Salt Lake City

Boards and Commissions

Parks, Natural Lands, Urban Forestry & Trails Advisory Board

This board advises Mayor Erin Mendenhall and City Council on issues relating to the City’s parks, natural lands, urban forestry and trails. Primarily, the board is tasked with providing and overseeing strong stewardship of the City’s parks, natural lands, urban forest and trails; educating the public and advocating for the City’s parks, natural lands, urban forest and trails policies; and encouraging and facilitating public involvement and input, and the incorporation of that input into the City’s parks, natural lands, urban forest and trails plans and policies.

Contact Information

Ashlyn Larsen
Public Lands Department
1965 West 500 South
Salt Lake City, UT 84104
(801) 972-7890 or

Agendas and Minutes

Bylaws and Governing Documents


The Parks, Natural Lands, Urban Forestry, & Trails Advisory Board has one At-Large vacancy. If you are interested in serving on this board, please fill out and submit an application online. To find out which district you reside in go here.

Please see below for all upcoming term expiration/vacancy dates. Only applications submitted up to one year prior to a vacancy date will be considered. The Mayor’s office will only contact applicants when considering them for specific appointments.

Member Qualifications

The Parks, Natural Lands, Urban Forestry and Trails Advisory Board has up to 13 members. Each member is appointed to a three-year term and may serve up to two consecutive terms. Members should reflect geographic, professional, cultural, and neighborhood/community diversity. Members with arborist, landscape architect, ecologist, land management, natural and developed non-motorized trail design, architectural, financial, planning, historic preservation, recreation, sustainability and environmental backgrounds are encouraged.

Residency Requirements: No more than three (3) members may live outside of the Salt Lake City boundaries.

UPDATE: On February 21, 2023, Salt Lake City Council approved an update to the City ordinance that requires two (2) members on the Board who represent indigenous tribes. 


First Thursday of the month, beginning at 5:00 p.m.

Public Lands Building, 1965 West 500 South

Powers and Duties

The board shall have the following powers and duties:
   A.   Review and advise the parks, natural lands, urban forestry and trail managers with respect to the annual budget and budget adjustments.
   B.   Review, rank, prioritize, and make recommendations on capital improvement program funding applications and construction designs pertaining to the parks, natural lands, urban forestry and trails programs. Recommendations should be reflected in applications submitted to the department of community and neighborhoods and community development and capital improvement programs advisory board for their consideration for review.
   C.   Review and make recommendations regarding annual financial priorities including budget, capital improvements, fees and concession agreements.
   D.   Provide recommendations regarding land acquisitions and dispositions as related to the city’s disposition processes.
   E.   Review operation and management policies and standards related to use, special events, facilities, resource protection, best management practices and the implementation of landscaping standards, design standards, and sustainability for the city’s parks, natural lands, urban forestry and trails.
   F.   Advise and provide input on broad policy, management, master plans and development standards related activities, specific goals and direction of the parks, transportation, and urban forestry divisions, as they relate to parks, natural lands, urban forestry and trails related issues.
   G.   Provide advice and expertise to other boards, such as the historic landmarks commission, planning commission, and transportation advisory board, as requested or deemed appropriate.
   H.   Advise and provide input on the acquisition or sale of properties within the parks and public lands program.
   I.   Administer and perform all duties and responsibilities of the open space lands program as set forth in chapter 2.90 of this title.
   J.   Submit reports, letters, and recommendations to the mayor regarding the foregoing powers and duties. A copy of the material submitted shall be also provided directly to the city council. (Ord. 49-16, 2016: Ord. 67-13, 2013)

Current Members




Serving Since

Term Expires




Aaron Wiley


May 2025

Aaron Wiley is a highly accomplished Business Advisor with 15 years of experience, and he is a man of the people, businesses, and community and represents the culture of Salt Lake City. As a member of the PNUT Board representing District 1, he brings his expertise in business and his passion for community servitude to help guide the Salt Lake City Parks Dept & Mayor in achieving its strategic goals for the reimagined nature plan. Aaron has an impressive track record of success, having held many positions at various companies. He has demonstrated achievements that highlight leadership, strategic thinking, and problem-solving. In addition to his professional accomplishments, he is actively involved in community service and has been for the past two decades. Aaron holds a Political Science degree from the University of Utah and has received multiple awards and recognitions for his impact and success. He is a respected leader in the community and as a member of the Salt Lake City PNUT board, Aaron is committed to ensuring the success of the organization by leveraging his skills, experience, and expertise. He is excited to work with the other board members and Salt Lake City’s leadership team to help drive growth, innovation, and positive impact throughout Salt Lake City.



