Staff Directory

The Great Lakes Commission is supported by a professional staff with offices in Ann Arbor, Michigan.


Executive Director

glcstaff-photo-timeder1-2015Tim A. Eder
Executive Director

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Tim Eder was appointed as the fifth executive director of the Great Lakes Commission on July 10, 2006. With more than 25 years of experience in natural resources policy development and advocacy, Eder is in charge of the Commission’s day-to-day operations and advancing the shared interests of the Commission membership in the areas of natural resources management and advocacy.

In nearly two decades with the National Wildlife Federation (NWF), Eder has headed a variety of programs that directly relate to Great Lakes issues. As NWF director of water resources, he led the formation of a nationwide coalition of taxpayer and conservation interests that forged bipartisan support in the U.S. House and Senate for legislation to protect and restore aquatic habitat. Prior to that, he served as director of the NWF’s largest field office, the Great Lakes Natural Resource Center, dedicated to educating, mobilizing and assisting individuals and organizations in the protection and restoration of the Great Lakes.

As a regional executive with NWF in the 1990s, he represented the organization’s views before Congress, agencies, other opinion leaders and the media. He also coordinated and led a 10-year federal and multistate campaign to develop and adopt uniform pollution control standards to implement the purposes of the U.S.-Canadian Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement.

Eder has served on the boards of the Great Lakes Fishery Trust, the Washtenaw County (Mich.) Road Commission, the Michigan League of Conservation Voters, the Michigan Aquatic Nuisance Species Advisory Council, and the Aquatic Invasive Species Team of the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in resource development from Michigan State University.

About Tim A. Eder



glcstaff-photo-stephencole1-2015Stephen J. Cole
Chief Information Officer

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Steve Cole is chief information officer of the Great Lakes Commission. As a member of its senior management team, Steve leads the Great Lakes Commission’s information management and delivery services. This includes leadership of the Great Lakes Blue Accounting initiative, a basin-wide information strategy that builds upon and complements the extensive data collection programs in place across the Great Lakes.

Prior to joining the Great Lakes Commission, Steve enjoyed a series of successful executive positions in the private sector creating and managing information services and technology businesses from start-up to market leadership. He was formerly chief marketing officer and senior vice president at Gladson, which provides information services to the consumer packaged goods industry. Prior to that Steve was senior vice president for technology and strategy at Click Commerce, a publicly-traded supply chain software company which was acquired by Illinois Toolworks in 2006.

About Stephen J. Cole


glcstaff-photo-tomcrane1Thomas R. Crane
Deputy Director

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Tom Crane joined the Commission staff in 1986 and has more than 30 years of Great Lakes research/policy experience. Since 2008, Crane has held the position of deputy director of the Commission. As such, he is responsible for a variety of administrative, financial and programmatic functions within the organization. Crane also served as interim executive director (2005-2006), resource management program manager (1990-2004; 2006-2008) and natural resources program specialist (1986-1990). Crane has program development, staff oversight and co-management responsibilities for numerous distinct projects including the Great Lakes Basin Program for Soil Erosion and Sediment Control, the Great Lakes Tributary Modeling Program and the Great Lakes Regional Water Use Database.

Crane has also served as a member of the Michigan Sea Grant Policy Committee, the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration Nonpoint Source Strategy Team, the International Joint Commission’s Advisory Group on the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement Review Public Consultations, and the Great Lakes Futures Roundtable. He was founding member of the Michigan State Section of the American Water Resources Association (AWRA) and served terms as board secretary and board treasurer with the organization.

Before joining the Commission, Crane’s previous work included positions with the Great Lakes Basin Commission, NOAA’s Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory and several years of NGO experience in Virginia and Missouri where Crane directed two citizen environmental groups. Crane holds a Bachelor of Science degree in natural resources and a Master of Science degree in water resources management from the University of Michigan.

About Thomas R. Crane


glcstaff-photo-mattdoss1-2014Matt Doss
Policy Director

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Matt Doss directs the Commission’s policy and advocacy program, including developing its annual federal priorities and managing relations with Congress and federal agencies. He tracks federal legislation related to the Great Lakes and appropriations for Great Lakes programs. He oversees preparation of policy resolutions and coordinates the Commission’s engagement with several large-scale regional programs, including the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.  Doss also supports the Commission’s work on restoring Great Lakes Areas of Concern; preventing the transfer of Asian carp and other invasive species through Chicago area waterways; restoring fish and wildlife habitat; and strengthening the Great Lakes navigation system.

Prior to joining the Commission Doss worked for a member of Congress in Washington, D.C., and for a private environmental consulting firm in San Francisco. He has bachelors’ degrees in political science and history from Kalamazoo College.

