Meet our committee members!
Chairman of the Steering Committee
Jordan is native of North Dakota, but ended up in Montana after a stint in Idaho, and has been living in Helena since 2012. He grew up in Minot, North Dakota and graduated from the University of North Dakota with a degree in Fisheries and Wildlife Biology. After college, he spent several years in Idaho working on everything from fisheries research to soil and water conservation issues. He moved to Helena in 2012, and worked for the Montana Department of Environmental Quality as a water quality specialist for 5 ½ years. Jordan joined NorthWestern Energy in the fall of 2017 as a Hydro Compliance Professional and is working on the water quality for NorthWestern’s hydroelectric projects. Jordan has been on the Lake Helena Watershed Group Steering Committee since 2013, and has been the Chairman of the Steering Committee since 2016. In his free time, Jordan enjoys spending time in the outdoors with his wife Cailin and their two dogs.
Steering Committee Secretary
Carolyn DeMartino was born in Anaconda, MT. At the age of 5 she moved to southeastern South Dakota. Much like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz she kept saying “I want to go home.” In 1992 after obtaining enough education (B.S. Earth Science from the University of SD) and experience (worked 10 years for the SD Geological Survey) Carolyn was able to return to Montana to work at the Montana Department of Environmental Quality. Carolyn has been on the Lake Helena Watershed Group Steering Committee since 2006. In her spare time, Carolyn enjoys being a member of the Helena Mineralogical Society, a member of the Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians, and spending time outdoors with her Newfoundland dog Angel.
Steering Committee Member
Kristy Fortman is a member of the LHWG Steering Committee and has recently returned to the Montana DEQ as a water quality planner. She spent 2016 working as an IT project manager for the Sage Grouse Habitat Conservation Program at the Montana DNRC. Previous to working at the DNRC, she worked for 7 and a half years at the DEQ as a senior water quality planner and water quality education and outreach coordinator. In 2015, Kristy took a sabbatical to serve as a Peace Corps Response Volunteer, developing a source water assessment with a municipality in Leyte, Philippines. Kristy also served as a Peace Corps volunteer, working with a watershed group as a habitat conservation volunteer, for 2 years in Ecuador. She received her graduate degree in Geography from Miami University, studying metals contamination from small scale mining in Ecuador; and her undergraduate degree in Environmental Science and Geography from the University of Colorado. In her spare time you can find her at the skate park. She enjoys playing roller derby, snowboarding, fly fishing, and running.
Big Sky Watershed Corps Member
Valerie was our Big Sky Watershed Corps Member for the 2017 season, and decided to serve a second year for us in 2018. A Midwestern-native, she grew up in the state of Michigan and attended college in Indiana (she’s used to the long, cold winters), where she received her B.Sc. in Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Biology from Saint Mary’s College of Notre Dame. Upon graduation, Valerie moved to Wyoming where she worked intimately with river and stream systems for the Bureau of Land Management. After her seasonal position ended, she applied to work as an AmeriCorps member, and found herself in Helena, Montana as of January, where she will be working for both the WQPD and LHWG. Valerie aims to expand the capacity of the LHWG through extensive community outreach, volunteer generation, marketing and education, as well as assisting in water quality studies and events. She looks forward to learning from all of us here in the community of Helena, as well as gaining experience in hydrology and watershed management.
Steering Committee Member
Bret grew up in the Lake Helena Watershed in Clancy, Montana. After spending a decade bouncing between Bozeman and Missoula, where he acquired a degree in Geography with an emphasis in G.I.S., he settled in Jefferson City, Montana. After a few internships and short-term positions with the State of Montana, Bret joined the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation as a GIS Analyst in 2012. In late 2017, he became a member of the Lake Helena Watershed Steering Committee. Bret is an active member of the Jefferson City Volunteer Fire Department, and when he has free time he enjoys hunting, fishing, and exploring Montana with his wife Lisa, their three children, and their dog Abby.
Steering Committee Member
I am a native from upstate New York and received a degree in Civil Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology in 1994. After college, I moved to Denver and spent 14 years there before moving to Helena, my wife’s hometown, in 2008 to raise our two kids. In Colorado, I worked in the mining industry as both a geotechnical and water resources engineer-in-training, but eventually focused solely on water resources. After several years in the mining industry, I started working locally as a water resources engineer on large urban developments, and urban waterway stabilization and restoration projects. Upon moving to Helena, I worked as environmental engineer, applying my water resources background to abandoned mine reclamation and superfund cleanup projects in Montana. Currently, I am working for the City of Helena as the storm water engineer: reviewing developments, managing the Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Program, and conducting storm water infrastructure improvement projects. In my free time, I enjoy spending time with friends and family: skiing powder, mountain biking, dirt biking, camping, hiking, and building and remodeling small residential projects. And, yeah, Rousey was a little cold but fine.