National Board Members

The Trust for Public Land benefits from the expertise and guidance of the National Board of Directors and its emeritus members. 

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Stephen W. Baird

Background and expertise: Steve Baird, Chicago, IL, is the president and chief executive officer of Baird & Warner. Established in 1855, the firm is the oldest residential real estate brokerage in the United States and currently ranks among the nation's top 12 with an annual sales volume of over $6 billion. Under Baird's leadership, the firm has grown dramatically, currently with a sales force of over 2,200 sales associates who operate from 30 strategically located offices throughout Chicago and its suburbs. The Company also operates subsidiaries in residential mortgage banking and title services.

Steve serves as chairman of the Realty Alliance – a consortium of the nation's top real estate...

Background and expertise: Steve Baird, Chicago, IL, is the president and chief executive officer of Baird & Warner. Established in 1855, the firm is the oldest residential real estate brokerage in the United States and currently ranks among the nation's top 12 with an annual sales volume of over $6 billion. Under Baird's leadership, the firm has grown dramatically, currently with a sales force of over 2,200 sales associates who operate from 30 strategically located offices throughout Chicago and its suburbs. The Company also operates subsidiaries in residential mortgage banking and title services.

Steve serves as chairman of the Realty Alliance – a consortium of the nation's top real estate firms – and has testified before the US Congress on matters of vital interest to the real estate community. In addition, he has long worked for the preservation of open space as past-president of CorLands, the Openlands Project, and currently as a national board member of the Trust for Public Land where he serves as Chairman of the Finance Committee. He holds memberships in the World Presidents Organization, the Chief Executives Organization and the Commercial Club of Chicago. He has served as a trustee of the Morton Arboretum, Children’s Memorial Hospital and the local advisory board of US Bank.

Steve also was selected by Fortune Small Business Magazine as a "Best Boss" for 2004. Steve is actively involved with Public Radio serving on the Board of WBEZ in Chicago for the past 10 years and as its Chairman for three years. Steve also is involved with Harvard University through its schools and scholarship committee. He coordinates all interviewing for the Chicago area.

Steve lives in Chicago and the North Shore with his wife, Susan. They have 2 daughters, Lucy and Abby.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "My family and I share The Trust for Public Land's belief in the importance of open space in people's lives. In cities and the wilderness, parks are where people connect and community is built. Creating a better, more open environment is critical to a better society in general."

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: "My family and I have supported The Trust for Public Land for decades because we believe its work changes lives. From preserving nature to giving more children access to a park close to home, The Trust for Public Land reaches more communities and creates more parks."

George Bell

Background and expertise: 30-year veteran of creating and growing consumer businesses; former managing director, General Catalyst Partners, a private equity investment firm; board member, John Wiley and Sons (NYSE: Wiley); board member, Angie's List; chairman, Place IQ, a location and movement data company; advisor to various public and private companies in digital media. Former CEO of Jumptap, a mobile advertising platform; former CEO of Upromise; former chairman and CEO of Excite and [email protected]; former chairman, Harris Interactive; founder of The Outdoor Life Network (now NBC Sports Network); former SVP of Times Mirror Magazines, overseeing titles such as SKI and Field & Stream. Recipient of Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of...

Background and expertise: 30-year veteran of creating and growing consumer businesses; former managing director, General Catalyst Partners, a private equity investment firm; board member, John Wiley and Sons (NYSE: Wiley); board member, Angie's List; chairman, Place IQ, a location and movement data company; advisor to various public and private companies in digital media. Former CEO of Jumptap, a mobile advertising platform; former CEO of Upromise; former chairman and CEO of Excite and [email protected]; former chairman, Harris Interactive; founder of The Outdoor Life Network (now NBC Sports Network); former SVP of Times Mirror Magazines, overseeing titles such as SKI and Field & Stream. Recipient of Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award for California and New England; four-time Emmy Award–winning producer and writer of adventure, wildlife, and vanishing-culture documentaries. Harvard '80.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "I have three sons and I have seen the powerful effect of nature and parks in our family's life. Opportunities to affect major, lasting transformations across the country don't come around often. I chose to make a commitment to protecting land and creating parks because I know our work will ripple across countless families and communities in America, for today and for generations to come."

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: "Now more than ever, there's urgency for this work. At the end of the day it's going to take a collective effort to make significant strides in land conservation. The Trust for Public Land is a major force in this movement, and the scope of our mission inspires me."

Luis Benitez

Luis Benitez’s early career was spent conducting mountaineering, climbing, and skiing courses for the international Outward Bound Schools which he advanced to becoming the Director of Operations and Chief Guide for Adventure Consultants, a Seven Summits guiding company based in New Zealand made famous via the book Into Thin Air.  
 
Luis has led parties of climbers to the summit of some of Earth’s most imposing peaks. His first of six summits on Mount Everest was in 2001 with blind athlete Erik Weihenmayer, and Luis has guided on the other famed Seven Summits a total of 32 times.  
 
From guiding and as a byproduct of...

Luis Benitez’s early career was spent conducting mountaineering, climbing, and skiing courses for the international Outward Bound Schools which he advanced to becoming the Director of Operations and Chief Guide for Adventure Consultants, a Seven Summits guiding company based in New Zealand made famous via the book Into Thin Air.  
 
Luis has led parties of climbers to the summit of some of Earth’s most imposing peaks. His first of six summits on Mount Everest was in 2001 with blind athlete Erik Weihenmayer, and Luis has guided on the other famed Seven Summits a total of 32 times.  
 
From guiding and as a byproduct of that work, working with governments around the world, Luis pivoted to full time government affairs and global impact work for the ski company Vail Resorts.  
 
He was also at that time elected to City Council in Eagle, Colorado serving as the youngest Councilman for the town.  
 
Luis then came to VF from leading the Outdoor Recreation Industry Office for the state of Colorado via his appointment by then Governor Hickenlooper.  
 
At the heart of his career, Luis has always focused on teaching as well as serving. Some of his most rewarding work has been to help create the nonprofit “Trekking For Kids”, which focuses on service based expeditions allowing participants to climb and trek while teaching them about local issues like housing and healthcare for orphans around the world. He has also worked closely with Warriors to Summits, a nonprofit focusing on serving returning Veterans by connecting them with the outdoors.  
 
Luis believes that a major shift is taking place, one in which the outdoor industry will transform into a powerful force for economic development, conservation and stewardship, education and workforce development and the intersection between public health and wellness, and spending time outside.

