Board of Directors

RMS Board at 2023 Symposium in San Antonio

The River Management Society Board of Directors is comprised of the National Officers, Immediate Past President, Chapter Presidents, and Ex-officio Advisors. The duties of Board members are outlined in our National Officer Roles and Ex-officio Advisor Statement (below).The Board of Directors manages the Society according to the terms of its Constitution and Bylaws.  The Board conducts business during monthly conference calls and an annual meeting, consistent with its Master Business Document.

Federal employees interested in serving on the Board:

The River Management Society's members include federal and state agency professionals interested in improving their professional effectiveness by meeting with and learning from peers and partnership professionals.  Many have held leadership positions and applaud the responsiveness of the agencies who have moved quickly to provide tools for employees who are leaders of boards like ours. We have conducted our work with federal support, and have therefore placed board ethics highest among our practices. 

For federal employees who consider serving on the RMS Board, the Office of Government Ethics have established a Rule that allows them to do so for RMS or other non-profit organizations. National Park Service drafted a Memorandum of Understanding (May 2013) as guidance for staff who volunteer to hold leadership positions in non-profit organizations. The Bureau of Land Management distributed an Interim Memorandum of Understanding for BLM staff serving in non-profit leadership positions as well as a Temporary Approval Request and Temporary Recusal Memorandum.

2024-2027 National Board Officers

Judy Culver

President: Judy Culver

As President, Judy represents the Society in external matters; coordinates and presides over Board and Executive Committee meetings; oversees or delegates supervision of paid staff; and negotiates and signs contracts and agreements on behalf of the Society.
Taos, NM. Having grown up in the Pine Barrens in New Jersey, my work and play passions in life have always been focused on waterways, river systems, Wilderness, hidden trails, secret places and ecological gems. Believe it or not, I enjoy the NEPA and planning process, mentoring staff and also try to share my joy with youth and those who have yet to experience the sounds of solitude or the river lapping against the shore watching the stars explode across the dark skies.
I graduated from the University of Fairbanks, Alaska with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies degree with a focus on Natural Resources/GIS and a minor in Archeology. My first federal jobs were as a seasonal river ranger at Dinosaur National Monument, then full-time Visitor Information Specialist for the US Forest Service in Yampa, Colorado. Missing Alaska, I managed the Fairbanks Alaska Public Lands Information Center for five years, returned to Dinosaur NM to manage the river program and river permit system and spent nine years in Vermilion Cliffs National Monument and the Cottonwood Field Office as an Outdoor Recreation Planner. From the Prescott National Forest where I was the Forests Supervisory Recreation Program Manager, I returned to my beloved BLM in May 2020 as the Assistant Field Manager-Recreation of the Taos Field Office. Now I step into the big shoes of my river and outdoor recreation planner mentors who have taken on regional and national positions with the River Management Society.


Shannon Bassista

Vice President: Shannon Bassista

As Vice President, Shannon will carry out the duties of the President in the absence of the President; will serve as a primary liaison to the Chapter Presidents; and will serve as liaison between the Board and committees appointed by the Board.
Boise, ID. Rivers are my love and passion. Everything about them is spectacular and I am drawn to water every single day (even if they are only in my daydreams). As River Management Society (RMS) members, we all have a passion for protecting, managing, and recreating on rivers. I have been a member of RMS since 2004 and value the work this organization accomplishes each year. Not to mention the many professional and personal contacts I have developed with so many of the members over the years. Although I have never held an RMS leadership position, I ensure you that my leadership skills are sufficient to take on this challenge. This opportunity is valuable to me both personally and professionally, which I take very seriously. Please consider my nomination for Vice President and I promise I will work hard to continue the many great programs RMS has developed, while striving to develop new opportunities for our members.
I graduated with my undergraduate degree in Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Resources from West Virginia University in 2000. I then pursed my master’s degree in Resource, Recreation, Tourism at the University of Idaho, graduating in 2003. My master’s resource project was funded by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and my job was to administer a visitor survey to boaters on the Owyhee River in Oregon. That was my first taste of multi-day boating and I was hooked! I am a Maryland native and moved to Idaho in 2001, and I still reside in Idaho. The wild rivers, exciting back country, towering mountains, and excellent fishing and hunting opportunities that lured me to Idaho originally, have kept me here.
I started my permanent career as a Recreation Technician on the South Fork of the Snake River with the Bureau of Land Management in eastern Idaho, June 2004. For the last 16 years of my career I have worked in the field of recreation, where I manage public lands for public benefit and natural resource management. I have been fortunate to work on rivers, sand dunes, remote landscapes, and many wild places. I currently work at the BLM Idaho State Office in Boise, Idaho as a state lead in the recreation program. This job requires dedication to the diverse field of recreation and its managing staff, understanding of budget and how to track down funding opportunities, requires good communication between upper level managers and field staff, and disseminating information through all layers of bureaucracy. Recently, I helped fill some gaps in leadership and detailed for four months as an Assistant Field Manager at the BLM Boise District. That position really taught me the value of good leadership and communication skills during a time where all of us worked from home, but still had workloads to accomplish. My professional aspirations are simple, keep working to provide recreation benefits to the public while managing for resource conservation.