Melanie Pehrson


May 2024

Melanie joined the Board in 2021 representing District 2. She has resided in the Poplar Grove neighborhood on SLC’s west side for the last five years. She actively wants to be part of cherishing and revitalizing our public spaces for everyone to enjoy. She has three small children and they live for public spaces, especially being outdoors and enjoying nature. They are especially fond of walking and biking the Jordan River, just a few blocks away from her home. In addition to the PNUT Board, she plays the clarinet in the Murray Symphony, works for PBS KIDS Utah as an Education Coordinator, and keeps her little ones alive and curious.



Phil Carroll


May 2024

Phil joined the Board in 2021 representing District 3. Phil has lived in the Avenues since he came to Utah as a graduate student back in 1974. He enjoys living in this community, the parks, and the surrounding foothills. He has been involved in the Greater Avenues Community Council for much of his time in Utah and he’s been a part of the Annual Memory Grove Cleanup since its inception. For Phil, public spaces and lands are critical to a livable community. He hopes to be part of ensuring their preservation and expansion.



Clayton Scrivner


November 2024

Clayton Scrivner is a 27-year resident of Salt Lake City’s Trolley Square neighborhood and represents District 4 on the PNUT Board. A public sector communicator by profession, Clayton has two decades of experience in public engagement, including five years at Salt Lake City Corporation and four years in Parks and Recreation at Salt Lake County. He currently serves as the spokesperson for Park City Municipal. Clayton plays the drums, collects records, and likes to spend his spare time either kayaking, backpacking, or spending chill time at the family cabin in the Uinta Mountains. His son Charlie is the coolest 10-year-old in the world and his rescue dog named Rudie is as lazy as she is goofy.



Brianna Binnebose


September 2025

Brianna Binnebose joined the Board in 2019, originally as an At-Large member, but was later appointed as the District 5 representative for the Liberty Wells, Central City, and Ballpark neighborhoods. After a spring break ski trip from Wisconsin to Little Cottonwood Canyon in 2005, the powder and the views convinced her to give Utah a try. She is a Communications Consultant and earned a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from the University of Utah and has been involved in public involvement and planning for nearly a decade. She has previously worked for the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire, and State Lands, and led the development of the first wildfire prevention and preparedness plan developed for Salt Lake City. She is a frequent visitor to Liberty Park and you can often find her there running her dogs. Her interest in the PNUT Board stems from her previous experience in resource management and passion for making both our urban and open space public parks and lands accessible for all users of all abilities.



CJ Whittaker


May 2024

CJ Whittaker joined the Board in 2021 representing District 6. He grew up in Salt Lake City and has enjoyed the Foothills Trails and SLC’s parks since he was a child. He has spent his career developing Utah businesses that specialize in providing outdoor equipment so people can enjoy parks and the outdoors. CJ frequently runs or bikes in the Foothill Trails or walks his dog at SLC’s Parks.



Samantha Finch


February 2025

Samantha joined the Board in 2019 representing District 7, the Sugar House neighborhood of SLC. She has resided in the same house near Nibley Park Elementary for 13 years. Originally from the Northeast, Samantha moved to SLC for its proximity to some of Utah’s amazing ski resorts and the strong job market. Currently, she works for a financial institution in Downtown Salt Lake. Previously, she has spent time in different occupations from working for a FinTech startup to being a junior attorney working on matters involving public lands for the state of Utah. Before her time with the state, Samantha worked in the financial services industry in Boston, MA. A frequent visitor to Fairmont Park, you can find her attending Friends of Fairmont Park events, Friends of Allen Park’s meetings, or the Sugar House Community Council Parks, Open Space and Trails Subcommittee. Her interest in the PNUT Board stems from her educational and employment experience in land use and environmental policy issues.



