Staff and Board

Carolyn Bartels, Event & Volunteer Manager Carolyn has a family history in Colorado which dates back to the 1800’s.  She has been a resident herself since 1978, calling Golden home for over 20 years.  Carolyn began her teamwork with volunteers while the Special Events Assistant at the Denver Botanic Gardens.  That position saw her managing events and the respective volunteer corps at the Gardens and the Arboretum at Chatfield Reservoir.  She later made a segue, joining Jim Sprinkle Productions as stage manager for the Denver Botanic Concert Series, still working with the same core group of volunteers for nearly 10 years.  As a volunteer herself at her daughter’s schools, she coordinated others for every classroom event, from parties to field trips and off site band performances. Carolyn’s favorite activities include attending live theater and music, hiking, travel, playing with her dogs and enjoying the company of family and friends!

Andrea Bestor, Guest Services Manager & Buyer – Andrea has railroading in her blood! Her father was a gandy-dancer, and her grandma and great-grandads all worked for the New York Central lines. Andrea has lived in Golden for the past 22 years, and has enjoyed watching it grow. She has worked in retail for over 15 years, and is excited to keep the Museum Store at the Colorado Railroad Museum stocked with interesting and fun “finds!”

Jack Campbell, Chief Mechanical Officer – Jack manages all of the Roundhouse functions at the Colorado Railroad Museum, which includes railcar restoration and operations. Prior to that, Jack served as Chief Mechanical Officer of the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad, where he was responsible for all aspects of restoration and maintenance of the 64 mile antique tourist railroad, including 6 operational vintage steam locomotives and many freight and passenger railroad cars. He was hired as a Shop Foreman and Machinist for the railroad in 1990 and became CMO by early 1996. Over this 8 year period the railroad ridership grew 60 to 70 percent, with a lower down time, or inability maintain advertised scheduling than any other time in its history. This success was from maintaining 6 steam locomotives for operation and making 4 or 5 of them available for daily use during operation seasons. The C&TS in-house shop forces generally achieved a boiler and or running gear rebuild per year along with maintaining and creating the passenger car fleet, and also maintained an operational steam powered rotary snow plow and used it to clear the snow and ice in spring time 4 different years in the 1990’s. When not at the Museum, Jack is a computer programmer and also runs his own business dealing with industrial automation.

Renee Fitzgerald, Customer Service Specialist

Renee is a mother of three children and has lived in the Denver area her entire life. When she manages to find some rare personal time, she is usually out jogging or biking around town. Renee’s previous work experiences have included childcare, office/secretarial duties, and computer data entry. “I am excited to be learning all about Colorado’s railroad history, all the new aspects regarding this job, and I’m having a great time getting to know my co-workers. I have a special interest in trains because my father worked for the Union Pacific Railroad in the 1970’s – 80s’. I remember all the lively and fun stories that he used to tell.”

Danielle Ghear, Customer Service Specialist – Danielle started at the Colorado Railroad Museum volunteering in the train restoration department rebuilding infrastructure and hand painting the train signs. She now works in the Depot General Store with Guest Services. “I’m excited to be working here at the Colorado Railroad Museum as there is a special place in my heart for the industrial age.” In her free time Danielle is a steampunk enthusiast creating costumes as well as unique art and sculptures. She also enjoys hiking, swimming, and rugby.

Stephanie Gilmore, Curator of Collections – Stephanie joined the staff at the CRRM in the fall of 2015. Born and raised in the east San Francisco Bay in California, Stephanie came to Colorado in 2005 to attend the University of Denver where she later earned her master’s degree.  She has always been fascinated by railroad history and especially how the railroad has shaped the American west.  She currently lives in Lakewood with her husband and their two “furry” kids – a black lab and an orange tabby cat.  In her spare time, Stephanie enjoys volunteering at the Cat Care Society in Lakewood, traveling, cooking, crafts, painting, and exploring all that Colorado has to offer.”

Beth Glandt, Assistant Manager, Guest Services – Beth joined the Museum staff in August 2014 and is responsible for a wide range of tasks & projects including donation requests, memberships and more. Beth has a BS in Business Administration and more than 20 years experience in the education and athletic fields, and 9 years experience as a corporate travel agent.

In her free time Beth enjoys photography, traveling and spending time with friends, family and granddaughter Emma! “I am excited to learn more about Colorado railroading history and to meet new people.”

Matthew C. Isaacks, Multimedia Coordinator – Matt, a Colorado native, studied Multimedia Communications at Warren Tech and Red Rocks Community College in Lakewood, CO. He has worked for the Colorado Railroad Museum in several positions since September 2002. Matt documents important events and activities at the Museum, helps maintain and update the web site, and is the project leader for the Museum’s catalog and auction programs.

