The Team

Boots on the Ground

Managers & Staff

Contact us at for questions about programming, tournaments, and rentals.

Sam Bird

director of operations

Sam Bird is the Director of Operations for Wyo Sports Ranch.

Bird brings a wealth of experience in business and sports management to this new position. He is an accomplished professional who has, over the past decade, successfully managed many projects, operations, and cross-functional teams in the sport and fitness industry across Kentucky, Arizona, and Wyoming. He is beyond excited and blessed to bring his education, experience, and values to WSR.

Bird’s local roots make him uniquely positioned to understand and cater to the needs of the community. As a resident of Casper, his firsthand experience and deep connections to the community will provide invaluable insights as he leads operations at WSR. As he transitions into his role, he is eager to use his local perspective to enrich Wyo Sports Ranch and our community.

His passionate determination to create a positive, enriching environment at WSR is sure to establish the facility as a leading center for sports, community spirit, and personal growth.

Bird graduated from Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Sciences in Economics. Currently nearing completion of his Master’s in Business Administration at the University of Wyoming, Sam’s track record exemplifies his keen ability to drive operational excellence and implement strategic initiatives that promote growth and success.

Bird’s journey in sports began with his passion for various athletic pursuits during his childhood. He grew up playing numerous sports but fell in love with soccer. He played competitively in local club and school teams all throughout his youth. His love for the sport propelled him to a collegiate soccer career at Spring Arbor University, coaching many teams along the way. After graduating college, he switched to competitive fitness (CrossFit) and has enjoyed bridging the gap between developing sport-specific skills and relevant strength and conditioning needed for that sport. This personal connection to sports, coupled with his professional know-how, makes him uniquely qualified to lead operations at Wyo Sports Ranch.

Nicole Klungness

Director of Marketing & Business Development

Nicole Klungness brings creative expertise and a deep-rooted passion for sports to the Wyo Sports Ranch. With a BFA in Graphic Design from Black Hills State University, she has well-developed skills in visual communication and storytelling. Nicole began her career in Casper as a professional graphic designer and photographer, where she blended creativity and functionality while creating lasting professional relationships. 

As a Casper native and lifelong athlete, Nicole has an intimate understanding of the community’s need for a large, state-of-the-art sports facility like the Wyo Sports Ranch. Nicole played multiple sports growing up including soccer, golf, basketball, and track. She excelled in soccer and golf, which led her to break the Kelly Walsh High School record for career and season goals, and become a 3-time State Champion and All-State golfer. Nicole finished her student-athlete career as a collegiate golfer at BHSU where she became a WGCA All-American Scholar. With a soft spot for athletics, Nicole looks forward to nurturing a vibrant sports culture within the community. 

As Director of Marketing and Business Development, Nicole is dedicated to championing The Wyo Sports Ranch’s mission of providing a top-tier sports facility and comprehensive sports programming for Casper’s youth. Nicole strives to foster connections within the community, tell stories, and help ignite a passion for sports.

Kaitlyn O'Meara

Finance Manager

Kaitlyn grew up in Calaveras County, California.  She was given the opportunity to play multiple sports from a young age. She made the early decision to specialize in softball through the California Grapette’s Softball organization.  Kaitlyn was 1st team All League & All-Academic Team at both Softball & Volleyball while at Calaveras High School.  Injuries and family life cut Kaitlyn’s college softball career short.  She is thankful for the coaches that pushed her, and the opportunities her parents provided for her to play her sport at a high level.  Kaitlyn was surrounded by a competitive, driven family.  She looked up to her grandfather Stephen O’Meara, who was instrumental in the evolution of the California Interscholastic Federation. A lifelong educator and sports fanatic, her Papa Steve emphasized the importance of developing well rounded Student-Athletes.

In 2009 Kaitlyn returned to her Alma Matter to coach the freshman volleyball team and later transitioned to the Head Varsity Coach.   With the help of her mentor, she worked to keep the athletes playing in the off season with the Calaveras Gold Volleyball Club.  Kaitlyn is a big believer in developing fundamentals from a young age.  Through district wide youth clinics and coaching 7th & 8th grade B teams she worked to unite all levels of the sport in her community. Kaitlyn is very excited to be able to give back to the sports that built her and plans to be involved in developing young volleyball players at the Wyoming Sports Ranch and looks forward to learning from the experience of Mike Gaffaney.

She relocated to Wyoming in Spring 2011 and spent 11 years in Riverton farming, ranching, training horses and raising her family. Kaitlyn began to feel like she had left something on the table. She committed herself to furthering her education and earned her Bachelors of Science Business Administration, Accounting through Western Governors University in February of 2024.  She is now pursuing her Masters degree in Accounting.