About Matt Doss


glcstaff-photo-victoriapebbles1-2015Victoria Pebbles
Program Director

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Victoria Pebbles is a program director with the Great Lakes Commission where she manages and facilitates multi-disciplinary project teams to analyze information, build consensus and develop policy solutions to address complex ecological and related socio-economic issues, including clean energy, climate change, water resource management, habitat conservation, land use, and coastal management. She has published dozens of articles and technical reports, delivered copious presentations, and served on and facilitated numerous multi-stakeholder project teams and task forces.

Before joining the Commission, Ms. Pebbles held positions with the University of Michigan, the U.S. Senate, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Ms. Pebbles earned her undergraduate degree with honors from the University of California Santa Cruz and holds a master’s degree from the University of Michigan. She has worked at the Great Lakes Commission since 1993.

About Victoria Pebbles


Program Staff

glcstaff-photo-karenalexander-2016Karen Alexander
Senior Program Specialist

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Karen Alexander joined the Commission in 2016 as a senior program specialist. Her main role is to work collaboratively with researchers at the United States Geological Survey to address the spread of the invasive plant Phragmites, by implementing the Phragmites Adaptive Management Framework (PAMF). She will also assist with other projects in the Coastal Conservation and Habitat Restoration program area.

Prior to joining the Commission, Karen worked as a Community Engagement Leader with the Township of Tiny, a municipal government in Ontario where she created and implemented various volunteer programs and special events, of which several aimed to benefit environmental health and sustainability.  Prior to her role in Tiny, Karen spent five years working in coastal conservation, evaluating the health of dune ecosystems for Ontario Parks, and developing and implementing numerous stewardship and outreach programs along the southeast shores of Lake Huron for a non-profit organization, the Coastal Centre. Karen is the co-founder and current co-chair of the Ontario Phragmites Working Group and holds an Honours Biology degree from Wilfrid Laurier University, a Graduate Certificate in Ecosystem Restoration from Niagara College, and a Young Conservation Professional certificate from the University of Guelph.

About Karen Alexander


glcstaff-photo-lauraandrews1-2014Laura Andrews
Design Manager

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Laura Andrews is responsible for developing and maintaining attractive and effective designs for a selection of Commission publications and educational/promotional materials.

Prior to joining the Commission, Laura worked as a senior designer at an award-winning design firm in south Florida, specializing in food and beverage package design. She also worked as an advertising account executive with a top international agency in Chicago, and as a project manager for a global business consulting firm. Laura’s design work has earned multiple honors from AIGA, the professional association for design, and her designs can be found on retail products and in publications worldwide.

Laura holds a Bachelor of Science in civil and environmental engineering from the University of Michigan, as well as a Bachelor of Fine Arts in design and visual communication from the Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago.

About Laura Andrews


davidbetcher1David Betcher
GIS Program Specialist

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Bio coming soon!

About David Betcher


glcstaff-photo-heatherbraun-2015Heather Braun
Program Manager

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Heather Braun joined the Commission in 2009 as the habitat restoration project manager. She supports the Commission’s role in advancing habitat restoration throughout the Great Lakes basin and currently manages several habitat restoration projects.

Prior to joining the Commission, Heather spent almost a decade as a regional biologist for Ducks Unlimited, Inc., in Ann Arbor, MI. She has also worked for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and Ducks Unlimited, Canada. Heather grew up in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada and attended the University of Manitoba. She holds a Master of Science Degree in natural resources management focused on wetland restoration and wildlife management, and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in psychology and zoology.

About Heather Braun


glcstaff-photo-sarahcook-2015Sarah Cook
Senior Program Specialist

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Bio coming soon!

About Sarah Cook


glcstaff-photo-ldenys1-2014Lisa Denys
GIS Program Specialist

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Lisa Denys is a program specialist for the Great Lakes Commission. Her projects focus on protecting the Great Lakes ecosystem from new introductions of aquatic invasive species, identifying energy resource risks near sensitive areas, and compiling information for Great Lakes leaders to use in policy decisions.

Prior to joining the Great Lakes Commission, Lisa conducted ecological research in Southeast Michigan, assisted with botanical and bat surveys, and managed an invasive plant species project for Eastern Michigan University’s, Institute for Geospatial Research and Education.

In her spare time, Lisa is an active volunteer for projects to educate the public about nature or restore habitat in Southeast Michigan.

Lisa has a Bachelor of Science in biology from Eastern Michigan University and is finishing a Master of Science in geographic information systems.

About Lisa Denys


comingsoonSiyu Fan
GIS Developer

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Siyu Fan joined the Great Lakes Commission in 2016 as a GIS Developer. He supports development needs from all teams across the Commission. His current priority is to facilitate the Barrier Removal Collaborative Suite (BRCS) project design and implementation.