Heidi Markley, Assistant Director of Events & Volunteers – Heidi has been an active Golden Volunteer since she retired from 30 years of teaching elementary students in Jefferson County Schools in 2003. She was the Volunteer Coordinator for Miners Alley Playhouse for over 10 years. Heidi has also volunteered at the Golden Visitors Center for 12 years helping run their many events, and assisting visitors with helpful information about the wonderful sights in and around Golden. Her love of trains and Colorado began at the age of 10 when she rode the Amtrak from Los Angeles to Denver to attend a summer camp. Heidi has resided in Colorado full time since 1966 and has ridden all the scenic trains in Colorado, many of the Amtrak routes in the US, VIA Rail in Canada and many of the European trains. She holds a Masters in Educational Curriculum and a Bachelors of Science in Education, Recreation and Health. She started volunteering at the Railroad Museum in October, 2014 to help coordinate all the volunteers for Polar Express (especially the chefs and the elves). In April, 2015 , Heidi became of the Museum staff.

Marcie Miller, Director of Development – Marcie was raised within walking distance of the Railroad Museum, and spent many a childhood hour playing in and around the railcars on the lot before graduating to horses and expanding her range to include the top of North Table Mountain. She is currently pursuing a Masters in Nonprofit Management from Regis University in Denver, and is an award winning glass artist with a hot shop in Golden. She likes to joke that it’s a metaphor for life: she’s not afraid to play with fire, and hardly ever gets burned! Marcie says she feels that she has come full circle from her early days at the Colorado Railroad Museum and has returned again to play at the Museum… only now she can come in the front door instead of sneaking in over the back fence!

Elizabeth Nosek, Curator of Education & Exhibits – Elizabeth  manages the museum’s education and exhibits programs at the Colorado Railroad Museum. A museum curator for over 20 years, she has worked in collections, interpretation, education and exhibition at museums around the United States as well as in various time periods. Museums are her lifelong passion and she delights in using objects to connect people with the unique story they have to tell. Whether milking a cow in Massachusetts, printing the Hawaiian alphabet in Hawaii, hearth cooking in Maryland or driving a Model T in Lakewood, Colorado, Elizabeth has always delighted in learning new things. She looks forward to the adventures that await at the Colorado Train  Museum where we bring Colorado Railroad history to life.

Bonnie Prater, Business Manager & Controller – Bonnie began her career with the museum as a volunteer in 2006 for a “Day Out With Thomas”, Halloween Train and Christmas Train. She then started as a Part-Time Guest Services Employee until the Business Manager retired and Donald asked if she would consider taking the position. She agreed and has been in this position since 2007. When she is not at the museum, Bonnie likes playing with her 4 parrots, fishing, playing on-line games, and target shooting.

Andrew Ridder, Guest Services Specialist & Grounds – Andrew works in the gift shop as guest services and also manages the museum grounds. When not working, Andrew likes soccer and skateboarding.

Mike Spera, Master Mechanic – Mike is in charge of the Museum’s steam & diesel locomotives. He started volunteering at the Colorado Railroad Museum at age 8, and was mentored by a Master Mechanic of the Pennsylvania Railroad. He has also worked at many tourist railroads in Colorado. Most days, you’ll find Mike elbow-deep in grease and oil out in the Roundhouse. When Mike is not at the museum he is working at his own shop in Denver, restoring steam locomotive appliances.

Donald Tallman, Executive Director – Donald begins his 10th year as the Executive Director at the Colorado Railroad Museum. Active in the community, Donald currently serves on the Boards of the Association of Tourist Railroads & Railroad Museums and Golden Visitor Center and is a member of the City of Lakewood Budget and Audit Committee. As a professional singer, he performs throughout the Denver area, and regularly performs the National Anthem at civic and professional sporting events. Donald is a member of the Colorado Mountain Club, and enjoys mountain-climbing and cooking. He and several of his favorite recipes are featured in the recently published cookbook “Denver Men in the Kitchen.”

Board of Trustees Emeritus

Charles Albi
Dave Bender
Thomas Daniels
Mike Danneman
Richard Farewell
Kenton H. Forrest
Martin Frick
Ronald C. Hill
William C. Jones
Ray Kenley


Lindsey Ashby
Jim Barton
Al Blount
Michael Davis
Larry Dorsey
Walter Downing
Bill Henderson
Roy Johnson
Sharon McGee
Steve Parker
William Robie
Dave Ropchan

Advisory Board

John Bush
Jack Campbell
Cornelius Hauck
Randy Lee
Richard Luckin
Linn Moedinger
Alan Olson
Mike Porter
Michael Ramsey
Henry Reynaud
Dave Schaaf