Meredith Benally


September 2025

Meredith Benally is one of the At-Large members appointed in 2022. She is tied to Utah through generations of family living in and around San Juan River, Bears Ears, and Salt Lake Valley, time immemorial. She worked as a Paralegal for a private law firm, Salt Lake Public Defender, Navajo Office of the Public Defender, and the Navajo Nation Office of Hearings and Appeals. She earned a Law Advocate Degree but continues her education at the University of Utah. Meredith’s mother was always an advocate for public lands and passed that love onto her. This love and work became a reality when she was introduced to Utah Diné Bikéyah, an Indigenous lead non-profit organization that works to heal, preserve Indigenous culture and traditions, and educate on sacred lands. This innate understanding of natural law is part of Diné philosophy and Fundamental Law. Meredith’s traditional insights have reminded her to take the time to enjoy what Salt Lake Valley has to offer, parks, trails, and the natural landscape of the region.



Ginger Cannon


January 2024

Ginger is a sustainability leader passionate about creating quality places where all people want to live, work, play, and learn. She currently works for the University of Utah and has over 20 years of experience in strategic planning, environmental design, and government administration. Ginger joined the Board back in 2021 and she is one of the Boards At-Large representatives.



Jenny Hewson


February 2025

Over the last 20 years, Jenny has collaborated professionally on sustainable land science projects, processes, and policies in over 25 countries throughout the tropics. This has been both rewarding and humbling. However, Jenny has resided in Salt Lake City since 2005 and had never had the opportunity to engage and collaborate locally, right here. Seeking an opportunity to listen, learn, expand act locally, Jenny applied to the Salt Lake City Boards and Commissions and was assigned to the Parks, Natural Lands, Urban Forestry & Trails (PNUT) Advisory Board in 2019 as an At-Large member. Jenny is grateful to have this opportunity to engage locally and learn about the plethora of responsibilities, activities, and issues that the Public Lands Department impacts at the individual park level, and much more broadly through its portfolio of parks and public spaces, trails and natural lands, urban forestry, and golf courses. Jenny is excited to support the Public Lands Department as it implements Reimagine Nature; SLC Public Lands Master Plan. In her free time, Jenny can be found outside trail running or pottering in the beautiful Wasatch mountains, plotting a hiking trip, curiously exploring the world around her, or geminating the odd vegetable seed!



Dave John


March 2026

Dave John is one of the At-Large members of the PNUT Board appointed in 2023. He is of the Tewa/Dine Nations of Turtle Island. Dave is involved with different organizations throughout Salt Lake and Utah Counties: he is a founder of O.U.R’s (Our Unsheltered Relatives), which feeds the unsheltered every Saturday with home-cooked meals; founder of Silver Avanyu Entertainment, which helps promote Indigenous artists and musicians; co-founder of PANDOS (Peaceful Advocates for Native Dialogue & Organizing Support), which advocates for Indigenous rights and environmental issues; co-founder of 2nd & 2nd Coalition, which shares a movie night for the unsheltered; he is a member of Native American Events, which hosts a New Years and 24th of July powwow for the Indigenous and Non-Indigenous of the Wasatch Front; and co-host on KRCL 90.9 “Living the Circle of Life”. He hopes that being on this committee, he can bring the Indigenous voice of the original stewards of this land forward.



Talula Pontuti


April 2026

Talula Pontuti is an At-Large PNUT Board member who is an incoming Ph.D. student in the Department of Geography at the University of Utah studying food justice, agriculture, and climate change with goals of focusing on mixed methods, and community-driven research. She has worked on sustainability projects on a city level, worked for nonprofits doing urban agriculture, and has been involved with other community-based programs focusing on environmental justice. She is excited to work on the PNUT Board to provide support to the Public Land’s work and represent community members in this space.