Page Knudsen Cowles

Page Knudsen Cowles was an investment professional in the financial services industry during the 1980's. She has been an active volunteer in the Twin Cities for many years and has served on the boards of the Children's Theater Company, Planned Parenthood Minnesota/South Dakota and Graywolf Press, a nationally acclaimed literary publisher. She currently is a trustee of St. Paul Academy and Summit School; serves on the board of Unity Avenue Foundation, a family foundation; and is a director of Lawrence Creek, LLC, a private investment company. In addition to serving as Chair of the national board of The Trust for Public Land (TPL), she is also the past chair of...

Page Knudsen Cowles was an investment professional in the financial services industry during the 1980's. She has been an active volunteer in the Twin Cities for many years and has served on the boards of the Children's Theater Company, Planned Parenthood Minnesota/South Dakota and Graywolf Press, a nationally acclaimed literary publisher. She currently is a trustee of St. Paul Academy and Summit School; serves on the board of Unity Avenue Foundation, a family foundation; and is a director of Lawrence Creek, LLC, a private investment company. In addition to serving as Chair of the national board of The Trust for Public Land (TPL), she is also the past chair of the board of The Conservation Campaign, TPL's 501(c)(4) lobbying affiliate. She serves as President of Madison Valley Park Foundation in Seattle, WA and as Managing Director of Knudsen Vineyards, LLC, a family-owned wine grape growing concern in Dundee, OR. Ms. Cowles is a native of Seattle, Washington. She received her B.A. from Yale College (New Haven, CT), her M.B.A. from Harvard University (Cambridge, MA) and her CFA from the Institute of Chartered Financial Analysts.

Background and expertise: Page is a long-time member of the national board of the Trust for Public Land (TPL), an organization working nationwide to create parks and conserve land for people to enjoy ensuring healthy, livable communities for generations to come. She joined the board in 2000, served as Chair from 2010 - 2016, and is immediate past chair and a board member of The Trust for Public Land's Action Fund, TPL's separate 501(c)(4) lobbying affiliate. On the local level, she is a founding member of TPL's Minnesota Advisory Board and a past Chair.

On behalf of the Knudsen family, she is Managing Partner of Knudsen Vineyards in Dundee, OR and President of Madison Valley Park Foundation, which stewarded Julia Lee's Park in Seattle for 23 years until its donation to the city in late 2016.

Page was an investment professional in the financial services industry during the 1980's, and a founder and partner in Ruminator Books Press, an independent trade book publishing company, during the 1990's. An active volunteer in the Twin Cities for many years, Page has served on the boards of the Children's Theater Company, Planned Parenthood Minnesota/South Dakota, St. Paul Academy and Summit School, an independent school in St. Paul, MN, and Graywolf Press, a nationally acclaimed literary book publisher, where she currently serves as a member of its National Council. Recently, she joined the Board of Trustees at the Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia). In addition, she serves on the Board of Advisors for the Yale School of Management in New Haven, CT.

A native of Seattle, Washington, Page received her B.A. from Yale College, her M.B.A. from Harvard University and is a retired Chartered Financial Analyst. Page possesses boundless energy. She has many interests and connects genuinely with friends and everyone she meets. She is married to Jay Cowles and they have three young adult children.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "It's about a connection to nature for me. I like to be outside and feel the elements—the sun on my face and the wind at my back. I think nature grounds us in a way that is important for human beings. As a child I hiked and camped a lot, and my memories of the places that we went as a family remain very special to me."

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: "The work is relatively permanent in an ever-changing world. When we create a park, it stays there. We ask communities what is important to them, and we help them realize their vision. When the space is complete, people feel a sense of ownership, empowering them to be committed long-term stewards."

Mickey Fearn

Background and Expertise:  Mickey Fearn has been a public servant and parks, recreation, and conservation professional for over 50 years, working with local, state, and national governments. Mickey is currently a Professor of Practice at North Carolina State University’s School of Natural Resources, teaching a class on diversity and equity in the field of parks and recreation. 

Previously, Mickey served as the National Park Service’s Deputy Director (2008-2013), and was a long-time employee of the City of Seattle where he held a variety of positions, including: Director of Innovation, Executive Director of the Neighborhood Leadership Program, Manager of Seattle’s Race and Social Justice Initiative, and Director of Communication and Citizen...

Background and Expertise:  Mickey Fearn has been a public servant and parks, recreation, and conservation professional for over 50 years, working with local, state, and national governments. Mickey is currently a Professor of Practice at North Carolina State University’s School of Natural Resources, teaching a class on diversity and equity in the field of parks and recreation. 

Previously, Mickey served as the National Park Service’s Deputy Director (2008-2013), and was a long-time employee of the City of Seattle where he held a variety of positions, including: Director of Innovation, Executive Director of the Neighborhood Leadership Program, Manager of Seattle’s Race and Social Justice Initiative, and Director of Communication and Citizen Engagement in the Department of Parks and Recreation. In addition, 

Mickey led the creation of the architecture to end youth violence in the City of Seattle, and developed programs connecting young people with nature.  Mickey was a Washington State Parks and Recreation Commissioner for 12 years, a Community Outreach Specialist for the Governor of California and the California Department of Parks and Recreation, and the Coordinator of Special Projects, Community Outreach and Community Organization for the Mayor of Oakland (CA).

Jody S. Gill

Background and expertise: Jody Gill is a graduate of Northwestern University with a B.A. in economics. After graduation, she worked as a media planner at Benton & Bowles Advertising in New York City, and later as a security analyst at L. F. Rothschild. Following marriage and the arrival of three sons, the family moved to Boston where Jody attended Boston University Law School. Thereafter, she worked as an estate planner at Choate, Hall and Stewart, a prosecutor at the Middlesex County Court House in Cambridge, and as a sole practitioner, specializing in criminal defense and civil rights litigation. In 1998, she retired to sail across the Pacific with her husband....

Background and expertise: Jody Gill is a graduate of Northwestern University with a B.A. in economics. After graduation, she worked as a media planner at Benton & Bowles Advertising in New York City, and later as a security analyst at L. F. Rothschild. Following marriage and the arrival of three sons, the family moved to Boston where Jody attended Boston University Law School. Thereafter, she worked as an estate planner at Choate, Hall and Stewart, a prosecutor at the Middlesex County Court House in Cambridge, and as a sole practitioner, specializing in criminal defense and civil rights litigation. In 1998, she retired to sail across the Pacific with her husband.

