Bio's

Rebecca Casper
Rebecca Casper
Mayor

Elected Office

Rebecca Casper was elected Mayor of Idaho Falls in a city-wide election in November 2013. She ran on a platform of solving City problems, growing the local economy, and enhancing community assets. Prior to that she served for seven years as a Bonneville County Republican Precinct Chair.

Business and Education

Mayor Casper serves as an adjunct professor at both BYU-Idaho and Eastern Idaho Technical College.  In the past she has taught foundational courses on American government. Rebecca earned her BA in 1985 and MA in 1987 in Political Science from BYU-Provo and her Ph.D. from UC-Berkeley in 1998. Prior to earning her degrees, she worked as a research associate at the Brookings Institution in Washington D.C.

She owns the small political and professional consulting business, Omnia Strategies. In this capacity, she has managed issue and candidate campaigns, conducted issue research, cultivated relationships for clients, and advocated for issues at the local and state level, including improved water policy and economic development.

Current Public Service

Mayor Casper sits on the Idaho Falls City Club Board of Directors. She serves as a board member of the Greater Idaho Falls Chamber of Commerce and served for several years in leadership on its Legislative Committee. Rebecca sits on the boards of directors for the District 91 Education Foundation, the Partnership for Science and Technology, the Regional Development Alliance, the Idaho Innovation Center, the Downtown Development Corporation, and the Bonneville Metropolitan Planning Organization among others.  She is a co-founder and first director of the Mayor’s Scholarship Fund and now sits on its Board of Directors.  Earlier this fall, she was named as an ad-hoc member of the Idaho’s LINE2.0 Commission.

Family

Rebecca has four children ranging an ages from 21 to 13.  Two are attending university and two attend District 91 schools in IF.

Mike Lehto

Mike Lehto
Council President
Liaison: BMPO, Idaho Falls Power
Co-Liaison: Human Resources, Public Works

Michael A. Lehto is currently a member of the Idaho Falls, Idaho City Council. He is the Chairman of the Idaho Falls Power and Public Works Departments. Mike was recently re-elected to a fourth term on the City Council. Mike received a Doctorate in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Utah. He worked in aerospace research and development and nuclear/environmental consulting prior to joining Idaho National Laboratory in 1996. He has diverse interests and expertise in structural/mechanical design, heat transfer, and fluid transport. He is and engaged in the nuclear renaissance dialogue and is working to promote the next generation nuclear fuels and plant design. Mike is also the Immediate Past Chair of the American Public Power Association (APPA) Policy Maker’s Council and an ex-officio member of the APPA Board of Directors. He was first nominated to the Policy Maker’s Council in 2005. He has been a member of APPA through his affiliation with the utility since being elected to the City Council in 1999.
In addition to the Idaho Falls City Council, Mike is a member of the Bonneville Metropolitan Planning Organization (BMPO), and a member of the Targhee Regional Public Transit Authority Board (TRPTA). He is committed to youth competitive soccer and hockey programs, having coached both. Currently he is the USA Hockey Rocky Mountain District Coach-in-Chief, and the Vice President of the Idaho Amateur Hockey organization.
Mike is extremely active in on-going national, regional, and local dialog on issues that impact the electric industry with particular focus on the public power impact. He regularly participates in Northwest Public Power Association (NWPPA), Idaho Consumer-Owned Utility Association (ICUA), and Utah Association of Municipal Power Association (UAMPS), to promote public power interests and garner supports for national, regional, and statewide issues that are of interest to public power.
Dr. Lehto is a supporter of his local utility and public power in general. He advocates for issues that are important to the customers served by his utility and for programs that promote the ability of not-for-profit utilities to flourish and maintain local control. He advocates for programs to promote a balanced portfolio that include provisions for future generation and for improving transmission and infrastructure in general. He is an advocate of allowing public power entities to develop broadband infrastructure and was instrumental in the network development as his utility. Dr. Lehto is always looking to promote strategic alliances with other organizations (such as the National League of Cities), to build a stronger coalition of support on issues that are important to public power. In 2011, he was awarded the Spence Vanderlinden Public Official Award in 2011 from the American Public Power Association.
Dr. Lehto has been married to his wife Shelly for 26 years, and the couple has 2 children, Christopher and Abigail.

