Charles Tripp, Chair
Charles grew up in the outdoors of Pennsylvania’s Appalachian Mountains. He joined the Marine Corps right after high school. When getting out of the Marine Corps he went with another Marine to Colorado to archery hunt and fell in love the Mountains and stayed for almost two decades before making his way to New Mexico. He is an avid outdoorsman who prefers the close interactions with wildlife while bowhunting, and good coffee on a cold snowy mountain. He joined NMBHA’s board due to his strong belief that sportsman need to stand together to protect our outdoor heritage or we will lose it divided.
Since I was a child I have always had a passion for wild places and the animals that inhabit them. That passion led me to pursue a career as an ichthyologist, and I have spent the past 20 years studying fish throughout the southwestern United States. Outside of a great year living in Missoula Montana, I am a lifelong New Mexican and received both my undergraduate and graduate degrees from UNM.
Whether it was hunting, fishing, camping or hiking, spending time on our public lands has been a cornerstone of my life. I now have the privilege of teaching my two children these same outdoor skills, and the satisfaction that comes from days spent in the field. It is my great pleasure to be working with the New Mexico chapter of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers as it defends the use and enjoyment of our public lands.
Brian Mileshosky, Secretary
Brian was born and raised in Albuquerque and has been shooting and fly fishing since age eight, thanks to his father. Better late than never, he began hunting in 2015 through the invitation and mentorship of co-workers with whom he’s hunted every season since. Having come full circle, Brian has found great joy teaching his young daughter and son to shoot, hunt, fly fish and be responsible stewards of the outdoors. He seeks every opportunity to be outside with his family and, when not drifting flies or sending rounds down range, Brian enjoys hiking, camping, backpacking, amateur radio, and snowboarding.
Public lands, waters and wildlife have provided Brian and his family with an abundance of skills, lessons, resources, sustenance, solace, joy, and memories. Serving within BHA is one way to give back to and conserve these treasures. Professionally, Brian is an electrical engineer having studied at the University of New Mexico and Georgia Tech.
As a young angler and backpacker, I seriously took for granted public access and never gave a thought to whether or not it would always be there. In my 40’s, after taking up hunting, the availability of land that I could hunt on seemed more scarce. I joined Backcountry Hunters & Anglers after hearing the California BHA chapter chair lay out the BHA mission and purpose on a local podcast. It also became clear that this work wasn’t going to be done just as a dues paying member. My move to New Mexico introduced me to a great group of people committed to conservation and access and supporting late in life hunters. A desire to be a part of this group and be of service to our outdoors access led to role as New Mexico BHA Treasurer.
Kamilia (Kami) Elsisie of Albuquerque enjoys working to preserve public lands, water and wildlife for future generations. Kami was born in Wyoming but grew up mostly in New Mexico. Her passion for the outdoors was sparked by early experiences including rafting the Middle Fork of the Salmon River in Idaho, pack trips in the Gila Wilderness and fishing and canoeing in the Arctic Circle in Alaska.
Kami identifies as an "adult onset hunter" seeing that she went on her first waterfowl hunt almost seven years ago, and that's all it took for her to fall in love with hunting. Since then, she has hunted big game and birds across the West, all on public land. Her hunting has increased her interest in conservation, education and public policy. Kami is a Leader for Artemis Sportswomen, a mentor with NewHunter.org and a NMGF Hunter Education Instructor Volunteer.
She currently works as a Paramedic in the Emergency Department and on an ambulance and her educational credentials include a Master of Public Health from San Jose State University and a Bachelors in Community Health from New Mexico State University.
Mark grew up in eastern Kansas just outside of Kansas City. He began hunting by tagging along with his dad, grandpa, and brothers on pheasant hunting trips to central Kansas even before he was old enough to carry a shotgun. The thrill of a pheasant or covey of quail flushing unexpectedly from under his feet was what really hooked him on hunting. As Mark got into high school and college, he broadened his hunting interests and started pursuing ducks, whitetail deer, and turkey. Shortly after college Mark’s career moved him out west to Montana, and then to California. In the western US is where Mark discovered public lands. Up until this time, public lands were somewhat of a foreign concept to him. Once he learned about them, a whole new world of recreation opportunities opened up. This is when Mark’s passion for our public lands was ignited.