Jody has served on many corporate and non-profit boards including Connecticut Bank & Trust Company, Nantucket Cottage Hospital, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, Boston, Milton Academy, Cambridge College, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and the Esplanade Association. She currently chairs The Trust for Public Land’s Massachusetts Advisory Board. Jody and her husband, Tom, are avid blue water sailors and hikers; they reside in Boston and West Palm Beach.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: I believe that access to green space should be a fundamental right enjoyed by every single person in America.

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: I support The Trust for Public Land because of its commitment to bring Americans within a 10-minute walk of a climate savvy park. With social equity a core, driving principle, The Trust for Public Land builds parks in underserved urban areas, making a daily difference in millions of lives.

Whitney Hatch

Background and expertise: Currently serves as chairman of the board of Issue One, working to put citizens back in control of our democracy by reducing the power of money in American politics and policymaking; worked at The Trust for Public Land from 1998 until 2011, primarily as director of the six-state New England region; previously served for 15 years at GTE Corporation in various capacities, ultimately as vice president of regulatory affairs, responsible for all GTE's Washington, D.C. federal regulatory advocacy on behalf of its portfolio of regulated telecommunications business units; currently serves on the Trust for Public Land national board; serves on the Conservation Law Foundation board and chairs...

Background and expertise: Currently serves as chairman of the board of Issue One, working to put citizens back in control of our democracy by reducing the power of money in American politics and policymaking; worked at The Trust for Public Land from 1998 until 2011, primarily as director of the six-state New England region; previously served for 15 years at GTE Corporation in various capacities, ultimately as vice president of regulatory affairs, responsible for all GTE's Washington, D.C. federal regulatory advocacy on behalf of its portfolio of regulated telecommunications business units; currently serves on the Trust for Public Land national board; serves on the Conservation Law Foundation board and chairs CLF’s Massachusetts advisory board; reappointed by Governor Deval Patrick to a second, seven-year term on and serves as chair of the stewardship council of the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation; appointed to a 3-year term on the Ipswich Municipal Electric Subcommittee; serves on the board of the John Merck Fund and the Merck Family Fund; advisory board of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, and founding board member of the School for Field Studies; previously served as chairman of the American Rivers and Management Assistance Group boards. Awarded the 2017 Liff Spirit Award from the Emerald Necklace Conservancy.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "Everybody needs a place to play, a place to reflect, a place to roam. Be those places in cities or in the boonies, those lands, those street corners, those playgrounds, those gardens, those park benches need to be there to receive us. We at The Trust for Public Land need to ensure they are available, maintained, and nearby to all."

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: "Unlike other organizations with which I am deeply involved, The Trust for Public Land feels like home. Having worked at The Trust for Public Land for over a decade, I witnessed firsthand the creativity, commitment, and collegiality with which my former colleagues threw themselves into often impossible conservation opportunities with local partners. The heartfelt New England town meeting testimonies urging neighbors to support a conservation project followed by unanimous votes to tax themselves to pay for it still reverberate years later. They did it, and The Trust for Public Land helped. Priceless."

Happy Haynes

Allegra “Happy” Haynes is the Executive Director of Denver Parks & Recreation and was Denver’s Deputy Mayor in 2017 and 2019. 

Happy served from 2011 – 2019 as an at-large member of the Denver Public Schools Board of Education following six years as the District’s Chief Community Engagement Officer. During her 40-year career in state and local government, Happy was the first African-American woman elected to the Denver City Council, on which she served thirteen years. 

She also serves on the boards of the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, Denver Botanic Gardens, Salazar Center for North American Conservation, and the City Parks Alliance.  Happy has also served on The...

Allegra “Happy” Haynes is the Executive Director of Denver Parks & Recreation and was Denver’s Deputy Mayor in 2017 and 2019. 

Happy served from 2011 – 2019 as an at-large member of the Denver Public Schools Board of Education following six years as the District’s Chief Community Engagement Officer. During her 40-year career in state and local government, Happy was the first African-American woman elected to the Denver City Council, on which she served thirteen years. 

She also serves on the boards of the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, Denver Botanic Gardens, Salazar Center for North American Conservation, and the City Parks Alliance.  Happy has also served on The Trust for Public Land Colorado Advisory Board for the past six years. 

She is a member of the Denver Chapter of The Links, Inc. She was a founding board member of Mile High Youth Corps, Sand Creek Regional Greenway, Colorado Black Women for Political Action and the Foundation for Educational Excellence. 

Happy first fell in love with the outdoors  in her backyard growing up, gardening with her grandmother, a perfect climbing tree, and a mother that encouraged outdoor activities and adventure. She supports The Trust for Public Land because, “putting people at the center of our mission and our work recognizes that people are not only the chief beneficiaries of our work to protect land and create quality parks and open spaces, but that their stewardship and advocacy and engagement is key to our success.

Happy is a Denver native, and received a BA in Political Science from Barnard College at Columbia University and an MPA from the University of Colorado at Denver. 

Ben Jealous

Ben Jealous has spent his professional life at the nexus of social change, media, and emerging technologies. Jealous is currently serving as president of People For the American Way and People For the American Way Foundation and is a visiting scholar at the University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg School for Communication, School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2), and the Wharton School. A former Rhodes Scholar, Jealous is a graduate of Columbia University and Oxford University. Jealous was the youngest person ever elected as National President & CEO of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), where he served from 2008-2013. He is credited with bringing the organization...

Ben Jealous has spent his professional life at the nexus of social change, media, and emerging technologies. Jealous is currently serving as president of People For the American Way and People For the American Way Foundation and is a visiting scholar at the University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg School for Communication, School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2), and the Wharton School. A former Rhodes Scholar, Jealous is a graduate of Columbia University and Oxford University. Jealous was the youngest person ever elected as National President & CEO of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), where he served from 2008-2013. He is credited with bringing the organization into the digital age where he led a series of wholesale changes in how the organization used social media and related technologies to enhance its organization. He was also the 2018 Democratic Nominee for Governor of Maryland, former Executive Director of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), and for more than half a decade has been investing in social impact startups.
 
A self-described organizer, Ben has a great deal of experience working with communities to effect change. He founded one of the first high school chapters of the Student Environmental Action Coalition, helped launch Public Interest Research Groups’ neighborhood Green Corps program in 1994, and launched the NAACP national climate justice program in 2008. He also co-founded the Democracy Initiative, a collaboration of environmentalists and civil rights organizations to fight voter suppression in 2012.

