Our Team

Eric Johnson

Principal, Project Manager


Eric is a co-owner of Samara Restoration and has over twenty years of experience working within the ecosystems of northern California. With a master’s degree in Environmental Systems from Humboldt State University, Eric advocates for community development and ecologial balance in our bioregion. He provides design and planning services for restoration and native residential/commercial landscaping projects.   Eric is responsible for bid estimates and managing a wide array of projects which serve private land owners, schools, non-profit organizations, local, state, tribal, and federal agencies.

Josh Koepke

Principal, Project Manager


Josh is the co-owner of Samara Restoration and is responsible for the nursery operations and restoration projects. He has a degree in Wildlife Biology and has extensive experience in the fields of ecological restoration, wildlife biology, vegetation management, horticulture, and sustainable landscape design/installation. Josh has worked on landscape related projects throughout California for public schools, private ranches, homeowners, architects, and government agencies.

Troy Perez

Troy Perez

Nursery Production Manager


Troy Perez is the co-owner of Samara Restoration and is responsible for leading day to day nursery technician operations. Troy has ten years of native plant horticulture experience and has a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science from Humboldt State University.

Jeff Rockefeller

Project Foreman/Equipment Operator

Rocky has worked for Samara since 2012 and brings an extensive skillset to our landscape construction. He is a Project Foreman responsible for field crew supervision and is our lead equipment and hydroseed operator. Efficiency and communication are his strong points which contribute to successful project completion. Rocky is experienced in all aspects of erosion control and implementing the most effective Best Management Practices for the project.    

Traci Zelles

Office Manager


Traci supports the administrative aspects of Samara Restoration including payroll, accounts receivables, accounts payables, vendor account management, policy development, client communications, and fiscal controlling. Traci owned and operated her own retail business for ten years and has been a great asset to the Samara team. Traci enjoys the outdoors and especially our local native plants and birds.


Terrance Brown

Restoration Technician

Terrance has been with Samara Restoration since 2013 and provides support to restoration and landscape construction projects. Terrance is very knowledgeable about our local ecology and the restoration principles for making our projects successful.  

Jhon Afridi

Restoration Specialist


Jhon has a bachelor’s degree in Rangeland Science and Wildland Soils from Humboldt State University.  He has been with Samara Restoration for five years and assists with nursery production and restoration projects. Jhon supports a wide array of special projects such as vegetation monitoring and restoration plans. 


Cesar Valesquez

Nursery/Restoration Technician


Cesar is a level two RestorationTechnician at Samara Restoration and supports us in all levels of our restoration/landscape construction services. His education background in Wildlife, familiarity with local ecology, and hard working ethics are great assets to our company.


Christina Cortez

Seed Collection Curator/Nursery Technician

Christina focuses on the collection, processing, tracking, and propagation of seed at the Samara Restoration native plant nursery. She has a degree in Rangeland Science and Wildland Soils from Humboldt State University and has strong plant identification skills. Christina also works as a nursery technician supporting all aspects of the nursery production.

Seasonal Nursery Technicians

During the Spring and Summer months the nursery production ramps up and production is in full swing, we hire seasonal nursery technicians. Our seasonal technicians are often in progress of completing their degrees in botany, ecological restoration, or soil science.