-day oversight on two large stream restoration projects on the East Branch Ausable River in Keene and Upper Jay during summer 2021. His current projects at AsRA include development of a regional geomorphic data set of rivers and streams in the Ausable watershed, overseeing the implementation of an upcoming stream restoration project in Upper Jay, identifying and prioritizing restoration efforts on the East Branch Ausable River, and helping to develop design plans for existing priority projects. In his free time, Gary enjoys making music, gardening, and spending time with family.

Kiana French - Nursery Curator

Kiana originally hails from western New York. After graduating from SUNY Potsdam, she moved to the Adirondacks and spent a few years working in the organic vegetable farming scene. Her passion for farming and local food took her around the world, including Hawaii and New Zealand. After returning to the continental US, Kiana worked with AdkAction on the Farmacy project to expand local food access in the Adirondacks before moving to Vermont. For the last 3 years, she worked at the Intervale Conservation Nursery in Burlington, where she developed a passion for native tree and shrub propagation and production. Her interest in riparian restoration species has recently brought her back to the Adirondacks to work with the Ausable River Association to launch the Ausable Conservation Nursery. Kiana is excited to be a part of the AsRA team and to get her hands dirty growing hyperlocal native plants in the Adirondacks. When not out collecting seeds or planting trees, she spends her time skiing, biking, hiking, and exploring the mountains.

Carolyn Koestner - Communications and Outreach Associate

Carolyn joined the Ausable River Association (AsRA) in 2022 as the GIS & Science Communications Fellow and transitioned into her current role as the Communications and Outreach Associate in 2024. A life-long New Yorker, Carolyn fell in love with the Adirondacks on weekend trips while living in the Capital Region and moved up here full time in 2019. She holds a B.A. in Environmental Science from Skidmore College and has worked in a variety of roles that combine her passions for conservation and GIS. These roles include serving as a River Steward for the Housatonic Valley Association and most recently as a Strategic Conservation Planner with the Lake Placid Land Conservancy. Carolyn spends her time outside of work exploring the Adirondacks and beyond via hiking, canoeing, camping, and backpacking, making maps of her most recent adventure, and serving on Saranac Lake's Climate Smart Community task force.

Liz Metzger - Research Associate

Liz has visited, and briefly lived, in the Adirondacks at various times throughout her life and returned in 2021 as the River Steward. She is excited to be staying with the Ausable River Association as a Research Associate. She holds a B.S. in Environmental Science from Juniata College in Central Pennsylvania. During her time there, her focus was on fisheries and aquatics. Liz continued on this path and spent a summer as a stream barrier technician with the Adirondack Chapter of the Nature Conservancy. She then spent a field season as a fisheries technician with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department. As much as she enjoyed her time in the west, she is happy to be back in the east working and exploring within the Adirondack Park again. In her free time, Liz enjoys paddling, crocheting, hiking, and spending time with her pup, Otis.

Krista - Research Associate

Krista joined the Ausable River Association in the spring of 2023 as the seasonal river steward, and now she is continuing her work for AsRA as a research associate. She holds a BS in Biology from SUNY University at Albany and an MS in Ecology from Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam in the Netherlands. Krista has volunteered on environmental projects in Denmark and the Philippines. While her passion for ecology and sustainability has led her to explore conservation all over the world, her heart truly lies in New York State. Krista fell in love with the Adirondacks over frequent childhood skiing and camping trips, and while searching for seclusion during the 2020 pandemic, she decided to relocate to the region permanently. She completed the last portion of her master’s degree in the University of Vermont’s Plant and Soil Science Department. Throughout that time, she worked on an organic vegetable farm in Wadhams, New York and since then has taught young children at a farm and forestry based elementary school. Krista has enjoyed her time in agriculture and education, but she is very excited to work with AsRA to directly promote science- based solutions and outreach. Krista spends her free time hiking the CATs trails with her dogs or sitting on her front porch admiring the wildlife around her.

Tully Miller - Nursery Technician

Tully was raised on a farm in Vermont and has been passionate about the natural world ever since. The lure of outdoor recreation brought him to Colorado, where, in between ski runs, he earned a BA in Sustainability Studies from Colorado Mountain College. Tully was moved by the gravity of climate change and its impact on the landscapes where he played, inspiring him to work for a private river restoration business in Northwest Colorado. After several years of learning the rhythms of the Yampa River and the ins and outs of running a business, he started his own restoration company. He founded Confluence Resource Management in 2017, working collaboratively with local nonprofits, government agencies, and private landowners to mitigate the effects of climate change on the Yampa River. In 2021, Tully moved to the Adirondack Park to be closer to family and found himself immersed in a vibrant local farming community. He spent the next two years working on his neighbors’ farms while earning an MS from Paul Smiths College. Tully is thrilled to explore the intersection between agriculture and environmental restoration in his role at the Ausable Conservation Nursery.



