The Ore Dock BotEco Center

Our goal is to create a special place on Marquette's waterfront that achieves a sustainable balance of educational, recreational and commercial uses.

1) Ecological Education and Research Facilities
2) Year-round Indoor Botanical Gardens
3) Historical Preservation and Education
4) Community Spaces

Board of Directors

Gisele Duehring
Jim Cantrill
Aurora Dobbs
Dan Kill
Nancy Peterson
Michael Marsden
Kristine Goupille
Joe Rom


Board President: Gisele Duehring
Sugar Loaf
Gisele grew up in Iowa building bridges over a pasture creek using scrap materials, curiously watching water bugs skim the creek surface, munching mulberries, and loving violets and other wildflowers in the pasture. With a BS in Mechanical Engineering from ISU and some grad classes, she worked as a PE and PMP for a Texas power company/engineering firm mostly with coal-fired plants. One of her favorite volunteer opps was teaching illiterate adults to read and training tutors. Marquette’s Hunger Garden holds a special place in her heart. Now at NMU’s Ripley Plant, she is learning a lot about their new wood chip-fired steam generating unit. Architecture, flowers, children and pets make her heart sing. The BotEco Center, her passion, creatively encompasses those favorites and more!

Vice President: Joe Rom

CV 2 bw

Joe Rom, RA, NCARB, has extensive international experience in residential, commercial and cultural projects. As a member of Studio Daniel Libeskind in New York City, Joe has been involved in numerous projects that have moved from design to documentation to construction, managing the architectural teams, coordinating with consultants and giving presentations to clients. Some of these projects include the Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco, opened in 2008, and high-rise residential towers in Warsaw, Poland and Sao Paulo, Brazil. 
At the Suk Design Group in New York, he worked on cultural and residential construction, including the renovation and expansion of the historic Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum.
He received his B.S. Architecture from the University of Michigan in 1997 and his Master of Architecture from the University of Michigan in 1999. Joe is a licensed architect.

Joe is a founder of Studio RAD in Marquette. He and his wife provide us will all of our renderings for our project, so please check out their website!

Secretary: Jim Cantrill
Jim Can
Jim has a Ph.D. from the University of Illinois, has lived in the Upper Peninsula since 1990, and currently is a professor and the Department Head of Communication and Performance Studies at Northern Michigan University. Over his career, he has authored several books, anthologized chapters, and journal articles related to environmental communication and conservation psychology. Jim has also served as a consultant for a range of organizations including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the National Park Service. He was the founder of the U.P. Land Conservancy in the 1990s, and is quite active in the Fred Waara Chapter of Trout Unlimited in addition to focusing on the BotEco Center at the Ore Dock. In his spare time, Jim enjoys fly fishing, cooking, and traveling to distant lands such as Patagonia.

Treasurer: Dan Kill

 Dan K
Dan Kill is a native of Silver Spring, Maryland and a 1983 graduate of the University of Maryland with a degree in finance. Dan also earned his Masters of Business Administration, while serving as an officer in the U.S. Air Force, from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Minot, North Dakota. A few of Dan’s important accomplishments include: surfing the black sand beaches in Iceland, piloting an aircraft with his wife over Half-Dome in Yosemite on a cloudy day, and he owns a Dingo (Roxxie) and didn’t allow it to eat any of his babies. Dan now lives in Negaunee, Michigan with his wife Lori and children, Nickolas and Abbi.

Board Members


Aurora Dobbs  came to the Upper Peninsula from Boyne City, Michigan in 2004 to attend NMU and instantly fell in love. After graduating with a degree in Environmental Conservation and a minor in Mechanical Engineering Technology in 2008, she just couldn’t bear to leave. She currently works as a Mechanical Designer in Marquette. Aurora embraces all of the seasons with a variety of outdoor activities and sports with her husband and two dogs. She is attracted to the idea of the BotEco Center because she feels the ore dock is a part of local history for the community to preserve and enjoy. The thought of gardening year-round indoors  is also very appealing!


Nancy Peterson grew up in a family business; her father was a landscaper and started 4 garden center business in different parts of Michigan.  She obtained her  horticulture degree from Ferris State University, was licensed by the State of Michigan for approximately 30 years in pesticide use, and has done landscape designing since 1981.  Nancy worked in landscape construction, managed the Garden Center in Marquette, Michigan, and currently is Sales Specialist in the Lowes’ Outside Lawn and Garden Department in Marquette.

Michael Marsden,
who most recently served as the Interim Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs at Iona College (New Rochelle, New York) for 2013-2014, served St. Norbert College (De Pere, Wisconsin) from 2003-2013. He served as Dean of the College and Academic Vice President from 2003-2010 and served briefly as Acting President in 2008. He was also Professor of English, American Studies and Media Studies from 2003-2013. Prior to coming to St. Norbert, he was Provost Vice President for Academic Affairs and Research at Eastern Kentucky University, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Northern Michigan University, and Assistant/Associate Dean in the College of Arts and Sciences at Bowling Green State University. Marsden was a Fellow in the National Humanities Institute at the University of Chicago serving as a Visiting Professor of Culture and Technology. He received an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from St. Norbert College in 2011 and the St. Norbert College’s President’s Medal in 2008.


Kristine Goupille moved to the Upper Peninsula in 1983 to attend Northern Michigan University, graduated college, and just never left. She is an Associate Broker in real estate at RE/MAX 1st Realty in Marquette and has been selling homes for 18 years. Kristine has two children, both born and raised in the U.P. Her daughter Hailey is currently a student at Michigan Technological University and her son Ely attends Northern Michigan University. In her “free time”, Kristine likes to play golf, garden, walk her Pomeranian ZsaZsa, and enjoys adding to her extensive shoe collection. Kristine is a firm believer in the education about and the preservation of historical structures, whether it be right here in Marquette or among her travels throughout the U.S and Europe. We’re hoping you will also feel as passionate as we do about this amazing structure and transforming it into something everyone can enjoy now and in the years to come.