Board of Directors

WELC is governed by a Board of Directors comprised of renowned attorneys, academics, and conservationists from across the country.

Board of Directors

WELC is governed by a Board of Directors comprised of renowned attorneys, academics, and conservationists from across the country.

Karin P. Sheldon, JD

Karin P. Sheldon, JD

Board President

Karin Sheldon is president of Four Echoes Strategies, a consulting firm providing policy analysis and strategic advice on Western land and water conservation issues. From 2007 to 2013, she served as president of Western Resource Advocates. Prior to 2007, Karin served as associate dean of the Environmental Law Program and director of the Environmental Law Center at Vermont Law School. Before joining the faculty at Vermont Law School in 1994, Karin served as president of The Wilderness Society. She was also a staff attorney with Earthjustice in Colorado, and was one of Ralph Nader’s original “Raiders.”

Peggy Nelson, JD

Peggy Nelson, JD

Board Vice President

Peggy Nelson served as New Mexico’s 8th Judicial District Judge until her retirement in 2008. She began her career in Taos working for Northern New Mexico Legal Services and for 10 years provided low-cost and free legal services with the the Community Law Center and as a Public Defender. Peggy has served on a lengthy list of non-profit boards and commissions, including Amigos Bravos.

Kevin Kirchner, JD

Kevin Kirchner, JD

Board Treasurer

Kevin Kirchner owns and runs CenterPoint Communications, a media strategy and advertising firm in Maryland that serves environmental and other progressive groups. Prior to founding CenterPoint Communications, he served as managing partner at MacWilliams, Kirchner, Sanders & Partners in Washington, D.C. and Vice President for policy, legislation, and communications at Earthjustice. He also worked for the Agriculture and Interior Committees in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Phil Katzezn, JD

Phil Katzezn, JD

Board Member

Phil Katzen is of-counsel to Kanji & Katzen, PLLC, where he was a founding member and managing attorney until May of 2016. Kanji & Katzen is a law firm dedicated to advocacy on behalf of Indian tribes and peoples. Phil earned his A.B. from the University of California, Berkeley in 1970 and his J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley (Boalt Hall) in 1977. Phil represents and consults with tribes across the country on a wide variety of issues, including sovereignty and governance, treaty fishing and hunting rights, Indian gaming, environmental protection, reservation boundaries, taxation and jurisdictional matters. Prior to starting his own firm, Phil served as a staff attorney and Native American Project Director for Evergreen Legal Services (later Columbia Legal Services) in Washington state.

William Leaphart, JD

William Leaphart, JD

Board Member

Justice William R. Leaphart served on the Montana Supreme Court from 1994 until his retirement in 2010. Before his election to the Supreme Court, Justice Leaphart ran a private practice in Helena, Montana. He worked as a public defender and represented individuals and small businesses. Justice Leaphart was born and raised in Montana and received his J.D. from the University of Montana School of Law. He has twice argued before the United States Supreme Court.

Mike Lindsay, JD

Mike Lindsay, JD

Board Member

Mike Lindsay is a partner in the Denver office of Snell and Wilmer LLP, a Phoenix-based law firm. Mike’s practice is concentrated in complex commercial litigation, with an emphasis on contract disputes, real estate and construction matters, and employment claims. He is a graduate of the University of Colorado, School of Law (1985). He has substantial experience in traditional court and jury trial cases, as well as in the use of alternative dispute resolution mechanisms such as arbitration and mediation. He is a member of the Denver, Colorado and Washington Bar Associations, and a chapter editor and author of The Practitioner’s Guide to Colorado Construction Law.

Dr. Lisa Manning

Dr. Lisa Manning

Board Member

Dr. Lisa Manning has experience as a consultant in global leadership development and executive coaching, and has served as a facilitator for the Globally Responsible Leadership Initiative. She is currently an adjunct faculty and researcher with the Center for Creative Leadership. As a licensed mediator, she is experienced in facilitation, conflict resolution, and dispute resolution. She also conducts training workshops for youth organizations on young leadership development, and recently started an outdoor experiential environmental education program for 5th graders. She has served on the boards of several non-profit organizations. Lisa received her M.A. in Organizational Leadership in 2000 and a Ph.D. in Leadership Studies in 2013 from Gonzaga University. She also received a B.A. and B.S. from American University in 1981.

Dyan Oldenburg

Dyan Oldenburg

Board Member

Dyan Oldenburg has worked with nonprofits for over 40 years and is dedicated to helping groups meet their mission, realize critical impact, and manage change. Dyan founded Training Resources for the Environmental Community (TREC) in 1996. As executive director, she developed and directed TREC’s programs, providing services to TREC clients for almost 20 years. Before founding TREC, Dyan worked with hundreds of environmental and social justice nonprofits on legislative, electoral, and issue campaigns and on deepening the abilities to sustain work to stunning outcomes. She is a graduate of Antioch College.