Helen Clough

Secretary (one-year term): Helen Clough

Secretary Helen Clough keeps the Society’s historical records, correspondence, and other documents related to the business of the Society. The Secretary will record and present to the Board minutes of Society and Board meetings. The Secretary, with assistance from staff, will develop an annual report of the affairs of the Society for the Board and members. The Secretary will ensure advance distribution of notices of all Society and Board meetings.
Juneau, Alaska. Retired in 2013 after almost 40 years in federal service working for Bureau of Land Management, Forest Service and Fish and Wildlife Service - National Wildlife Refuge System. Came to RMS when I was tasked with river planning for rivers within refuges in western Alaska in 1990. Have served on the board as treasurer - 2013-2014, president 2015-2017, and secretary 2018 to present. Have been very involved with our River Training Center and am excited about the direction we are going demonstrating leadership and success in these unprecedented times.  Living where I do I am more of a saltwater boater than river person but love anything to do with water. Since retiring I have been an active member of the planning committees for the Denver, Boise, Vancouver, and Richmond symposia and am chair of the Richmond program committee. 

Rob White

Treasurer: Rob White


As Treasurer, Rob is responsible for all financial transactions of the Society, including deposits into the Society’s account, payroll transactions, and payments on behalf of the Society. The Treasurer will make payments and disbursements as directed by the approved budget or upon direction by the Board and will keep accurate and up-to-date records of all receipts and disbursements of the Society. At least quarterly, the Treasurer will submit for Board review and approval a listing of payments, disbursements and transfers of funds and will present an annual financial report to the Board. The Treasurer will coordinate with the Society’s accountant for all audits and Internal Revenue Service transactions.
Salida CO. I recently retired from Colorado Parks and Wildlife where I served as the Park Manager for the Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area (AHRA) for the past 20 years. During my time at the AHRA I developed a deep appreciation for all of the professional development and connections that RMS provided through its RMS Journal, workshops, symposiums and many interactions with river rangers and river management professionals from throughout the country.
While working as the Park Manager of the AHRA I was also fortunate enough to be elected to and serve as the President of the Southwest Chapter of RMS, a position that I will continue to serve in for the remainder of 2020. I appreciate the opportunity to assist RMS further by serving as the RMS Treasurer, a responsibility for which I can now devote the time to participate in fully.


Linda Jalbert

Immediate Past President: Linda Jalbert

Flagstaff, AZ

Ex-officio Advisor: Bob Randall

Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell LLP
Ex-officio Advisor Statement: Advisors will assist the Society in an ex-officio (non-voting) consultation capacity. Advisors are appointed for their expertise in organizational, legal, financial, facilitation, conflict-resolution, mentoring and/or needed skills to maintain the Society's vision and integrity. Advisors provide objectivity, counsel, continuity, and self-evaluation in order to ensure consistency with the Society's constitution/by-laws, policies and procedures. Advisors may be used to assist the board with interpersonal and organizational conflicts to promote society effectiveness.

Ex-officio Advisor: Nate Hunt

Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell LLP
Ex-officio Advisor Statement: Advisors will assist the Society in an ex-officio (non-voting) consultation capacity. Advisors are appointed for their expertise in organizational, legal, financial, facilitation, conflict-resolution, mentoring and/or needed skills to maintain the Society's vision and integrity. Advisors provide objectivity, counsel, continuity, and self-evaluation in order to ensure consistency with the Society's constitution/by-laws, policies and procedures. Advisors may be used to assist the board with interpersonal and organizational conflicts to promote society effectiveness.


Chapter Presidents 

Alaska Chapter President
Alaska Chapter

Pacific Chapter President
Kristina Rylands, Upper Merced River Watershed Council
Pacific Chapter

Northwest Chapter President
Cannon Colegrove, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks
Northwest Chapter

Southwest Chapter President
Matt Blocker, Bureau of Land Management
Southwest Chapter

Southeast Chapter
James Vonesh, Virginia Commonwealth University
Southeast Chapter

Midwest Chapter President
Ed Fite, Grand River Dam Authority
Midwest Chapter

Northeast Chapter President
Emma Lord, National Park Service
Northeast Chapter

Canadian Chapter President
Canadian Chapter