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Committed to Preserving and Protecting the Buffalo River Watershed

Leadership: Meet the Team

Alison Lee


Alison is a criminal defense/appellate attorney at the law firm of Norwood & Norwood, P.A., in Northwest Arkansas. Previously, she worked for the U.S. Forest Service as a guide in Blanchard Springs Caverns, and as a law clerk in the real estate department for Walmart, Inc. She attended the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville where she received her J.D. and a B.A. in English. Alison grew up in Morning Star, Arkansas, just a few miles from South Maumee, where she learned to swim, canoe, hike, and camp at a very early age. The Buffalo River played an integral role in her childhood, and Alison is dedicated to helping preserve the beauty of the river for future generations.

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Timothy T. Jones

Vice President

Timothy T. Jones practices natural resources law.  He formerly worked in the areas of food and agriculture in Northwest Arkansas, and for the U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the Arkansas Attorney General. Jones traces his family history to the middle Buffalo in the late-1800s.  He became familiar with the river at a very early age. He canoes, fishes and hikes the watershed frequently. Timothy holds a B.A. from the University of Tulsa, a J.D. from the University of Arkansas, and an LL.M. from George Washington University.

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Mike Mills


Mike Mills is the founder and CEO of the Buffalo Outdoor Center, Green Energy Products and Voices Entertainment, all headquartered in Ponca, Arkansas. He is a member of numerous boards and foundations, including the Arkansas Travel Council and the Arkansas State Parks, Recreation and Travel Commission. He served in the United States Marine Corps from 1969-1971. From 1974-1976, he managed Lost Valley Lodge in Ponca, Arkansas. In 2009 Mike became President of the America Outdoor Association. He was the Director of Tourism for the State of Arkansas from 1982-1986. He graduated with a B.S. from Hendrix College.


Jamie Claire Kiser


Jamie Claire Kiser is the Director of Merger & Acquisition Services at Zweig Group in Fayetteville, Arkansas. She is currently serving as the Treasurer of the Buffalo River Foundation. Jamie Claire received her B.A. Cum Laude in History, her J.D., and her MBA, all from the University of Arkansas. Jamie Claire grew up in Northwest Arkansas and has enjoyed the Buffalo River since floating trips in elementary school.


Colene Gaston

Board Member

Colene Gaston is the Staff Attorney for the Beaver Water District, the water supplier for much of Northwest Arkansas. Colene received her B.A. with honors in Biology from Austin College and her J.D. from The University of Texas School of Law. She has over twenty-five years of experience with environmental issues. Colene has worked with legal services on the Navajo Reservation, with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Attorney's Office in Boston, Massachusetts, and in private practice in Fayetteville, Arkansas. She currently serves on the Advisory Board of the Fayetteville Natural Heritage Association.

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Ben Milburn

Board Member

Ben Milburn is the President and CEO of Buffalo River Outfitters and founder of RiverTrail Manufacturing, both located in Silver Hill, Arkansas. He is a member of several trade organizations associated with resort and livery services and tourism in Arkansas. He attended Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas, studying biology and anthropology for 2 years before transferring to the University of Arkansas where he received his B.S. in Administrative Management. He is an Eagle Scout and proud supporter of the Boy Scouts of America.


Dr. Joel Carver

Board Member

Dr. Carver is a practicing physician in Northwest Arkansas where he specializes in cardiovascular disease. His parents were instrumental in early conservation of the Buffalo, a tradition he continues. Dr. Carver is a graduate of the University of Arkansas School for Medical Sciences.


Mo Elliott

Board Member

Mo is a founder and owner of Fayettechill, and outdoor clothing and supplies company in Fayetteville, Arkansas.  He is a 2016 "Outdoor 30 under 30" honoree, and a 2011 graduate of the Sam Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas.

Jeff Rickard

Jeff Rickard

Board Member

Jeff practices as an in-house attorney for Walmart Inc.  He attended the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville where he received a J.D. and a B.S. in Environmental Soil and Water Science.  Jeff spent his youth camping, fishing, and hiking in the Mulberry River watershed.  He learned about the importance of preservation and restoration from his grandfather, who worked for the Forest Service and the Arkansas Game & Fish Commission.  Jeff joined the Buffalo River Foundation Board to help continue this family tradition.  He resides in Bentonville with his wife, Kim, and their three children, Michael, Noah, and Lydia.

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Kenneth Smith

Board Member Emeritus

Ken is a leader in the development of the Buffalo River Trail, and the author of the Buffalo River Handbook. He was formerly a civil engineer and park planner for the National Park Service from 1962-1974, and Education Director of The Ozark Society from 1974-1977. He co-authored the first master plan for development and use of the Buffalo National River. He holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, from the University of Arkansas, and a M.S. in Natural Resources Administration from the University of Michigan.


Ross Noland

Executive Director

Ross Noland is an environmental attorney and conservation advocate. As Executive Director of the Buffalo River Foundation, Ross works with landowners to realize their conservation objectives, recruits new donors, and conducts field activities on BRF easements and properties. Ross is an avid whitewater paddler who grew up floating Arkansas's wild and scenic waterways. Ross and his wife Ali are now passing their love of the Buffalo River on to their two young children.  Ross holds a B.A. and J.D. from the University of Arkansas, and an LL.M. in Environmental Law from George Washington University.

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