Christine Motter - Finance Manager

Christine moved to the Adirondacks from the Hudson Valley in 2019. Soon thereafter, she helped her partner Zack start up the Ice Jam Inn in Upper Jay, NY. She joined the Ausable River Association in 2021, and is responsible for bookkeeping and financial management. Christine has a bachelor's in business management from Central Connecticut State University and has worked in business and nonprofit administration for over 8 years. When not elevating the Ausable River Association's administrative functions, she spends her free time painting and hanging out with her dog.


Board of Directors

Christian Brammer - Chair

Christian is a founding member of Silverton Advisory LLC, a consultancy serving financial institutions and specializing in credit risk analysis and work out for a number of clients in New York and in Europe. Prior to co-founding Silverton, Christian spent several years designing and building a home for his family on the Ausable River between Keene and Upper Jay. During this time, he also worked for a hedge fund and taught courses and lectures on capital markets at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs. Previously, Christian spent nearly 20 years in the financial markets working for investment banking firms in New York, London, Frankfurt, Hamburg and Dublin.

Kathleen Martens - Vice Chair

Kathleen most recently worked as the Supervising Attorney at NYS Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. She retired from more than 20 years of State service in 2021. In the 1990's she worked in Albany at the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and had positions at the Department of State and the State Legislature. She is a graduate of Albany Law School, has a bachelor's degree from Queens College, CUNY, and practiced law in Plattsburgh and Lake Placid. During her career, she provided legal advice to tackle complex federal, State, and local government issues. Kathleen has experience with SEQR/NEPA, energy, environment and coastal programs, planning, permitting, land use, grants, State procurement, contracts, construction, and general government administration and enforcement. In the late 1980's, she and husband Joe lived in Wilmington on the Ausable River. They currently reside in the house they built in Lake Placid in 1988 and are enjoying all the recreational opportunities the Adirondacks offer.

Charlie Wise - Treasurer

Charlie and his wife Nancy own The Mountaineer in Keene Valley, NY. Through his youth, Charlie spent his Adirondack time closer to the Little Moose/Old Forge section of the park, only discovering the higher gradient brooks and streams of the High Peaks region in the late 90’s. After nearly 25 years in software, greentech and utility scale renewable energy consulting, Charlie steered his professional career towards business ownership, affording him year-round access to the Ausable watershed and surrounding recreation. Having previously served on the board of Maryland Trout Unlimited and more recently facilitating a partnership with fisheries biologist Dan Josephson of Cornell as part of Upper Ausable Lake trout population survey work, Charlie brings coldwater conservation experience to his role with the board.

Audrey Hyson - Secretary

Audrey has been a resident of Lake Placid and Keene Valley for 28 years. In this time, she has been involved with many non-profit organizations working to protect the wilderness of the Adirondack Park. These include the Adirondack Mountain Club, Adirondack Nature Conservancy, Adirondack Land Trust, Northern New York Audubon Society and the Adirondack Loon Center. Audrey was a founding member of the North Elba Land Conservancy, now merged into the Adirondack Land Trust. Audrey has an undergraduate degree in Botany and pursued a master’s degree in biology. She has worked in the field of natural history interpretation and continues to pursue her personal interest in natural history, botany, and ornithology as recreational pursuits. She is married to Chris Hyson who is a Family Practitioner. They have two adult children, Peter and Rose.

John Braico

John is a retired board-certified pediatrician who maintained an active clinical practice in Glens Falls, NY from 1978 – 2012. An active angler and lover of rivers, John has been active with several nonprofit organizations. Most notably, he has served as an active member of Trout Unlimited (TU) at the national, state, and chapter level advocating for natural stream restoration approaches, river restoration, and the protection of native species, especially brook trout. He founded the Adirondack Chapter of TU in 1985.

