OLT staff members handle the on-the-ground work, both in the office and out in the field.

Jerry DeBacker
Executive Director
(509) 557-6306 

Jerry began serving as Executive Director of OLT in 2016. He brings a wealth of land trust experience, having worked for the Sagebrush Steppe Land Trust (ID) and Whatcom Land Trust (WA). He was the founding executive director of Prickly Pear Land Trust in Helena, Montana.

Jerry has assisted two organizations in securing national accreditation and has secured permanent conservation of trail corridors, nature reserves, agricultural lands, mitigation properties, and public parks.

“My goal is fairly simple, work with people who wish to protect and steward nature,” explained Jerry. “I’ve been fortunate to serve as a conduit for people’s best intentions- and for that I’m very grateful!”

Jerry, and his wife Ellen, have always enjoyed camping, skiing, biking, and river running with their two daughters, son-in-law, and two granddaughters.

If you wish to learn more about how you might protect and preserve your land- you will find Jerry very willing to spend time explaining what is possible. “Don’t hesitate to ask for help, figuring out solutions and finding ways to DO conservation is something I truly enjoy!” says Jerry.

Bryan Cook
(509) 557-6306

Bryan joined OLT in 2015. He handles all our vitals– bookkeeping, record keeping, HR and more.

As the song goes, Bryan “left a good job in the City” when he and his wife Kirsten relocated from Seattle to Okanogan in 2011. They lived on their property in two small sheds (total of less than 300 sq ft.) without power or running water for more than two years until they were able to build and move into their dream house in 2014.

Bryan’s career has involved many a messy desk that comes with the territory of program management and administration, working in these areas in governmental, corporate, and non-profit settings,

Bryan is originally from the East Coast and earned his BA in Asian Studies from Connecticut College. He also holds an MA in Environment and Community from Antioch University Seattle. He has now been out West longer than he was back East, and rest assured, now roots for the Seahawks over the Patriots!

In his spare time, Bryan enjoys reading, playing guitar, hiking, snow shoeing, and cooking all those foods you can’t get at restaurants in this area (which is a big list!). He and Kirsten also enjoy traveling, especially when it involves snorkeling.

Anna Burica
Conservation Associate
(509) 557-6306

Anna joined OLT in 2017. Anna assists in the acquisition of conservation easements and conducts community outreach with a focus in the Okanogan River watershed.

Growing up in rural McCall, Idaho, Anna spent her time enjoying the expanse of open space readily available to her. Spending her summers hiking and camping and her winters skiing, she developed a love and appreciation for the splendor of the outdoors. It was there that she started on a path towards conservation work.

Anna attended Colorado State University (CSU) and earned a B.S. in Natural Resources Management with a Minor in Forestry and a B.A. in Sociology with a concentration in Criminology and Criminal Justice. It was while studying at CSU that she learned about conservation easements and was inspired.  From there she attended the University Of Denver Sturm College Of Law and earned a J.D. and is a member of the Colorado State Bar.

During school and since graduation she has gathered relevant knowledge and developed skills that she use in OLT’s conservation endeavors, including experience with GIS and GPS data manipulation, drafting conservation easements, stewardship of conserved properties, record keeping, fundraising and policy development.

In her spare time Anna enjoys hiking, camping, cooking, and playing with her dog.