Meet WEN

Deb Fassnacht, Executive Director

Deb fell into a pond as a small child and has been playing and working with water ever since. She is one of the founders of the organization, along with Wendy Sturgis and Eric Ringleberg. What began as a volunteer stream monitoring effort in 1996 has grown into a successful non-profit organization focusing on watersheds, wetlands and education. Deb brings science teaching and education/outreach experience to WEN. She is nearly finished with her Masters in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in science education at the University of Montana. Deb has returned from an education position at Salish Kootenai College to serve WEN again as Director and looks forward to resuming WEN’s many community relationships! She is eager to hear from WEN friends and partners and warmly welcomes you to stop by our office to say hi!

 

 

Rebecca Paquette, Program Coordinator

Since Rebecca was a third grader she’s known exactly what she has wanted to do in her life; with role models like Steve Irwin, Jane Goodall and Jeff Corwin, it wasn’t that strange for her parents when she decided to study zoology at the University of New Hampshire. Some highlights of her coursework there was obtaining her scuba license and teaching two semesters of Vertebrate Morphology. As you may have already guessed, Rebecca is quite new to Missoula. She flew out here in February, moving from Maine with her cat, Francois, and all her belongings. She instantly began exploration through hiking, biking, and skiing Missoula and its surrounding mountains as well as volunteering with the Montana Natural History Center. Through her experiences there and a mutual friend of hers and Deb’s, she was introduced to WEN. It wasn’t long after their introduction that Rebecca fell in love with WEN’s mission and the passion that was evidently driving it. Towards the end of April, Rebecca was brought on as Program Coordinator and has been immersing herself with everything WEN ever since.

 

 

Patrick Myers, Volunteer Coordinator

Patrick Myers moved to Missoula from Chicago five years ago and has been fully immersed in the outdoor lifestyle ever since. He got his first taste of outdoor education in 2011, when he kayaked over 200 miles through the Tongass National Forest of southeast Alaska with the Wild Rockies Field Institute. During this time he developed a deep appreciation for the complex workings of natural systems, as well as a love for the immersive learning environment he experienced through outdoor education. Since returning from Alaska, Patrick has worked as an Outdoor Leader with Missoula Outdoor Learning Adventures, graduated with a degree in Environmental Studies and Literature from the University of Montana, and worked with WEN as Volunteer Coordinator since the fall of 2013. When not sending emails to volunteers or helping kids learn stream monitoring techniques out at the river, Patrick spends his free time hiking, climbing, rafting, and kayaking the mountain paradise of Montana.