Sharon Parry
Sharon D. Parry
Council Member
Liaison: BMPO, Library, Public Safety (Police)
Co-Liaison: Airport

Sharon D. Parry has been a councilmember since November 20, 2007. Sharon and her husband, Steven R. Parry, moved to Idaho Falls in 1991, after Sharon received her master's degree and Steve finished his masters and J.D. Degrees. Steve and Sharon have three children.
 
Sharon served on several city commissions and committees prior to being elected to the council, including: City Planning and Zoning for 7 years, County P & Z for 2 years, City Traffic Safety Committee, City Police Federal Grants Committee, and City Parks and Recreation Commission. Past Service also includes three terms on the District 91 School Board (9 years), NW Regional Education Laboratory Board of Directors in Portland for 5 years, president of Bonneville County Republican Women, and Bonneville County American Cancer Society President. Sharon currently serves on the EITC Foundation Board and EIRMC's Board of Directors.
 
During her first term, she is focusing on the city's economy; convention and tourism opportunities including gateway commercial and residential beautification; tourism campaigns; and promoting the arts as well as outdoor recreation in our region.
Dee David Whittier

Dee David Whittier
Council Member

Liaison: Airport, Municipal Services, Planning and Building

 

Dee has lived in Idaho Falls most of his life.  He is a graduate of Idaho Falls High School and received a bachelor’s degree in Business Management-Finance from Brigham Young University - Provo.  He has also achieved the Chartered Financial Consultant designation from the American College located in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania.  He works as an independent personal financial advisor and is affiliated with Cornerstone Financial Advisors here in town.

Dee has served on the Idaho Falls Planning Commission for 2 years, and is a member of the East Idaho Estate Planning Council. He and his wife, Amy, have been married for 30 years, and have raised all seven of their children in Idaho Falls.  Six have graduated from his alma matter, IFHS, with the seventh scheduled to graduate in 2015.  They currently have three granddaughters, with another one coming in March of 2014.   Dee has spent many years leading Boy Scout groups, coaching youth sports teams, serving in leadership positions in his church, and being a devoted husband and father.  In his spare time he enjoys traveling, camping, and hiking.

Dee has a strong desire to help Idaho Falls continue to be a great place to live, and is looking forward to serving the community on the City Council.

Thomas Hally
Thomas Hally
Council Member
Liaison: IFRA, Parks and Recreation, Public Safety (Police)
Co-Liaison: Planning and Building


Council member Hally was born and raised in Idaho.  His wife and four children moved to Idaho Falls in 1979.  He has managed the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation for the State Board of Education since 1978 in Region Six.  His four children were all graduates of Idaho Falls High School.  His late wife Deanne was watercolorist who was well known throughout the region.  He is a Rotarian and serves on boards that support opportunities for persons with disabilities. 

He attended Gonzaga University and Idaho State University and received his Master of Arts in Education from Idaho State University in 1971.  He is a graduate of The Academy for Executive Leadership from the University of Oklahoma in 1993.  He has served on the Governor's Commission for Substance Abuse for four years.

Ed Marohn

Ed Marohn
Council Member

Liaison: Human Resources, Municipal Services, Public Safety (Fire)


After 30 years in the tire industry with Global Fortune 500 companies, Michelin Tire Corporation, and then Continental Tire of North America/AG, headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, where he served as Director of Sales in North America and VP in Canada, he retired to eastern Idaho with his wife, Cathie, to write full time, ski near the Tetons, and continue worldwide travel.

