Clean Up The Lake Staff & Key Volunteers

Colin West, Founder and Executive Director

Colin West, Founder and Executive Director

Cleanupthelake@gmail.com
(530) 562-7131

Colin West has 10 years of experience as a SCUBA diver and is a certified PADI RESCUE Diver. With a decade of experience as the Owner, Director and Executive Producer (EP) of a film & television production company, he has managed overseas operations, including project logistics, documentation, & personnel from 5 to 30 people on set at a time. His content has aired on networks such as Amazon Prime, ABC International, HULU, Virigin Media, In Flight Entertainment programs & more. Colin’s expertise in multi-faceted project management, campaign development & SCUBA help to guide our organization to success.

SADYE-EASLER

Sadye Easler, Programs Manager

Cleanupthelake.cleanups@gmail.com
(603) 568-7039

Originally from New Hampshire, Sadye grew up with a passion for exploring natural areas and saw the importance of restoring and protecting these wild spaces. Sadye has attended Johnson State College in VT with a focus on Environmental Science, Natural Resources Management. She eventually moved to the Tahoe Basin and fell in love with Lake Tahoe and the surrounding mountains where she eventually joined the CUTL team as our Programs Manager. Sadye’s current focus is the intricacies of logistics for the 72 mile SCUBA clean up of Lake Tahoe as well as finding alternate shore based litter mitigation programs CUTL can participate in locally, nationally and throughout the world.

Hannah

Hannah Urrutia, Environmental Intern

cleanupthelake.dive@gmail.com
(408) 402-2755

Hannah majored in Wildlife, Fish, and Conservational Biology at UC Davis. Her past work includes animal care at SF Aquarium of the Bay and volunteering for restoration ecology organizations. Her knowledge and passion for conservation inspired her to work with Clean Up the Lake. In her role as an environmental intern, Hannah has been working with our PHD environmental scientist and researchers at UC Davis TERC & Desert Research Institute (DRI) helping CUTL implement their litter sorting method. Hannah could not be more right when she recently said, “The more we know about what the waste is, why it’s ended up in the lake, and where, the more we can do to prevent it from happening again”.

zoe harrold

Zoe Harrold PhD, Environmental Scientist & Grant Writer

Zoe Harrold PhD, met the Clean Up The Lake team back in 2019 shortly after her team at Desert Research Institute discovered microplastics in Lake Tahoe. After their initial introduction, Zoe began working for herself as a consulting environmental scientist & grant writer; where CUTL became one of her clients. Dr. Harold received her PhD in Geomicrobiology from University of Washington, and her background, experience, interest in research science, data driven studies and the environment all contribute massively to the success of Clean Up The Lake.

RACHEL-DURBEN

Rachel Durben, Secretary to the Board

As a long time local Tahoe resident, passionate about the environment and highly involved in the non profit sector. Rachel saw an opportunity to work with a board of directors and make a difference by supporting the Clean Up The Lake initiative and joined our team in Fall of 2020.

Current Board Members

Meghan Burk, Chairman of the Board

Meghan Burk, Chairman of the Board

meghanburkmedia@gmail.com
(802) 373-2235

As a west coast transplant from Vermont, Meghan finds herself drawn to new experiences, travel and environmental stewardship projects. As the Owner of MDOT Connective, Meghan Burk directs and manages a vast array of projects from coast to coast, related to production and small business development. She is an environmental advocate and community connector, helping to find solutions to any challenge at hand. Her love for Lake Tahoe and background in sustainable development inspired her involvement with Clean Up The Lake. As President of the Board and now avid clean-up diver, she hopes to build a passionate team ready to bring awareness about plastic pollution from one lake to the next.

JEFF COWEN

Jeff Cowen, Board Member

Jeff currently serves as Public Information Officer for the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA), where he has worked on the communications team from 2006 to 2014 and to which he returned in 2020. As a Tahoe sportfishing captain of eight years, Jeff marveled at the crystal‐clear waters and took in a daily panorama of Lake Tahoe’s breathtaking environs. When the chance to work with Colin West and the team at Clean up the Lake emerged, Jeff saw a natural confluence of his skills and knowledge with a mission that was close to his heart. He came onboard with CUTL as an assistant to the fundraising team and has since been transitioned to the non‐profit’s board of directors. Jeff understands complex policy, large‐ and small‐scale budgets, public and private finance, and collaborative frameworks; and has proven experience in project management, organizational leadership, conflict resolution, public speaking, and strategic communications.

TIARA WASNER

Tiara Wasner, Board Member

Bringing over 14 years of experience in public relations, sales and marketing, social media, event production, promotion coordination, project management and community trend analyses, Tiara has worked with numerous clients throughout California to build and implement successful Communications Plans.

katie senft

Katie Senft, Board Member

Katie is an associate specialist, scientific diver, and member of the UC Davis Diving Control Board at the UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center. During the past 10 years, she has worked on various projects from monitoring water quality and nearshore algae growth to researching a new and novel approach to restore the lake’s clarity by removing the invasive mysis shrimp. The ability to observe the lake on an intimate level has inspired Katie’s most recent work focusing on microplastics in Lake Tahoe’s surface waters, bottom sediments, municipal waters and biota. She has extensive knowledge and experience on the joys and challenges of diving year-round in a high alpine lake. Katie prefers “warm” water diving in the summer months but loves Lake Tahoe’s peaceful and exceptionally clear waters in the winter as well.

mike peron

Mike Peron, Board Member

Aside from his jobs that pay the bills, Mike serves the community in a multitude of ways. He’s an active board member at Tahoe Chamber, Boys & Girls Club, and T.R.Y.P. He’s an associate board member for the League to Save Lake Tahoe and Tahoe South, as well as Emcee of non-profit events such as: Live Violence Free Gala, Soroptimist Fundraisers, Blue Ribbon Awards, etc. Mike is proud to call Lake Tahoe home for over 10 years and it holds a very special place in his heart that delivers world class recreation mixed with world class entertainment! His passion for people, music, sports, dancing, and the great outdoors can be felt by all in the community. #LivinItAndLovinIt