Who We Are

Our Mission

Bringing Idahoans together for economically and environmentally sustainable actions to address our changing environment and improve the quality of life for all residents.  ISEC's focus is on technical solutions to address changing weather, water availability, land use, and pressures from a rapidly increasing population. 

Board of Directors

Stephanie Walsh, President 

Stephanie Walsh, president of the Idaho Sustainability and Energy Coalition (ISEC)

A native of Idaho Falls, Stephanie received her degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Idaho.  Stephanie is a licensed professional engineer with 30 years of engineering, management, and business experience.  In 2005, she formed Walsh Engineering Services, a full-service Engineering/Architecture (E/A) firm that quickly grew from a one-person start-up to employing approximately 100 technical and support personnel.  Stephanie retired in 2019, and has since devoted her time to hiking, skiing, traveling, and non-profit work.

As well as leading ISEC, Stephanie is currently on the board of the Museum of Idaho and is a past president of the Partnership for Science and Technology in Idaho Falls, ID.  She is a strong believer in lifelong education and has supported the formation of the College of Eastern Idaho (CEI), guest-lectured at local middle and high schools, and supported the addition of technical classes/certifications at the University of Idaho/Idaho Falls campus and CEI.

Stephanie believes that our quality of life in Idaho depends on valuing and sustaining the resources we currently enjoy.  As a businesswoman and daughter of 4th generation Idaho farmers, she both appreciates the natural beauty of Idaho and understands the importance of natural resources to a strong economy.  Stephanie is a problem-solver by nature, and believes that Idaho is poised to take a strong lead in the energy transition.  She also believes that by addressing climate change head on, Idaho will build a stronger economy and protect its resources, industries, and citizens. 

Linda Montgomery, Vice President 

Linda Montgomery is a retired attorney who practiced environmental law for 30 years, 20 of which she was the head in-house lawyer for energy, construction, and government research and environmental clean-up firms. Linda worked on environmental contracts for the EPA, Army Corps of Engineers, Department of Interior, Forest Service, and the Department of Energy.

Linda was the Idaho National Laboratory’s (INL’s) General Counsel supervising staff and teaching leadership/management to new managers. In the early 2000s, Linda designed the clean-up plan for a nuclear weapons factory, taking the project from an estimated 65 years to 7 years, saving $30 billion in taxpayer money. In 1989, while in law school, Linda started the environmental law society at the University of Kansas, which is still operating today.  

Linda has served in Fortune 50 public companies, non-profit companies, government contractors, and start-up companies. She was named to Who’s Who in the Practice of Law, was awarded one of the National Law Journal’s 50 legal trailblazers in energy and environmental law, and was a 2019 winner of the Idaho Business Review’s ICON award. She serves on several non-profit boards, including the Museum of Idaho, where, as board chair, she oversaw the restructuring of the board, a $5M building expansion, and the search and hiring of a new executive director. Linda is well known for her practical advice, innovative ideas, and organizational skills. In addition to serving as the Vice President of the Idaho Sustainability and Energy Coalition, she is consulting and teaching part-time for the College of Eastern Idaho.

Karen Baker, Treasurer 

Karen Baker is an experienced and highly respected nonprofit leader and community organizer.  Karen recently retired as Executive Director of the Museum of Idaho, where she led the organization to become the state's premier history and science center  Karen has also served as the Director of Community Education at the Vista Hermosa Foundation and the Executive Director of the Washington State STEM Education Foundation.  She has a degree in Economics from the University of Colorado, Boulder, and integrates economics and fiscal responsibility into all of her jobs and advisory roles.

Karen was recognized by the Idaho Business Review as one of the 25 most influential names in the non-profit sector in Idaho in 2022--the 25 Power List.  She was also awarded the 2021 Woman of Influence (Idaho Statesman, Post Register) and the 2020 CEO of Influence by the Idaho Statesman.

Karen is an inspiring leader known for innovative, high-impact results across her multiple non-profit and for-profit organizations.  With a unique blend of strategic insight, financial acumen, and emphasis on social responsibility, Karen has earned the deep trust and confidence of the communities she has supported.

