The Utah Geological Survey seeks to assist the public and professionals in finding information necessary to make informed decisions about geology. Our administration staff are the main contact to the different programs and qualified personnel in the UGS. They are necessary in interacting with the public, coordinating events, and making the UGS run smoothly behind the scenes.
Utah Geological Survey Board
- Elissa Richards – Chair, representing the Public at Large
- Ken Fleck – Vice Chair, representing Minerals (Coal)
- Riley Brinkerhoff – representing Minerals (Hydrocarbons)
- Rick Chesnut – representing Engineering Geology
- Dave Garbrecht – representing Minerals (Metals)
- Becky Hammond – representing Scientific Interests
- Sam Quigley – representing Minerals (Industrial)
- David Ure – SITLA, ex officio member
Phone: (801) 537-3301
Bill is a scientist, educator, and expert in technology with over 30 years of experience in industry, academia, and regulatory state government. After earning a B.S. degree in Geology from Brigham Young University and an M.S. degree in Geophysics from Cornell, Bill spent over five years in offshore hydrocarbon exploration in the Gulf of Mexico and with SOHIO/BP in California. He then joined Landmark Graphics (now Halliburton) where he spent 17 years traveling the world developing 3D visualization technology and adoption. He returned to Utah in 2006 taking roles at both the Energy and Geoscience Institute at the University of Utah and Brigham Young University doing research and teaching courses on seismic interpretation and reservoir modeling. One of his favorite roles in academia has been the opportunity to develop and lead field courses taking students and professionals from around the world throughout Utah to see and learn its many wonders. In 2017 he accepted a role with California’s Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources to evaluate reservoirs and bring technology into the division. The latter goal was recently realized with the introduction (first ever) of computer interpretation tools. Another goal was bringing in UAS (drone) technology and developing protocols for regulatory inspections. While in California he has continued his adjunct appointments with the University of Utah and Brigham Young University to satisfy his passion for teaching.
Mike received a B.S. in geology from Western Washington University and an M.S. in geology from Oregon State University. Prior to joining the UGS in 1994, he conducted a regional tectono-stratigraphic study in the Himalayan foothills of northern Pakistan and led engineering-geologic studies in the Pacific Northwest. Mike has served in a variety of roles at the UGS, including geologist in the Geologic Hazards and Geologic Mapping Programs, Technical Reviewer, Geologic Information & Outreach Program Manager, and since 2016 Deputy Director. His research focus at the UGS has been on active faulting and neotectonics, and he has been principal or co-principal investigator on numerous paleoseismic fault trenching investigations in Utah. Mike has also taught geology courses for Salt Lake Community College and University of Utah Lifelong Learning.
Phone: (801) 537-3310
Russell is the Financial Manager for the Utah Geological Survey and has 21 years of experience in State Government. His experience includes accounts payable, federal grants management, and budgeting. Russell earned an Associate’s degree from Utah Tech University (formerly Dixie State University), a Bachelor’s degree in accounting from Utah State University, and a M.B.A. from Western Governors University. He is a native Utahn from the southern Utah community of Washington City. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his family, gardening, doing yard work, and reading.
Phone: (801) 537-3303
Winnie Pan is a Financial Analyst with the Utah Geological Survey and moved to the UGS from another state agency in 2022. She manages the division accounts payable/receivable and other accounting-related duties. Winnie earned a B.S. degree in accounting from the University of Utah. She likes hiking and fossils.
Phone: (801) 537-3351
Ben Dlin joined the UGS in 2023 as a contracts and grants analyst, focusing on contract/grant management and administration. Ben has B.A. degrees in political science, international studies, and sociology from Johns Hopkins University, and a Masters of Natural Resources from Virginia Tech. Ben’s background is centered in finance and operations, with his last role in clean energy project development. While out of the office, Ben can be found taking advantage of Utah’s abundant natural resources. As an East Coast transplant, he certainly appreciates the diversity of scenery and the presence of mountains, not hills.
Phone: (801) 537-3326
Mark R. Milligan is a Geologic Manager with the Geologic Information and Outreach Program and has worked with the UGS since 1997. Current job duties include: serving as the legislative liaison, preparing geologic brochures and booklets for the public, responding to public inquiries, writing articles for the UGS’s Survey Notes, creating geologic signage for public display, responding to press inquiries, speaking to public groups, and organizing and leading geologic field trips. Prior employment included managing the State of North Carolina’s Underground Injection Control Program and working as a technician for an environmental consulting firm in Southern California. Mark earned a B.S. with honors in geology from California State University, Fullerton, and a M.S. in geology from the University of Utah. He has been a licensed Professional Geologist since 1996. Mark has authored or coauthored over 40 technical and non-technical articles on a wide variety of geologic topics published by entities ranging from the UGS, to the Society for Sedimentary Geology, to the L.A. Times. He twice received the UGS’s Crawford Award in recognition of work on outstanding geologic publications.
Phone: (801) 538-5324
Hollie Brown is the Public Information Officer for the UGS and is responsible for translating complex geological information into accessible and engaging content for diverse audiences, including media and legislators. Her role is to shape the narrative and enhance public awareness around geological issues in the state, including hazards, energy, critical minerals, and groundwater. Hollie brings a wealth of experience in strategic communication and public relations. She has been with the Department of Natural Resources for over 25 years and with the UGS for two years. She is an avid fly fisher, rockhounder, and explorer of Utah’s deserts.
Phone: (801) 537-3300
Starr Soliz has been the enthusiastic face and voice on the front line at the UGS for over a decade. She enjoys good humor, so the next time you stop by or make a phone call, be sure to drop your latest joke on her!
Phone: (801) 537-3360
Cheryl Wing has been employed with the UGS for 20 years. She is a Utah-local, born and raised in West Valley City. She enjoys spending time with her family camping, fishing, hunting, and riding ATVs.