Board of Directors
Deputy Infrastructure Director, City of Thornton
Emily is the Deputy Infrastructure Director at the City of Thornton. Highlights of her water career include managing the expansion of Thornton’s Water Conservation program (www.thorntonwater.com), the development of multiple raw water facilities for the City, and the successful negotiation of several collaborative agreements with other water providers. She also serves on the Board of Directors for the Colorado Water Congress. Emily is a second generation Colorado native, and she earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Geology from the University of Colorado at Boulder, and her Master’s degree in Fluvial Geomorphology from the University of Denver. She also had the privilege of participating in the Water Education Colorado’s first Water Leader’s Program in 2006. When not at work, Emily enjoys being outside, growing spicy things, and spending time with her dog, Gulliver. She also volunteers as a Big Sister with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Colorado and Girls, Inc. of Metro Denver.
David C. Taussig
Partner, White & Jankowski, LLP, Denver
David Taussig is a fourth generation native of Colorado, who got his feet wet in water matters on the end of a shovel irrigating mountain hay meadows on the family cattle ranch near Kremmling. He learned the consumptive end of the water business early on, but finds the community benefit from non-consumptive water uses for fishing and recreation to be equally important. He joined White & Jankowski in 1989. Dave has litigated or negotiated to successful conclusion a number of complex water rights cases and has an active practice in water rights transactions. While Dave’s heritage stems from his grandfather’s historic court battles in Denver v. Sheriff and Taussig v. Moffat Development Co., and he is not opposed to litigation when necessary, he has successfully negotiated various water-related agreements for numerous clients.
Founder and Managing Partner, Flywheel Capital
Ben has over 15 years of real estate finance, capital markets and executive experience with over $1.2 billion in closed transactions. He has worked entirely on the ownership side of the commercial real estate business. Ben was previously VP of Investment Accounting and Reporting at Sage Hospitality in Denver. His responsibilities included coordinating all corporate tax filings, partnership waterfalls, 5-year long range plan, and investor communication. Previously, Ben has held positions at UDR, a $10 billion publicly traded company and Continental Realty Advisors (CRA), a start-up multi-family real estate fund with equity committed from a Boston hedge fund. Prior to CRA, Ben was Director of Portfolio Accounting at Alliance Commercial Partners (ACP), now known as EverWest. At ACP he was responsible for all property and corporate accounting, corporate tax returns, partnership waterfalls, and investor reporting. Throughout his career he has worked on all property types with the majority of transactions in value-add office, retail, industrial, multi-family, hospitality and land assets.
Ben is a licensed CPA, and earned his Bachelor of Science in Accounting and Masters of Accountancy from the University of Denver. Ben is a 4th generation Colorado native, current Treasurer of the Colorado Society of CPA’s and volunteers with several non-profits.
General Manager, Roxborough Water & Sanitation District, Littleton
Barbara Biggs is the General Manager of the Roxborough Water & Sanitation District. Barbara has over 30 years of experience in the water and wastewater industry in Colorado, formerly having been a consultant to water and wastewater utilities, and having managed the Governmental Affairs and Water Quality Division for the Metro Wastewater Reclamation District for over 20 years. She holds a Bachelor in Science degree, cum laude, in Business Administration from the University of Colorado along with experience in municipal and special district finance. Previously Barbara served three terms on the Colorado Water Conservation Board (Chairperson in 2005), two terms on the Water and Wastewater Facility Operators Certification Board, 7 years as Chairperson of the National Association of Clean Water Agencies Water Quality Committee, and is currently serving her second term (until 2/19) on the Colorado Water Quality Control Commission. She also serves on the Board of the Colorado Water Trust and the Advisory Council for the One World, One Water Center at Metropolitan State University.
Rancher, Reeder Creek Ranch, Kremmling
Paul is the 5th generation of the Bruchez family to farm and ranch in Colorado. He currently operates the family ranch near Kremmling with his brother and father. Paul and his family raise cattle and irrigate with water from the Colorado River, the Williams Fork River and Reeder Creek. After graduating from the University of Denver in 2003, he started a fly fishing business to help diversify income. Working in agriculture and being a fishing guide has given Paul a unique perspective on water resources. Paul is currently spearheading a 12-mile restoration of the Colorado River with 12 landowners collaborating to sustain agriculture and the environmental health of the river. After participating with the Colorado Basin Implementation Plan, he was selected to be the voting Agriculture Representative to the Colorado Basin Roundtable in the spring of 2015. He is committed to working on permanent solutions for sustaining agriculture and healthy rivers in the face of a growing population.
Ph.D., Founder and Principal, Hydros Consulting
John is a founder and principal of Hydros Consulting in Boulder, Colorado. He has a BA in Mathematics from Colorado College, an MA in Geography and Ph.D. in Water Resources Engineering from CU-Boulder. He began his career with Hydrosphere Resource Consultants before founding Hydros in 2010. His work has focused on the development of decision support tools to inform policy and operations in complex water management settings. He is an advisor to the State of Colorado on Colorado River management issues. He and his firm have represented clients in “pretty much every state west of the 100th Meridian”. John has served on a number of other Boards and organizations, including the Council of Trustees for the Montana Land Reliance and the Louisville Open Space Advisory Board. John is married with two children (and a dog). When he is not thinking about water, he might be found tending to his honey bees, skiing, biking, or fly-fishing.