Christopher G. Lea

Background and Expertise: In 2004 Mr. Lea formed a partnership to create Lea + O'Reilly based in Chicago, with a practice limited to promotional marketing law, including sweepstakes, sponsorship and talent/endorsement agreements, as well as charitable commercial co-ventures. Prior to starting the firm, Mr. Lea practiced in the antitrust and trade regulation group at Bell, Boyd & Lloyd (now KL Gates) working primarily on mergers, acquisitions and marketing matters. Mr. Lea also served on the board of Paper Converting Machine Company in Green Bay, Wisconsin until its acquisition by a private entity in 2005. Always in love with the outdoors and Jackson Hole, Chris finally made the move to Wyoming...

Background and Expertise: In 2004 Mr. Lea formed a partnership to create Lea + O'Reilly based in Chicago, with a practice limited to promotional marketing law, including sweepstakes, sponsorship and talent/endorsement agreements, as well as charitable commercial co-ventures. Prior to starting the firm, Mr. Lea practiced in the antitrust and trade regulation group at Bell, Boyd & Lloyd (now KL Gates) working primarily on mergers, acquisitions and marketing matters. Mr. Lea also served on the board of Paper Converting Machine Company in Green Bay, Wisconsin until its acquisition by a private entity in 2005. Always in love with the outdoors and Jackson Hole, Chris finally made the move to Wyoming full-time in 2016.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: I believe we are creatures of nature. Without it, we are nothing. It's really that simple. At a very early age, I had the good fortune of spending substantial time during the summers camping in and around Steamboat Springs, and later, in the Grand Tetons. The experiences left an indelible mark on my psyche: I wanted all of my friends and family to be able to share in the wonders of nature and vast open spaces. As I became an adult, my vision evolved from merely my immediate circle of friends to all the people of the world -- so that they too would forever be able to enjoy what I experienced. Nature can't be appreciated if our only connection is via television and the big screen. I want people to live—feel-- and even smell-- nature! I truly believe that without actual live experiences we as a society will not understand the importance of preserving our open spaces for generations to come. This must be our legacy.

From a more urban perspective, I previously lived along the abandoned train line that became The 606, a TPL project. After completion of the project, I would look out of my windows and see thousands of people walking, jogging, skate boarding, and biking each day--oftentimes with entire multi-generational families participating together. I almost immediately started asking myself, where did these people go to enjoy the outdoors before this? Where did they bike, walk and run? What did they do to stay healthy? The answer was simple: For many, they did nothing. Now, literally tens of thousands can get a little closer to nature, right in their own backyard in Chicago. And now, partially due to TPL's initiatives, a park is no more than a ten minute walk from millions of fellow Americans. TPL is improving the lives of people every day.

Why I support the Trust for Public Land: I feel humbled to be part of what I consider the premier organization dedicated to protecting land. And not just protecting it for the sake of protecting it – but protecting it for people. Its programs of creating parks within walking distance of most Americans is just as important. I believe the Trust for Public Land's missions improve the quality of life for all, not just a chosen few. I am also impressed with the manner in which TPL obtains public support and input for its projects--so that it is able to help give the people what they want.

Joseph Lipscomb

Joe is co-founder and partner of Arborview Capital, a Chevy Chase-based private equity firm which makes growth equity investments in established businesses in the energy efficiency, resource efficiency and sustainability sectors. He previously spent 15 years working in private equity and investment banking at the Global Environment Fund, The Carlyle Group, BT Alex Brown and First Boston.Joe serves on the board of Envocore and previously served on the boards of numerous companies, both private and public. He is the vice-chair of the board of Kenyon College and is a Trustee of the Maryland/DC Chapter of the Nature Conservancy. Joe received an undergraduate degree from Kenyon, a master's degree from Johns...

Joe is co-founder and partner of Arborview Capital, a Chevy Chase-based private equity firm which makes growth equity investments in established businesses in the energy efficiency, resource efficiency and sustainability sectors. He previously spent 15 years working in private equity and investment banking at the Global Environment Fund, The Carlyle Group, BT Alex Brown and First Boston.Joe serves on the board of Envocore and previously served on the boards of numerous companies, both private and public. He is the vice-chair of the board of Kenyon College and is a Trustee of the Maryland/DC Chapter of the Nature Conservancy. Joe received an undergraduate degree from Kenyon, a master's degree from Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: The natural environment is an increasingly scarce resource yet is one that is fundamental and vital to the physical and spiritual health of humans. It is hard to imagine a mission that is more critical to our future.

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: The Trust for Public Land plays a unique and critical role among conservation and environmental organizations. While many preserve and restore land, The Trust for Public Land is distinguished by a core mission of preserving land for people.

Ignacia S. Moreno

Background and expertise: Ignacia S. Moreno has practiced environmental and natural resources law for 27 years; currently Chief Executive Officer and a founding Principal of The iMoreno Group, PLC, where she provides legal services and strategic counseling on environmental and natural resources matters; served as Senate-confirmed Assistant Attorney General for the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (2009 to 2013) and was recognized for her outstanding service, including her leadership of the Division’s response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill; former Counsel for the Northeast/Midwest Regions and International at the General Electric Company; practiced at two prominent Washington, D.C. law firms, including as a partner;...

Background and expertise: Ignacia S. Moreno has practiced environmental and natural resources law for 27 years; currently Chief Executive Officer and a founding Principal of The iMoreno Group, PLC, where she provides legal services and strategic counseling on environmental and natural resources matters; served as Senate-confirmed Assistant Attorney General for the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (2009 to 2013) and was recognized for her outstanding service, including her leadership of the Division’s response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill; former Counsel for the Northeast/Midwest Regions and International at the General Electric Company; practiced at two prominent Washington, D.C. law firms, including as a partner; served at the U.S. Department of Justice in the Environment and Natural Resources Division for seven years during the Clinton Administration; appointed in 2016 by Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe to serve a four-year term on the State Air Pollution Control Board; elected in 2016 as a Fellow of the America Bar Foundation; serves on the National Board of Directors of the Trust for Public Land; serves on the Advisory Board of the Institute for Policy Integrity at New York University School of Law and as Chair of the Litigation Committee; serves on the Board of Directors of Green 2.0; and serves on the ABA Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources (SEER) Council and served as Chair of the SEER Special Committee on State Bar Coordination and Engagement; served pro bono as General Counsel to the Hispanic National Bar Association and on the boards of the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs and the Center for International Environmental Law; former President of the Hispanic Bar Association of the District of Columbia; named one of the Top 100 Green Leaders in the United States by PODER Hispanic Magazine and one of the 100 Most Influential Hispanics in the United States by Hispanic Business Magazine; earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from New York University in 1986, and a Juris Doctor degree from New York University School of Law in 1990; born in Cartagena, Colombia, grew up in New York City, and lives in McLean, Virginia with her husband and teenage son.

