Skip to main content


{Vacant} – Executive Director
Dr. Dan Collins – President
Dr. Evan Iverson – Director of Science and Research
{Vacant} – Secretary
Kris Holstrom – Treasurer

Program Directors
Dr. Dan Collins
– Sustainable Communities and Place-Based Eduction (SCAPE)
Dr. Evan Iverson – Telluride Environmental Science and Engineering Laboratory (TESEL)
Dr. Evan Iverson – Prospect Basin Fens Research
Lia Cristadoro – Watershed Education Program
Pam Lifton-Zoline – Clute Science Fiction Library
Joanna Spindler – Talking Gourds

Masters in Environmental Management Telluride Cohort (MEM Telluride)
Dr. Evan Iverson
– Western Colorado University Liaison
Kris Holstrom
– Student Community Coordinator

Telluride Mushroom Festival
Laurie Lundquist
– Mushroom Committee Chair
Dr. Britt Bunyard
– Programming Director
Matt Guertin
– Co-Operations Manager
Teal Stetson-Lee
– Co-Operations Manager

Dr. Dan Collins

President & Chief Investigator SCAPE

As president of the Board of Trustees of the Telluride Institute in Colorado, he has helped to develop and administer a number of environmentally-based curricula in the Colorado River Basin. His recent work, “The Colorado River Re-Storied,” focuses on locative media, participatory research methods, and documentary video with an environmental focus. Dan holds an MA from Stanford in Education, an MFA in Sculpture/New Forms from UCLA, and a PhD in Interdisciplinary Humanities from Arizona State University. Dan is the founding Co-Director of the PRISM lab (a 3D visualization and prototyping facility) and heads the first-year art program in the School of Art (artCORE) at Arizona State University. As a member of the Intermedia faculty at ASU, Dan teaches courses in the School of Art and the new Digital Culture program in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts (HIDA). Over the past two decades, Dan has collaborated on a variety of discipline-based research projects that harness digital media for 3D visualization, prototyping, and archiving.

Dr. Evan Iverson

Director, Trustee, Scientist

Evan is the Director of Science and Research for the Telluride Institute. He is also a Trustee and on the Executive Committee. Evan moved to Telluride in 2016 to pursue his interests in environmental science and to build the Telluride Environmental Science and Engineering Laboratory (TESEL), for which he is the Director. Evan has a strong interest in systems biology, particularly for high-mountain soils, wetlands, and forests. He also does work in microbiology, plant morphogenesis, mycology, and biodiversity/biocomplexity. Work at TESEL also includes the development of specialized instrumentation for unattended in situ environmental monitoring and the application of physics and engineering principles to address climate resilience, particularly related to small-scale renewable energy. Evan is also interested in STEM education through project-based learning, and is a volunteer at the Pinhead Institute and a leader for the establishment of a Telluride Community Makerspace.

Evan holds a BS in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of New Mexico, and MS and PhD degrees in Applied Mathematics, with a focus on computer science and physics, from the University of Arizona. He was at the Los Alamos National Laboratory for 13 years where he conducted research in computational physics, computer science, nonlinear dynamics and chaos, complex systems, and artificial neural networks. In 1990 he joined Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) where he led R&D in remote sensing, computer vision, machine learning, artificial intelligence, and digital signal processing. In 1998 he became a Vice President and served as the Manager of SAIC’s Imagery Technology and Systems Division from 1998 to 2006. This was followed by a year serving as Chief Scientist of SAIC’s Reconnaissance and Surveillance Operation. In 2007 he joined Rincon Research Corporation and served as Chief Scientist and Program Manager until transitioning to Consulting Employee and moving to Telluride.

Kris Holstrom

Treasurer, Student Community Coordinator

Kris Holstrom is currently San Miguel County Commissioner from District 3. She is the owner of Tomten Farm, a high-altitude demonstration and education farm at 9000’ above Sawpit, Colorado. Kris grew up in Ft. Collins, Colorado and has lived in San Miguel County since 1987. From 2007 through 2013, she was the Regional Sustainability Coordinator and Executive Director of EcoAction Partners, a non-profit focused on sustainability issues in the San Miguel Watershed. Prior to that she worked for the Telluride
Institute as its Sustainability Director. Kris has a B.S. in Forest Management from Utah State University and an M.S. in Horticulture from Virginia Tech. She has a diverse background having held many different positions in the region from cleaning houses to operating a small saw mill. She co-founded and is Board President for SWIRL – the Southwest Institute for Resilience – a non-profit that supports community gardens, greenhouses and the Telluride Farmers Market. Kris has spent over three decades educating the public and youth about sustainability issues including renewable energy, food security, waste reduction and “out of the box” systems thinking to contribute to regional solutions to current challenges.

