board of directors.
A volunteer board of directors, composed of community leaders, guides the Bighorn River Alliance in achieving its mission.
President of the Board
After graduating from the University of North Carolina in 1966, Rick served as a Marine Corp helicopter pilot from 1966 until 1971 In 1992 in Bend Oregon he helped establish Central Oregon Veterans Outreach, serving as board president for two years. COVO is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing counseling, housing and jobplacement for veterans in need. Rick’s passion f . . .
Vice President of the Board
The Bighorn River has proven to be one of the best trout fisheries in the country because of its diversity, resilience and quality of fish. I am a life long outdoorsman, guide and outfitter and I have been very blessed through the years to be able to share this great resource with others.. . .
Jim Chalmers is an academic economist and real estate consultant who retired to Montana in the early 2000’s. He, his wife Josie, and the bird dogs now live in Billings which is their home base for fishing and hunting throughout the northwest. As a frequent visitor to the Bighorn, Jim had more questions than answers concerning the condition and health of the river.  . . .
Born and raised in southeastern Pa. Started fishing local trout streams. Graduated from Campbell University in North Carolina with a BBA. Began fishing Western North Carolina trout streams after graduation. Career included working for Johnson and Johnson and BBA over 30 years in nonwovens manufacturing for Medical and industrial fabrics. In the mid 80’s lived in Little Rock . . .
Wild Trout Society Chair
John Sindland was raised in New England. He served aboard nuclear submarines in the US Navy. He has lived in Montana the past 30 years, and has been a fly fishing guide for over 20 seasons on the Bighorn River. He has acted as a board member for the Bighorn River Alliance since 2008 and also serves on the board of the Southern Arizona Quail Forever chapter. He a . . .
Born and raised in North Carolina . Graduated from Campbell University with a degree in Education. Retired after 32 years of teaching middle school in North Carolina. Through the years I have served on nonprofit boards and assisted with fundraising efforts. The Big Horn River became important to me because it was important to my husband. Over the years I have learned to row the b . . .
Doug Haacke is a self-employed software developer and part-time guide who started fly fishing over 50 year ago in Ohio. His love for trout fishing brought him from Ohio to Montana after college, where he met his wife Kathie, married, and settled in Billings. While fishing the many treasured rivers and streams in Montana, Doug's appreciation for conservation efforts blossomed, and . . .
Tom Hansen is an avid fly fisherman, upland bird hunter, outdoorsman and conservationist. Tom owns and operates a commercial real estate company, E.P. Hacienda Group, Inc. that specializes in property management. In 1978, Tom and his father, Jon T. Hansen, met a lodge owner from the Big Horn River while quail hunting in Patagonia, AZ. Thus began the life long relation . . .
My passion for the Bighorn River and its wild trout began when my fishing guide, and soon to become close friend, Kurt Olson, first introduced me to it in October, 1986. Although I have fished many places, nothing, in my experience, comes close to the Bighorn River wild trout fishery. Although I often average 10-15 days a year on the Bighorn, and sometimes more, I never get there . . .
The Bighorn River is one of the best trout fisheries in the country because of its diversity and quality of fish. My passion for the Bighorn River began when I started fishing here in the mid 80's and I have been fishing here ever since. Living in Ft Smith and working with the Bighorn River Alliance has allowed me a chance to give back to the river that has given me so much joy o . . .
"I was fortunate to grow up with both grandfathers and a father and uncle that all adored fly fishing. I was taught to "throw" with both hands before I was given an actual fly. I learned a ton about fishing small waters in the Beartooths, upper Mushellshell and stories about Sixteen Mile Creek. I spent over 50 years in healthcare administration, and I am now ret . . .
Mike Parnell is currently in his 2nd year of serving on the board of directors for the Bighorn River Alliance. Prior to his work with the Alliance, Parnell was captain of the US skydiving team for eight years while also serving as the Vice President of the brand Surwear Op. In the mid 80’s he worked with the founder of Oakley sunglasses in introducing sports sunglasse . . .
Mike Stevens is an avid and passionate fly fisherman and part time resident of Ft Smith for the last 10 years. When not fishing Dr Stevens is a root canal specialist practicing in the Billings area for the last 35 years. Mike has long been an advocate for sportsman and has chaired banquets for Ducks Unlimited and Pheasants forever. Mike has been on boards serving his p . . .
Trout and trout fishing got into my soul at an early age. I spent many hours on “the water” in the Allegheny Mt watersheds of Pennsylvania. Moving to Colorado in the middle ‘70s, climbing, skiing, alpine mountaineering, and flyfishing took up most of my free time. My avocation soon became my vocation. I was fortunate to have worked for a couple premier outdoor companies until I r . . .
Barry Yontz is an avid fisherman who started his journey to western waters in 1972 until the present time. After fishing many of Montana's waters he found a home on the Bighorn. A retired Phys. Ed teacher and coach for thirty five years, he was involved in educational as well as with the community organizations. He purchased a property in Ft. Smith and is now invo . . .