Land Tawney - Executive Director

Land Tawney Land is a 5th generation Montanan who garnered his conservation ethic from a young age in duck blinds on warm water sloughs in the Bitterroot Valley, at the end of a flyrod during the salmon fly hatch on the Big Hole River, and chasing the wily wapiti in Cinnabar Basin.  Land received a BS in Wildlife Biology from the University of Montana in 2000 and a PHD in post hole digging fencing in the family Quarter horses and mules. Fresh out of college, he worked for a newly formed sportsmen organization called the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership (TRCP) as their National Grassroots Coordinator. Much of his work at TRCP was aimed at protecting quality places to hunt and fish via roadless areas and promoting volunteer incentives for landowners to provide public access to private lands.  After four years working for TRCP, Land joined the staff of the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) as Regional Representative in Missoula, Montana.

John Gale - Conservation Director

John Gale

John Gale is a 5th generation Idahoan who grew up hunting and fishing the backcountry with his family. Engaged in politics at a young age, John finished high school early to take his first job with the Idaho State Senate. Later on, while feeding an outdoors addiction as a whitewater river guide and ranger, John received his degree in Natural Resource Management from the University of Idaho. After a two year stint in Morocco with the Peace Corps managing biodiversity and water projects, John found a niche for his ecumenical angling habits in Washington, D.C. directing a variety of grassroots conservation programs for Trout Unlimited. Eventually he succumbed to the calls of western topography and returned to the high country directing sportsmen campaigns and public lands policy for 9 years with the National Wildlife Federation. As BHA’s Conservation Director, John is committed to defending our wild public lands, waters, and wildlife for future generations. In his personal time, John enjoys the outdoors with his wife and daughter and prefers the solitude of lonely backcountry mountains where the elk bugle and cold streams run with wild trout.

Frankie McBurney Olson - Director of Operations


Frankie was born and raised on a cattle ranch outside of Ronan, Montana.  She grew up hunting, camping and enjoying the wonderful state of Montana. Frankie attended college at the University of Montana and upon graduation began her work in the nonprofit sector.   Frankie has fundraised for the University of Montana, American Cancer Society and most recently was the Executive Director for Habitat for Humanity of Missoula. 

Frankie’s love of the outdoors brought her to BHA where she is very excited to be part of the conservation effort so that her two young boys can also enjoy the same experiences that she had growing up.   

Caitlin Twohig - Project Manager & Outreach

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Caitlin was born and raised in Missoula, MT, where she grew up fishing and camping with her family. She attended the University of Oregon for college in Eugene, OR where she majored in Business and Communications. Following graduation Caitlin moved back to Montana, where she balanced her time between rafting and skiing tight tree lines in fresh powder. Her love for the open spaces, snow-capped mountains, and bountiful rivers of Montana brought her to BHA, where she can now advocate for the conservation of these special landscapes. Caitlin is pleased to work for an organization that strives to preserve the kind of outdoor experience that was so influential in her young life, and continues to be a source of refuge and adventure, today.

Tim Brass - State Policy Manager

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Tim Brass grew up hunting and fishing in Minnesota. As soon as he was old enough to drive he quit all organized sports to hunt and fish and followed this passion for the outdoors to earn a B.S. in Natural Resource Management from the University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point and an M.A. in Community and Regional Planning from University of Oregon. Prior to working for BHA, Tim did environmental research for the Forest Service, National Science Foundation and Cooperative North American Shotgunning Education Program. Now living in Colorado with his wife Megan, Tim enjoys hunting waterfowl, big game hunting with a bow and fly-fishing high mountain lakes. He’s glad to be a part of an organization that stands-up for the wild, public lands he enjoys the most.  Feel free to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with ideas on social media or southern rockies issues. 

Grant Alban - Development Associate

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Born and raised in Southern California, Grant knew at an early age that he would someday live in Montana.  Fascinated by animals his whole life, he learned the finer points of hunting from his Grandpa when he was old enough to carry a gun.  After graduating from Humboldt State with a degree in Wildlife Management, Grant spent most of the next decade as a biological science technician, doing everything from studying spotted owls in the northwest to eradicating feral pigs from California’s islands, to spending 5 seasons in Montana’s backcountry collecting grizzly bear hair.  Grant now enjoys elk and antelope hunting and guiding his wonderful wife down Montana’s rivers while she casts to rising cutthroats.  Grant is thrilled to be a part of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers and feels privileged to be able to help protect the wild places that means so much to him.  

