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Oregon Lakes Association

....a voice for quiet waters.

Careers in Freshwater Panel

  • Thursday, April 08, 2021
  • 3:00 PM - 4:30 PM
  • Remote Zoom meeting via Portland State University

Registration is closed

Careers in Freshwater Panel

Sponsored by Oregon Lake Association & Washington State Lake Protection Association & Portland State University. 

Remote Zoom meeting via Portland State University

Thursday, April 8th 3:00-4:30 pm PST

Calling all students and early career professionals in freshwater science and management: Join this event for a discussion on career paths and development! Here you can meet and ask professionals about jobs in a wide range of sectors including private consulting, government agencies and academia in fields such as fisheries, water quality, and environmental policy. Send any career related questions you may have for the panelists in advance to Lara Jansen, OLA’s student director- ( or bring them to discuss at this live event.

This event will be a remote video event offered through Portland State University’s Zoom platform. Registration is free. After registration you will receive an email with instructions on how to join the Zoom meeting including a URL link, phone number and a password, To participate you can join by computer (video or audio) or telephone.

 Agenda (download pdf flyer)

3:00 pm Panelist introductions

3:30 pm Q & A with all panelists

4:00 pm Breakout groups by sectors for small group Q & A

4:30 pm Adjourn


Wafa Tafesh, Water Quality Planner. Wafa Tafesh is a University of Washington graduate with a career focused in Environmental Public Health and experience in non-profit, private and government sector work. Various projects include green stormwater infrastructure, disinfection and coliform compliance of public drinking water systems, and stormwater and hazardous waste management compliance. Currently, with the Science and Technical Support Section within King County’s Water and Land Resources Division, her work includes water quality sampling, managing water quality data systems, and assisting with report writing

Toni Pennington, Aquatic Biologist. Toni Pennington has over 20 years of experience focused on the management and research of aquatic plants, preparing and implementing sampling and analysis plans for freshwater systems, and developing aquatic invasive species (AIS) prevention and management programs. After completing her PhD in Environmental Science and Management, Toni begin working in the field of environmental consulting and currently is a Senior Biologist and Project Manager for Environmental Science Associates (ESA) in Bend, Oregon. In addition to memberships to several professional organizations, Toni serves on the board of directors for the Oregon Lakes Association and is the Treasurer for the Western Aquatic Plant Management Society.

Angela Strecker, Associate Professor. Angela Strecker is the Director of the Institute for Watershed Studies and faculty in the Department of Environmental Sciences at Western Washington University. Her research interests include anthropogenic stressors in freshwater ecosystems, such as invasive species, climate change, habitat connectivity, and contaminants, as well as continental-scale patterns in aquatic biodiversity. Her lab works on a variety of study units, from genes to populations to communities to entire food webs. Ultimately, this work leads to the question of how ecosystem functions and services may be affected by human activities.

Zach Penney, Fishery Science Department Manager. Zach Penney is the Fishery Science Department Manager for the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission (CRITFC) and is a member of the Nez Perce Tribe. Zach received a BS in Aquatic Resources from Sheldon Jackson College in Sitka, Alaska, an MS in Earth and Ocean Science from the University of Victoria, BC, and a PhD in Natural Resources (Fisheries) from the University of Idaho. At CRITFC, Zach manages a diverse team of tribal and non-tribal professionals that provide technical and scientific support to the four Columbia River treaty tribes of CRITFC.

Lisa Brown, Staff Attorney. Lisa Brown has worked as a Staff Attorney at WaterWatch of Oregon since 2004. She works in administrative and judicial proceedings, before the Oregon legislature and in collaborative processes to protect and restore streamflow in rivers, lakes and groundwater dependent ecosystems across Oregon. Lisa holds a BS in Environmental Science from Oregon State University and a JD, with a Natural Resource Certificate, from Lewis and Clark Law School. She is a member of the Oregon Bar.

Jennifer O’Reilly, Fish & Wildlife Biologist. Jennifer O’Reilly has worked as a Fish and Wildlife Biologist for the US Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) in central Oregon since 2001. She has a M.S in Environmental and Forest Biology and a B.S. in Water Resources from the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse, NY with both degrees rooted in wetlands ecology. Currently she is the Service’s species lead for Oregon spotted frog and recovery lead for bull trout at Odell Lake.

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