Chris Ischay, Director 

Chris grew up in Willoughby, Ohio, and has called Idaho Falls, Idaho home for 32 years. Chris recently retired from his position as Department Manager at the Idaho National Laboratory, where he started their sustainability program in 2007, and oversaw the Sustainable INL Program in support of INL’s Net-Zero initiative. Chris's INL career started in 1991, and he worked on a number of energy-saving projects, homeland security initiatives, and national programs. During that time, he also served a yearlong detail assignment in Washington, DC. Prior to his arrival at INL, Chris worked at 5 nuclear power plants in Arizona and Wisconsin. Chris has a degree in electronic engineering and completed environmental engineering graduate courses at the University of Idaho. He is a certified Project Management Professional and is currently responsible for ensuring INL meets or exceeds Strategic Sustainability Performance Plan goals. 

In his free time, Chris enjoys hiking, camping, climbing, and exploring backcountry areas in the Yellowstone-Teton areas. He is an avid runner, and enjoys running ½ Marathons and pacing other racers to help them meet their running goals. Although not a fan of long winters, Chris does cross-country ski as time allows and makes the most of the cold Idaho winter months. He served as a Board Member and Chair of the Idaho Section of the American Nuclear Society, and other board memberships over the last 30 years. Chris is passionate about leaving the environment and the world we live in a better place than we inherited it and focuses on optimization and waste elimination to meet financial and greenhouse gas reduction goals. He enjoys mentoring youth and is thrilled each and every time a young person’s eyes are opened to learning and the great possibilities each of them has in front of them.

Chris was awarded a 2022 Department of Energy Sustainability Champion Award.  The DOE Sustainability Awards recognize the outstanding contributions of individuals and teams at DOE facilities across the country. Sustainability Champions are individuals who have advanced DOE’s sustainability goals for buildings, water, waste, and acquisitions, among other areas. Chris's award comes on the heels of other sustainability awards, including the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool Purchaser Award, DOE Sustainability Award for Innovative Approach to Sustainability, and Governor’s Award for Leadership in Energy Efficiency in the Building category.  

Keith Daum, Director 

Keith is retired environmental scientist and program manager with an almost 40-year career, working at both the Idaho National Laboratory and RTI International in North Carolina.  His work included environment/energy issues, radiochemical forensics, nuclear fuels, and detection of explosives and illicit drugs.  In all of these areas he focused on determining data quality requirements and then developing programs to collect data that would meet those requirements.  Keith has a PhD in Chemistry and a BS/MS in Environmental Sciences.

Keith grew up in El Paso Texas, where his budding interest in the environment was encouraged by some great Boy Scout leaders and parents who valued visiting National Parks.  After finishing his MS, he moved to North Carolina where he lived and worked for 12 years. In 1990, Keith moved to Idaho Falls to join the INL.  He and his family have enjoyed the many outdoor activities Idaho offers, including rafting, kayaking, hiking, and biking.  He also enjoys travel to far-off and near places, and dabbling in archeology and anthropology. 

Other volunteer activities have included Friends for Learning, Boy Scout Troop 382, Science Olympiad Coach for Skyline/Eagle Rock, Hospice of Eastern Idaho, AYSO Soccer, and Mountain Brewers Beer Festival.     

Joe Mitchell, Ex Officio board Member 

Joe Mitchell was born in North Idaho and lived for 18 years on the Coeur d’Alene Indian Reservation. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Idaho, and is a licensed Professional Engineer in several states. Joe was a design engineer for Argonne National Laboratory and Vice President of Engineering for Walsh Engineering Services.

Joe was founder and president of Mountain Friends, a non-profit company that provided education and performed community development projects in Yunnan province, China. He lived without a vehicle or central heating in China with his wife Kim and children Anna and Niels for seven years. Their home was a Tibetan style house at an altitude of over 10,000 feet and included a variety of dogs, pigs, chickens, and local houseguests.

Joe’s concern for environmental sustainability comes from a firm conviction that people have a calling to be responsible, joyful stewards of our natural resources, using only what we need and leaving conditions better than we found them. He enjoys all types of outdoor activities including whitewater rafting, canoeing, backpacking, and conversations around a small, clean fire.

Joe has recently retired from both engineering and Mountain Friends to focus on writing, volunteering, and traveling with Kim.  Joe and Kim are assisting legal refugees in Idaho through their non-profit, Bridge Builders of Idaho.  Bridge Builders is currently assisting Afghan and Ukrainian refugees resettle, find employment, and advance their education in eastern Idaho.