Why I believe in the importance of protecting land and creating parks: "As a child growing up in New York City north of Harlem, I loved walking with my sister and brother to Riverside Park on the Hudson River. The calm and natural beauty of the park offered a respite from the hectic and concrete world in which we lived, and it made us all very happy!"

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: "The work of The Trust for Public Land makes an enormous difference in the lives of the American people by protecting land and creating parks and playgrounds for the enjoyment and well-being of communities across the country. The Trust has long understood that conservation efforts, including the creation of parks, 'must serve all people and all communities, regardless of income, ethnicity, or geography.' These are values that I hold dear."

Caroline Niemczyk

Background and expertise: Currently serves as chair of The Trust for Public Land Action Fund and the Yale Institute for Biospheric Studies; serves on the advisory boards of the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, the Open Space Institute, and the Land Trust Alliance; served on the staff of Senator Daniel P. Moynihan, as a program officer at the Smith Richardson Foundation, as special assistant to Boston University President John Silber, and as an adjunct professor on the history faculty at Barnard College; graduated from Yale, the London School of Economics, and Columbia; has three children and resides in Bedford, New York.

Why I believe in protecting land and...

Background and expertise: Currently serves as chair of The Trust for Public Land Action Fund and the Yale Institute for Biospheric Studies; serves on the advisory boards of the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, the Open Space Institute, and the Land Trust Alliance; served on the staff of Senator Daniel P. Moynihan, as a program officer at the Smith Richardson Foundation, as special assistant to Boston University President John Silber, and as an adjunct professor on the history faculty at Barnard College; graduated from Yale, the London School of Economics, and Columbia; has three children and resides in Bedford, New York.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "I first fell in love with the natural world while camping as a child. My family was traveling cross-country. I remember scampering over the rocks of a streambed in the Great Smoky Mountains, light sparkling off the water as sun fell through the forest leaves. I felt happy, energized, independent, and peaceful."

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: "This organization has stunning success conserving the land people love. By being here, I'm part of a national team that strengthens community bonds. We deliver what people ask for, whether it's a trail, a playground, a historic site, a community garden, or a family farm."

Michael Parish

Background and expertise: Michael, from San Francisco CA, has been a Northern California real estate investor for over 30 years. He is the co-chair of California Advisory Board for the Trust for Public Land and a member of the National Board. Michael has served as Board President of the St. Anthony Foundation, where he received the St. Anthony Spirit Award in 2018. In addition he has served as President of the Board of Trustees of The Katherine Delmar Burke School, and as a Trustee at Marin Academy High School. Michael earned his MBA from the University of Colorado and his bachelor's degree from Middlebury College. He is an enthusiastic skier, mountain...

Background and expertise: Michael, from San Francisco CA, has been a Northern California real estate investor for over 30 years. He is the co-chair of California Advisory Board for the Trust for Public Land and a member of the National Board. Michael has served as Board President of the St. Anthony Foundation, where he received the St. Anthony Spirit Award in 2018. In addition he has served as President of the Board of Trustees of The Katherine Delmar Burke School, and as a Trustee at Marin Academy High School. Michael earned his MBA from the University of Colorado and his bachelor's degree from Middlebury College. He is an enthusiastic skier, mountain biker and hiker.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: Connecting to the outdoors, whether it is a city park or a mountain trail, is what makes me feel grounded and alive. It is becoming more and more important that people have access to nature for their health and well-being. Protecting land and creating parks is not only good for the people who access those places, it is also beneficial to the environment as a whole.

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: My family and I started supporting the Trust for Public Land because of a local project on Donner Summit in the Sierra, where I have spent a good portion of my life. That project, Royal Gorge, preserved thousands of acres of land that would have been developed, destroying important habitats. As I have learned more about the organization what I really appreciate is the commitment to serve communities that do not have adequate access to parks and open spaces. Specifically in the San Francisco Bay Area, the Oakland schoolyards project is one of my favorites.

David Poppe

Background and Expertise:  David Poppe is President of the investment firm, Giverny Capital Asset Management. Prior to Giverny, David spent 20 years as an analyst, research director, portfolio manager, mutual fund director and ultimately CEO of Ruane, Cunniff & Goldfarb, another investment management firm. While at Ruane, Cunniff & Goldfarb, David was co-manager and director of the firm’s flagship Sequoia Fund.  Previously, David was a journalist, working for publications such as the Miami Herald. David has been a member of The Trust for Public Land’s New York Advisory Board since 2019. 
 
Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: The U.S. is a beautiful country with a...

Background and Expertise:  David Poppe is President of the investment firm, Giverny Capital Asset Management. Prior to Giverny, David spent 20 years as an analyst, research director, portfolio manager, mutual fund director and ultimately CEO of Ruane, Cunniff & Goldfarb, another investment management firm. While at Ruane, Cunniff & Goldfarb, David was co-manager and director of the firm’s flagship Sequoia Fund.  Previously, David was a journalist, working for publications such as the Miami Herald. David has been a member of The Trust for Public Land’s New York Advisory Board since 2019. 
 
Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: The U.S. is a beautiful country with a steadily growing population that is expected to reach 400 million by mid-century. Protecting land and creating access to parks, trails and open space is vitally important work, both to preserve precious natural areas and to improve public health and quality of life for Americans. If we don’t do this now, we won’t be able to do it tomorrow.

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: The land for people mission sets TPL apart from other worthy conservation causes. When we connect people with nature, we improve public health, commitment to conservation and civic engagement. Parks and green space in cities contribute to climate resilience and quality of life. This work feels essential, both to the stewardship of the land and to our commitment to one another.  

Thomas S. Reeve
Chair, National Board

Background and expertise: Tom has served as chair of The Trust for Public Land's National Leadership Council and The Trust for Public Land's Washington State advisory board. Currently serving on the Hawaiian Islands and Northwest advisory boards, he is also a board member and past president of the board of the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Coalition. Tom has served on the national council of the Land Trust alliance and as chair of the San Juan Islands National Monument Advisory Committee. He had an 18-year career at Microsoft, managing teams focused on consumer software, internal tools, international software versions, the Works business, media production, and the MSN.com portal site. Tom is...

