Brian Watson, WDC
BS Natural Resource Management, Mankato State University
Brian is responsible for the overall management of the Dakota SWCD. As the District Manager, Brian is responsible
for developing and administrating the District's budget, hiring staff, employee development, and building partnerships to further
programs and activities. Brian also administers the Minnesota Wetland Conservation Act and is a Certified Wetland Delineator in
the State of Minnesota. He has been involved in a number of wetland restoration projects. Brian is responsible for ensuring
policies and directives of the Board of Supervisors are carried out.
Brian joined the SWCD in 1994 and has served as the District Manager since 1998. He grew up in Goodhue, Minnesota.
Curt Coudron, CPESC
Project Management Supervisor
BA in Biology and Environmental Studies, St. Johns University
Curt is responsible for overseeing field staff involved with the planning and installation of conservation
projects ranging from urban stormwater retrofits, native plantings, streambank stabilizations to agricultural practices.
He is a Certified Professional in Erosion and Sediment Control. Curt is also responsible for implementing the Dakota SWCD
financial incentive and cost share programs including the development of measurable outcomes for projects being planned for
installation. Curt has past experience in construction management, ecological restoration, management of native vegetation,
biological research, and construction site erosion and sediment control.
Curt joined Dakota County SWCD in 2007 and grew up near Marshall, Minnesota.
BS in Natural Resources and Environmental Studies, University of Minnesota
Todd is responsible for surveys, designs and installing structural practices on agricultural lands. He provides technical
assistance to landowners and helps them through the various cost share opportunities. He also provides technical assistance
with streambank stabilization projects. Todd serves as the Dakota County Agricultural Inspector which provides local support
to the Minnesota Noxious Weed Law. Todd is the point of contact for landowners looking to participate in the Minnesota Department of Agriculture's Best Management Loan Program.
Todd joined the SWCD in 1997 and grew up in Caledonia, Minnesota. Todd retired from the Navy Reserve In 2009 after returning from a one year deployment to Southwest Asia.
David Holmen, GISP
GIS Specialist/Resource Conservationist
MS in Natural Resource GIS, St. Mary's University
BA in Environmental Biology, St. Mary's University
Dave coordinates the Geographic Information System (GIS) and Information Technology (IT) activities of the Dakota SWCD.
He earned his GIS Professional Certification in 2014. Dave develops and maintains the District's GIS databases, web applications, and
electronic data for staff. Dave provides GIS maps for programs, provides updates to land cover data, serves as County IT Liason, and assists with implementing the
Minnesota Wetland Conservation. Dave also coordinates the Dakota SWCD's annual 5th Grade Outdoor Education event held each September.
Dave joined the SWCD in 1999 and grew up in West. St. Paul, Minnesota.
Water Resource Specialist
MS in Environmental Science, University of Sydney Australia
BS in Marine Biology, Boston University
Lindsey leads surface and groundwater monitoring programs to evaluate the chemical and biological integrity of our water.
She also assists with education and outreach activities including Landscaping for Clean Water workshops. Lindsey is active with coordinating
citizen stream and lake monitoring activities and assists with implementing Dakota County's Aquatic Invasive Species program.
Lindsey joined the Dakota SWCD in 2015 after coordinating volunteer stream monitoring programs for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.
She grew up in Minnetonka, Minnesota.
BS in Environmental Design and Urban Planning, University of Minnesota
Joe provides planning, design and implementation of urban stormwater management practices for homeowners, townhome associations,
churches and school districts. He also serves as the Administrator of the Lower Mississippi River Watershed Management Organization to support
and facilitate implementation of their Comprehensive Watershed Management Plan. Joe has experience with project management, construction oversight,
erosion and sediment control compliance. He leads the Landscaping for Clean Water program that includes educational workshops and project installations.
Joe joined the Dakota SWCD in 2014 and is a native of New Prague, Minnesota where he grew up on a farm. He still spends much of his free time working
on the family farm.
BS in Environmental Science, Policy and Management, University of Minnesota
Ashley is responsible for a variety of agricultural programs including the planning, design and installation of conservation practices,
developing conservation plans, groundwater protection efforts and soil health initiatives. She provides assistance to the Landscaping for Clean Water
Program. She also serves as the Administrator for the North Cannon River Watershed Management Organization and the Eagan-Inver Grove Heights Watershed
Management Organization and is currently providing a lead administrative role for developing the Cannon River One Watershed, One Plan.
Ashley joined the Dakota SWCD in 2015 after working at various local and state governments as well as non-profit organizations. She is from Rosemount,
John Stelzner, MCTI
BS Environmental Studies, University of Minnesota
John is responsible for ecological restorations including native plantings and native plant management. He is a Minnesota Certified
Tree Inspector. John coordinates the Dakota SWCD native drill program and provides landowner assistance with establishing and maintaining native plants.
He assists with field evaluations needed to implement a variety of federal, state and county easements programs. John also assists with the Landscaping
for Clean Water workshops and project installations.
John joined the Dakota SWCD in 2016 and grew up in South Saint Paul, Minnesota.
Finance and Grants Coordinator
AAS in Accounting, Dakota County Technical College
Lana is responsible for maintaining financial records, accounting, grant reporting and maintaining budget schedules. She provides billing
and develops financial reports for the Board of Supervisors and staff. Lana is responsible for maintaining records in accordance with State grant
administration standards and provides administrative support to staff and Board of Supervisors.
Lana jointed the Dakota SWCD in 1993 and grew up in Lakeville, Minnesota.
Education and Outreach Coordinator
MS in Conservation Ecology and BA in Environmental Studies, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
Liz creates, coordinates, and delivers education and outreach initiatives, including managing the Landscaping for Clean Water program, coordinating K-12 education including our annual Outdoor
Education Days, and providing activities and information at events around the county. She writes outreach materials, including the quarterly newsletter, and manages the District's social media presence.
Liz is also responsible for working with both technical and administrative staff to measure and report on the objectives and strategies of the District.
Liz joined Dakota SWCD in 2018 after coordinating education programs for the Minnesota Zoo and working as an interpretive park ranger with the National Park Service. She is originally from Detroit, Michigan.
BS in Field Biology, University of Wisconsin - River Falls
Elsa is responsible for a variety of administrative tasks and is the main point of contact when visiting or contacting the office. She assists with multiple programs helping people obtain
information or getting them in contact with the appropriate staff person. Elsa will be assisting with water monitoring tasks including collection of both chemical and biological samples. Additionally she
assists staff with coordinating events, developing and distributing outreach materials, promoting conservation programs, and grant writing. Basically she has her toes in a little of everything.
Elsa joined Dakota SWCD in 2018 after working for a variety of state, county, and non-profit organizations including the Minnesota Zoo and Dakota County Parks. She is originally from Forest Lake, Minnesota.
Back from left:
Joe Barten, David Holmen, Curt Coudron, Todd Matzke, Brian Watson, John Stelzner.
Front from left: Liz Dengate, Lana Rotty, Ashley
Gallagher, Elsa Litecky, Lindsey Albright.
United States Department of Agriculture
Natural Resource Conservation Service Staff