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BioRegions International
P.O. Box 6541
Bozeman, MT 59771

(406) 599-7755 Email us »

Our Team:

The BioRegions Team consists of individuals from a diversity of  occupations and  disciplines, all contributing in their own ways to fulfillment of the BioRegions mission.

Our Staff

Cliff Montagne, Director

On BOD, liaison with Montana State University BioRegions Program, overall direction for BioRegions International, fund raising in collaboration with BOD

Muughi (Munkhtsetseg Dorjjantsan), Mongolian Education Program


Lora Soderquist, Home Bioregion Coordinator

Office organization, legal updates/filings, financial accounting, communications on website, blogs

Loren Barber Franklin, Communications Coordinator

Website, liaison for student projects, social media

Sunjee (Sunjidmaa Tsagaan), Ulaan Baatar Coordinator

Help organize trip and project logistics, provide communication between project areas and BioRegions, oversee projects on-site and at field stations

Mishig (Mishig Jigjidsuren), Darhad Coordinator

Help organize trip and project logistics, provide communication between project areas and BioRegions, oversee projects on-site and at field stations

Turbat (Turbat Gochoo), Orkhon Coordinator

Help organize trip and project logistics, provide communication between project areas and BioRegions, oversee projects on-site and at field stations

Board of Directors

Joan Montagne

As a founding board member of BioRegions International, Joan has traveled to Mongolia since 1998. She serves as the secretary/treasurer of the board. Joan is an environmental, community and social justice activist.

Cliff Montagne, Ph.D

Cliff is a Professor Emeritus and Adjunct Instructor for the Land Resources and Environmental Science Department at Montana State University in Bozeman, MT. As a Holistic Management Certified Associate Educator, Director and co-founder of the BioRegions Programs, and emeritus professor, Dr. Montagne works to actualize the application of systems thinking and holistic management in various settings in North America, Japan, Mongolia, and Russia, with emphasis on Mongolia and the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

Bolgiv Bazartseren, Ph.D.

Bolgiv has an MS in Wildlife Ecology from Cornell and a PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from U of Pennsylvania. He has been the Chair and Professor of the Ecology Dept at the National University of Mongolia. He has recently been appointed Vice President for Research and International Affairs. Much of his research has focused on the environment of Lake Huvsgul and ramifications of climate change.

Peter Heidmann, DVM

Peter is a specialist equine veterinarian, with interest on infectious and zoonotic disease epidemiology. He is the founding partner of Montana Equine, the equine veterinary hospital in Bozeman Montana. His international work has included projects in Baja California Sur, Nayarit, and Jalisco (Mexico), Kathmandu and Jomsom (Nepal), and the Orkhon Valley (Mongolia).

Erich Pessl, M.D.

Erich is a family physician who lives in Bozeman, Montana. He has worked on international health projects throughout his career, including working with BioRegions in Mongolia since 2013. His work has included a vaccination project in Paraguay, research on traditional medicine in the Peruvian Andes, an eye health project in Kenya with Engineers without Borders, and more recently work with a mobile surgical vehicle project in Ecuador. His is drawn to the traditional, mountain culture of the Mongolian people and their interest in maintaining a healthy lifestyle and preserving their breath-taking natural environment.

William Harjo, Ph.D.

William is the President American Native Services, and a member of the Muskogee (Creek) Nation. William consults with First Nation non profits throughout the USA to ensure that grants are culturally appropriate. William also serves as instructor at Montana State University in Native Food Systems.

Mark Johnstad, JD

Mark has over 30 years of experience supporting a variety of conservation and development activities across Mongolia including establishment of Mongolia’s modern system of protected areas. Mark is an international environmental consultant, and founder of Mongolia River Outfitters.

Wayne Poulsen

Wayne is an architect and community activist. He has worked with BRI in Mongolia in summers of 2000 and 2004, 2006, 2007, 2010. Blue Valley Awards/Festival and supports the artist/apprenticeship program. He is also the publisher of their children’s art book Visions of the Blue Valley. He is active in Russian Altai, Tuva on cultural preservation/awareness.

Kristin Ruppel, PhD

Kristin is a professor in the Native American Studies (NAS) Department at Montana State University (MSU). At MSU, Kristin coordinates the NAS Department’s online graduate certificate program, and serves as faculty graduate coordinator for the Department’s MA program. She has taught undergraduate and graduate levels of Federal Indian Law & Policy, Indigenous Peoples & Film, Native Food Systems, Contemporary Issues, and graduate courses in NAS Research Methodologies and NAS Theory. During summer 2016, she partnered with BioRegions and the National Science Foundation to lead a group of six Native American students (4 from MSU, 2 from tribal colleges) on a month long research expedition to the Darhad Valley. Her own research on American Indian land tenure and Indigenous Research Methodologies complements the BioRegions’ Holistic Management approach to supporting community-based endeavors in Mongolia.

Past Board of Directors

Richard Cates

Yvonne Rudman

Will Swearingen

Gordon Wiltsie

Jennifer Read

Jerry Nielsen, Ph.D.

Chris Eller

Richard Eller


Teki Tsagaan Sankey, Ph.D.

Kate Burnaby Wright

Patrick Lawrence