Meet the CVTA Board Members
|Neal Falk, President
Neal fulfilled a life long dream when he moved to the Carson Valley from South Florida in the summer of 2017. When he is not practicing Nevada law, he can be found hiking our Carson Valley trails with his yellow lab Jackson. Neal is passionate about our community and the preservation of it’s first class trail system. He joined our board in March 2019 and looks forward to helping CVTA fulfill it’s vision for the future.
|Lee Elson, VP/Membership
Lee has always loved the outdoors so when an opportunity to retire appeared, he and his wife Anne moved to the Carson Valley mainly for the recreation opportunities: skiing, snowshoeing, biking, hiking and kayaking. After building a passive solar house which later found itself only feet from the Clear Creek Trail, he finds time to be outdoors most days. He is active in his community in several volunteer capacities including the Douglas county Community Emergency Response Team and Angel Flight. Although he left a career in Southern California with NASA, he continues with a second part time job giving flight instruction.
|Norah Gastelum, Director at Large
Norah has lived and taught in the Carson Valley since 1990. Mostly, she loves being out in the woods; running, hiking, backpacking, sketching and building trails with the awesome folks from CVTA.
|Juan Guzman, Director at Large
After fifteen years of service as a planner in Mono and Douglas Counties and fourteen years as the Carson City Open Space Administrator, Juan retired in September of 2014. He is passionate about the stewardship of open space and sustainable forms of recreation. Jobs Peak Ranch Trail is so far his preferred trail where his Australian Sheppard Shelby takes him for walks almost daily. The non-profit organization, Carson Valley Trails Association, has accomplished so much in a short time. Future growth and strength is tied to collaboration and partnerships with similar organizations and public agencies as expressed in the strategic plan. Based on his past work experience, Juan anticipates that fostering and maintaining these critical relationships will become one of his areas of contribution to the Carson Valley Trails Association.
|Michael Hartstein, VP/Chief Information Officer
Mike visited the Tahoe area frequently while living in the Bay Area, and finally moved to Carson Valley in 2009. Now he loves the convenience of local skiing, hiking, and snowshoeing. His favorite hike is up to the tops of the three peaks — Job’s Peak, Job’s Sister, and Freel Peak. Previously Mike worked for several technology companies in the Bay Area, and he now manages the CVTA website, the document repository, the email system, and the other technology assets of the organization.
|Joni Jackson, Director at Large
Joni moved to the Carson Valley in the winter of 2011 after twenty years in the education field as a teacher and guidance counselor. She has always enjoyed the outdoors and being active, so being involved with CVTA was a perfect fit for her. Trailbuilding is her favorite activity because it combines the outdoors with hiking, playing in the dirt and being around amazing people.
|Dianne Jennings, Director at Large
Dianne is an enthusiastic hiker and a lover of history. She combines these two passions by leading groups along the California Emigrant Trail through Carson Valley and up and over the Sierra Nevada, “History really comes alive when you struggle up the same trails and around the same obstacles that the gold-seekers faced in their rush to California in 1849.” Recently, Dianne journeyed even further back in history when she walked a portion of the 500-mile Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route in Spain. She would like to see more opportunities for long-distance walking here in the US, and has pioneered a 5-day walking route from Gardnerville to Minden. Closer to home, her favorite trails are the Eagle Ridge Trail and the River Fork Ranch Trail. She joined the CVTA Board of Directors in 2021.
|Vickie Kieffer, Treasurer
Vickie has been in Genoa for 10 years and appreciates all the hiking opportunities our Valley has to offer. “The CVTA has developed an amazing trail system and I want to be a part of it! I love the fact that I can step out my back door and hike all the way to the TRT.” Coming from Flagstaff, Arizona she was able to do lots of hiking, river rafting, and backpacking in the Grand Canyon. With an education in business and 20 years of experience as an Administrative Officer, she brings behind the scenes skills such as budgeting, fund raising, grant writing, and outreach.
| Linda Kleiner, Secretary
Growing up in New Jersey, Linda spent time at the shore, not the mountains. She and husband Ed started a native seed company in Reno in 1992 and moved the operation to the Carson Valley in 2000, with sons Evan and Eric. Linda is on the board of GreenACTnv and is currently a mentor through Tahoe Youth & Family Services. She enjoys hiking the trails with gal pals.
| Judy Larquier, VP/Outreach and Publicity
Judy was born and raised in Southern California but quickly moved to Fairbanks, Alaska after graduation from high school. After 17 years of beautiful summers, incredible Northern Lights and extremely cold winters, she traded in her boxing glove mittens for a more temperate climate. She has resided in Carson Valley for 30 years and appreciates all the easily accessible outdoor sports available close to home. She likes backcountry skiing, hiking, kayaking, backpacking and domestic and foreign travel. She comes from a management and public relations background and retired three years ago from Western Nevada College’s Community Education Department.
|Carlo Luri, Director at Large
Carlo has been on the board of the Carson Valley Trails Association since 2011. Prior to joining the board he was active in other volunteer organizations such as the National Ski Patrol and Search and Rescue. Carlo’s favorite pastimes are skiing, cycling, kayaking, and just about any other activity that can be enjoyed outdoors. He is passionate about promoting the connection between trails and economic vitality and serves on the boards of the Carson Valley Visitors Authority and Carson Valley Chamber of Commerce.
|Joel Potter, President Elect
Born in South Lake Tahoe and moving to the Carson Valley shortly thereafter, Joel has spent a majority of his 38+ years as a Douglas County resident. After graduating from Douglas High in 1999, he made the decision to give Southern California a try. This however, only lasted a couple of years, as he quickly learned he preferred the serenity and beauty of the Carson Valley over that of California. He met the beautiful woman who would later become his wife in 2006 and they married in 2010. His son was born in 2011 and his daughter in 2013. They enjoy camping, exploring Nevada in our side by side, hiking and biking. He grew up riding BMX but within the last 10(ish) years discovered mountain biking which, in turn, piqued his interest in finding a way to help with our local trails. He is an Associate Engineer for the Nevada Department of Transportation for whom he has been employed by since 2008. Prior to that he worked in construction as a framer and he also has a background in marketing, advertising and sales. He looks forward to contributing in whichever way he can to help develop and uphold the wonderful mission and vision of the CVTA.
|Robert Schilling, Director at Large
A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Robert relocated to the Carson Valley in 2011. With a background as a serial entrepreneur in the consumer product, high technology and biomedical technology industries, Robert quickly became engaged in multiple community organizations supporting art, music and environmentalism in the Carson Valley. As a volunteer for The Nature Conservancy at River Fork Ranch, Robert was responsible for corporate and community engagement and worked closely recruiting hundreds of volunteers to aid in multiple trail projects for CVTA – including construction of the Clear Creek Trail.
Joining our Board in 2021, Robert is looking forward to contributing wherever needed to ensure the growth and success of the organization and the continued access to a world class trails system for all.
Look for Robert (and his black lab “Porter”) out on the trails!
|Jeremy Vlcan, VP/Trail Operations
Jeremy oversees the planning, design, construction and maintenance of trails around Carson Valley. He has worked and been active in the Nevada outdoors and the west for over 15 years. Jeremy’s contributions to the CVTA are to help establish and maintain a high quality system of trails for the benefit of residents and visitors to experience and enjoy.