Background and expertise: Tom has served as chair of The Trust for Public Land's National Leadership Council and The Trust for Public Land's Washington State advisory board. Currently serving on the Hawaiian Islands and Northwest advisory boards, he is also a board member and past president of the board of the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Coalition. Tom has served on the national council of the Land Trust alliance and as chair of the San Juan Islands National Monument Advisory Committee. He had an 18-year career at Microsoft, managing teams focused on consumer software, internal tools, international software versions, the Works business, media production, and the MSN.com portal site. Tom is an avid traveler and outdoorsman, has a bachelor's degree from Harvard University, and lives with his family on their Lopez Island farm, which they protected by conservation easements.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "Historically, the American experience has centered around place. You can't tell the American story without recounting tales of people and the lands where they live and explore. We need to ensure that people continue to connect with the land and that outdoor experiences-whether learning to ride your bike in a nearby park or visiting a farm where your food is grown-continue to be a part of the American story."

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: "My wife Sally and I support The Trust for Public Land as our top charity because we believe our investment of time and money in this organization has the potential to help more Americans, in more communities, in a broader variety of ways than any other conservation investment we could make."

Jeff Resnick

Background and Expertise: Former partner and managing director at Goldman Sachs, where he was global head of commodities trading and money market businesses and served on the firm's risk and finance committees; worked for Chevron Corporation in San Francisco and Houston; former treasurer of Riverkeeper, a non-profit advocacy organization for the Hudson River watershed chaired by Robert Kennedy, Jr.; serves on the board of the dZi Foundation, supporting economic development in Nepal; avid skier, cyclist and furniture builder; lives in Telluride, Colorado, with his wife Debbie and their two sons.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "Most of the best moments in my life have been shared...

Background and Expertise: Former partner and managing director at Goldman Sachs, where he was global head of commodities trading and money market businesses and served on the firm's risk and finance committees; worked for Chevron Corporation in San Francisco and Houston; former treasurer of Riverkeeper, a non-profit advocacy organization for the Hudson River watershed chaired by Robert Kennedy, Jr.; serves on the board of the dZi Foundation, supporting economic development in Nepal; avid skier, cyclist and furniture builder; lives in Telluride, Colorado, with his wife Debbie and their two sons.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "Most of the best moments in my life have been shared with friends and family in the simple setting of a natural environment. In a world where our lives are becoming increasingly complex, the need for simple, healthy time in a beautiful city park or wilderness area is paramount. The health of our communities depends on the preservation and access to these places."

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: "I believe The Trust for Public Land is simply the best and smartest conservation organization protecting land for people. The combination of thought leadership, unique execution capabilities, and a focused, collaborative approach ensures great outcomes for the communities we work with. From parks in New York City to mountaintops in Colorado, I have personally experienced many of the amazing projects that The Trust for Public Land has completed."

Laura Richards

Background and expertise: A Doctor of Humane Letters, Laura is Founder and Chair of the Friends of Carrollton GreenBelt, an 18-mile concrete, recreational, circular trail within the City of Carrollton, Georgia. She currently serves as a national board member for the Trust for Public Land (since 2014.) Past board service includes: Carroll County Board of Health (2015-18), Georgia and Alabama Land Trust (2009-14,) the PATH Foundation in Atlanta (2013-18 and as Secretary,) Tanner Medical Foundation in Carrollton (2010-17.) Laura received the following awards for the GreenBelt: the 2016 Steinen Award for Service to Anthropology from the University of West Georgia (UWG); 2017 Award for Environmental Excellence from Keep Carroll Beautiful;...

Background and expertise: A Doctor of Humane Letters, Laura is Founder and Chair of the Friends of Carrollton GreenBelt, an 18-mile concrete, recreational, circular trail within the City of Carrollton, Georgia. She currently serves as a national board member for the Trust for Public Land (since 2014.) Past board service includes: Carroll County Board of Health (2015-18), Georgia and Alabama Land Trust (2009-14,) the PATH Foundation in Atlanta (2013-18 and as Secretary,) Tanner Medical Foundation in Carrollton (2010-17.) Laura received the following awards for the GreenBelt: the 2016 Steinen Award for Service to Anthropology from the University of West Georgia (UWG); 2017 Award for Environmental Excellence from Keep Carroll Beautiful; 2017 Georgia Recreation and Parks Association Volunteer of the Year award; 2018 Honorary Doctorate from UWG for Social Science research on the GreenBelt.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: “A quotation I like about land and parks is: ‘One touch of nature makes the whole world kin,’ by Shakespeare. For me, parks are about uniting people and place.”

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: “I give because The Trust for Public Land has a track record of helping in places where quality of life needs attention. For example, my city now enjoys a 26-acre park, which was one of The Trust for Public Land’s projects. I want others elsewhere to share in a similar positive experience.”

Lex Sant

Background and expertise: Since 2015, president of Sant Foundation; since 2018, president of the Summit Foundation; From 2008-2015, co-founder and managing director of Persimmon Tree Capital; past director in the Alternative Energy group at AES Corporation, responsible for the origination and execution of transactions related to biofuels, wind, and other forms of renewable energy; director emeritus and past chairman of Island Press; past trustee of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation; MBA (Baker Scholar) from Harvard Business School; Lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife and two daughters.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "As people, we need natural places in order to be ourselves. Whether it's a small...

Background and expertise: Since 2015, president of Sant Foundation; since 2018, president of the Summit Foundation; From 2008-2015, co-founder and managing director of Persimmon Tree Capital; past director in the Alternative Energy group at AES Corporation, responsible for the origination and execution of transactions related to biofuels, wind, and other forms of renewable energy; director emeritus and past chairman of Island Press; past trustee of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation; MBA (Baker Scholar) from Harvard Business School; Lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife and two daughters.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "As people, we need natural places in order to be ourselves. Whether it's a small city park that provides a quiet refuge from a busy day or a wild landscape with the broad vista to inspire awe, our interactions with nature are made possible by the places we protect for ourselves and for all those who will follow us."

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: "It takes great skill and deep knowledge to provide and protect the natural and special places, small and large, on which we rightly depend for human wellbeing. For 40 years, The Trust for Public Land has focused on this important work with an enviable entrepreneurial spirit and a deep commitment to conservation, which benefits us all."

Lucas St. Clair

Background and expertise: Lucas was born and raised into a subsistence living family in the North Woods of Maine, with no running water or electricity for most of his childhood. He left that lifestyle to attend a boarding school in the Western Mountains of Maine and went on to study abroad, pursuing a Culinary Arts degree at Le Cordon Bleu in London. Lucas worked in the beginning of his career in the restaurant and wine industry in New York City, Maine, and Seattle.

