To protect natural resources from the threats of invasive species.
Healthy and resilient native ecosystems in the upper Gallatin Watershed.
The Alliance began in 2004, when two people witnessed spotted knapweed taking over Gallatin Canyon and decided to take action.
Now more than ever, we turn to the outdoors for respite and relief, when doing so, are reminded of how important these places are.
Resource managers everywhere recognize that invasive non-native species are the biggest threat to the integrity and function of terrestrial and aquatic environments. The Gallatin watershed is no exception.
Conservation doesn’t just happen. It’s a commitment
made by the collective and requires a long-term vision and ongoing investment to yield results.
We work to ensure that what we love so much about this place is not destroyed by our pursuit to experience it.
Why Should I Care?
The Upper Gallatin Watershed encompasses some of the most ecologically and economically important resources in the state, providing vital habitat and water for plants, wildlife, and the people who live and recreate in the area.
Funding for the Alliance comes from public & corporate support, grants & foundations, state & country grants, and Big Sky Resort Area District.
Working cooperatively with various agencies, non-profits, and organizations is key to our success.
The individuals who serve on the board represent a combined 160 years
of involvement and expertise in natural resources, horticulture, and invasive species.
The board meets quarterly, on the second Friday of the second month.
Locations and times vary, so please contact us about details.
John is a recent retiree from the Custer Gallatin National Forest where he worked for nine years on the Bozeman Ranger District. A graduate of the University of Idaho, he had a 36-year career with the Forest Service with most of that time spent working in forest management as a silviculturist and forest management specialist in Idaho. He has also managed wildlife, range, minerals, soils, hydrology and noxious weed programs. He is a proponent of landscape ecology and progressive forestry techniques. John enjoys many outdoor activities with his wife Kim who is lead project scientist for a non-profit conservation organization.
Michael Jones was fortunate to grow up in Yellowstone National Park, where he developed a great appreciation of wild places. After earning a B.S. in Fish and Wildlife Management and an M.S. in Fisheries Ecology, Michael began his career in noxious weed management as a seasonal weed control technician working for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Michael’s seasonal work captured his interest in invasive plant management as an effective wildlife conservation tool. He has worked for the Gallatin County Weed District as the assistant coordinator since 2010, and been a part of the Alliance since 2008. Michael takes great satisfaction taking a weed infested tract of land and making it productive for wildlife and people again. When he is not fighting weeds, Michael can be found fly fishing, rafting, or exploring the backcountry.
Cathy Gunther moved to Bozeman in 2016 and then to Big Sky in 2018. She completed a liberal arts degree and worked in human resources for several different industries in Texas. It was here she met her husband, where both chose to follow his career and raise their two daughters mostly overseas. Wanting to know more about gardening in the demanding Texas climate she pursued a Master Gardener’s certification that highlighted the value of native plants, conservation and sustainable gardening practices. Cathy held multiple volunteer positions while living in England, Africa, Asia and Texas. She holds a core belief that fundamental change including conservation efforts happens best with a diverse group of people lending skills and talents toward the common goals.
Founder & Board Member
Don McAndrew worked for 34 years with the Natural Resource & Conservation Service as an Engineer, Hydrologist, and Director of Operations, followed by 20 years as a realtor specializing in farm, ranch, and recreation real estate. Don has served as a volunteer on the Big Sky Planning and Zoning Board, Gallatin Conservation District, and the Northern Rockies RC&D. Don is a property owner in Big Sky and is a founding director of the Alliance.
Larry Holzworth has had an extensive career working for the Natural Resources Conservation Service as an Agronomist, Plant Materials Center Manager and Plant Materials Specialist for 37 years. He worked with landowners on soil and water conservation, reclamation of disturbed lands, grazing land improvement and weed suppression projects in CO, AZ, UT, NV, MT & WY. After his official retirement, he has served on the board of the Gallatin Invasive Species Alliance since 2008, member of the Gallatin County Weed Board, is a CES field inspector for Weed Seed Free Hay and Certified Seed field inspector for the Montana Crop Improvement Association. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family exploring the outdoors and working on home and land improvement projects.
Katie Coleman has lived in Big Sky since 1999 and worked in a variety of fields including the food service industry, education, non-profit management, and currently in property management. Her love of the outdoors and the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem has drawn her to the Alliance Board where she looks forward to contributing to the education of the community regarding noxious weed management. When not working, you can find Katie, her husband Tim and their dogs cooking, camping and playing outside as much as possible.
Danielle Jones has been with the Gallatin County Weed District for five years and has worked in the Natural Resources field for over twenty years. Her interest in noxious weeds first began while pulling spotted knapweed on Mount Sentinel as a student at The University of Montana. Danielle has served on the board of the Gallatin Invasive Species Alliance since 2017. She lives in Manhattan with her family.
Krisy moved to Big Sky the fall of 1993, working for dude ranches and outfitters, including Lone Mountain Ranch for over twenty years. It is here that she met her husband, Scott, and the rest is history. With their two kids, Chloe and Gus, dogs, cats and horses, they enjoy a busy and fulfilling life hiking, nordic skiing, riding horses and pulling weeds all along the way. A passionate volunteer, Krisy lends her talent and time to the Montana Wilderness Association, Habitat for Humanity, Windhorse Equine Learning and various other groups. Although she went to school for elementary education, her passion for wildlife biology and love for the native grasses and flowers of Montana has led her to join the board of the Alliance.
Ann and her husband Brian found and fell in love with the Big Sky area in the summer of 2001. While living overseas, they moved their family home in the US to Big Sky in 2006. Both sons now live and work in Bozeman. Ann and Brian are residents of Big Sky and spend time in New York. In addition to hiking, camping, and enjoying winter sports, Ann and her husband are becoming stewards of the land, including education and work on their own property managing the forest for health, bio-diversity and fire mitigation. Ann loves this land, rivers and the native flora and fauna and is working to help restore and preserve it. After college and business school, Ann was a banker in NY. Since 2011, she has been active in co-founding and growing a family real estate development company that builds 55+ rental homes in the Midwest. Ann is responsible for projects promoting sustainable initiatives in the product including native plants in landscaping.
Jennifer Mohler of Bridger Scientific, Inc., is a resource conservationist and executive director for the Gallatin Invasive Species Alliance. For over 20 years, Jennifer has worked with a diverse group of public, private, and non-profit entities to conserve natural resources by promoting sustainable land management practices. Jennifer was a founding board member of the Association of Gallatin Agricultural Irrigators and served on the board for 14 years. In her free time, she’s trains and competes in 3-day eventing with her horses, is an avid gardener, and enjoys hiking the trails with her husband and dog.
Big Sky Watershed Corp
Sean is a graduate from Indiana University, where she studied Biology, Germanic Studies and Animal Behavior. Her love of nature, the outdoors and giving back to the community is what drew her to serve as a Big Sky Watershed Corp member. She's hit the ground running and already making an impact on our organization. We have so many things to be excited about this year, and Sean is most definately one of them. Welcome, Sean!
Cooper joined the team in 2022, as his mom is the executive director. Cooper loves to hike trails, dig holes, chew bones, and meet new people. He hates houndstongue burrs that stick to his fur. He's dedicated to help inspire all trail users to do their part to stop the spread of invasive species and PlayCleanGo!