Core Paddlers

Libby Tobey

Elizabeth (Libby) Tobey

River guide, Policy Nerd, Environmental Educator

Libby (she/her), is originally from Utah and began working on the Middle Fork of the Salmon in 2019 after nearly a decade as a river guide and whitewater kayak instructor domestically and abroad. She is currently working towards a Master’s degree in International Conservation and Development with a focus on international climate policy and loss and damage resulting from climate change. Her lifelong love of running rivers keeps her searching for ways to bring research and recreation closer together- particularly close to home in the Western U.S. She brings to the team a background and graduate certificate in natural resource conflict resolution and extensive experience in environmental and outdoor education.

Brooke Hess

Brooke Hess

Science Writer, Professional Kayaker, Media Whiz

Brooke (she/her) is originally from Montana and a former USA Freestyle Kayak Team member. She recently received a master’s degree in journalism with a focus on science writing. Through her undergraduate work in fluvial geomorphology and her recent internship with NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, she has become an expert in condensing complex scientific concepts into written word that can be easily understood by anyone and everyone, no matter their education level or scientific background. Brooke brings to the team a broad depth of knowledge of the Snake River Basin salmon populations from her master’s thesis reporting on the necessity to breach the four Lower Snake River dams.

Hailey Thompson bio photo

Hailey Thompson

Artist, Mariner, Whitewater Paddler, Fisheries Gal

Hailey (she/her) lives in South Central Alaska, and was born in Hawaii. Hailey grew up on rivers, formerly paddling for the US National Whitewater Slalom team before rivers led her to the ocean. She graduated from the US Coast Guard Academy with her degree in Fisheries Biology and Physical Oceanography and spent the last decade working as a ship driver and fisheries expert in Alaska and beyond.

In the last several years, Hailey has transitioned to her career as an artist and graphic designer, working to make art that emanates love for wild spaces, and a passion to conserve them. Her life in Alaska has been intimately impacted by the presence of healthy, wild salmon populations and unrepressed rivers; Joining an expedition to encourage breaching the four Lower Snake River Dams and halt the Stibnite Gold Project resounds with everything she believes in.

For Hailey, art is a universal love language which can be used to share science and indigenous knowledge with wide audiences. She believes that spending time on the land, amongst rivers, mountains and the ocean is critical to generating conservation momentum, and having a personal relationship with salmon is a privilege that enables us to fiercely protect them.

Core support

Danielle Katz bio

Danielle Katz

Co-founder and Director Rivers for Change, Source to Sea Coordinator, Producer

Danielle (she/her) has helped coordinate and manage over 17 source to sea expeditions. Some of her highlight expeditions include paddling 2,271 miles down the length of the Mississippi, completing a first SUP descent on the Androscoggin, and hiking 40 miles of dry river bed on the San Joaquin to link the river from source to sea. In addition to her work with Rivers for Change, Danielle is a passionate climate educator with an MBA in environmental management, founder of Source to Sea Productions, and a producer of several short educational videos on science, waste, single-use plastic, and well-being.

 

 

Jessica Wiegandt

Director, Lead Editor

Jess Wiegandt (she/her) is based in Western North Carolina and is a filmmaker and paddler. Her parents introduced her to whitewater paddling at a young age and she now has paddled around the country and world. Jess is passionate about telling stories of conservation with a focus on our rivers. She is pursuing her MFA in Environmental and Social Impact Filmmaking from American University and recently completed an all-female expedition on the James River in Virginia. Jess is an award-winning filmmaker and brings her skills in storytelling to shape the Grand Salmon film as its director and lead editor.
Tess McEnroe

Tess McEnroe

Environmental Educator, River Guide & Fish Nerd, Communications Support

Tess (she/her) grew up in Minnesota and has been river guiding for 16 seasons across the west and internationally. She is an expert of Idaho river and conservation efforts, specifically in the Salmon River watershed. Tess believes in the power of inclusive storytelling and has her undergraduate degree in Photojournalism, and Master’s in Environmental Education, with a focus on Indigenous ecological knowledge and curriculum design. Tess recently worked with Idaho Rivers United as a River Fellow to create the “Wild & Scenic Stewardship Guide Education Program,” which focuses on wild river and salmon conservation. She is currently working remotely from Missoula, Montana for the Wild Salmon Center.

Samara Rosen

Samara Rosen

RFC Board Member, Source to Sea Program Support

Samara (she/her) connects people to rivers through a mosaic of mediums. When she is not supporting The Grand Salmon expedition, she works works to empower recreational communities to protect the places they love with the science behind LNT practices. You can also find her educating students on her raft, running citizen science water quality programs, mobilizing communities around river conservation, or undertaking ethnographic studies of river communities. Her love of rivers is inspired by her years of guiding in CA, OR, and UT.

