Utah Rivers Council has an active volunteer board of directors that provides passion and expertise for protecting Utah’s rivers and independent oversight and monitoring of our staff and financial resources.

Meet our Board of Directors

Rob Bero is an executive in the Great Salt Lake commercial brine shrimping industry and owner of Red Rock River Company. An active conservationist for more than thirty years in Utah, Rob seeks to raise awareness and funds to help protect the Great Salt Lake and all the rivers of Utah.

Celeste Kelty is a pediatric RN at Primary Children’s Hospital and has served as Head Nurse at two children’s surgical centers in the Salt Lake Valley. A former Ute gymnast and co-captain she helped capture 4 NCAA titles in the 1980s for the University of Utah. She is an avid hiker camper and water lover. As a long time volunteer at the URC she envisions clean, plentiful and still wild waters for Utah’s future generations.

Dave Mock is an experienced venture capitalist and owner of the very popular Boulder Mountain Lodge. Dave is serving his second term on our Board of Directors after a 5-year break working in New York and other parts of the country. Dave is the founder of a small philanthropic foundation.

Rhianna Riggs has twelve years of marketing experience in the architecture/construction/engineering industry and is currently working for a local planning/civil engineering firm. She is a Utah native and graduated from the University of Utah. Ms. Riggs enjoys spending time with her family and pets and is always looking for any opportunity to get out and explore Utah’s wild places.

Osman Sanyer is a native of Wisconsin who has made Utah his home since 1986. A family physician, currently teaching and practicing at the University of Utah in the Department of Family and Preventive Medicine, he initially moved to Salt Lake City to join the effort that started the Community Health Center system here in the Salt Lake Valley. He is also an avid outdoorsman.

Matt Shaw is the Controller at locally owned business Cactus & Tropicals and has been with the company since 1999.  He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Philosophy from the University of Utah.  Matt is a native Utahn and loves the many varied outdoor environments the state has to offer. His passions include environmental justice, human rights, film, music and animals.

The Utah Rivers Council staff work together on issues that affect Utah’s river ecosystems. Our staff are advocates for Utah’s rivers and water conservation. We provide a range of skills and experience to achieve the Utah Rivers Council’s mission and we’re passionate about engaging the Utah public in the decisions being made about our aquatic ecosystems and our water supply.

Meet our Staff

Zachary Frankel – Executive Director

Zach Frankel received his B.S. in Biology at the University of Utah and is the Executive Director of the Utah Rivers Council, which he founded in 1994.  Zach has led many exciting campaigns to protect Utah’s rivers and is an expert on water policy in Utah. Zach lives with his family and their horses in the Salt Lake Valley and enjoys writing, making short films and all manner of outdoor sports. 

Email Zach@utahrivers.org


Richard Buck – Research Analyst

Richard Buck has an M.A. in economics from Michigan State University and a B.S. in both mathematics and economics at the University of Utah. He is the head research analyst at Utah Rivers Council and works to crunch the numbers on how Utah can save water. He is currently working on our WaterRoots Campaign. Richard loves spending time with his wife and enjoys reading, writing, and watching basketball teams other than the Golden State Warriors.

Email Richard@utahrivers.org

Jon Carter

Jon received his B.A. in Business Administration from European University in Barcelona, Spain with a focus on sustainable business models. Jon spent the past three years working as the Environmental Program Coordinator for the Patagonia Salt Lake City store. While there he cultivated relationships with community members, businesses, and environmental non-profits across the state to develop awareness and solutions to local environmental issues. A skier, climber, biker, and general explorer, Jon understands the connections between healthy water and healthy communities and the need to protect this precious resource.

Email Jon@utahrivers.org

Deborah Evans – WaterRoots Development Manager

Deborah has a B.Sc. in Biological Science from Lancaster University, England and an M.Ed. from Seton Hall University. She moved to America from England over 20 years ago and has lived in several different States. Deborah has been involved in the non-profit sector for many years both in grant making and as an advocate.

Email Deborah@utahrivers.org

Nick Halberg

Nick is currently double majoring in economics and philosophy at the University of Utah. Previously, Nick worked as an environmental reporter for a local outdoor publication and was involved in riparian habitat restoration projects in Northern Utah. He is intrigued by water policy and enjoys educating others on the topic. Much of his free time is spent canyoneering and exploring the deserts of the American Southwest.

Email Nick_h@utahrivers.org

Graham Rich — Grassroots Organizer

Graham obtained his B.S. in Environmental and Sustainability Studies from the University of Utah. After graduating he traveled to Madagascar to undertake conservation projects and biological research. Graham has also worked with Tree Utah and Utah Clean Energy doing Education coordinating, web formatting, and outreach. When he’s not in the office Graham can be found drawing, painting, and skiing in the Wasatch.

Email Graham@utahrivers.org