Ian Isaacson, Chair - Bend
Like most people living in Bend, Oregon, Ian is a transplant from a far off land. He hails from the Great Lakes State and like many Michiganders before him, followed in the footsteps of his father, hunting and fishing the millions of acres of public land and water available in the state. In 2012, after reading an Outdoor Life magazine article naming Bend the #1 town for sportsman, his sense of adventure took over and he, his now wife Devin and their Springer Spaniel Archer packed up and made the 2,300 mile trip to Bend that Summer.
With a degree in Landscape Architecture, Ian now works for the Bend Park & Recreation District as a Landscape Designer and owns his own residential landscape design business. Since taking the biggest, scariest and most amazing chance of their lives, many of Ian and Devin’s most cherished memories have come while hiking, camping and exploring some of Oregon’s most wild and scenic places.
In the Spring and Summer months, you will find Ian on weekend adventures with Devin, wetting a line in the nearest stream, racing in Triathlons all across the Pacific Northwest and continuously talking about the upcoming hunting season (Devin can verify this).
Come fall and winter, Ian will be doing one of four things; chasing deer and elk with his bow, trying to keep up with Archer and Atlas (his Yellow Labrador Retriever and the only native born Oregonian in the family) as they find and flush birds, playing ice hockey or watching Jim Harbaugh lead Ian’s beloved Wolverines back into national prominence.
No matter the season, one common thread weaves many of Ian’s passions and loves together, our public lands and waters. Fighting to maintain and enhance access to these wild places for all citizens is why Ian is proud to serve as the Chair for the Oregon Chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers.
Mike Haralson, Co-Chair - Portland
Mike Haralson is a 5th generation fur trapper, houndsman, big game and bird hunter, and an avid fly fisherman. He's a loving father, and a devoted husband to a wife that shares his passion for the outdoor pursuits. Mike grew up in intermountain north eastern California, and has hunted and recreated on public land for virtually his entire life. A strong desire to ensure that future generations have the opportunity to share those wonderful outdoor experiences with their friends and family, and to live the outdoor lifestyle on public land led Mike to become a Hunter Education Instructor in the state of Oregon, where his family has lived since 2005, and ultimately brought him to his position on the Board of Directors of the Oregon Chapter of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers.
When he’s not working towards the the efforts of improving and securing public land for future generations, Mike can be found in a river with fly rod in hand, or afield with a gun or bow in hand, and his wife, Angela, at his side where ever they are hunting or fishing.
Heather Wise, Treasurer - Medford
Heather was born and raised in southern Oregon. She has had an affinity for the outdoors as far back as she can remember while “standing up in the cab of her dad’s truck and bouncing along dusty, dirt roads looking for mule deer.” The love of the hunt, time well spent with family and new wild places have led to a lifelong passion for the outdoors.
Heather lives in Southern Oregon with her Husband Justin, son Caden and daughter Kenna. She has been in the banking industry for 10 years but always loves when fall comes around and elk season is at the door. You can find her and her husband chasing elk in Hells Canyon or looking for late season blacktails around the Rogue Valley.
Heather is a member of the Oregon Hunters Association, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Rocky Mountain Goat Association and Life Member of the Wild Sheep Foundation. She has a strong connection with BHA with all of the hunting she does with her husband and friends is on public land! Heather wants to be sure that those lands are available for her children to experience, enjoy and pass on to future generations.
Bill Welch, Secretary - Redmond
Bill grew up near White Salmon, Washington. Hunting and fishing were introduced at a young age which he participated in with his dad, grandfather and sister. His family’s summer vacations were spent on horseback trips in the Mt. Adams Wilderness.
He holds an Associate’s Degree from Central Oregon Community College and attended Central Washington University. Bill has been a firefighter for 25 years.
Bill is an avid archery hunter. Credit for becoming an archery hunter goes to his oldest daughter who did archery through our local 4H chapter. When not chasing elk, Bill and his family enjoy mountain biking, hiking and fishing.
Bill is fairly new to Backcountry Hunters and Anglers and has found its mission to protect special places and keep public lands public to resonate with him. Wanting to do more than just pay dues, Bill sought an opportunity to bring his leadership strengths to serve BHA.
Bill, his wife and three children live in Redmond.
Trent Kadrmas, Board of Directors
I grew up hunting the Cascades as a young boy with my father and uncles. Throughout my time in school I got very involved with sports and hunting took a backseat for a few years. I graduated from North Eugene High School in 2005. Since then I have continued to live and work in the Eugene area. Then about five years ago I got back into hunting. Since then my passion for the outdoors, wildlife, and hunting has grown immensely over that time. I pretty much eat, breath and sleep hunting and the outdoors at this point.
For now I still hunt the Cascades and coastal mountain range for blacktail, elk and bear. Up until this point I've always rifle hunted, but beginning 2017 I'm picking up a bow for the first time and going all in with archery hunting. I have also become fascinated with wildlife conservation and I try do what I can to give back to our natural world that has given us so much.