In 2011, Lucas took over his family’s operating foundation, Elliotsville Foundation, Inc. The Foundation owns 125,000 acres of timberland in Northern and central Maine that they have...

Background and expertise: Lucas was born and raised into a subsistence living family in the North Woods of Maine, with no running water or electricity for most of his childhood. He left that lifestyle to attend a boarding school in the Western Mountains of Maine and went on to study abroad, pursuing a Culinary Arts degree at Le Cordon Bleu in London. Lucas worked in the beginning of his career in the restaurant and wine industry in New York City, Maine, and Seattle.

In 2011, Lucas took over his family’s operating foundation, Elliotsville Foundation, Inc. The Foundation owns 125,000 acres of timberland in Northern and central Maine that they have been purchasing since 1998. They have been managing the land and adding infrastructure for recreation over the last several years. To celebrate the 100 anniversary of the National Park Service, President Barack Obama accepted the gift of 89,000 acres of land from Elliotsville Foundation and created the newest unit of the National Park Service, Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument on Aug 24th, 2016. Lucas and the Foundation continue to play a role in the development of the region and enhancing the community’s ability to capitalize on the newly realized asset.

Beyond the restaurant industry and land conservation, Lucas has a strong interest in outdoor pursuits. He has hiked the Appalachian Trail, paddled the Northern Forest Canoe Trail, taken a NOLS semester in Patagonia and has climbed peaks in Alaska, Washington, Peru, Chile and Argentina. He has also worked as a fly fishing guide and helped Eddie Bauer with designing fishing apparel. He has had the great fortune to fish in some of the most beautiful waters in the world.

Lucas lives in Hampden, Maine with his wife and two children.

Sheryl Crockett Tishman

Background and expertise: Along with the Trust for Public Land, Sheryl is a trustee of Telluride Mountainfilm, and her family foundation. As an Environmental Educator she taught at the National Audubon Society Expedition Institute, and at Weymouth House for girls in Maine. B.S. in environmental studies from Middlebury College; M.S. in education from Lesley University; Sheryl is an avid outdoorswoman who enjoys wilderness travel with her husband and two sons.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "My greatest teacher has been and continues to be the natural world. I feel honored, as well as responsible, to do what I can to enable future generations to have nature...

Background and expertise: Along with the Trust for Public Land, Sheryl is a trustee of Telluride Mountainfilm, and her family foundation. As an Environmental Educator she taught at the National Audubon Society Expedition Institute, and at Weymouth House for girls in Maine. B.S. in environmental studies from Middlebury College; M.S. in education from Lesley University; Sheryl is an avid outdoorswoman who enjoys wilderness travel with her husband and two sons.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "My greatest teacher has been and continues to be the natural world. I feel honored, as well as responsible, to do what I can to enable future generations to have nature in their lives. Ensuring that there are protected lands for years to come is a win for us all."

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: "Many environmental advocacy organizations do amazing work. What sets The Trust for Public Land apart for me is its focus on the belief that all people have the right to experience the natural world every day-making our planet stronger and healthier. From inner city parks to iconic landscapes, The Trust for Public Land accomplishes projects that greatly enhance people's exposure to the natural environment."

F. Jerome Tone

Background and expertise: Serves as agent for Hellman Properties LLC in Seal Beach, California; former general partner and executive vice president of Montgomery Capital Corporation in San Francisco; served as a director of the Alamitos Land Company in Signal Hill, California; former chief financial officer with BRIDGE Housing Corporation; former vice president in the real estate lending department at Wells Fargo Bank; currently serves on The Trust for Public Land's national board of directors, and the board of the Seattle Parks Foundation; graduated from Williams College and received his MBA from the University of California-Berkeley.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "When I walk through cities across...

Background and expertise: Serves as agent for Hellman Properties LLC in Seal Beach, California; former general partner and executive vice president of Montgomery Capital Corporation in San Francisco; served as a director of the Alamitos Land Company in Signal Hill, California; former chief financial officer with BRIDGE Housing Corporation; former vice president in the real estate lending department at Wells Fargo Bank; currently serves on The Trust for Public Land's national board of directors, and the board of the Seattle Parks Foundation; graduated from Williams College and received his MBA from the University of California-Berkeley.

Why I believe in protecting land and creating parks: "When I walk through cities across America, I am struck to see that the parks, trails, and open spaces are in constant use. There is always a resident, a couple, a family, or a group who are using our public spaces. These spaces are open and free: a perfect demonstration of our democracy at work. For example, my father recently pointed out an older fellow who sits on a bench in a central riverside park across the street from a coffee shop dad frequents. He told me that the guy is there every day. We were in Cleveland, Ohio, and so I asked, 'I wonder what he does in the winter?' Dad said, 'He's there in the winter!' Sitting in the park, enjoying his community. That's why I believe in protecting land and creating parks. The Trust for Public Land is doing a fantastic job creating special places for people to get outside and enjoy their communities."

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: "Having been on the 'inside' of The Trust for Public Land for many years, I can attest to the fact that the income that comes into the organization is allocated and used very efficiently. The Trust for Public Land leverages its resources in the most amazing ways, with project teams, the legal team, the finance and administrative teams cooperating to bring complicated and expensive transactions to closure. They navigate complex political situations at the local, regional, state, and federal levels-with thousands of examples (5,000-plus transactions to date) demonstrating their professionalism and efficiency. I am very proud to be associated with staff and volunteers for The Trust for Public Land and to have witnessed so many incredible transactions which have enhanced communities across the country."

Taylor Toynes

Taylor Toynes is the co-founder and executive director of For Oak Cliff, a culturally responsive organization serving the South Oak Cliff community in Dallas, Texas.
 
Working as a community organizer in the South Oak Cliff neighborhood of Dallas, Taylor Toynes has been on a mission to overturn systemic oppression in his community, and parks are one of his more powerful tools. In addition to serving as the Executive Director and founder of the non-profit community organization, For Oak Cliff, he represents his neighborhood on the City of Dallas’ Park and Recreation Board, which manages the city’s park system.  

“I’ve always believed in order to incite...

Taylor Toynes is the co-founder and executive director of For Oak Cliff, a culturally responsive organization serving the South Oak Cliff community in Dallas, Texas.
 
Working as a community organizer in the South Oak Cliff neighborhood of Dallas, Taylor Toynes has been on a mission to overturn systemic oppression in his community, and parks are one of his more powerful tools. In addition to serving as the Executive Director and founder of the non-profit community organization, For Oak Cliff, he represents his neighborhood on the City of Dallas’ Park and Recreation Board, which manages the city’s park system.  

