Advisory Board

Fisheries Enhancement Specialists, Planning, Volunteer Services, Engineering, Economist, Government Affairs, Project Development, Strategic & Public Affairs


Megan and Tom SorbyMegan & Tom Sorby (2)
True Blue Aqua
 True Blue Aqua has brought together a group of diverse aquaculture backgrounds to offer a unique perspective on every situation. Founders, Tom and Megan Sorby, have worked in both the research and commercial sectors, learning from each situation and bringing those facilities up to both environmentally and economically sustainable operation. Both hold Master’s degrees in Sustainable Aquaculture and have worked with multiple species across the spectrum, freshwater to marine, finfish to shellfish, and much more. Tom’s expertise and passion lies in optimizing growth through improved nutrition and feeding regimes, optimizing larval rearing protocols to increase survival, overall fish health, but also designing systems and utilizing new technologies in creating optimal culture conditions. Megan also enjoys being hands on in system building and design while focusing her efforts on improving broodstock management and incubation techniques, culture of live feed and enhanced nutrition, water chemistry and its effects on optimal rearing conditions, particularly in recirculating conditions, as well as facilities management, permitting and compliance, and diversification of facilities into new products. Together with their colleagues, they bring a well-rounded group with up-to-date experience and eyes towards future development.
To learn more about us or hear more about examples of our work, please reach out to the team by contacting us through our website,


Gregg BonackerGregg Bonacker
 A degree background that is non-traditional when compared to most in aquaculture, has been foundational to my thirty eight year career. This degree path started with a B.Sc. in Physical Geography (estuarine geomorphology), a M.Sc. in Resource Geography (marine resource management) and a minor in Economics. This academic mixture has served well both for employers and myself personally. My career track has included managing various species in wide-spread locations, from Atlantic salmon farms and hatcheries from Washington State to the coast of Maine, to a trout farm and hatchery in California, to a shrimp farm in Hawaii. Along the way I have designed RAS for hatcheries, consulted in aquaculture development both domestically and internationally and managed oyster and clam farms. Currently I’m working for a broodstock farm producing steelhead, coho and Atlantic salmon eggs. All but the mollusks required a firm grasp on feed from the nutritional aspect to feeding techniques, from performance and economic analysis to waste management. For just shy of 13 years I represented EWOS/Cargill (international feed company) in the Pacific Northwest where I grew up and obtained my education.
So, it is safe to say that I have had an eclectic career in aquaculture. This variety has provided a broad base of experience for dealing with issues that many managers in aquaculture face. I don’t get surprised often, but often enough to stay enthusiastically interested in the operational side of aquaculture.


Chief Dave LeitchAB- Chief Dave Leitch
Fire Chief Dave Leitch has been part of Yakima Counties Fire Service in Washington State for the past 40 years.  After 13 years as a volunteer firefighter Dave was hired fulltime as the Fire District # 12’s first fulltime Training Officer.   He was promoted to Deputy Chief of Operations & Safety in 1996.  He served as Fire Chief for 16 years recently retiring in 2016.  Dave is currently serving as a volunteer Fire Chief for Yakima County FD 1.   He has actively worked with, recruited and retained 85 to 100 volunteers with Yakima FD 12 during his career.   The Fire District served over 16,000 people spread over 100 square miles.   Chief Leitch has been an active member on Type II Incident Management Teams since 1997.   Serving as a Division Supervisor, Operations Chief and is now currently an Incident Commander for Washington state.  Dave and his fire teams have traveled across the western states managing large wildfires.  For 22 years Dave served on Washington State’s Labor and Industries Firefighter Safety Technical Review Team.   Dave has been recognized as a leader in Inter-Agency cooperation working with county, state, and federal agencies.   The Washington State Fire Chief’s Association honored Chief Leitch with their “Fire Chief of the Year Award” in 2008.   Chief Leitch is an avid outdoorsmen, re-engaging in many activities out of doors since his retirement.


Richard V. “Dick” Haapala, P.E.   AB Dick Haapala    
Agricultural Engineer
B.S., Irrigation Science, University of California at Davis, 1965
Professional Registrations
Agricultural Engineer: California, No. 158, 1976
CH2M HILL Certified Project Manager: 1995