Senior Fellow, Getches-Wilkinson Center for Natural Resources, Energy, and the Environment at the University of Colorado
Anne Castle is a senior fellow at the Getches-Wilkinson Center for Natural Resources, Energy, and the Environment at the University of Colorado, focusing on western water issues. From 2009 to 2014, she was Assistant Secretary for Water and Science at the U.S. Department of the Interior where she oversaw water and science policy for the Department and had responsibility for the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Geological Survey. While at Interior, Castle spearheaded the Department’s WaterSMART program, which although not an entirely original name despite best intentions and multiple trademark searches, provides federal leadership on the path toward sustainable water supplies. She was the driving force behind the 2010 federal MOU addressing sustainable hydropower, the largest, least respected, and most vilified form of renewable energy in the country. Castle also provided hands-on leadership on Colorado River issues and was the Chair of the Glen Canyon Dam Adaptive Management Work Group and a champion of Minute 319 between the US and Mexico. The fact that the Colorado River descended further and further into drought during her tenure is generally believed not to be her fault. Castle is a recovering lawyer, having practiced water law for 28 years with the Rocky Mountain law firm of Holland & Hart.
John Currier, P.E.
Chief Engineer, Colorado River Water Conservation District, Glenwood Springs
John Currier is a fourth generation west slope native with family roots that run deep in irrigated agriculture in both the Grand Valley. He is the Chief Engineer for the Colorado River Water Conservation District where he is responsible for managing all technical activities of the District as well as guiding the District’s technical and policy direction. He has 30 years of experience in the public and private sectors in the operation and management of large water resource projects, water policy development, water supply planning, water rights analysis and administration, surface and groundwater analysis, well design and construction, and hydraulic structure design. As an engineering consultant, clients included the state, municipalities, special districts, ski areas, industrial water users, farmers and ranchers, conservancy districts and development interests. He is honored to serve on the Colorado Water Congress board of directors. He is an avid mountain biker and chances are that’s where you can find him.
Marsha Daughenbaugh is part of a multi-generational ranching family, based in the Elk River Valley near Steamboat Springs. She and her husband, John, chose to stay in the region, ranch and raise their family in a location that is known for pristine waters and lots of snow.
Marsha’s professional career of over 40 years included 25+ years with USDA Farm Service Agency and 15 years as Executive Director of Community Agriculture Alliance, a non-profit serving Northwest Colorado.She has been instrumental in developing and implementing community-based programs, meetings, workshops, tours and educational opportunities that underscore the importance of agriculture to the economy and culture of Colorado. She worked closely with the Yampa-White-Green Roundtable for 12 years, helping formulate and administer their public education and outreach programs in Moffat, Rio Blanco and Routt Counties. Although retired from paid positions, Marsha remains a passionate activist for agriculture, open space, working landscapes, the protection of healthy, abundant natural resources and local community.
Shareholder, Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, Denver
Wayne Forman is a shareholder with the law firm of Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck. His practice encompasses land and water issues including water law, land use litigation, condemnation and environmental law and litigation. He represents private and public clients throughout Colorado on water rights matters and has extensive experience in land use litigation and water quality and wetlands matters. Throughout his 30-year career, Wayne has helped navigate a number of complex water and land use issues for energy companies throughout the Rocky Mountain region. Wayne’s expertise is integral in establishing balance between state and local regulation of Colorado’s oil and gas industry. He is a leading spokesman on the risks of taking claims associated with bans, moratorium and setbacks on hydraulic fracturing, having presented on that issue to the Governor’s Oil and Gas Task Force and other organizations. Wayne holds a Juris Doctor from the University of Colorado Law School and a Bachelor of Science degree from the Cornell University.
Shareholder, Somach Simmons & Dunn
Sarah grew up in the Upper Midwest. Her childhood summers were spent either at her family’s cabin on a lake in northern Minnesota or in the beautiful Upper Peninsula of Michigan. She holds a BA in biology from University of Northern Iowa, and MS in entomology from Colorado State. After working as a park ranger and biologist, she worked as a climate scientist, collecting the precipitation data underlying standards set for acid rain in the Clean Air Act. In 1994 Sarah went to law school at the University of Wyoming. Sarah worked at White & Jankowski, a Denver water law firm and is now a shareholder in Somach Simmons & Dunn. She represents farmers and ranchers, as well as institutional clients on water rights matters in four western states. Sarah is married with four (grown!) children and two dogs. She enjoys biking and trail running with her husband, and is an open water marathon swimmer.
Water Program Director, High Country Conservation Advocates
Director, Colorado Basin Program, American Rivers
Matt Rice directs American Rivers’ multidisciplinary programs in the Colorado River Basin, a region that spans seven states from Wyoming to California. His team drives innovative policy, program, and project solutions to conserve water in the urban, agricultural, and energy sectors to ensure that the rivers and streams in the region are healthy for local and regional economies, sustainable agriculture, and world-class recreation.