Ed is the Vice Chair of the Board of Directors for the Idaho Humanities Council. He is also on the Board of the Idaho Falls City Club, and is a member of the Idaho Writers Guild, and the Idaho Writers League. He served in the US Army as an officer for ten years. As a Captain he had one full year of combat in the Vietnam War with the 101st Airborne Division and was awarded three Bronze Star Medals, one Air Medal, two Army Commendation Medals, and numerous other awards. In academia he was Assistant Professor of Military History at the University of Nevada.

He grew up in Boise and attended the University of Idaho, Moscow, earning his BA in Political Science in 1968. He earned his MA in Counseling and Guidance from the University of Nevada-Reno, in 1975. He achieved Dutch Language Professional Proficiency, from the Foreign Service Institute, State Department, Washington, DC, 1975, and was assigned to NATO in The Netherlands. Ed also attended the Executive Marketing Course at the Darden School of Business, University of Virginia.

His wife Cathie, nee Gruel, is from Idaho Falls. They have two sons: the older one is a Captain, US Coast Guard, based in Boston, and the younger one is a CEO of a financial company based in Charlotte. They also have three granddaughters, one a recent graduate from Florida State University.

Ed has been published as follows:

*Local Columnist for the Post Register Newspaper, Idaho Falls, Idaho.

*Creative non-fiction storyAlmost American”, Idaho Magazine, July 2011.

*Short story, “Retirement”, Hardboiled Mystery Magazine, February 2012.

*“Brainwashing: Man Over Mind”, ARMY Magazine, Vol. 23, No. 8, August 1973.

Barbara Dee Ehardt
Barbara Dee Ehardt
Council Member
Liaison: Public Works, TRPTA
Co-Liaison: Idaho Falls Power
 

Barbara Dee Ehardt was born and raised in Idaho Falls, graduating from Idaho Falls High School.  She then attended North Idaho Junior College and Idaho State University on a basketball scholarship.  This “love of the game” enabled her to embark on a 15-year college-coaching career that provided many rich and unique experiences.  Her coaching career included stops at four outstanding Universities, three as an assistant coach, including:  University of California, Santa Barbara; Brigham Young University (Provo); Washington State University; and finally Cal State Fullerton, where she served as the Head Women’s Basketball Coach. 

Serving in the capacity of a “Division I Women’s Basketball Coach” opened doors and created many opportunities to lead, teach, empower and encourage youth through the forum of sports.  While at UC Santa Barbara, she created the Gaucho Women’s Basketball ‘Community Outreach’ program designed to use basketball as a tool to teach the youth in the community “life lessons” ranging from the importance of staying in school to ‘saying NO to drugs.’  Twenty four years later this Community Outreach program is still going strong and has been a model for other collegiate teams in all sports who are looking to add more growth opportunities for their student athletes. 

Barbara made the decision to return to Idaho Falls because of her love of the people here, their values and a love of this city and state.  Since Barbara’s return, she has been employed at Apple Athletic Club as a manager over Youth Programming.  She is also a small business owner where she runs a highly successful travel basketball program as well as conducts her own “Hoops Camps & Clinics.”     

She currently serves as a board member for the Education Foundation for School District 91 and has served as a school board member for Monticello Montessori School.  Politically Barbara has served as a past President of the Bonneville County Republican Women; a precinct officer; and has worked on countless campaigns in the various places where she has lived. 

Barbara has also been a highly sought after motivational speaker in many arena’s but primarily with the youth.   These speaking engagements have ranged from State Jr. Miss Pageants to the NCAA Final Four “YES” clinics as well as patriotic flag retiring’s.  She has also been an EFY (Especially for Youth) speaker.

Barbara is single and has never married nor had children.  However, between her 14 nieces and nephews and the many kids that Barbara has coached, she feels that she has been blessed with countless children!  In her spare time, Barbara loves to play tennis, bike, jet ski and root for her favorite sports teams. She feels very blessed and honored to serve you, the great people of this city, as one of your council members.