Your Donation to FDRD supports the local forest!

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Friends of the Dillon Ranger District (FDRD) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that, with the help of volunteers, ensures that our National Forest is not negatively impacted by its immense popularity.

With more than 60 volunteer projects on our National Forest each year, FDRD volunteers contribute thousands of hours maintaining and improving trails, planting trees, pulling invasive weeds, educating visitors, and much more. FDRD is one of the most active, locally-based outdoor stewardship organizations in the country and by volunteering with FDRD or supporting us with a financial contribution, you benefit the National Forest that makes Summit County a world-class destination.

Staff & Board
Goals/Accomplishments

FDRD Team

Meet the Friends of the Dillon Ranger District Team

Michael Connolly
Michael ConnollyExecutive Director
Mike moved to Summit County fifteen years ago and started volunteering with FDRD as a Ranger Patroller shortly thereafter. He joined the FDRD Board in 2012 and stepped into the role as FDRD Executive Director during the 2014 summer season. Mike is a graduate of the University of Michigan and the Amos Tuck School of Business Administration at Dartmouth College. After working in the corporate world on the east coast he is thrilled to now call Summit County his home. In the past, he has been a volunteer firefighter, Jr Achievement and girl scout leader, and United Way organizer. He is a member of the Summit County Rotary Club and has been active with Mountain Mentors, Summit Social Services as a foster parent, the Summit and Breckenridge Chambers, and with various other county volunteer groups. He is an avid hiker, camper, mountain biker, downhill and backcountry skier, and sailor.

Get in touch: michael@fdrd.org

Doozie Martin
Doozie MartinPrograms Manager
Doozie, who grew up in Kansas City, followed his Midwest roots to graduate school at the University of Missouri. Upon the completion of the program, he followed his love of the forest and the mountains to the high country of Summit County where he stumbled upon Friends of the Dillon Ranger District. He’s now entering his ninth season of forest stewardship with the strong volunteer community that resides in Summit County. When he’s not rubbing shoulders with volunteers in this devoted mountain community, he can be found hiking with his dog, Titus, riding his bike, camping in the woods and strummin’ on his ol’ 6-string. He hopes to make your acquaintance on an upcoming forest health project on a trail near you!

Get in touch: doozie@fdrd.org

Jen Vogler
Jen VoglerMarketing & Events Manager
Jen joins the FDRD team excited to immerse herself in all that Summit County has to offer. She recently moved up from Denver, having worked the past several years in nonprofit marketing and development roles. Originally an east coast transplant, Jen graduated from the University of Vermont and spent the first decade of her career working clinically as a physical therapist. In her free time she found herself volunteering with nonprofits and eventually decided to make a career jump. Jen completed an Executive MBA program with UC Denver in 2019 and has found herself at home working in the nonprofit sector. Outside of the office you’ll catch Jen behind her camera, hiking, snowboarding and trail running alongside her husband Chad and pup Tucker.

Get in touch: jennifer@fdrd.org

Lizzie Morrison
Lizzie MorrisonPrograms Coordinator
Lizzie is returning for her fourth trail season with FDRD. She transplanted to Colorado from the Midwest about 7 years ago. After graduating from college with a degree in Environmental Science, she looked west for outdoor conservation work. Her trail background comes from participating and leading trail crews with the Student Conservation Association and Rocky Mountain Youth Corps. She is inspired by FDRD volunteers and their dedication to giving back to their local forest. When she is not busy organizing volunteer projects and wearing her hard hat, she can be found outside biking, hiking, and skiing with her partner and powder hound Cheezy. In the winter, you can find her teaching people to glide on skinny skis at the Frisco Nordic Center. Lizzie is looking forward to digging in a borrow pit with you at one of our trail projects this summer! Happy trails!

Get in touch: lizzie@fdrd.org

Marin Oschmann
Marin OschmannEducation & Youth Programs Manager
Marin recently moved to Summit County and is very happy to be a part of the FDRD team! She was born and raised in southern Wisconsin where she was lucky enough to spend a lot of her childhood exploring the bog in her backyard. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she studied Conservation Biology and Latin American Studies, she went off to work seasonal jobs as a naturalist, ecology field instructor and farm hand all over the U.S. and abroad. Most recently she was living in Corvallis, Oregon where she coordinated garden projects and farm to school education programs with a small non-profit. She is especially passionate about land stewardship and rehabilitation, and is looking forward to connecting with volunteers while learning and doing trail work outdoors! If you see Marin on trail in her free time, she will most likely be observing moss, mushrooms or any other tiny wonders – unless it is winter, then she will be playing in the snow and cross country skiing!

