Mark Riskedahl, Executive Director

Mark grew up in a little house on the prairie in rural North Dakota. He received a B.A. from the University of Minnesota and his J.D. from Lewis and Clark Law School. Before attending law school, Mark worked in the social services, primarily with people dealing with autism. During law school, Mark worked as the NEDC Law Clerk, a Project Coordinator, and Student Director. Following graduation, Mark helped institutionalize NEDC’s capacity to protect the environment and natural resources of the Pacific Northwest by becoming the organization’s first full-time Executive Director.


Jonah Sandford, Staff Attorney

Jonah grew up in Missoula, Montana, and moved to Portland in 2003 after graduating from the University of Montana. As a law student at Lewis & Clark Law School, Jonah worked with NEDC as a Student Director and Project Coordinator, and clerked for Earthjustice, the Center for Biological Diversity, and WaterWatch of Oregon. Prior to joining NEDC as Staff Attorney, Jonah served as Executive Director of the Deschutes River Alliance. In his free time, Jonah enjoys canoeing, hiking, and goofing off with his son Jasper.


Austin Starnes, Law Clerk

Austin grew up in a large family in a small rural community in central Indiana, attended Indiana University, and moved to Portland in 2019 to attend Lewis & Clark Law School. As a law student, Austin has volunteered his time with NEDC’s Public Lands & Wildlife group, subsequently served as one of the group’s Project Coordinators, and was then hired by NEDC as the 2021-2022 Law Clerk. Austin has also worked with Wildlands Network and participated in the Earthrise Law Clinic. Austin’s passion for the environment is all-encompassing, but his education and experience has mostly focused on public lands and wildlife issues. In his free time, Austin enjoys spending time with his cat, Siri, hiking, bird-watching, running, and just generally being outside.