Staff & Board

/Staff & Board
Staff & Board 2017-11-17T12:57:32+00:00



Sharon grew up in Michigan in the suburbs of Detroit. She attended Michigan Technological University in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan where she got her degree in Mechanical Engineering Technologies and found her two true loves: the outdoors and her soul mate, Chris. After college she and Chris moved west to Idaho where they enjoy mountain biking, backpacking, snowboarding and adventuring outdoors. Sharon has served as the Coeur d’Alene Earth Day Fair coordinator since 2012 and also participates in the Junk2Funk Eco-Fashion Show. Sharon is an avid gardener and steward for the environment. She has a passion to get people together and work to make a difference. She and Chris have two wonderful children, a super fluffy white dog, 9 chickens, and 3 fish.E-mail Sharon:

Jill spent her childhood in the mountains above Lake Pend Oreille near the small town of Hope, ID.  After graduating from Colorado Christian University with a B.A. in Psychology she found her passion for working with nonprofit organizations in various fields. Jill has lived in Coeur d’Alene since 2010 and enjoys hiking, mountain biking, skiing, swimming, and camping with her husband and three children. She loves to play her ukulele and create pieces of art with watercolor and ink.

E-mail Jill:

Mike was born and raised in Coeur d’Alene. He has been a member of KEA for approximately 20 years and has been involved in monitoring and commenting on forest issues since 1990. His hobbies include viewing areas on the Coeur d’Alene National Forest and the St. Joe National Forest.

E-mail Mike:

 Board of Directors


Tiffany is the Agency Director for Addus HomeCare in eastern Washington.  She has worked in the field of human services for over 20 years and loves helping others. She has lived in northern Idaho since 2009 after moving here from Arizona, and has lived in multiple different states.  Tiffany has always been interested in environmental topics and enjoys learning more about issues effecting the Inland Northwest while volunteering with KEA.  She is an active outdoorsman and loves to hike, fish, camp, ski, snowshoe, etc.  The inland northwest is her dream place to live and play. Tiffany and her husband Steve recently welcomed their first baby in March.



Janet and her husband, Greg, moved to the Coeur d’ Alene area in 1972.  They bought property, pitched a tent and began building their dream of a sustainable homestead and enjoying the great outdoors.

Janet joined the KEA Board of Directors in 2003 with the desire to help build community around environmental activism. She has watched the organization grow at a steady, intentional pace and says, “Our programs and projects have expanded exponentially. Through the growth of our strong volunteer base KEA is able to do more while still operating within our means. The satisfaction I have received and the wonderful people I have come to know through KEA have made the organization a centerpiece of my life.”

Doug is currently retired but spent much of his career serving as director of the North Idaho College Head Start.  He currently serves as a trustee on the Coeur d’Alene Public Library Board, the Inland Northwest Food Network Board, and as a rod building instructor with North Idaho Fly Casters.  He enjoys fly fishing, gardening, skiing, backpacking and cycling. Doug serves on the board of KEA because, “KEA is our best effort to ensure a healthy environment, today and tomorrow. I feel a need to contribute to that effort.”




Ed and his wife moved to north Idaho in 1993. He holds a Ph.D. in Zoology from the University of Montana and has held faculty positions at the Rockefeller University in New York and the University of Maryland. His primary area of research was echolocation systems in mammals. He later transitioned into stealth submarine research and development and is currently semi-retired.

He has been active in bat conservation efforts in the area for many years, assisting federal and state agencies and private conservation groups such as The Nature Conservancy. Efforts have included surveying abandoned mines to determine if they should be gated to eliminate disturbance, moving colonies from dwellings to nearby alternate roost sites, erecting bat houses at suitable locations and educating people about bats.

Ed is a past President of the Coeur d’Alene chapter of the National Audubon Society and works actively with birds of prey as a federally licensed raptor rehabilitator. He and his wife are members of several conservation-based organizations.

Rebecca Patano is co-owner of DOMA Coffee Roasting Company, a longtime business supporter of Kootenai Environmental Alliance. Rebecca is experienced in responsible business practices, working closely within the Fair Trade movement for green coffee.  She has strong ties to the local community, expertise in design, marketing, and business operations. Rebecca has been a life long environmentalist and outdoor enthusiast and has served on the KEA Board of Directors since 2011.


Russ Hersrud received Masters Degree in Science Teaching from University of North Dakota. Longtime educator in the US and abroad. Russ, and his wife Jean, moved to CDA from Tunisia in 1997. Russ has  memberships in Sierra Club, Audubon Society and is on the Ped/Bike committee of the CDA  Parks and Recreation Department. Russ enjoys tennis, hiking, reading and travel to parts known and unknown.  Russ is currently an adjunct Instructor in the Biology Dept. of Gonzaga University.




jim-markleyJim and his wife Debbie moved from Alaska to Coeur d’Alene in 1977. They, along with their children Alan and Anna, have enjoyed countless hours camping, hiking, boating, and exploring North Idaho’s forests and waterways.

Jim retired from the City of Coeur d’Alene as Water Superintendent. In that position he was able to work closely with KEA on water related issues. He was a member of the committee that created the Management Plan for the Rathdrum Prairie Ground Water Management Area, (RP-GWAMA) and also the committee that created the Rathdrum Prairie Comprehensive Aquifer Management Plan (RP-CAMP), and most recently was a member of Kootenai County’s Aquifer Protection District Advisory Board.

As a KEA board member Jim embraces the opportunity to work on environmental issues.

Dennis Brueggemann recently retired from a lifelong career with the Special Olympics movement, which was his passion for more than 36 years. Dennis has a Master of Science Degree in Education from Syracuse University.  He and his wife, Ann, joined the Peace Corps shortly after marriage and served in Brazil, where they helped to launch Special Olympics.  After living overseas for 23 years, they have established permanent residence in Coeur d’Alene.

Dennis has been an advocate for protecting and restoring our environment his entire life.  He has been an avid outdoorsman and has witnessed over the years the damage we have inflicted upon our environment around the globe. He very much believes in the educational programs that KEA offers our citizens and wants to be a contributor. Dennis is an avid runner and, together with Ann, enjoys hiking, swimming, canoeing, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.