Kaitlyn feels blessed by the opportunity to be involved in the Wyoming Sports Ranch.  She believes it will elevate youth sports state-wide by  giving young athletes access, repetition, and a firm foundation to build their skills to the next level. She looks forward to seeing future champions come in through the doors to play, learn, compete…. and grow into amazing humans.  

Kaitlyn has three children; Madison, Rye Ty & Boldry.  They are her “why” in everything she does.  Success to Kaitlyn is showing her children how  to embrace challenges, view failure as opportunity, and believe that their goals are achievable. 

“Somewhere behind the athlete you’ve become and the hours of practice and the coaches who have pushed you is a little girl who fell in love with the game and never looked back… play for her.” —Mia Hamm

Luke Gilliam

Executive Director

Luke joins the WYO Complex team after 4.5 years of working for Visit Casper. 

Luke’s role at Visit Casper was focused on bringing large groups from all segments of tourism business to Casper. Whether a trade show of 200, a corporate retreat of 50, a men’s beauty pageant of 2000, or a national collegiate sporting event of 3000+, the goal was the same, bring people and their money to Casper. 

Luke was also responsible for the operation of the non-profit Proud to Host the Best. This non-profit raises the funds necessary to pay for each of the eight state high school culminating events in Casper, work with the various stakeholders within those events, work with community partners, gather volunteers, procure food donations, and most importantly, keep these events coming back to Casper year after year. 

The state high school events cared for by Proud to Host the Best equate to over 24 million in direct spend in our community each year. 

Luke has lived in Casper for nine years with his wife Kayla. Luke and Kayla both played college basketball at Colorado Christian University, and now ten years later, they coach the Kelly Walsh Girl’s basketball program together. Kayla is the head coach and Luke, the fiery assistant



JR is an original founder of Altitude Energy Partners where he held the role of CEO from March 2016 until his resignation and appointment as Executive Chairman in January 2020. Since January 2020, JR has still been actively involved in the daily activity of the business as well as the direction of the business, from the Board of Directors.  JR brings 18 years of oilfield service experience to the company, including various management roles in the US land markets for Haliburton, Weatherford, and Newsco International Energy Services.

Glenda Thomas

Glenda has spent 30 plus years building relationships and connecting with people in Casper.  She is the Executive Director of the Wold Foundation and manages the grant selection process and donations for the Wold family.  She recently completed the fundraising and construction management of the Casper YMCA Phase I and Phase II projects totaling over $30M.  Glenda is a Chemical Engineer that has worked in the trona and uranium mining industries – including designing, building and operating a uranium mine at a cost of over $40M. 

Glenda is responsible for the fundraising and relationships with donors and organizations for Wyo Sports Ranch.  She directly manages the donor meetings, donor materials, donor database, meeting schedule, meeting follow up, donation tracking, pledge agreements, pledge payments, thank you notes, grant writing and grant reports.  

Glenda grew up in Casper and moved back to raise her family. Glenda is married to Mike Thomas, and they have 4 teenagers – Kassidy, Tristy, Braxton and Daxton. The Thomas kids have all participated in many of the spots that can use the Wyo Sports Ranch from cheerleading to volleyball, basketball, and football.

Jessica Hastings


Jessica is the operations manager for the McMurry Companies.  She understands  the operations of a volume of entities and can transfer this to the Wyo Sports Ranch. She manages and operates businesses from startup to maintaining and sustaining operations. Her experience with construction allows her  to contribute and manage the development of pre-construction services and oversee the development of the facility from the ground up. As an employee of  the McMurry Companies she operates under the mission to “Pay it Forward” and is focused on the success of the Wyo Sports Ranch. 

Jessica is responsible for the overall development of the WSR facility.  She directly manages the pre-construction services, the architectural and design teams, the contractor qualification and selection process, the operator qualification and selection process, project schedule, project budget, and quality of construction.

Ben Blalock

Executive Director

Ben is the recently retired President/CEO of the University of Wyoming Foundation.  He worked actively with the Daniels Fund during his 25-plus year career with the UW Foundation.  He oversaw the growth of the UW Foundation from a $40 million asset organization when he joined UW in 1996 to the achievement of over $900 million in total assets at the time of his retirement from the UW Foundation in the summer of 2021. In his contract role with the Wyo Sports Ranch, Ben serves as the 501(c)3 Executive Director and supports major gift fundraising.  He has worked closely with the McMurry Foundation and the McMurry Family for over two decades through their UW philanthropy.

As Executive Director, Ben is responsible for the overall direction of the WYO Sports Ranch.  He oversees the pre-construction, contractor selection, operator selection, donor relations and fundraising.  

Steve FReel

Steve is a Casper native who retired after 26 years in law enforcement. Steve is now a local Realtor / Broker with Platinum Properties of Casper. Steve became involved with the board as a member of the Casper City Council and then continued with the Board after leaving the Council. Steve is currently a newly elected County Commissioner, filling the role as the Commission Chair.