Distinguishing Qualifications
  • Experience on irrigation canal and pipeline evaluations, design, upgrades, and rehabilitation
  • Familiarity with automatic control systems for pump stations, diversion structures, and canals
  • Design, construction management, and commissioning of small hydroelectric facilities
  • Design and construction management of fish protective and rearing facilities
  • Design and construction management of emergency repairs to irrigation facilities
  • A senior agricultural engineer and project manager with CH2M HILL in Eastern Washington
Relevant Experience
Mr. Haapala is an agricultural engineer and project manager with more than 46 years of experience specializing in irrigation system operation, maintenance, design, repair, and rehabilitation. Prior to joining CH2M HILL, he served in active combat duty overseas with the US Army Corps of Engineers and as the District Engineer for a large irrigation district in northern California. With CH2M HILL, he has managed the evaluation, design, and construction management of several major irrigation water conveyance facilities, including master plan development, fish protective screens, diversion dams, pumping equipment, hydroelectric facilities, pipelines, and open canals in the US and overseas. Many of the projects have been associated with the rehabilitation or replacement of older structures. Additionally, Mr. Haapala brings expertise in automatic control systems for pump stations, diversion structures, and canals. Several projects have included land application of industrial wastewater. He has designed and managed the design and construction of emergency repairs to irrigation conveyance facilities.
Organizations: American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers.
Training: Health and Safety, Construction Safety Awareness, Confined Space Entry Supervisor.
Sunnyside Canal Improvement Project, Sunnyside Division Board of Control, Sunnyside, WA. Project Engineer/Construction Manager. Provided planning, design, and construction management services for three re-regulation reservoirs, 31 new canal control structures, and a complete SCADA control system for a 64-mile-long irrigation water delivery canal for the Sunnyside Division Board of Control. Provided design and review of check structures and reservoirs for the project. Coordinated the electrical and control systems requirements between the CH2M HILL team, subconsultants, and the owner. Performed construction management and construction observation duties. The work included extensive use of membrane reservoir liners and shotcrete concrete canal lining techniques.  Fee: $4,100,000
Rehabilitation Project, Yakima-Tieton Irrigation District, Yakima, WA. Project Engineer/Construction Manager. Served as a project engineer during the planning, design, and construction of the pressurized pipe system to replace a deteriorated open canal system that served irrigation water to the 27,000-acre district. The $72-million project includes 200 miles of pipelines, one regulating reservoir, six pump stations, two hydroelectric stations, and SCADA system. Managed the final construction and startup and testing of the two hydroelectric stations. Continues to support the District with improvements and maintenance. Currently working with the district to evaluate alternative methods to replace 12 miles of open conveyance flume with more reliable facilities.
Feasibility Design of the Walla Walla River Water Exchange Conveyance System, Milton-Freewater, OR. Project Engineer. Provided engineering support for the alignment, hydraulic sizing, and interface with existing water users in the Walla Walla River Basin. The project involved pumping 175 cubic feet per second (cfs) of irrigation water from the Columbia River approximately 32 miles via a 72-inch- diameter pipeline to the irrigated area near Walla Walla and Milton-Freewater.
Water Conservation Project, Selah-Moxee Irrigation District, Moxee, WA. Project Manager. Managed the funding application, feasibility study, design, permitting, and construction management of water conservation projects involving converting open canal irrigation systems to low pressure pipeline systems. A completed portion of the conservation work included installation of flexible membrane canal liner to reduce seepage and improve canal bank stability.  The project will eventually convert approximately 30 miles of open ditches into pipelines and lined canals.
Water Conservation Project, Union Gap Irrigation District, Wapato, WA. Project Manager. Managed preparation of a water conservation plan, design, and construction management of water conservation projects involving converting open canal irrigation systems to low pressure pipeline systems including at least one re-regulation reservoir. The project will eventually convert approximately 20 miles of open ditches into pipelines and membrane lined canals. Provides on-going support for operation and maintenance work.
Water Conservation Project, Kittitas Reclamation District, Ellensburg, WA. Project Manager. Managed the preparation of a water conservation plan, feasibility study, design, and services during construction for portions of the 47,000-acre irrigation district. The project includes canal and pipeline design; ongoing maintenance of Easton Diversion Dam, emergency canal repairs, and ongoing operations and maintenance support to the District. Work has included replacement and rehabilitation of existing concrete canal lining using shotcrete and urethane joint sealants. Fee: Ongoing at approximately $30,000 per year
Project Manager, Outlook Irrigation District Rehabilitation, Outlook Irrigation District, Outlook, Washington. Directed the study, design, and construction of new pipeline facilities to replace open canals. A project feasibility report including an environmental impact assessment and economic evaluation was prepared in support of federal and state funding. The project included replacement of the district’s 70-cfs pump station, installation of 5,000 feet of 48-inch-diameter pipeline, and construction of approximately 10 miles of low-pressure concrete pipelines. A similar project was completed for the Grandview Irrigation District.
Work in Foreign Countries. Managed and supported irrigation work in Egypt, Sri Lanka, Haiti, Canada, and Brazil.
Project Manager, Emergency Repair of Irrigation Facilities, Washington and California. Mobilized engineering staff and construction resources to quickly and cost effectively restore failed irrigation structures to service. Projects and clients have included:
  • Yakima-Tieton Irrigation District – Several concrete canal repairs
  • Naches Selah Irrigation District – Wood flume replacement with steel pipe
  • Methow Valley Irrigation District – Wood flume replacement with steel pipe
  • Wenatchee Reclamation District – Concrete lined canal repair
  • Oakdale Irrigation District – Concrete lined canal repair
  • Kittitas Reclamation District – Concrete lined canal repair
  • Cascade Irrigation District – Wood flume replacement with two pump stations