“I’ve always believed in order to incite change, you need to engage the community, and The Trust for Public Land makes that the center of its work,” said Toynes. “I’m honored and excited to join The Trust for Public Land’s National Board of Directors and to devote my time and energy to building a more equitable future for South Oak Cliff, and communities across the country.” Toynes is a key partner of The Trust for Public Land’s efforts around the Five Mile Creek Greenbelt Master Plan and has a deep commitment to the work of building equitable communities.
   
After graduating with his master’s degree in education from Southern Methodist University, Toynes returned to the neighborhood he grew up in with the singular focus of working to overturn the decades of racism and systemic oppression that have limited the opportunities for its residents, especially youth and children. He brought this passion and commitment to his students at W.W. Bushman Elementary School l where he taught. Shortly after he launched the first annual Back To School Festival, a vessel to equip the community and students with the necessary supplies and resources for the new school year. For his leadership, he has received awards from the United Nations, the NAACP, and Southern Methodist University and was named an Echoing Green Fellow in 2020.  

Keith E. Weaver

Background and expertise: Keith Weaver is Executive Vice President, Global Policy and External Affairs, Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE). Mr. Weaver was elevated to this position in August 2011 and started as Vice President for the company in June 2002. Mr. Weaver oversees all of SPE's community affairs as well as its government and public policy activities across the globe. He works closely with SPE's operating units and corporate staff groups to develop a legislative and regulatory agenda that supports the business strategies and initiatives of the Company's motion picture, television, home entertainment and digital entertainment divisions. Mr. Weaver also coordinates SPE’s...

Background and expertise: Keith Weaver is Executive Vice President, Global Policy and External Affairs, Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE). Mr. Weaver was elevated to this position in August 2011 and started as Vice President for the company in June 2002. Mr. Weaver oversees all of SPE's community affairs as well as its government and public policy activities across the globe. He works closely with SPE's operating units and corporate staff groups to develop a legislative and regulatory agenda that supports the business strategies and initiatives of the Company's motion picture, television, home entertainment and digital entertainment divisions. Mr. Weaver also coordinates SPE’s government activities with Sony’s other U.S. operating companies such as Sony Music, Sony Electronics and Sony Computer Entertainment. Prior to joining SPE, Weaver was the staff director of the California State Senate Redistricting Office. Before working on legislative redistricting for the State of California, Weaver was a regional manager of Community and Government Relations for Kaiser Permanente and served on the staff of former State Senator Herschel Rosenthal. Mr. Weaver also served as chair of the California State Film Commission and as vice chair of the Board of Neighborhood Commissioners for the City of Los Angeles.

Susan D. Whiting

Background and expertise: C-level executive and board director working with multinational corporate and not-for-profit organizations in the United States; serves for the past decade as top advisor and director for consumer, technology, and financial services companies, working with executive leadership, external business partners, clients, and investors; currently serves on the board of directors for Alliant Energy Corporation and Kemper Corporation; is actively involved in several community, educational, and environmental organizations, including Denison University, the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum and as the chair of the board of The National Women's History Museum. Susan previously served as vice chair at Nielsen; retired from the company in January 2014, after a 35-year career;...

Background and expertise: C-level executive and board director working with multinational corporate and not-for-profit organizations in the United States; serves for the past decade as top advisor and director for consumer, technology, and financial services companies, working with executive leadership, external business partners, clients, and investors; currently serves on the board of directors for Alliant Energy Corporation and Kemper Corporation; is actively involved in several community, educational, and environmental organizations, including Denison University, the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum and as the chair of the board of The National Women's History Museum. Susan previously served as vice chair at Nielsen; retired from the company in January 2014, after a 35-year career; known for building Nielsen's most visible franchise in television measurement during the cable, telecommunications, and media industries' digital transition; currently resides in Chicago and Wisconsin with her children.

Why I believe protecting land and creating parks: "Green spaces and parks have a unique ability to transform cities and urban spaces, inspiring people-both young and old-to be a part of their community. We need to preserve the land for all those who come after us. It is our national legacy."

Why I support The Trust for Public Land: "I support The Trust for Public Land because I believe in its core mission. I also believe it is our civic duty to protect our environment for future generations."

Florence Williams

Florence Williams is a journalist, author, and podcaster. She is a contributing editor at Outside Magazine and a freelance writer for the New York Times, New York Times Magazine, National Geographic, The New York Review of Books, Slate, Mother Jones and numerous other publications. 

She is also the writer and host of two Gracie-Award-winning Audible Original series, Breasts Unbound and The Three-Day Effect, as well as Outside Magazine’s Double-X Factor podcast. Her public speaking includes keynotes at Google, the Smithsonian, the Seattle Zoo, the Aspen Ideas Festival and many other corporate, academic and nonprofit venues.

A fellow at the Center for Humans and Nature and a visiting scholar at George...

Florence Williams is a journalist, author, and podcaster. She is a contributing editor at Outside Magazine and a freelance writer for the New York Times, New York Times Magazine, National Geographic, The New York Review of Books, Slate, Mother Jones and numerous other publications. 

She is also the writer and host of two Gracie-Award-winning Audible Original series, Breasts Unbound and The Three-Day Effect, as well as Outside Magazine’s Double-X Factor podcast. Her public speaking includes keynotes at Google, the Smithsonian, the Seattle Zoo, the Aspen Ideas Festival and many other corporate, academic and nonprofit venues.

A fellow at the Center for Humans and Nature and a visiting scholar at George Washington University, her work focuses on the environment, health and science.

Florence’s first book, BREASTS: A Natural and Unnatural History  (W.W. Norton 2012) received the Los Angeles Times Book Prize in science and technology and the 2013 Audie in general nonfiction. It was also named a notable book of 2012 by the New York Times. Her most recent book, The Nature Fix, was an Audible bestseller and was named a top summer read by J.P  Morgan. 

In 2007-2008, Florence was a Scripps Fellow at the Center of Environmental Journalism at the University of Colorado. She has received many awards, including two National Magazine Award nominations, six magazine awards from the American Society of Journalists and Authors, and the John Hersey Prize at Yale. Her work has been anthologized in numerous books, including Outside 25, the New Montana Story, How the West Was Warmed and Best American Science and Nature Writing 2008. Florence serves on the board of  two of her favorite non-profits, the Trust for Public Land and the Ted Scripps Fellowship in Environmental Journalism. She lives with her family in Washington, D.C.