Meet the Team

Staff Members


Heidi Anderson   (she/her/hers)

Executive Director

Heidi has five years of non-profit and programming experience serving as Executive Director of the Children’s Museum of Eastern Oregon and the Panhandle Humane Society. She's incredibly passionate about TMPF's mission and her experience in managing educational programming helped the Students Stewards Program flourish since she began working here as AmeriCorps Program Director.

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Allie Baracani   (she/her/hers)

Operations Director

Allie received her B.S. in Public Health from the University of Nevada, Reno. After working various jobs in the healthcare system she followed her passion for business administration and enrolled in the University of Nevada, Reno MBA graduate program. Working with the Truckee Meadows Parks Foundation allows her to combine her love of the outdoors with her education background. When not in the office she can be found rock climbing in the Truckee/Tahoe region, camping, or rollerblading through Idlewild Park.    


Chantel Dominguez   (she/her/hers)

Programs and Events Director

Chantel is our Programs and Events Director. She received her B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Nevada, Reno and, after spending 4 years in Chicago, is thrilled to be back in Nevada promoting environmental sustainability and healthy lifestyles through her work with the Parks Foundation. In her free time, Chantel enjoys eating and cooking with friends, game nights, coffee, and exploring Nevada’s great outdoors.


Devin Sandoval de Genovese   (he/him/his)

Student Stewards Program Director

​Devin served nearly two years as a Naturalist Educator for Truckee Meadows Parks Foundation before starting his position as Student Stewards Program Director. He is originally from Grass Valley, California. He received his B.A. in English from the University of Nevada, Reno.  In his free time, Devin enjoys riding mountain bikes and enjoying Nevada's great outdoors. Devin is excited to be a part of the TMPF team and hopes to inspire youth in the community through the SSP program. 


Elena Larsen   (she/her/hers)

Wetland Restoration Program Director

Elena served as a Naturalist Educator for TMPF in the spring and summer of 2018 and is now working as the Wetland Restoration Program Director.  She's a local and is extremely excited and proud to be working to restore an abandoned open space back to a functional ecosystem in her hometown.  In her free time, Elena can be found obsessing over dogs or participating in trivia nights.


Hannah Lansverk Sonnenberg   (she/her/hers)

Student Stewards Program Manager

​Hannah is the Parks Foundation's Student Stewards Program Manager. She began her time here as an AmeriCorps Naturalist Educator in 2018. Originally from Bozeman, MT, she received her B.S. in Biology from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, WA and has spent the last several years working for non-profits in Montana and Connecticut. Hannah is an avid birder and is looking forward to sharing her love of science and the natural world with her new community!

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Matt DeBray   (he/him/his)

Communications Manager

Matt is the Communications Manager for Truckee Meadows Parks Foundation. After serving with TMPF as an AmeriCorps VISTA in 2017 he worked to promote AmeriCorps programs throughout Nevada for four years and is excited to be back at the place that started his journey in the nonprofit world. Matt studied Radio Television Production at the University of Montana and brings over a decade of experience to the TMPF communications team. When he isn't working you can find Matt watching baseball, hiking with his family, or being pulled behind a boat.


Sarah Holcombe   (she/her/hers)

Development Director

Most recently living in Montana and originally from Oregon, Sarah is now planting her roots in Nevada. After receiving her degree in Public Relations and Business Administration from the University of Oregon, Sarah quickly found her passion leaned towards the nonprofit and development world working within animal welfare and sustainability - leading to a perfect fit here at Truckee Meadows Parks Foundation. Sarah is excited to explore her new home with her hobbies of snowboarding, backpacking, gardening, and hanging with shelter dogs.  


AmeriCorps VISTA Members


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Caroline Stillitano   (she/her/hers)

Community Engagement Coordinator

Caroline received her BA in Environmental Science from the University of Michigan in 2021. Working with the Truckee Meadows Parks Foundation as the Community Engagement Coordinator allows her to follow her passion for environmental justice through expanding access to the outdoors for low income individuals. She enjoys spending time outdoors and is excited to apply her previous volunteer engagement experience to TMPF! 

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Derik Knak   

Grant Coordinator

Derik is serving as a Grants Coordinator VISTA for Truckee Meadows Parks Foundation. Originally from the gateway community of Redding, California, he graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno with degrees in political science and journalism. Derik is excited to work for a nonprofit in the area and help support TMPF's programs in a development role. He enjoys reading, hiking, snowshoeing, and exploring public lands in his free time.


Stephanie Le

Youth Recreation Coordin

Bio Coming Soon

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Jennie Johnson   

Wetland Restoration Outreach Coordinator

Jennie is a lifelong Reno resident and graduated locally from Hug High School and the University of Nevada, Reno. She holds a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology and has a passion for supporting local businesses and events.  After working in Gaming and Marketing for the last 10 years, she is excited to have the opportunity to apply her skills and experience to public service.  In her free time, Jennie enjoys hiking, traveling and restaurants.  She is an enthusiastic reader and runner that loves hot, sunny days.  She is looking forward to supporting Northern Nevada programs and parks and to promoting the Rosewoods Nature Study Area to the community.