Anthony T OliveiraAnthony Oliveira
24476 Fairfax Ave. Lemoore, CA 93245. 559-924-4393.                    
Professional Experience
Oliveira Advisory Services LLC, 2011 to Present:
Professor Oliveira is the founder and CEO of Oliveira Advisory Services (OAS), a global advisory and research organization. OAS was formed in 2011 to inform and provide services for private, governmental agencies, and academic universities on the organizational structure of pension funds and the trend issues that affect their strategic decision process. Global areas of research include agribusiness, health services and technology, infrastructure, real estate, public/private partnerships, food security, and ESG strategies. A diversified expertise founded in over 25 years of government service as an elected official and appointee serving at the local, state, and national levels, matched by a portfolio of over 40 years of experience in the private business sector. Services include the strategic analysis for PE and real-estate firms seeking potential global private and institutional investors with special emphasis on US public pension funds. The analytics, do not include placement agent services, but rather are strategic and systematic studies of possible funds, fund strategies, and or investors with similar alignment of interests. Currently he serves as an independent advisor and researcher to several national and international teams in the areas of public pension audits, pension economic trends, agribusiness risk/investment strategies, and academic research and entrepreneur development with the UC Academic system. He is an independent part time asset/liability auditor for the Funston Advisory Group and specializes in the review of the asset/liability process and strategic asset allocation decision metrics of US state pension funds. Acts as an independent advisor to GLG Research specializing in pension organizational studies and trends of US pension fund allocations and global investment strategies and an array of expert research in litigation strategies. Recently completed an economic impact study with Parsons Brinckerhoff, in the Central California region for the California High Speed Rail Authority. He serves as an advisor to the University of California Merced School of Engineering, and to the President of the UC System Innovation Council. He currently serves for a Scandinavian pension fund as an independent director for investments that acquire and rent high quality US single family homes in several US states. His role includes oversight of company matters including investment management that is outsourced to Mann Invest (London) and their local US property management partners.
Boards and Fiduciary Services 1980 to Present
Has severed on more than forty boards in both fiduciary and general law capacities including private, public and NGO organizations.
Economist, 1992 to Present:
As a practicing economist, advises on economic trends globally in several sectors with special attention on investment strategies that affect the decision process for institutional pension funds. Since 1998 has been an advisor on economic issues to local governments including Kings County and other local agencies throughout California. Both as a member of the California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) and the California State Association of Counties (CSAC), was involved deeply in advising the economic side of investment strategies and public pension management. Was a coauthor and researcher in the evaluation of the economic impacts of technology and innovation in the value-added sector of agriculture in central California. He has participated on several projects of resource development and the economic impacts to the regions and the whole of the State of California.
Tony & Connie Oliveira Farming, Lemoore, Ca. 1976 to Present:
As the managing partner of a diversified farming operation, which over the years has farmed and developed thousands of acres in the central valley of California with a variety of crops including field crops, permanent plantings, and dairy, has developed an expertise in the management of a very complex business.
Oliveira Holdings, Lemoore, Ca. 1971 to Present:
As the President and CEO, he developed over 20 businesses in the retail and developmental sectors including banking, sport facilities, restaurant, construction, newspaper publishing, commercial, residential, and industrial land devolvement, and various retail outlets in consumer products.
Project Manager, 1976 to Present:
As a practicing project manager has more than 15,000 hours of project management experience in a diverse array of fields ranging from agriculture, government, food service, environmental management, finance, retail development, real-estate development, and pension auditing and review. Is currently a curriculum writer for academic programs in project management at the college level.
Professional Experience – Governmental Sector
California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) Sacramento, CA, 2005 to 2012:
As a member of the CalPERS board, appointed twice by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, and kept on the board by Governor Jerry Brown, held key positions in several areas of the operations as well as serving on virtually all the committees of CalPERS. He was the only board member of the 13 members that was specifically appointed to represent more than 1,500 local governments of California including cities, counties, and special districts. As finance chair, he was responsible to oversee all budgeting, financials, auditing, and financial reporting of the then $200 billion plus fund to the board of directors and to chair all financial committee meetings. As finance chair was the lead in the internal review of all real-estate assets (more than $8 billion) following the meltdown of the housing bubble in 2008. One of the most important outcomes of his work as finance chair was the legislation and action by the board of CalPERS that would eventually establish the first chief financial department and chief financial officer in the history of CalPERS. From the internal review work that he did on the real-estate holdings of CalPERS, following the housing bubble burst, the board appointed him to develop and chair the first risk committee of CalPERS as an ad-hoc committee. Under his work and leadership, the staff and the committee would eventually become a permanent committee and the first risk office and chief risk officer was established. Today CalPERS celebrates one of the most committed organizational-wide risk management systems in the world.
Kings County Board of Supervisors Hanford, Ca. 1999 to 2011:
Elected to the Kings County Board of supervisors three times (12 years). During his tenure on the board most of his focus was on those things that improved the economic welfare for all the citizens in Kings County with special attention through his board position on the Kings County Economic Development Board. One of the co-authors of the Kings County Dairy Element which became nationally known as an attempt to bring appropriate balance between the needs of the industry while protecting the environment of the region. Served as the board’s representative on the California State Association of Counties (CSAC), and all economic issues, for the 12 years of his tenure.
California State Association of Counties (CSAC) Sacramento, CA 1999 to 2011
Served on the California State Association of Counties (CSAC) board for twelve years holding positions on key committees and as the treasurer, vice president, and in 2010 became the president and a spokesperson for all of California’s 58 counties. Is well known for his pension sustainability knowledge and the economic issues of local government and during his tenure visited and spoke to hundreds of local governments throughout California and the United States on these issues.
Professional Experience – Academic & Research
West Hills College Lemoore, CA 2000 to Present:
Instruction: As an adjunct professor teaches classes in micro/macroeconomics, business law, business management, business bookkeeping and electronic accounting. Teaches face to face and online, and proficient in Blackboard, Canvas, and Ed360 platforms. Highly skilled in electronic accounting and most software applications.
Curriculum: Has full understanding an experience in writing curriculum for both online and face to face course and academic programs. Recently wrote a six-course online program for a project management certificate, as well as business and leadership courses. Part of the code alignment team at the college in the areas of business and CTE courses. Full understanding of the processes and applications of the TOP, CIP, SOC and SAM reporting codes. Serves on the CTE and business learning area committees.
Administration: Designed, implemented and coached the school’s first athletic program, women’s soccer, was the first athletic director, designed and completed initial stages of school’s soccer complex and is the academic adviser to the Business Entrepreneurship Club.
Research and Publications 2000 to Present:
Has contributed to economic and public policy studies as an elected official, visiting professor, or guest speaker, at several universities, and as a contributing researcher/writer to entities such as Stanford, The California State Legislature and the California Little Hoover Commission.
Examples of Research Papers
California High Speed-Rail and the Central Valley Economy 2015