Lia Cristadoro

Watershed Education Program

Lia completed her undergraduate degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado Boulder. Since, she has been inspired to promote sustainable community development through scientific and cultural efforts. One of her passions is entomology, specifically the relationships between insect health, climate change, social implications, and modern agricultural practices. Additionally, Lia is incredibly motivated to integrate Indigenous voices and perspectives into creating environmental management strategies. She has been working to create a graduate school project that considers all of these elements, while addressing the distinct needs of Telluride and the surrounding region. Away from school, she spends her time coaching gymnastics, climbing, and skiing. Working with children and devoting her time to exploring outdoor spaces has enhanced her appreciation for community and the value it holds in addressing environmental problems. Beyond this, she recognizes that providing environmental education to children from a young age is the recipe for generating a healthy, resilient, and climate-friendly world. She plans to pursue her future endeavors with a dedication to progressive science, sustainability, environmental justice, and unity.

Pamela Lifton-Zoline

Clute Science Fiction Library Program Director

Pam is a writer and environmental educator who has a long history of projects created at the intersection of speculative fiction, environmental education, and politics. Zoline is admired for her experimental approach to both the form of the short story and the genre of science fiction, especially for using the language of science to interrogate the scientific world view. Her 1967 novel, Heat Death of the Universe, is structured in a loosely encyclopedic style, with 54 numbered paragraphs narrated in a deliberately matter-of-fact third-person voice. As the narrative veers back and forth among scientific explanations, descriptions of household events, and philosophical speculation, the cumulative effect is of a mind and a culture on the verge of collapse. Zoline has also written a children’s book (Annika and the Wolves), libretti for two operas (Harry Houdini and the False and True Occult, The Forbidden Experiment), and original science fiction radio plays for the Telluride Science Fiction Project.

Laurie Lundquist

Mushroom Committee Chair

Laurie Lundquist is an environmental artist with deep interests in both the natural and engineered systems at work in the landscape. Laurie’s connection to Telluride stems back to 1992 when she and Dan Collins initiated the first Deep Creek School summer session. The school ran for eight consecutive summers, bringing art students and faculty from universities far and wide to the mountains to live on site in tents. While in residence at Deep Creek Students and faculty engaged in an intense dialogue and art making process around the topics of: ecology, technology and the body. The Telluride Institute played a great support role for the Deep Creek School, in Laurie’s words “that synergy continues with the mindful ecological programming that TI has sustained for 30 years.” Laurie studied Landscape Management at Penn State University, attended the Skowhegan School of Art in Maine, received a BFA from the Maine College of Art and an MFA in Sculpture from ASU. She has been working as a public artist for over 20 years. She has collaborated with nationally acclaimed architects, engineers and planners to integrate art into the overall design of civic projects. Her public projects call attention to the site in ways that are aesthetically engaging and environmentally responsible. For further information, visit:

Dr. Britt Bunyard

Telluride Mushroom Festival Program Director

Britt Bunyard, PhD, is the founder, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief of the mycology journal Fungi. Britt has worked academically as a mycologist his entire career, teaching a number of university courses and writing scientifically for many research journals and popular science magazines. He has served as an editor for mycological and entomological research journals, and mushroom guide books. A popular evangelizer on all things fungal, Britt has been featured on NPR’s All Things Considered, PBS’s NOVA and Wisconsin Foodie television programs, and in The Atlantic, Vogue, Forbes, Saveur, Women’s World, and others. He serves as Executive Director of the Telluride Mushroom Festival. He co-authored Amanitas of North America (2020; The FUNGI Press), Mushrooms and Macrofungi of Ohio and Midwestern States (2012; The Ohio State University Press), and the forthcoming The Beginner’s Guide to Mushrooms (coming November 2020; Quarry Books).

Click on any of the above images to learn more about and get contact information for our wonderful faculty & staff.