Additional Support

Reese Hodges Bio

Reese Hodges

River Advocate, River Guide, and Environmental Educator

Reese (he/him) works across policy, advocacy, and community engagement as a river advocate, guide, and environmental educator. As a California native but nearly lifelong Idahoan, Reese grew up paddling, fishing, and surfing in both fresh and saltwater. He cut his teeth in conservation work as an intern with the Patagonia Sin Represas campaign while studying abroad in Chile, and has worked both on and for rivers ever since. Reese has an M.A. in International Environmental Policy and has guided on the Middle Fork of the Salmon since 2012.

Alia Payne

River Guide, Media Support

Alia (she/her) grew up in a family of conservationists. Unable to choose between scientific and creative expression, she got a degree in Geology while commuting to an art school to take film classes. For years, she has been following a winding path with camera in hand: from commercial fishing in Alaska to studying glaciers high in the Peruvian Andes, from sailing the South Pacific to guiding California whitewater,  and most recently to a video production company in Berkeley, CA.

Photo of Sarrah Claman, The Grand Salmon Support Member

Sarrah Claman

River Guide, Environmental Educator, and Communications Support

Sarrah grew up in the arid mountains of Nederland, Colorado but her connection to rivers began as a child exploring the rivers of Northern Quebec and Ontario by canoe during her summers. After moving to Squamish BC, she began to fall in love with coastal rivers while learning about wild pacific salmon and their incredibly vital role in ecosystems and communities across Salmon Nation. Sarrah has worked as a river guide since she was 18, first guiding educational canoe trips for youth with the rivers of her childhood and currently, as a raft guide with the Upper and Main Salmon River. She studied the intersection of gender, sexuality, trauma, and nature-based psychology and weaves her knowledge of these areas into her work as a guide and educator. She believes that humans are intimately connected to the land and waters that we are surrounded by and by exposing folks to this inherent connection, people will begin to understand and care about protecting and stewarding these spaces and their inhabitants. Since moving from Squamish to Idaho, salmon have become a thread of connection between these communities for Sarrah. She is passionate about advocating for their protection in both places and leveraging her voice as a guide and educator to share nerdy salmon facts and inspire others to care about the wild spaces they enjoy.

All of the places from Sarrah’s Bio are stolen lands and waters of the Algonquin, Cree, Anishinabewaki Peoples, Squamish, Lil’wat, Coast Salish, Shoshone-Bannock, and Nimiipuu Peoples.

Trenton Holenbeck

Kayak, River Advocate, and Photography, Film, and Logistics Support

Meet Trent (They/Them), photographer, film and logistics support. Instagram: @trent_Holen

Trent started kayaking as a kid on the Snake River through Alpine Canyon, and fell in love with the Salmon River on their first multi-day trip down the Middle Fork of the Salmon. They are passionate about river protection, restoration, and access. Trent loves the connection to water that kayaking and rafting gives, and loves to help people find their way to the water and record the journey. 

Trent has worked at NRS for 6 years, starting in repairs and now working in EU customer service. They love the river community and spend their free time on the river with their pup in tow. You will likely find them kayaking or shooting photos on the Lochsa this spring. Stop by and say hi!

Fun fact: Trent has the best dog ever.

Photo of Mikayla Rewey, Grand Salmon Support Member

Mikayla Rewey

River Advocate, Retired Guide, and Website Support

Mikayla (she/her) is a retired raft guide turned Web Designer and Marketing Creative. She was born in Spokane, grew up in Florida, spent many years on rivers in the Southeast and West, before settling in Salt Lake City. Today she enjoys water in all of its forms — flowing and frozen — while skiing and padding in the West.

One of her favorite things about rivers is the communities it creates. She’s excited to do what she can to give back to rivers that have given her such joy in life.

Additional Paddlers/Safety Support

Izzy Guthrie, The Grand Salmon Support Team

Izzy Guthrie

River Guide, Advocate, and Paddling Support

Isabelle (Izzy) Guthrie was born in Northern Idaho where she was raised with an adoration for her home state and its precious rivers and watersheds. With an inherent appreciation for wilderness combined with experience and passion, Isabelle has been one with the water before she could walk. She started guiding at age 17 and has continuously worked on 12 different rivers throughout the western U.S. and South America. Holding a BS degree in Exercise Science and Outdoor Education from the University of Idaho, Isabelle continues to live a life that centers her interaction with rivers and wilderness within her own backyard. Here, she shares her expertise of connecting body and soul with life on the Main and Middle Fork of the Salmon and the Selway rivers. Her home waters are where she feels she belongs, teaching others how a life of wilderness preservation and respect are first and foremost. Acutely aware and emotionally affected by the changes and growth taking place in Idaho, she passionately carries a message of stewardship and looks forward to a meaningful life of service in those places where she is “home.”