Nic Collero, Board of Directors - Portland
A Pacific NW native and University of Oregon graduate, Nic has worked the majority of his professional career in the non-profit conservation field working to protect wildlife and the large swaths of public lands they call home. Working 7 years for the National Wildlife Federation Nic organized sportsmen and women on conservation issues dealing with renewable energy, LWCF funding, protecting public lands and impacts to ESA listed species from proposed development and changing climates. It was not uncommon to find Nic wandering the halls of the Senate and House buildings in Washington DC with Oregonian hunters and anglers in tow bird dogging Members of Congress. Currently Nic works for a non profit that focusses specifically on protecting BLM land across the west.
When he is not in the office he is either backcountry salmon and steelhead fishing somewhere in the coastal rainforest, chasing stupid blacktail deer, elk hunting, dreaming about elk hunting, rock climbing in the Pacific Cascades, while preparing to soon teach all of these to his newborn daughter Mia.
Justin Wise, Board of Directors - Medford
Justin is from Medford originally and has bumped around the woods of southern Oregon with family and friends all his life. After moving away from the Rogue Valley for college, GO BEAVS, and work opportunities in southern California, he realized how much he had taken for granted with regard to the wild and public places he had access to in Oregon. He prefers mountains and rivers over beaches and interstates any day.
Justin lives in Southern Oregon with his wife Heather, son Caden and daughter Kenna. He has been in the financial services industry for 8 years. He has been a rifle hunter all his life, but his wife has shown him the joys of archery hunting and he is headed into the backcountry with stick and string this fall.
Justin is a member of the Oregon Hunters Association, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Rocky Mountain Goat Association and Life Member of the Wild Sheep Foundation. You can find him spending time with his wife, running around chasing his kids, looking for elk over east or looking for blacktail bucks, but he will never tell you where. He loves the passion and foundation at BHA as they are fighting to protect the public places he holds near and dear, so his son and daughter can experience the same places when their time comes.
Ed Putnam, Board of Directors - Bend
Ed came west in 1991 with little more than a backpack and a fly rod. Since then he's worn out many pairs of boots traveling Oregon's backcountry. Whether he's carrying a longbow for elk, a shotgun for chukar, a fly rod for trout, or a spey rod for steelhead, he always brings with him a deep respect for the land and its natural ecosystems.
Ed is active with Traditional Archers of Central Oregon, promoting the sport of archery, and has served on the USFS's Travel Management Plan for the Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests. For Ed, hunting and fishing are not just pastimes, but adventures that allow him to be connected to nature. Working with BHA is his way of setting an example to others. Through BHA he helps ensure that our relationship to the natural world is not lost to the ages, but is carried on to future generations.
Tristan Henry, Board of Directors - Bend
An Oregon native, Tristan has a lot of gratitude for the trails that lead people to their passions. In 1994 his parents bought a farm in the Yamhill River valley. They partnered with NRCS and ODFW and Tristan got to see first hand his father's vision of stewardship realized and a native ecology restored. In the wetlands and in the woods, every day after school, he was free to explore, hunt and fish and learn on his own the natural side of the world's order. He cultivated a passion and a fascination with the natural world that is as persistent now as ever.
Upon graduating from Oregon State University in 2011, Tristan moved to central Oregon to work in the Outdoor Industry. Now, still in Bend, he owns & operates a small marketing agency, and takes every opportunity to retreat to the rivers, lakes, woods and mountains to fish, ride bikes, snowboard, wing shoot and bow hunt.
He's only a recently converted to chasing larger game, but even as a novice it’s easy to see that Tristan is enthralled with the learning process and has found that pursuing deer, elk, or turkey with a bow to be one of the most rewarding and exhilarating pursuits of his life so far.
Like many, Tristan relies largely on #PublicLands his my hunting, fishing and other assorted outdoor endeavors, and he's proud to be working with BHA to be an ambassador for the conservation ethos that we lovers of the outdoors and all humanity benefit so much from.
Chelsea Cassens, Board of Directors - Imbler
Chelsea was born in Eastern Oregon where she was raised on public lands and wild places. Her passion for public lands comes from previous generations of parents and grandparents who exposed her to the beauty of the outdoors and built memories to last a lifetime.
After spending 9 years in the Portland area attending the School of Nursing at the University of Portland and beginning her nursing career, her and her husband Tanner were lucky enough to move back home to Eastern Oregon where they are raising their two children Brynlee and Lane. As a family they enjoy hunting big game and upland birds during the fall. During the winter you can find them chasing waterfowl and steelhead fishing. In spring and summer they are enjoying multiple public land activities whether it is trying to outsmart the elusive Rio Grande turkey, to mushroom and huckleberry picking, to spending time in the woods scouting and camping with friends and family. As a family the Cassens’ crew is a Life Time Member of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, members of Oregon Hunters Association, Wild Sheep Foundation, Mule Deer Foundation, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, a sustaining member of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership, and 2% for Conservation. They enjoy being active in their small community and being an advocate for the public land their livelihood depends on.
Chelsea is also the Oregon Ambassador for Artemis Sportswomen, a non-profit organization of women protecting sporting traditions, supporting women as leaders in the conservation movement, and fostering the next generation of conservationists. She also enjoys photography and capturing the memories of her time spent on public lands with her family to cherish forever. Chelsea believes that everyone at some level cares for fish and wildlife as well as clean air and clean water, and joining a bipartisan organization like BHA brings us the most common sense solution to get the most realistic outcomes for our future generations.