IPEA Board of Directors

Our district directors volunteer to assist with their local IPEA events and membership. If you are interested in serving as a district director, please contact the IPEA office for more information.

Brian Poole, President
Julie Caldwell, Vice President
Erika Tucker, Treasurer
Vicki Farrar, Secretary
District One (Vacant)
District Two, Tim Long
District Three (Vacant)
District Four (Vacant)
District Five, Oscar Tracy
District Six, Fred Tucker
District Seven (Vacant)



Brian Poole

Brian Poole, the current IPEA board president, has been employed by the Idaho Transportation Department for the last 30 years. He graduated from Idaho State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in engineering in 1987, following his graduation from Rigby High in 1982. Brian is a referee of high school sports including football, volleyball, basketball, baseball and softball. He is president of the Idaho Horseshoe Pitching Association and a member of the National Horseshoe Pitching Association. Brian teaches snowboarding at Pebble Creek, and is a member of the Pebble Creek Ski Patrol.

In his free time, Brian enjoys hunting, fishing, camping, golf, horseshoes, and snowboarding. He and his wife Melanie live in Pocatello. They have four children and eleven grandchildren.


Julie Caldwell

Julie Caldwell, vice president of IPEA, retired from the Idaho Transportation Department after thirty years of service. Julie stayed active in IPEA after her retirement to stay on top of issues that could impact her as a retiree.  After seeing the changes in employees’ benefits during her three decades as a state employee, Julie wants to help protect remaining benefits for public workers.

To stay busy Julie delivers mail part time and enjoys fishing, mountain walks, travel and spending time with her family.  She currently lives in Garden Valley, Idaho, and is married to her wonderful husband Mike.


Erika Tucker

Erika Tucker, IPEA’s treasurer, received an accounting degree from Moorpark College. Her career path has included advertising and marketing, as well as nine years in the nuclear medicine manufacturing industry. She has a strong work ethic which she attributes to her father. Currently Erika works for the Idaho Transportation Department in District 6.

She lives with her husband and son in Lewisville, ID, and enjoys the simple, country life.


Vicki Farrar

Vicki Farrar, IPEA’s secretary, participates with the IPEA because she believes employees can be most effective in communicating their needs to their employers when they work together. Vicki worked in civil engineering, and later served as an environmental planner for the Idaho Transportation Department for about 21 years. Vicki is retired and lives in Boise.


Gwen Smith

Gwen Smith, immediate past president of IPEA, joined in 1982 when she became a state employee. She wasn’t active in her membership, but felt good about having a voice in the State Legislature. When she retired in 2008, Gwen became a District Director for IPEA and has served in some capacity ever since. She says, “I am proud of my state service career:  I worked hard to serve the people of Idaho for 25 years and now I work for those who are making services available to me.”

Gwen is a grandmother, quilter, reader, gardener and political junkie – probably in that order.  She loves coffee and conversation with friends and is always available for a chat.


Mary Tipps

Mary Tipps, IPEA’s executive director, spent six years as a legislative staffer in the Idaho House of Representatives after a dozen years as a successful nonprofit administrator. This combination of experience provides a solid framework for her to effectively serve and grow the IPEA. She is currently completing an organizational leadership program through Penn State University. She has degrees in political science and liberal arts from the College of Western Idaho, and is certified as a women’s health educator through the University of California.

Mary enjoys farmers markets, live music, baking, reading, writing, ridiculous comedies, and organized spaces. She and her husband live in Kuna, Idaho. They have five children and one grandchild.


Tony Smith

Tony Smith, legislative director of IPEA, graduated from Boise State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in political science and a Master’s Degree in public administration. He has served Idaho-based and national clients since 2009 and has built strong relationships in the Idaho Legislature, executive offices, and state agencies. His commitment to integrity and dedication to ensuring respectful dialogue have made him a trusted advisor and advocate.

Tony is an avid outdoorsman who enjoys dirtbiking, fishing, camping, shooting, snowboarding, whitewater rafting and woodworking. He and his wife have five children and one grandchild.