Key Personnel


Holly Purpura

Executive Director

Our Executive Director comes to us locally, born and raised in West Virginia. A West Virginia University Alum in the Geography department, she worked prior to FODC at National Geographic Education and the Hunger Project UK.

Now Hiring

Water Remediation Project Manager

We are seeking an energetic individual to maintain and expand environmental remediation in the watershed. The Water Remediation Project Manager will primarily work to improve water quality in Deckers Creek through coordinating the treatment of acid mine drainage and other pollutants; improving freshwater habitats; collecting and presenting water quality data; writing grants to line up funding; coordinating and overseeing construction; and other duties as assigned, including fundraising and environmental education.

Please visit to learn more about the position.


Suzanne Kepple

Education Coordinator

With a Bachelor's Degree in Environmental Science with minors in GIS and math, Suzanne started her year of service moving to Morgantown from Western Pennsylvania. Previously, she has worked as an intern and volunteer at Shenango River Watchers and Sharon Beautification Commission in Sharon, PA.

 Sarah Cayton


Sarah Cayton is a Morgantown native and a 2015 graduate of West Virginia University.  She has a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Geoscience with a minor in Communications. The past two years she’s been working on a soil remediation project in Spelter, WV cleaning up a community after contamination by a zinc smelting plant. Sarah enjoys boating, swimming, hiking, game nights with her friends and family, and almost any outdoor activity. She is very excited to join the FODC team and make an impact in her home community.


Board Members

Brian Carlson_2

Brian Carlson


Brian is an Environmental Scientist for AllStar Ecology specializing in stream ecosystems.  He is a genus level macroinvertebrate certified taxonomist through the Society for Freshwater Science.

KK Photo

Krista Kent


Krista, Director of Planning & Operations at the WVU Foundation, is a long-time South Hills resident and wants to help better the beautiful creek that runs near her house.

Kendra Hatcher

Kendra Hatcher


Kendra is a native West Virginian from the Eastern Panhandle.  She holds an undergraduate degree from West Virginia University in Geology, and returned to Morgantown after completing a Master’s of Science in Geography at Oregon State University.


Elliot Gulley


Elliot is a senior Accounting, Geography, and Political Science triple major at West Virginia University. He joined FODC after serving as our Accounting Intern over the summer of 2016. He enjoys hiking, gardening, and being outdoors whenever he can.

Rick Landenberger

Rick Landenberger

Rick grew up in southern California and moved to upstate New York as a teenager.  He maintained a close connection to nature and eventually studied environmental science and ecology in college.  Rick took a position with the US Forest Service that brought him to West Virginia in the late 1980’s.

Brad STephens 3

Brad Stephens

After receiving his J.D. from the WVU College of Law, Brad opened a practice in Morgantown. He aims to chiefly provide representation to organizations forwarding the causes of environmental stewardship.

Anna Runner

Anna Hathaway Runner

Anna has worked throughout the United States on various research and monitoring projects with an emphasis on wildlife research. She has studied endangered and threatened avian, reptile, and mammalian species in Utah, West Virginia, Connecticut, and Florida.


Jordan Young

As a Program Administrator for the Mountaineer Boys and Girls Club, Jordan has worked with Friends of Deckers Creek on numerous occasions. He is an alum of the West Virginia University Biology Department and is certified as a Master Gardener through the WVU Monongalia Extension Agency.


Chris Dale

Chris is the Communications Director at the Morgantown Utility Board. Living alongside the mouth of Deckers as it enters the Monongahela River, Chris wants to help Be the Solution to cleaning up Deckers Creek.


Christian Root

Christian is a biology and anatomy teacher at Morgantown High School. After studying Environmental Science and Policy at the University of Maryland, where he also worked in a biotechnology lab investigating the merits of using transgenic fungus to combat Chestnut Blight, he earned his Master’s in Teaching.


Aldona Bird

Aldona is a journalist with the Dominion Post, where she writes a weekly column on homesteading and living locally. She is also a freelance photographer and studied Photojournalism at Point Park University. Aldona has volunteered with Friends of Deckers Creek since 2006, when at the age of 16, she served as a regular volunteer and leader in the organization. In this role, she became a founding member of the FODC Youth Action Board. Under her expertise, input, and leadership, Aldona is interested in potentially starting a Preston County Youth Action Board.


Anna Withrow

Anna is a Brownfield Redevelopment Specialist at the Northern WV Brownfields Assistance Center, located in the WV Water Research Institute at WVU.  Formally trained as a Landscape Architect, Anna works to advance property reuse projects throughout the state, many of which are large waterfront industrial sites and rail-trails. She has a special interest in promoting ecologically responsible stormwater management and green space development. Anna is proud to be a WV native and enjoys exploring the states many wild areas.



← Haley Mutz

Haley is an environmental geoscience major at West Virginia University with minors in geology and geography, and hopes to be involved in species conservation or in environmental protection once she graduates. She enjoys animals, technology, and warm weather.


← Emma Carte

Emma is a born-and-raised Morgantown native, studying English at West Virginia University. When she's not hanging out with her dogs and cats, Emma likes reading and writing above all. She hopes to use her skills in ways that ultimately help how we treat the Earth and how we treat each other.