Prior to joining the Commission, he worked in the utility industry at Gas Engineering Services of DTE Energy for a brief period of time, primarily on scripting to automate MISS DIG facility request process and population density survey using oblique imageries. While at school, Siyu worked at Institute for Geospatial Research and Education (IGRE) of Eastern Michigan University as a research assistant, supporting various research and applications needs for GIS and IT, where he also lectured three semesters for graduate Python/ArcPy and Geodatabase courses. He holds a bachelor’s degree in engineering from the Wuhan University of China, Master of Science in GIS from Eastern Michigan University, and is working on his doctoral degree in technology focusing in GIS.

About Siyu Fan


glcstaff-photo-elaineferrier-2016Elaine Ferrier
Senior Program Specialist

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Elaine comes to the Commission after five years with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry where she coordinated research and policy development programs related to shoreline management and invasive species. As a volunteer, Elaine was co-chair of the Ontario Phragmites Working Group for a two year term, leading outreach initiatives and strategic planning.

Elaine also led a research program to determine stakeholder priorities for the cross-boundary Flyingfish fishery during a position with the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism, and results of this study were used to develop a regional management plan for several eastern Caribbean nations.

She holds a Master of Environmental Studies degree from the University of Waterloo and a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies with a specialization in policy and law from Trent University.

About Elaine Ferrier


glcstaff-photo-dangold-2016Dan Gold
Senior Program Specialist

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Dan Gold comes to the Commission after six years of experience in environmental consulting where he focused on subsurface investigation and remediation, stormwater compliance, and a myriad of other environmental due diligence activities. In graduate school, he worked with the City of Burbank Department of Water and Power to develop a quantitative understanding of how various water efficiency initiatives impact demand and translate into multiple operational and economic benefits. He has also worked as a Conservation Crew Leader in several National Parks.

He holds a Master of Environmental Science and Management degree with a concentration in water resources management from the University of California Santa Barbara, and a Bachelor of Science degree in environmental geology from the University of Michigan.

About Dan Gold


glcstaff-photo-erikajensen1Erika Jensen
Program Manager

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Erika Jensen is the aquatic invasive species project manager. She serves as coordinator for the Great Lakes Panel on Aquatic Nuisance Species, providing strategic, administrative and programmatic support. She also provides staff support to the Invasive Mussel Collaborative and works with a variety of partners while managing other AIS projects focused on invasive species pathways including organisms in trade, ballast water and interbasin transfer of AIS. She has a master’s degree in environmental management from Duke University, a bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University.

About Erika Jensen


glcstaff-photo-mleduc2-2014Michèle Leduc-Lapierre
Senior Program Specialist

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Michèle Leduc-Lapierre originally joined the GLC staff in September of 2013 as the Government of Quebec intern for a six-month internship. She holds a master’s degree in wildlife management and a bachelor’s degree in biology. She has been working on crude oil transportation, on the Great Lakes Dredging Team, the Great Lakes Tributary Modeling Program, The Lower Fox Demonstration Farms Network and the Great Lakes Information Network.

About Michèle Leduc-Lapierre


glcstaff-photo-garyovermier1Gary Overmier
Senior Project Manager

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Gary Overmier is a project manager overseeing activities related to the Great Lakes Basin Program for Soil Erosion and Sediment Control.

Gary comes to the Commission with a wealth of experience in areas related to agriculture, erosion control and nonpoint source pollution issues. He was a long-time employee with the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA-NRCS) in Ohio. Overmier also served as the Assistant Director of the University of Toledo’s Legal Institute on the Great Lakes and most recently was serving as a redevelopment specialist for the City of South Bend, Indiana.

Gary earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Ohio State University and also received a law degree from the University of Toledo College of Law.

About Gary Overmier


glcstaff-photo-gregparrish-2016Greg Parrish
Senior Project Manager

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Greg Parrish joined the Commission in 2016 as a program manager for information management and delivery. He supports the Commission’s role in advancing information management, planning, and mapping. His current projects include an EPA project and Blue Accounting. Prior to joining the Commission, Greg worked for nonprofits, governments, and universities. He enjoys data, tech, planning, and wonky policy discussions.

Greg grew up in Detroit, Michigan, and attended Cass Tech, Michigan State University, University of Michigan, and Wayne State University. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science, a Master of Public Administration degree, and an all-but-dissertation in public policy, public administration, and American government.

About Greg Parrish


glcstaff-photo-michaelschneider1Michael Schneider
Senior Program Specialist

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Michael Schneider is assisting with the Great Lakes Basin Program as well as collecting and mapping economically and environmentally sensitive data for the area contingency planning project. Schneider has a broad background in government operations and regional planning initiatives.

About Michael Schneider


glcstaff-photo-bethwanamaker1-2016Beth Wanamaker
Communications Manager

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Beth Wanamaker leads communications for the Great Lakes Commission, supporting individual projects, advocacy and outreach, and the Commission’s overarching regional mission and mandate. Beth previously served as press secretary for U.S. Senator Mark R. Warner, where she managed media relations and digital outreach, securing state, national and international media coverage and developing innovative social media and e-marketing campaigns. Prior to that position, Beth managed digital communications for the Government Accountability Project, a nonprofit dedicated to protecting the rights of whistleblowers.

