The Center for Western Priorities is a nonpartisan conservation and advocacy organization that serves as a source of accurate information, promotes responsible policies and practices, and ensures accountability at all levels to protect land, water, and communities in the American West.
Based in Denver, Colorado, the Center advances responsible conservation and energy practices in the West. We encourage open, public debate and work to advance those discussions online, in the media, and throughout Western communities by promoting responsible solutions and original research.
The Center is a project of the Resources Legacy Fund.
Prior to joining CWP, Jen served as the State Director for U.S. Senator Mark Udall of Colorado. Jen grew up in Colorado and is a graduate of the University of Colorado, Boulder. As a native of the West, Jen has always been passionate about protecting our public lands. Her favorite national park in Colorado is the Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve.
Aaron joined CWP in 2015 after 14 years as a journalist and broadcast news producer, executive producer, and news director. He co-hosts CWP’s podcast, The Landscape, and works to expand the Center’s reach among reporters and the general public. A native of Tucson, Arizona, Aaron grew up exploring the Sonoran Desert and now enjoys hiking with his kids and impersonating a skier in the Rocky Mountains.
Director of Campaigns and Special Projects
Lauren leads the planning and execution of CWP’s advocacy campaigns. Before joining CWP, she served as a policy advisor at the Interior Department during the Obama administration, and worked for former Colorado Senator Mark Udall. She is a graduate of Colorado College and the University of Colorado Leeds School of Business. She enjoys Colorado’s parks, public lands, and abundant outdoor recreation opportunities in all seasons.
Rachael oversees CWP’s conservation policy program. Prior to joining CWP in 2022, Rachael served as a senior policy analyst at Western Resource Advocates where her portfolio included a variety of state-level conservation policy initiatives across the West. She earned her Master of Public Administration degree, with a concentration in Environmental Policy, Management and Law, from the University of Colorado’s School of Public Affairs, and her Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Williams College. On weekends, you can find her climbing high peaks and camping with her kids.
Kate joined CWP in July 2021 after two at Utah’s statewide public radio station, KUER, as its Southeast Utah bureau reporter. In that role, she covered Bears Ears National Monument and public land management issues extensively. She now co-hosts CWP’s podcast, The Landscape, and manages CWP’s social media. She works remotely from Salt Lake City. On the weekends, she enjoys hiking in the canyons around Salt Lake, thrifting, walking her dog Tony, swimming, and skiing.
Policy and Design Associate
Lilly is responsible for policy research tasks and design of print and digital products. She is a graduate of Macalester College and the University of Vermont. Prior to joining the CWP team, she spent six years doing communications for Jefferson County Open Space in Colorado. On the weekends, she can be found camping, hiking with her dog, or snowboarding.
Outreach and Campaigns Associate
Sterling joined CWP in December 2022 as a Wyss Fellow and provides support for CWP’s advocacy campaigns. He is a graduate of the University of Minnesota Twin Cities, where he studied political science, psychology, and sustainability, and sang in a few bands that were consistently on the cusp of being “almost recognizable, locally.” Prior to joining CWP, he was a volunteer manager at HandsOn Twin Cities, where he held events for corporate employees to volunteer at local nonprofits. On weekends, you can find Sterling rock climbing, visiting local coffee shops, shooting photography, thrifting, and camping.
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