Arizona Fish & Wildlife Conservation Office
Southwest Region

Contact Information & Staff

Contact Us


Mailing Address:
Po Box 39
Pinetop, AZ 85935

Project Coordinator: Jeremy Voeltz
Phone: 928-338-4288 ext. 23

Flagstaff (Headquarters):

Mailing Address:
2500 S Pine Knoll Dr
Flagstaff, AZ 86001

Phone: 928-556-2140/2124
Fax: 928-556-2125
Project Leader: Jess Newton
Project Coordinator: Kirk Young ext. 2124


Mailing Address:
60911 Hwy 95
Parker, AZ 85344

Phone: 928-667-4785/4144
Fax: 928-667-4015
Mitch Thorson ext. 15


Our office is staffed with professionals who possess expertise in a wide variety of specialties. Individually, we are many parts: biologists, ecologists and ichthyologists; sport fish managers and outreach specialists; cartographers, grant writers and teachers; and budget and finance professionals. Collectively, we are the sum of these parts, a group of professionals who share the goal of conserving, protecting and enhancing fish and other aquatic organisms and their habitats in Arizona.


Jeremy Voeltz, Project Coordinator - Jeremy joined AZFWCO as the lead fishery biologist and project coordinator for the Pinetop office. He coordinates fisheries management activities with several Native American Tribes and other state and federal agencies. He is the Service’s lead for Apache trout recovery efforts, and is the AZFWCO lead for the Service’s Fish Passage Program in Arizona.

Jennifer Johnson, Fish Biologist - Jennifer Johnson received a B.S. from the University of Missouri. Her current work focuses on the recovery of the threatened Apache trout and providing fishery management assistance to various Indian tribes, state, and other federal agencies in Arizona. Jennifer also serves as AZFWCO's education and outreach lead and safety officer.


Jess Newton, Project Leader - Jess Newton began working at the AZFWCO in March of 2014 and came from the Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office - Ecological Services, where he served as the Assistant Field Supervisor for Maui and Hawaii Island and, previously, as the Recovery Program Leader. In the Pacific Islands, Jess’ work focused on implementation of the Endangered Species Act: including consultations, HCP’s, recovery permits, and recovery planning. Prior to that, Jess spent 12 years at the Red Bluff Fish and Wildlife Office, California, where he served as a fisheries program manager, working to recover listed Chinook salmon and steelhead trout. Jess also worked for the USGS conducting radio telemetry research on migration patterns of juvenile fish affected by large hydropower facilities on the Snake River, Idaho.

Kirk Young, Project Coordinator - Kirk is a recent addition to the USFWS and brings over two decades of experience in fisheries conservation by way of the Arizona Game and Fish Department. Kirk supervises the Flagstaff and Parker Field Offices where the focus is on the conservation of aquatic species and habitats throughout the lower Colorado River Basin. Kirk possesses broad technical and organizational experience from work in the Colorado river’s aquatic ecosystems.

Randy Van Haverbeke, Senior Fish Biologist - Randy works on collaborative fish monitoring efforts in Grand Canyon with other Federal, State, Tribal, and private partners. Specifically, he is responsible for stock assessment activities on humpback chub ( Gila cypha ), including study design, data collection, data analyses, interpretation of results, and writing interim and final reports. In addition, Randy has worked extensively on native fish issues in the lower Colorado , Verde, and Salt river ecosystems. Randy's areas of expertise include: limnology, fisheries management, stock assessment, genetics, statistics, chemistry, and technical writing and editing.

Dennis Stone, Fish Biologist - Dennis has conducted research and monitoring of endangered fishes in Arizona since 1993. His primary focus has been on humpback chub, from which he completed a MS thesis and several papers concerning various aspects of their life history. He helped develop the currently used mark-recapture study design to estimate their population in the Little Colorado River (LCR), designed and implemented a study to translocate these fish to an unexploited upriver reach in the LCR, and has helped compile, organize, and archive historical fishery data collected in the LCR and Colorado River within the Grand Canyon . His expertise include: fishery research, monitoring, management, ichthyology, limnology, stream ecology, chemistry, and statistical analyses.

Mike Pillow, Fish Biologist - Mike has been with AZFWCO in Flagstaff since 2009. Mike is responsible for volunteer recruitment and coordination for the 10-day fish sampling trips and he regularly participates in fish monitoring activities on the Little Colorado River and mainstem Colorado River. He has also coordinated and led annual humpback chub collecting trips for translocation within the Little Colorado River and to Havasu Creek and Shinumo Creek in Grand Canyon National Park. This is a collaborative effort with the National Park Service to broaden the current range of the population. Aside from his biology responsibilities, Mike has also produced outreach videos that illustrate the important work being done across Arizona by AZFWCO.

Jim Walters, Biological Technician - As an intermittent employee, Jim Walters does field work. The bulk of his time is collecting data for population studies of Humpback chub in the Little Colorado River. He also assists with surveys on Lake Mohave and Lake Havasu.

Rick Deshler, Biological Technician


Mitch Thorson, Fish Biologist - Mitch has worked with AZFWCO for 11 years where he combines his field duties as a biological technician with keeping vehicles, boats, and equipment running. Mitch performs netting, stocking, data collection and entry, water quality collection, and fish tagging. He works on several projects including: recovery efforts for razorback sucker and bonytail; control of invasive Giant salvinia; and backwater management with the Colorado River Indian Tribes, Emerald Canyon Golf Course, and 4 National Wildlife Refuges along the Colorado River . He lends a hand to not just our fisheries office staff, but also to other Fish & Wildlife Service field stations, Native American Tribes, and others. Mitch is certified in electrofishing, DOI boat operation, helicopter, heavy equipment, CPR, and first aid. Mitch enjoys his job, particularly working with AZFWCO volunteers, other Federal and State agencies, and public citizens.

Tammy Knecht, Fish Biologist

John Naugle, Biological Technician

Vacant, Biological Technician

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Last updated: October 29, 2015