Beth is a proud graduate of the University of Michigan and holds a master’s degree in multimedia journalism from Boston University.

About Beth Wanamaker


glcstaff-photo-ceciweibert-2016Ceci Weibert
Program Specialist

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Bio coming soon!

About Ceci Weibert


glcstaff-photo-nicolezacharda1-2016Nicole Zacharda
Program Manager

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Nicole Zacharda joined the Commission staff as a project manager after nearly 16 years working in water enforcement for the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality. As part of her role, Nicole coordinates the Commission’s nonpoint source pollutant reduction project portfolio. She’s a proud MSU Spartan adjusting to life in Wolverine country with her husband and two mostly-charming cats.

About Nicole Zacharda


Administrative Staff

glcstaff-photo-joebertram1Joe Bertram
Financial Operations Manager

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Joe Bertram is the Great Lakes Commission’s manager of financial operations. Most recently, Joe served as accounting director for the Metropolitan Consolidated Association of Realtors (MCAR), a real estate trade organization that promotes education, professional/ethical standards and political advocacy for agents and brokers in Oakland and Macomb counties. Bertram holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Michigan State University and an M.B.A. in finance from Oakland University.

About Joe Bertram


glcstaff-photo-patgable1Pat Gable
Administrative Assistant

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Pat serves as the Great Lakes Commission’s administrative assistant. Previously, Pat worked as a medical secretary and an office manager in a private school. Pat has completed coursework in business management and tax preparation.

About Pat Gable


glcstaff-photo-laurakaminski-2015Laura Kaminski
Grants and Contracts Manager

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Laura Kaminski joined the Commission in 2002 and is the grants and contracts manager. In this role, Laura manages several pass-through funding programs and contributes to the Commission’s financial and operations management through budget oversight, internal grant and contract coordination, financial and compliance reporting, and preparation of the Commission’s annual organizational indirect cost rate proposal to the federal government. Laura also supports the Commission’s program development efforts through the development of budgets and formulation of requests for funding to public and private funding sources. She also provides staff support to a number of the Commission’s water quality and nonpoint source pollution programs. Laura holds a Master of Science in resource policy and an M.B.A. in nonprofit management from the University of Michigan.


About Laura Kaminski


glcstaff-photo-mmorrice1-2014Marty Morrice
Manager, Information Technology

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Bio coming soon!

About Marty Morrice


Research Associates and Fellows


Daniel Faghihnia
Research Associate


glcstaff-photo-kengibbons-2016Ken Gibbons
Great Lakes Commission Fellow

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Ken Gibbons is a Commission fellow assigned to assist with a range of water quality projects, including the Great Lakes HABs Collaboratory and ErieStat.

Prior to joining the Commission, Ken attended the University of Toledo where he received his Master of Science Degree in biology. While at Toledo, Ken studied under Dr. Thomas Bridgeman and focused on Harmful Algal Blooms in Lake Erie, specifically investigating internal loading of phosphorus. Prior to Toledo, Ken received a bachelor’s degree in biology with a minor in environmental geology from Albion College.

About Ken Gibbons


glcstaff-photo-edojakupovic-2016Edo Jakupovic
Government of Québec Intern

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Edo Jakupovic is the 2016 Government of Québec intern. He will be involved in a variety of projects including the Great Lakes Regional Water Use Database and the Great Lakes Maritime Transportation System Strategy.

Edo earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Université Laval in Québec City, and attended Université de Montréal, where he pursued a master’s degree in urban planning, focusing on the implementation of Integrated water resources management in Greater Montréal. Prior to joining the GLC, Edo worked for the City of Québec as a transportation analyst.

About Edo Jakupovic


glcstaff-photo-michaelpolich-2016Michael Polich
Sea Grant Fellow 2016

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Michael Polich is the 2016 Sea Grant Fellow. Michael assists the Commission in a range of projects, including Great Lakes oil transportation, Blue Accounting, green infrastructure,  and nonpoint source pollution and nutrient reduction efforts.

Michael has spent time working at the United States Geological Survey, United States Environmental Protection Agency, Wisconsin Department of Military Affairs, and the Environmental Law & Policy Center. He received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Wisconsin, where he also received his Master of Science Degree in biological systems engineering and a Bachelor of Science Degree in civil and environmental engineering.

About Michael Polich


Interns and  GLC Contractors

James Baumann
Water Quality and Ecosystem Health – Fox P Trade

John Hummer
Lake Michigan Nearshore Monitoring

Dave Knight
Great Lakes Dredging Team and Special Projects

Devra Polack
Web Design and Communications Support

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