Trudi Holthouse

Board Member

Born and raised in Casper, Trudi has spent the majority of her adult life raising her four girls and volunteering her time through the work of The McMurry Foundation.

The foundation places special emphasis on the areas of education, religion, children and advocacy for children, health and human services, the arts and humanities, and a favorable business environment. In carrying out its work, the foundation is guided by the values of excellence and compassion. The foundation invests in innovative ventures as well as established community programs that have the potential to make a lasting difference.

I look forward to continuing the legacy of giving instilled by my parents. I’m grateful to be a part of building a better Wyoming and paying it forward for years to come.

Dirk Montgomery

Board Member

Dirk and his wife Jill have four active children ranging in ages from elementary through high school.  As a father he has coached numerous sports teams and volunteered in various roles in youth sports.  He is excited to be serving on the board of The Ranch.  As a lifelong Wyoming native, he is eager to see the opportunities the sports complex will provide for youth in Casper and Wyoming.

As a Certified Public Accountant for over 20 years he has been involved with various boards and organizers over the years.  He is currently a partner with the firm Lenhart, Mason & Associates in Casper.

Jim Orr

Board Member

Jim is a co-founder of Casper based Transportation Partners and Logistics and Global Specialized Services and serves as the President and CEO of Takkion Group which is the holding company of these entities as well as Renew Energy Maintenance of Sioux Falls , SD  and Airway Services of San Angelo, TX. These companies primarily serve the Oil and Gas and the renewable energy industries.

Jim and his wife Shannon were both born and raised in Casper Wyoming and graduated from Natrona County High School. They have three children and six grandchildren. They enjoy traveling, spending time with their family and watching their grandchildren excel academically and athletically in the sports they participate in. 

Mike Porter

Board Member

Mike is a lifelong Casper resident that is proud to be part of four generations here. He is the senior managing wealth advisor at Ashton Thomas Private Wealth. Mike has spent 30 years in the wealth management industry managing large family relationships. He graduated from Casper College, University of Wyoming, and has a CTFA (Certified Trust and Financial Advisor) designation.

Mike has spent the past 20 years coaching his kids in youth sports in Wyoming. Through these coaching years, he realized the tremendous need for gym space that was lacking in Casper.

Mike and his wife Stacie have 3 children. They own River’s Edge RV Park in Casper. They also enjoy traveling, camping, hunting, and family time all with the family dog, Willow, a golden retriever.

Kyle Ridgeway

Board Member

Kyle is the Chief Operating Officer for WERCS (307 First) whose mission is to own, operate, invest in and grow Wyoming businesses ( Kyle has a B.S. in Economics from Gonzaga University and. J.D. from the University of Wyoming. He was a practicing attorney in Casper for nearly 10 years focused on corporate law and civil litigation. He is currently President of Mountain West Technologies Corporation, 307 Horse Racing (Derby Club Gaming Parlors), 307 Tech Pros, and has a variety of other roles at WERCS’ investments and subsidiaries. 

His non-profit endeavors include service as the President of the Healthy Births and Infant Brains Foundation, a Director at Mercer Family Resource Center, Olivia Caldwell Foundation, and Advance Casper. He is passionate about the Wyo Sports Ranch’s mission and local economic development initiatives. Kyle, his wife Erica, and their two children live in Casper.

Tom Walters

Born and Raised in Wyoming. Graduated from the University of Wyoming with a degree in Animal Science and Agriculture Business. Tom works as the Manager of Bummer Land and Livestock.

He served 10 years on Natrona County Conservation District Board — 9 years as chairman; and 10 years on Central Wyoming Fair Board — 2 years as chairman. Tom served on the Natrona County Republican party executive committee for 8 years; 10 years (5 terms) in the Wyoming House of Representatives. He was relected in 2022 and began is 6th term in 2023.

Eric Sullivan

Eric developed the original financial and market analysis tools that SFC is most well-known for and led the first facility opening projects in our company history that paved the way for the launch of SFC.

Since joining SFC in 2006, Eric has overseen and served as an advisor to hundreds of projects including market studies, financing plans, development plans, turnarounds, and new facility openings. His work in domestic and international markets has included projects in the U.S., Canada, Caribbean, United Kingdom, Latin America, Asia, and the Middle East. Eric currently leads SFC’s expansion efforts in our continued vision to integrate sports, fitness, education, leadership development, and adventure sports into communities around the globe.

In 2012, he was honored as a member of the Tampa Bay Business Journal’s “30 Under 30” Up and Comers class. In total, Eric has been a catalyst for SFC’s growth, leading the entire planning, funding, and grand opening of more than $500 million in sports, fitness, recreation, and entertainment facilities.