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Staff

Mike Koopal: Executive Director & Founder
mike@whitefishlake.org

Mike is the founder and executive director of the Whitefish Lake Institute. He has a biology degree from Luther College. Mike's professional career began with the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks as a fisheries technician working in the Clark Fork and Blackfoot River drainages. Mike also traveled to Nevada to study Lahontan Cutthroat trout for the Summit Lake Paiute Tribe, and in Alaska he worked with sockeye salmon for the Prince William Sound Aquaculture Corporation. Upon his return to Montana, Mike was a partner at Watershed Consulting for eight years where he specialized in fisheries related issues in Montana, Idaho and Nevada.

Mike serves on the Flathead Basin Commission Monitoring Committee, the Flathead Aquatic Invasive Species Committee, Flathead Community of Resource Educators (CORE), and provided technical assistance to the Bigfork Stormwater Advisory Committee. He was a co-coordinator of the Montana Lake Book, now in its second edition printing. Mike most recently co-authored the Whitefish Water Resources Report: A Status of the Whitefish Lake Watershed (2015) and an author of the Investigation of Septic Leachate to the Shoreline Area of Whitefish Lake (2012).

In 2009, Mike was presented an Individual Achievement Award by the Montana Chapter of the American Fisheries Society for his outstanding contribution to the protection and enhancement of fisheries resources in Montana.


Lori Curtis: Science & Education Director
lori@whitefishlake.org

As Science and Education Director, Lori ensures that Whitefish Lake Institute's science and educational programs perform to their potential. She has a Master of Science in Environmental Studies from Green Mountain College and a Bachelor's degree in Business Management. Lori has contributed to research in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems in California, Colorado, and Montana. Her career includes diverse management roles across a variety of disciplines.

Lori is the author of the Flathead Watershed Sourcebook: A Guide to an Extraordinary Place, a book and companion website that illustrates the natural and cultural histories of the Flathead Watershed, while detailing biodiversity, water quality, land management, agricultural production, and economics. It identifies conservation and education resources and is being used by educators in grade schools, high schools, and colleges including the University of Montana. Lori most recently co-authored the Whitefish Water Resources Report: A Status of the Whitefish Lake Watershed (2015) and was lead author on the Investigation of Septic Leachate to the Shoreline Area of Whitefish Lake (2012).

Lori serves as a Supervisor on the Flathead Conservation District Board, is a member of the Flathead CORE Watershed Education Committee, and is an Adjunct Instructor and Thesis Advisor for Green Mountain College. She is the recipient of the 2011 Outstanding Writer Award from the Montana Chapter of the American Fisheries Society and the 2010 Partner of the Year award from the Northwest Regional RC&D.