Previously, Matt has worked as a fly-fishing guide in Montana, Colorado, Kentucky, and South Carolina. He also spent 4 years in Zambia working with rural farmers to integrate fish farming and irrigated agriculture into their farming systems. Matt completed his masters in Environmental Policy from the University of Denver. His research was focused on global water resources. He received his undergraduate degree from Montana State University in 2000.
When not at work, he can be found with his three boys and a fly rod on a river somewhere in Colorado.
Associate Professor, Sturm College of Law
Tom was born and raised in Denver, Colorado and has roots that go back generations to Antonito, Durango, and Olathe. He spent his summers on his maternal grandparent’s farm in Olathe riding tractors, feeding the chicken’s and learning how to swim in the irrigation ditches. Tom is an Associate Professor in the Sturm College of Law and Affiliated Faculty with the Department of History at the University of Denver. The author of numerous articles, book chapters, and essays, Tom researches and teaches in the areas of the legal history of the American West, with a particular emphasis on the relationship between race and water law, school desegregation, property, land use, and urban development and local government. Tom has several on-going projects related to the history and current challenges of immigration, racial inequity, and water law and policy, including a book chapter that examines the intersection between developments in water and immigration law in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and a community based participatory research project on water access and water quality issues impacting neighborhoods of color in Denver.
Tom has served as the interim Vice Chancellor of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and the Associate Provost of DEI Research and Curricular Initiatives for the university during the last eight years. He also directs all activities associated with DU’s Interdisciplinary Research Institute for the Study of (In)Equality (IRISE). He received his Ph.D and J.D. from the University of Michigan and is an undergraduate alum of the University of Denver.
Born in upstate New York, Dr. Rooney graduated from Boston College with degrees in English Literature and Sociology. He moved to Colorado to attend veterinary school at Colorado State University (CSU), where he also served as a clinical surgery instructor. Dr. Rooney was the proud owner of Aspen Meadow Veterinary Specialists, and a partner in Alpenglow Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Center in Boulder, until 2016. He’s also worked extensively in wildlife conservation medicine, in Uganda and Guatemala and at numerous zoos across the country. Matt is a proud partner in Spirit Hound Distillers in Lyons, and served for three years as president of the Lyons Watershed Board. After the floods of 2013 greatly affected their farm, he and his wife re-created a riparian ecosystem with robust aquatic life along the North fork of the St Vrain River.
Director of Catalytic Projects, Denver Department of Housing Stability
Brad joined Denver’s Department of Housing Stability as the Director of Catalytic Projects in January 2021, where his role is to grow and preserve the City’s affordable housing options through both policy and negotiations with developers. Prior to joining the City, he played a variety of roles within the affordable housing arena, spending the last few years in the development world, working for both Forum Investment Group and Kittle Properties Group. Before that, Brad was Deputy Director of Denver Programs for Enterprise Community Partners, where he worked very closely with the City of Denver running the Denver Regional TOD Fund and supporting the establishment of the Dedicated Affordable Housing Fund. Brad also has experience in underwriting and closing loans for affordable housing, primarily with Citi Community Capital. He has a Masters degree from the University of Colorado, where he focused on sustainable real estate. Outside of work, his family (wife Annie and sons Pete and Connor) enjoy all that Denver and our beautiful state has to offer, including skiing, hiking, and golf!
M.S., P.E. Retired Colorado State Engineer, Senior Advisor LRE Water
Dick is a registered Professional Engineer in Colorado and obtained a B.S. and M.S. in Agricultural Engineering from Colorado State University. Dick served the State Engineer’s Office for 24 years with the last 10 years as State Engineer. Prior to that he was employed for seven years with Spronk Water Engineers. He is proud to be a Colorado native farm boy who greatly enjoys spending a lot of time with his family including seven grandchildren. Since retiring from the State Engineer’s Office in 2017, Dick has been employed part time with LRE Water since 2018 as a Senior Advisor.
Dr. Leo Martin Eisel was one of the founding members of the Colorado Water Trust, responsible, in part, for its creation in 2001. Since that time, Leo shaped the Colorado Water Trust as he occupied the office of Secretary for over a decade, sat on every committee, ventured into the field to help formulate solutions to streamflow issues, missing one Water Trust meeting in that time. Dr. Eisel received his Ph.D. in engineering from Harvard University in 1970, a master’s degree in hydrology from the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, New Zealand, and a bachelor’s degree in forestry from Colorado State University. Dr. Eisel was a water resources engineer of near-unique experience and credentials, with experience in all sectors including state and federal government, private industry, the NGO sector, and academia.
David Getches served on the Colorado Water Trust Board of Directors almost since its inception. His passion for the environment, creativity, and quiet, thoughtful approach to complex problems helped guide the Water Trust in its formative years. During his life, David served as Dean of the University of Colorado, School of Law. He had previously served as Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Natural Resources and as an advisor to the Interior Secretary during the Clinton Administration. David authored a number of books and publications on western water issues. He graciously gave his limited free time to a number of causes in which he deeply believed, including the Colorado Water Trust.