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Fish PassageTask Force


2022 Fish Passage Semi-annual Legislative Report (pdf)

The State's Fish Passage Task Force touring in the North Umpqua River Basin near the PacifiCorp's Soda Springs Diversion Weir and Powerhouse (N. Umpqua Hydro Project) on May 19th. The Task Force is the Department's public advisory body and its volunteer members represent Fishing and Conservation, Public-at-Large and Owners & Operators of Fish Passage Barriers (artificial obstructions).

Included in the image (left to right) Evan Leonetti (ODFW), Zak Toledo (Task Force), Terry Turner (Task Force), Bill Cunningham (Task Force), Ken Bierly (Task Force), Steve Albertelli (Task Force), Fred Messerle (Task Force), Greg Apke (ODFW), Sara Gregory (ODFW), Jason Brandt (ODFW) , Kelly Moore (Task Force) and Katherine Nordholm (ODFW). Task Force Members not present include April Snell and Denise Hoffert.

Contact: Mac Barr
Statewide Fish Passage Program Leader
503-947-6228 (office) / 971-678-4871 (cell)

The Fish Passage Task Force advises the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Fish and Wildlife Commission on matters related to fish passage. These matters include, but are not limited to, rulemaking to implement statutes, funding and special conditions for passage projects, and exemptions and waivers. The nine Task Force members are chosen by the ODFW Director to represent one of three groups. Task Force member’s terms last for four years. Each Task Force member is eligible for two terms. Current Task Force members and their terms are:

Kelly Moore Corvallis Fishing and Conservation October 2019
Denise Hoffert Albany Fishing and Conservation October 2018
Terry Turner Gladstone Fishing and Conservation September 2017
Steve Albertelli Ashland Water Users October 2019
April Snell Salem Water Users April 2021
Fred Messerle Coos Bay Water Users June 2021
Zak Toledo Salem Public-At-Large September 2017
William Cunningham Bend Public-At-Large November 2015
Ken Bierly Salem Public-At-Large November 2015

Fishing and Conservation Groups

Kelly Moore worked as the ODFW West Region Fish Research Program Director from 2004 – 2015.  He has a long and unique history and perspective with Oregon’s native fishes and aquatic habitats.  His exemplary science based background and interagency work experiences provide a solid ecologic foundation for the Task Force.  Kelly’s leadership skills and expansive understanding of watershed function, restoration, and conservation will provide a unique and valued perspective.

Denise Hoffert is the owner of an environmental consulting firm.  Denise has extensive experience implementing the state’s fish passage policy, particularly as it relates to dam removal projects.  She brings a unique perspective having worked for American Rivers and various watershed councils in Oregon.  Ms. Hoffert has built many partnerships with non-profits, state and federal agencies and has an excellent track record of delivering grant funds to many restoration projects in Oregon. 

Terry Turner, is an active member and Oregon Council Chair of Trout Unlimited (TU).  Most recently, as the TU Executive Committee Leader, he played a pivotal role leading the Salmon Super Hwy Fish Passage Restoration Project in Oregon’s North Coast.  He is no stranger to large-scale collaborative fish passage and community infrastructure improvement projects and will represent fishing and conservation interests well.  He has volunteered with ODFW for many years participating on numerous volunteer projects and is been an active agency advocate and proponent.

Water User Groups

Steve Albertelli is employed by Pacific Power as a Hydropower License Program Manager with emphasis in the Rogue and Umpqua River Basins.  Steve has many years of experience in the hydropower license arena, specifically with implementation of the North Umpqua project license and relicensing of the Prospect No. 3 project for Pacific Power.  Steve will bring new and diverse perspectives into the FPTF.  His experience and interest in seeking collaborative, balanced natural resource outcomes and solutions are a valuable asset to the Department.

April Snell, is the Executive Director of the Oregon Water Resources Congress (OWRC), a nonprofit association representing irrigation districts, water control districts, drainage districts, and other agricultural water suppliers around the state. April has been with OWRC since 2007 and previously worked at the Oregon Water Resources Department. She has extensive experience with water policy, water infrastructure funding, and other state and federal natural resources issues. She has a Master’s in Public Administration, Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management, and Bachelor’s in Political Science with honors, all from the University of Oregon.

Fred Messerle, resides in Coos Bay and is the owner and manager of Messerle and Sons, Inc.  In this capacity he is an owner/operator of agricultural and forestry related fish passage artificial obstructions (culverts, tide-gates, berms, roads, and obstructed stream channels).  He is a water user and presently manages the Beaver Slough Drainage District.  He has a genuine interest in representing the owner/operator/users of artificial obstructions and is committed to bringing a balanced perspective to the Task Force.


Zak Toledo, has over 20-years of experience in natural resource management. He has an advanced degree from Oregon State University and served in the Oregon Army National Guard. As a regulatory policy analyst and aquatic ecologist for a large consulting firm he has worked throughout the state. He has extensive experience in streamlined programmatic environmental permitting strategies ranging from fluvial performance, water quality, and fish passage. He has worked with and represented diverse stakeholder teams and brings a focused collaborative perspective and approach to integrating disparate policies and regulations for the benefit of effective natural resource management.

William Cunningham, is an avid fisherman and conservationist who has both pursued and actively worked to protect migratory fish in Oregon, California, and Idaho. He is retired after working thirty years as a Deputy Attorney General for the State of California representing California Fish and Game and other California natural resource agencies. He worked as legal counsel for the California Fish and Game Commission for over six years, and helped draft statewide regulations for protection of California migratory fish species including provisions specifically designed to enhance fish passage.

Ken Bierly, is a promoter of wetland and waterway health. Mr. Bierly was the Wetlands Program Director for the Department of State Lands form 1983 to 1996, the Governor’s Watershed Enhancement Board Program Manager on Governor Kitzhaber’s staff from 1996-1999, and the Deputy Director of the Watershed Enhancement Board from 1999 until his retirement in 2013. In these roles he drafted administrative rules on wetland permitting, provided administrative enforcement for wetland and waterways laws, oversaw the development of the Oregon Watershed Assessment Guide, and performed a variety of other duties associated with protecting Oregon’s waterways, including testifying to both state and federal legislative committees.

Meeting Schedule, Agenda and Minutes (pdfs)
2024 Meetings Location Agenda (pdf) Minutes (pdf)

February 9, 2024

Salem Agenda  
May 17-18, 2024 Prineville Draft Agenda  
October 4-5, 2024 Klamath Falls    
December 6, 2024 Location to be determined    

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