Ernest oversees the national divisions of TPL that provide TPL's conservation services, which includes Conservation Transactions, Conservation Vision/GIS, Conservation Finance, Federal Affairs, and the national Parks for People (urban) program. Since joining TPL in 1980, Ernest has significantly expanded TPL's geographic and program scope, laying the groundwork for TPL's land conservation programs in New England and the Midwest and serving as TPL's first Regional Director for both regions. After moving to a national leadership role in 1994, Ernest played a primary role in planning and marketing TPL's Green Cities Initiative, which renewed and expanded TPL's historic commitment to urban parks. He also built TPL's Conservation Finance program by establishing a nationwide team of staff and political consultants who have helped state and local governments create over $40 billion in new sources of public funds for parks and land conservation. More recently, Ernest formed a Conservation Economics unit and is leading the creation of large-scale national databases that allow for greater accountability and effectiveness of conservation programs for both public and private conservation partners. Ernest holds an undergraduate degree from Harvard and a Master's in Public Administration from New York University.