Ryan RodruckRyan Rodruck
Ryan Rodruck is the Owner and Principal Consultant at Columbia Public Affairs. Specializing in government, non-profit and public-sector communications and advocacy, Columbia Public Affairs builds and launches substantive communications and public affairs campaigns to help clients more meaningfully engage with their key audiences and stakeholders. Projects range from providing strategic communications advisory services; to guiding messaging and positioning; to tailoring traditional, digital, and social media solutions.
Ryan has previously worked as Director of Communications and Marketing for Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences (PNWU) in Yakima, Washington. At PNWU, Ryan was responsible for a wide range of communications duties including presenting the University’s message to community and stakeholder groups, interacting with the press and media, and oversight of the University’s marketing department.
Prior to joining PNWU, Ryan was the General Manager of KYVE 47, Central Washington’s PBS affiliate. At KYVE, Ryan was responsible for overall station operations, production of local broadcasts, community outreach, and occasional on-air hosting duties.
Ryan has also served as a senior staff member to former U.S. Congressman Doc Hastings in Washington’s 4th District. Ryan worked on a wide range of issues directly affecting the residents of the Central Washington community and worked to advocate to the government on their behalf.
Prior to serving with the federal government, Ryan worked in the association management field as Assistant Director for three of the largest commercial real estate development associations in the Pacific Northwest. Ryan has also worked in the marketing field, helping to develop marketing and communications strategies for the real estate industry.
He has also served as staff to a member of the Washington State Legislature, developing electoral and constituent outreach strategy.
Ryan attended Central Washington University where he graduated with a degree in Political Science.