John has training and experience with fluvial geomorphology, river analysis, field studies, and restoration work. He has completed all 4 levels of training in fluvial geomorphology, assessment, and design with David Rosgen of Wildland Hydrology. He has a strong knowledge of the Ausable watershed and nearby systems. Among many efforts undertaken jointly with AsRA and the USFWS, John has coordinated assessment and design, raised funds and assisted with construction supervision of 2012 Rivermede project. He also co-led survey, assessment, design, and co-supervised construction of AsRA-coordinated Riverlands (2014) and Dream Mile (2017-2019) projects.

Ken Brownell

Ken retired from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Northeast Region located in Hadley, Massachusetts December 31, 2015. A licensed professional engineer in the states of Washington and Maine, Ken joined USFWS in 2002 working as a fish passage engineer producing detailed conceptual designs for Alaska Steeppass, Denil and nature-like fishways, and assuming the position of Regional Dam Safety Officer. In 2007 when the Engineering Division was eliminated Ken was transferred to the Fisheries Division where he assisted USFWS hatcheries with project planning, design, construction and maintenance of systems used for fish rearing such as air-cooled chillers, and water/waste water treatment plants.  As a hydraulic engineer, Ken provided technical guidance on water flow in natural streams and man-made piped systems.

Ken is married to Margaret (Peggy) Savage Brownell. He began coming to the Adirondacks in 1971 when his parents joined a partnership in Willsboro, NY to protect land from development. His parents built a small log cabin and Ken has enjoyed coming every year. Peggy has been coming to Keene Valley ever since she can remember. Two standard poodles keep them busy in their spare time.

Richard Conney

Rick is a recently retired hospitality management professional. A native New Yorker from the Rome-Utica area, he relocated back to take position as general manager for Lake Placid Conference Center with Centerplate Corporation overseeing all catering and concessions operations including the Olympic Center, Ski Jumping and Bobsled Complexes. He is now retired. Rick and his wife live in Ausable Acres with their two Labrador retrievers. He’s an avid fly fisherman, paddler of both canoes and kayaks, hiker, cyclist and general outdoors enthusiast.

Rick has served on the Pere Marquette Watershed Council board of directors in Michigan including serving as president. Additional board memberships included several community-based organizations: Lake County Community Foundation, Ferris State University Hospitality Management Program, Local Rotary Club. He is a member of the ADK Mountain Club, American Canoe Association, and Vermont Paddlers Club.

Larry Master

Larry Master has been photographing wildlife and natural history subjects for more than 50 years. After doctoral and post-doctoral studies at the University of Michigan, Larry spent 20 years with The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and 6 years with NatureServe, most of that time as Chief Zoologist. NatureServe is an offshoot of the Conservancy and is the umbrella organization for the network of natural heritage programs in every U.S. state and Canadian province as well as in many Latin American countries. Larry has authored and contributed to a variety of publications including Rivers of Life: Critical Watersheds for Protecting Freshwater Biodiversity. He serves on numerous national and regional non-profit conservation boards. Larry lives in Keene and Connecticut with his wife Betty. 

Wally Walters

Wally is recently retired from over 35 years in public service in a wide array of executive level leadership and strategic responsibilities including: chief of staff of national security executives promoting interagency reform, strategist and senior strategic communicator for the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, and U.S. Army District Engineer (Hawaii/Pacific and subsequently Arkansas/Missouri). He also served as the U.S. Defense Attaché to Bosnia negotiating major international agreement and director of testing for new military equipment. He holds a B.Sc. from the U.S. Military Academy, West Point, a M.A. in international affairs from The George Washington University, an M.Phil. from Columbia University, and M.Sc. degrees in military studies and strategy from the Marine Corps University and the U.S. Army College. Wally retired from paid work in 2015 and moved to Au Sable Forks, having previously owned property and vacationed in the Adirondacks for many years.

Andrew Weibrecht

Andrew raced on the FIS World Cup from 2007-2018, was on four World Championship Teams, and raced in three Olympic games (Vancouver 2010, Sochi 2014, Pyeongchang 2018), winning medals in 2010 and 2014 (Super G Bronze and Silver respectively). Post ski racing, he completed studies in hydrology at Dartmouth. He’s looking forward to focusing some of his volunteer time on the protection of Adirondack waters. Andrew currently serves as the operations manager at his family’s hotel, the Mirror Lake Inn. He is an avid backcountry skier, fisherman, hunter, mountain biker and devotes his time to his wife and three kids.

Our mission — is to help communities protect our streams and lakes.
AsRA is working hard to protect the Ausable River.
Read the latest stories about the Ausable River.
The Ausable River is a river on the edge.
Website Development by