Julie Johnson 

Student Stewards Program Outreach Coordinator

Julie is a Nevada local and earned her B.A. in Journalism from the University of Nevada, Reno. She is passionate about community outreach, stewardship, marketing, and is thrilled to be a part of the TMPF team. As the Student Stewards Program Outreach Coordinator, Julie is looking forward to engaging with the Reno community about the incredible parks and open spaces in the area, as well as the many amazing programs TMPF has to offer! In her free time, Julie loves to be in the mountains. You can usually find her backpacking, skiing, and exploring hot springs.


Leland Peterman

Nature Study Area Development Coordinator

Originally from New York, and most recently living in California, Leland moved to Reno with his fiancé and two dogs for exciting new opportunities and mountain access! With a huge passion for the outdoors, he is thrilled to be contributing to the development of the Rosewood Lakes restoration efforts. In his free time he loves to be camping, climbing, playing music, or working on his home.

AmeriCorps State/National Members

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Ashley Butler   (she/her/hers)

Community Programs Educator

Ashley is local to Northern Nevada. She graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno with a B.A. in Speech Communications and Journalism. Ashley's career has offered opportunities in the nonprofit sector, government and education. Although she has always felt a connection with the outdoors, that connection grew even stronger during the strenuous times of the pandemic. Ashley relied on her daily walks or hikes to help keep a sense of balance. It is important to her that our local parks and trails are shared, explored responsibly and accessible to all. She is excited to serve her first AmeriCorps term with TMPF, an organization that has positively impacted her family in many ways. When she is not exploring one of our local trails, Ashley devouring ice cream, checking out local community events or cheering on her son.

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Isabella Buffalini   (she/her/hers)

Lead Naturalist Educator

Isabella comes from Western Pennsylvania to join us as the Lead Naturalist Educator for the Student Stewards Program. Isabella earned her B.S. in Environmental and Conservation Biology from Kent State University where she loved to play and coach women's lacrosse. She is thrilled to work at a non-profit for the first time, making outdoor education more accessible to students in Washoe County. Her passion for ecology and conservation drive most of her hobbies including hiking, camping, and road tripping! Isabella has been to 14 national parks, hoping to check a few more off while she's out west during her year with Americorps.

Kristina Lee

Kristina Lee   (she/her/hers)

Naturalist Educator

Kristina has been a Naturalist Educator for TMPF since September of 2020 and she's on her second term of AmeriCorps service here at our organization. When she's not teaching and backing supplies for classes, Kristina likes to spend her time making arts and crafts as well as exploring all that Reno has to offer. 

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Kylie Robinson

Community Programs Educator

Kylie is a local Nevadan from Las Vegas and is currently working on her BA in Community Health Sciences at the University of Nevada, Reno. She is thrilled to join the TMPF team where she has the opportunity to share her appreciation of the outdoors with others. In her free time, she loves to enjoy the outdoors hiking in Lake Tahoe, taking care of her plants, yoga, and road tripping to national parks.


Paige Land

Visitor Center Host

Paige is a Reno local graduating in May from the University of Nevada, Reno with a B.S. in Geography and a specialization in Environmental Policy and Management. Growing up close to Galena Creek Park, Paige was always exploring the outdoors and has a strong love for our native plants and animals. She has worked for nonprofits in the past and enjoys educating and communicating the importance of our natural environments with the community. She hopes her role as Visitor Center Host and Coordinator helps her share her passion for local parks and outdoor spaces with everyone that comes to visit! In her free time Paige can be found skiing, hiking or snowshoeing with her rescue dog Sequoia, or watching the newest Netflix series!

AmeriCorps Wetland Restoration Technicians

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Peter Jordan   (he/him/his)

Wetland Restoration Lead Technician 

Peter is a Lead Wetland Restoration Technician for TMPF. He began serving with TMPF as a Wetland Restoration Technician in February 2021 and has since become a Lead Technician for our organization. When he's not in the wetland, Peter likes to spend his free time going on hikes, socializing with his friends, and worrying about climate change. 

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Sadie Smith   (she/her/hers)

Wetland Restoration Lead Technician 

A born and bred East Coaster, Sadie is excited to be returning to the Truckee Meadows as a Lead Restoration Technician with the Parks Foundation. Although she hails from Vermont, Sadie has had the pleasure of calling many places home; from the Eastern Townships of Quebec where she went to boarding school to the sunny coast of St. Petersburg, Florida where she graduated from Eckerd College with a B.S. in Biology. Her favorite pastimes include playing rugby, creating artwork, or spending any kind of quality time outside enjoying nature. Sadie is looking forward to using her role as a Lead Technician to have a demonstrably positive impact on her new home and help make positive changes to the Reno-Sparks community.