Mark has been a member of BHA since 2015, and became more engaged when he moved to Minnesota a couple of years later, eventually serving on the Minnesota Chapter Board in 2021. When he learned that he and his wife would be moving to Albuquerque, he reached out to the New Mexico board to learn how he could stay involved with BHA to ensure the same opportunities he has now are still available to future generations. Mark truly enjoys being a part of an organization that matches his passion for public lands.
Joel Gay, Central Region
Joel grew up in Albuquerque and learned to love the backcountry while fishing, skiing and hiking around New Mexico with his family. After graduating from UNM he moved to Alaska and stayed nearly 30 years, working as a journalist and commercial fisherman and enjoying the state’s great outdoors. After returning to New Mexico in 2005, he was hired as communications director for the New Mexico Wildlife Federation. Now retired, Joel is an avid bow hunter and fly fisherman who would rather walk miles into the backcountry than hunt or fish among the crowds.
Adam Barkalow, Central Region
Adam Barkalow was born and raised in New Mexico and was exposed to hunting and fishing at an early age through family and friends. Trying to keep himself outdoors as much as possible led Adam to seek a career in conservation biology. Adam attained both undergraduate and graduate degrees in biology from the University of New Mexico. Since 2007, Adam has worked in New Mexico, Arizona, and Utah trying to restore native fishes, amphibians, reptiles, and invertebrates. Currently, Adam works for the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish as the San Juan River native fish biologist. His goals are to continue to do great things for fish and wildlife conservation, protect public lands in perpetuity, enrich his family’s life with outdoor experiences, and hopefully one day train a decent bird dog.
Jeb Brown, Central Region
Jeb Brown grew up duck hunting and fly fishing in Arizona, and eagerly anticipated every opportunity to camp on public lands in the cool mountains of northern and eastern AZ. Now a self-declared hunting and fishing generalist, Jeb enjoys all kinds of outdoor activities in New Mexico, particularly those resulting in cooking food from the wild and sharing with friends and family. Better still, enjoyed with a first-time hunter or fisher. As a hydrologist Jeb understands careful conservation and protection of water and habitat is foundational for preserving a heritage of wildlife on the landscape.
Chance Lee was born in raised in Clovis,NM. After graduating high school from Clovis High, Chance attended New Mexico State University. He grew up fishing in many lakes and rivers throughout NM. It wasn’t until 2017 that he really began to hunt. The public lands and waters of New Mexico have given Chance the opportunity to do what he loves. In the future he hopes to be able to share his passion for the outdoors with his niece, Audrey.
I wear many hats in this life, and like many, am a hard-working American. My wish—like many of you—is that I can spend more of my time in the great outdoors. The support of conservation is important to me and my family. Protecting our lands for hunters and non-hunters alike for future generations to enjoy. I grew up loving the outdoors, and am an avid hunter, pursuing big game in New Mexico and other states whenever I can.
Another passion is what lands me in the kitchen, where no one leaves the table hungry. I worked as a camp cook with an outfitting business for many years. As a mother, I enjoy knowing that I can provide good organic meals and try new recipes to share with my family and friends.
Felix Hernandez, Southeast Region
I am a science teacher, husband, father, outdoor enthusiast, and founder of New Mexico Avid Hunters. I was raised in the southeastern part of New Mexico. I attended the University of New Mexico and received my BS in Education. I have since spent my time educating students in science classrooms within the northern areas of New Mexico. In my free time I have helped with conservation efforts with the Mule Deer Foundation .
New Mexico has a diverse population of big game and small game and it’s our responsibility to harvest game ethically and responsibly. As hunters we must focus our efforts in conservation to help keep sustainable populations for our future children. Hunting is a tradition that has been passed down for generations, and we plan to keep it alive for future generations.