Katie Mckalip - Communications Director

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Descendant of coal miners, fur trappers, ice fishermen and schoolteachers from Pennsylvania, Katie McKalip grew up with a front row seat to the politicking of Washington, D.C., thanks to her military upbringing. After college in Virginia, she landed in western Montana, where she spends a lot of time outdoors and engages in policy making from a distance.

Katie joined the BHA team following a seven-year stint with the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership, where she led the TRCP’s media outreach and other communications work. She also helped realize founder Jim Range’s vision of the TRCP as an influencer of sportsmen-driven conservation policy and a center point in the outdoors and hunting and angling constituencies. She is actively involved with the boards of the Outdoor Writers Association of America, where she directed communications before moving to the TRCP, and Conservation Hawks, which levies sportsmen’s political muscle to advance effective approaches to climate change.

She has an M.S. from the University of Montana and a B.A. from The College of William & Mary. For her master’s thesis, she wrote a manuscript on the history of mining – camps, communities and colorful characters – in the area now known as Rocky Mountain National Park.

Married to a Montanan who’s hunted since he was 12, Katie especially enjoys upland hunting with good friends and great dogs, cross country skiing Montana’s hills and river bottoms, and summertime paddles in sun dappled mountain streams, ideally with her two kids in tow. 

Toni Ruth - High Divide Coordinator

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Toni has a Ph.D. in Wildlife Resources, a M.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Science and a B.S. in Wildlife Ecology. She has done extensive field work on cougars; collected data for IDFG on muledeer, peregrine falcons and flammulated owls; worked with the Concervacìon Patagonica research program in Southern Chile; trapped and transported feral Russian hogs in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and worked on brook trout restoration. Toni has lived in Salmon for nine years and is a board member of Salmon Valley Stewardship. BHA is asking Toni to foster community awareness of the intersection of wildlife habitat and security with land use, both public and private, to provide a healthy ecosystem for wildlife that will also support sustainable agricultural and forestry practices to build a strong local economy. Toni is a hunter and angler who enjoys hiking and riding her horse in the rugged land of the High Divide. BHA is pleased to have a wildlife biologist of Toni’s stature join our team!

Sam Lungren - Backcountry Journal Editor


Sam grew up on Whidbey Island in Washington’s Puget Sound, where he developed a love for outdoor adventures and an ambition to write about them. After a youth filled with steelheading and duck hunting he went to Gonzaga University to study journalism. His senior thesis story about the historic Elwha River dam removal project led him straight into graduate school at the University of Montana. He wrote and photographed another thesis about the controversial use of salmon and steelhead hatcheries and graduated with an M.A. in environmental journalism and natural resource science. While attending UM, he worked for Bugle Magazine at the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. He spent his last four summers on a commercial salmon fishing boat in Prince William Sound, Alaska and lives the rest of the time chasing trout, elk and snow in Montana and steelhead in Washington, freelance writing, and editing Backcountry Journal. Please send Sam any stories, queries or questions regarding the Journal This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Ty Stubblefield - Chapter Coordinator


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Ty Stubblefield grew up in Oregon's Umpqua Valley with access to some of the west coasts most diverse landscape and wildlife. From coastal blacktail's to desert mule deer and Rocky Mountain elk to rainforest Roosevelts he has taken full advantage of the opportunity to seek out the wild critters and public lands Oregon has to offer. At an early age he came to the realization that hunters and fishermen are the true conservationists and stewards of the land. Recognizing the need to give back Ty jumped on the conservation band wagon getting involved with state policy while volunteering for Oregon Bow Hunters from 2001 to 2008. In 2008 he was blessed with the opportunity to work with Oregon's largest state based conservation group - Oregon Hunters Association - as Field Administrator. In this position he worked with Oregon hunters to conserve Oregon's wildlife, habitat and hunters rights. Joining BHA and the AWESOME people who make up this organization is described as the apex of his career in conservation! "BHA'ers are an elite group of people who understand that these lands we hold so dear are not free and must be fought for" - says Ty. When not working for the betterment of wild public places and wildlife he can be found enjoying them with a bow or fly pole in hand.   

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Backcountry Hunters & Anglers seeks to ensure North America's outdoor heritage of hunting and fishing in a natural setting, through education and work on behalf of wild public lands and waters.

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