Helena Christine Garrett-Paullada

Wetland Restoration Technician 

Helena is from Henderson, NV and is graduating from UNR this year. She is majoring in Environmental Science and minoring in Archaeology. She is looking forward to learning new skills and she is passionate about conservation, water quality and habitat preservation.  She. likes visiting national parks and hopes to visit them all someday.

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Megan Yount   (she/her/hers)

Wetland Restoration Technician 

Megan grew up in Texas and currently lives up in Beautiful Lake Tahoe. She started school at University of California-Santa Cruz and finished with a B.S. in environmental science at Sierra Nevada University in Incline Village, NV. She enjoys spending her free time climbing, camping or spending time with her 5 fur babies. Megan has a huge passion for plants and animals, especially birds, and looks forward to watching her hard work make a difference on the wetland!


Hayden Wright

Wetland Restoration Technician 

Hayden grew up in the foothills of California and made his way to Reno for college. He is currently attending UNR as an Environmental Engineering major with a minor in Environmental Science. His desire to learn more about plants and riparian habitats led him to becoming a Wetland Restoration Technician with TMPF. He spends his free time trail running, hiking, fishing, and checking the forecast for rain repeatedly (it’s what you do when you’re from California).


Mikaela Neary

Wetland Restoration Technician 

Mikaela grew up and went to College in New York. She recently graduated from SUNY Cobleskill with a Bachelors in Environmental Management, and is excited to be a wetland restoration technician with TMPF. She became passionate about the environment while volunteering in High School, and continued to volunteer in her free time in college. Her hobbies include reading, baking, and hiking, and she is passionate about bats, fungi, birds, and anything in the ocean. I was really interested in being a part of restoring a golf course to a functional wetland, because it’s such a big change and it has such a positive impact.


Patrick Law

Wetland Restoration Technician 

Bio Coming Soon!

Board of Directors

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Katie Palani


As an active member of the Parks Foundation since 2017, Katie and her two kids, Rowan and Holly, have adventured though many of our region’s parks, trails and open spaces with the Parks Foundation family. She’s been to years of Discover Your Parks Walks (how she found the foundation initially), many Junior Naturalist programs through seasons of AmeriCorps VISTA educators, and a few Trails Challenge adventures. As a new teacher for Washoe County, Katie also sees tremendous value in the programs that TMPF offers to underserved children and families in our communities through the Student Stewards Program and of course, summer camp. We live in an incredibly diverse, accessible region with so much to offer, and Katie is happy to be a part of this team that helps develop awareness, appreciation and stewardship of our open space. She’s a Reno native, has graduated twice from UNR, finally found her passion in education and loves teaching (which is mostly learning). When she’s not in the classroom, you’ll find her with her own kids, exploring Peavine from their front door with the rescue dogs, baking something delicious, skiing, hiking, camping, her nose buried in a guidebook, but more often deep in conversation.

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Dawn Smith

Vice President

Dawn moved to Reno from Washington State for a job with Renown. She enjoys hiking and exploring new areas. Dawn is thankful for the opportunity to get to know and be involved in education and stewardship of the local open spaces. She is a past AmeriCorps VISTA member through the Resource Assistance for Rural Environments (R.A.R.E) in Oregon. Dawn previously worked with natural resource agencies to help document and preserve habitat in her role as G.I.S. Coordinator of Wallowa County. 

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James Dickey


Jim was born and raised in Stockton, California. He graduated from the University of California, Berkeley. He moved to Reno in 1972 with his wife Laura, to whom he has been married for 41 years. They have 1 daughter and 2 grandchildren. Jim’s passion for parks and open spaces are the results of a lifetime of backpacking and hiking in the Sierras. Jim’s hobbies include cooking, gardening, golf, genealogy, and watching his grandchildren’s sporting events. Jim is also a volunteer coach for The First Tee Program.

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Laura Fillmore

Board Member

(Coming Soon)

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Sophia Kirschenman

Board Member

Sophia is a native Nevadan who grew up exploring the many outdoor wonders of the Truckee Meadows and the Sierra Nevada. She is dedicated to protecting our wildlands and connecting communities by creating shared outdoor spaces. After getting her master’s degree in international environmental policy and living for a handful of years in Colorado and California, she is excited to be back in her hometown, working as a park planner for Washoe County and serving on the Parks Foundation's Board of Directors. 

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Jill Richardson

Board Member

(Coming Soon)

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Nate Tippie

Board Member

Nate Tippie is an entrepreneur, product designer, and longtime Parks Foundation supporter. After selling his accounting backup software to Intuit, he joined them as a Product Manager for QuickBooks Online. He studied Finance and Film at the University of Georgia, where he also served as a judge for the Peabody Awards. Nate has been a volunteer, member, sustaining member, and Doggie Ambassador before becoming a board member. He enjoys yoga, camping, and aviation, and lives in Midtown with his dogs, Bennie and Luna.