Get in touch: marin@fdrd.org

The FDRD Board

Jim Borgel
Jim BorgelBoard President
Corporate Attorney at Holland & Hart
Brian Blankenmeister
Brian BlankenmeisterTreasurer
Senior Vice President at Alpine Bank
Charlotte Clarke
Charlotte ClarkeSecretary
Retired College Professor
Laurie Alexander
Laurie Alexander
Retired Software Product Manager
Jordan Mead
Jordan Mead
Forest Ecologist
Rapid Cartelli
Rapid Cartelli
Professor of Business at CMC
Eric Erslev
Eric Erslev
Retired Geology Professor
Elaine Collins
Elaine Collins
Dedicated Volunteer
Jill Hutton
Jill Hutton
Compliance Manager
Vail Resorts
Brad Piehl
Brad Piehl
Watershed Planner at JW Associates

FDRD Mission

Friends of the Dillon Ranger District (FDRD)’s Mission is to partner with the White River National Forest’s Dillon Ranger District in Summit County to provide opportunities for the community to play a more active role in the sustainable management of the local forest and to enhance the experiences of all who recreate here by:

  • Conducting high quality projects to build and maintain trails, plant new trees, promote watershed restoration and perform other services to sustain the Dillon Ranger District
  • Developing and maintaining collaborative partnerships between the Forest Service and a diverse group of local organizations, stakeholders, individuals and users of the National Forest land
  • Creating excellent educational programs for our visitors, residents and youth to promote, protect and preserve our National Forest

History of FDRD

Friends of the Dillon Ranger District (FDRD) began in 2005 as a group of local community members who wanted to collaborate with the US Forest Service, Dillon Ranger District (DRD), to play a more active role in the sustainable management of our local National Forest. At the time, Ken Waugh was the District Recreation Staff Officer for the DRD. He also recognized the need for the Forest Service to make some “friends” and the inception of FDRD became his mission. In the past 15 years, the organization has grown to a four-person, full time, year-round staff, with two summer seasonals and over 1,000 dedicated volunteers. Our programs have grown steadily in response to a high level of demand for organized, effective outdoor stewardship projects, as well as the growing popularity of recreation in Summit County. FDRD was recognized as the US Forest Service’s National “Volunteer Program of the Year” in 2010 and won 2nd Place in the Summit Daily News’ Best of Summit competition for Best Nonprofit in 2019.

Here is a list of the awards received by FDRD –

  • Caring for the Land Stewardship Award
  • Summit Foundation Outstanding Community Organization Award
  • Continental Divide Trail Alliance Partner of the Year
  • Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado Partner Organization of the Year
  • USDA Forest Service Sponsored Group of the Year Award
  • The SHIFT Youth Stewardship Award
  • Best of Summit County Award

Summer 2021 Accomplishments

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Volunteer Hours
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Bags of Trash Collected
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Feet of Trail Maintained
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Number of Youth Volunteers

Shop to Support FDRD

Buy a map at the Dillon Ranger District and support FDRD!
Location: 680 Blue River Parkway, Silverthorne, CO 80498
Phone: (970) 468-5400
Hours: Monday-Friday 8:30am-4:30pm (closed 12:30pm – 1:00pm for lunch)

Items for Sale

  • Maps
  • Hiking Guides
  • Naturalist Pocket Guides
  • OHV Guides
  • Local History Books
  • Children’s Books
  • Animal Puppets
  • FDRD t-shirts
  • FDRD hats
  • FDRD pint glasses

Educational Resources

  • Recreation Opportunity Guides (ROG) – a printed, one page guide for each individual trail in the Dillon Ranger District, complete with directions to the trailhead, trail highlights, topographic map and elevation profile

  • Local tourism brochures & magazines
  • Local wildlife displays
  • Knowledgeable front desk staff

Seasonal Permits for sale by the Dillon Ranger District (these do not benefit FDRD)

  • OHV/Snowmobile permits
  • Firewood cutting permits
  • Christmas tree cutting permits
  • Special Use Permits

Our Goals & Accomplishments

Our organization’s goals include:

  • Improving trail conditions on the National Forest in Summit County by engaging a diverse range of community members and other stakeholders in outdoor stewardship projects.
  • Providing a consistent volunteer outreach and monitoring presence on the National Forest in Summit County by engaging individual volunteers as part of FDRD’s Ranger Patrol program.
  • Providing a continuum of service learning opportunities for youth ages 6-18. Increased engagement of local, and visiting, youth remains a primary goal for FDRD in the years to come.
  • Improving natural resource conditions by engaging partners and community volunteers in a variety of volunteer service projects including ecological restoration and trail maintenance.
  • Seeking business and organization “field partners” to not only participate in field projects but also to help recruit additional sub-population of volunteers.
  • Educating the public about issues facing the National Forest, by providing and facilitating educational presentations, outreach opportunities, and interpretive hikes throughout the year.

Summer 2021

 Season Accomplishments

1,023 Volunteers

5,751 Volunteer Hours

Check Out Our Summer 2021 Accomplishments Blog