Staff & Board


Katrina Shindledecker

Executive Director
Katrina Shindledecker

Currently Executive Director of HHLT, Katrina has been with the organization for more than a decade. In her previous role as Director of Conservation, she was responsible for overseeing our acquisition and stewardship program.

Katrina holds a Masters of Science in Environmental Policy from Bard College and a Masters of Science in Environmental Science from Pace University.

Her Environmental Science degree focused on land and natural resource management. Her Environmental Policy degree focused on Hudson Valley land trusts and their adoption and implementation of the Land Trust Alliance’s Standards and Practices for land acquisitions and stewardship.

Katrina used her knowledge of Land Trust Alliance Standards and Practices to co-lead HHLT’s original accreditation application in 2008 and renewal application in 2013. In 2016-2017, Katrina served as a member of the Land Trust Alliance Standards Advisory Committee, providing guidance and advice on the 2017 Standards & Practices revision.

Before joining HHLT, she worked in several roles at the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, including implementing environmental recommendations and projects at parks and historic sites across the Taconic region.

Carmela Buono

Preserve Manager & Ecological Restoration Specialist
Carmela Buono

As the Preserve Manager & Ecological Restoration Specialist, Carmela oversees the protection and stewardship of ~ 1,000 acres of land owned and managed by HHLT, including Granite Mountain Preserve and Canopus Creek Preserve. Carmela works with neighbors, community members, scientists, and other experts to develop and implement management plans for each unique property that focus on restoring critical habitat and supporting forest regeneration. Most notably, she is leading the transformation of one of our newest properties from a former golf course into a productive habitat that will support local biodiversity.

In her role, Carmela’s goals include implementing management strategies that protect natural resources and wildlife habitats while also ensuring HHLT’s preserves are safe and accessible. Carmela started her passion for conservation at Binghamton University, where she is completing a Ph.D. in biological sciences. In addition to her work for HHLT, Carmela has been recognized for her extraordinary commitment to conservation, receiving her B.S. in Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources at Rutgers University, serving as an AmeriCorps Watershed Ambassador, and receiving a fellowship from the Center for Integrated Watershed Studies to create the first annual “EcoBlitz,” an environmental outreach event designed to bring together the community to celebrate biodiversity and the environment. During her free time, you can find Carmela identifying plants and insects, crafting, hiking, or cooking.

If you want to learn more about our preserves and current stewardship initiatives, please contact Carmela!

Mona Smith

Strategic Communications Manager
Mona Smith

As Strategic Communications Manager, Mona works with HHLT’s leadership and staff to communicate our mission and programs to our community, the media, and policymakers. She oversees HHLT’s storytelling through our website, social media, print and digital publications, and she helps direct our marketing and fundraising campaigns.

Mona joined the team in 2018 as a grants management specialist, expanding our fundraising profile by securing support from foundations and government agencies. She previously consulted for HHLT, having started a consulting practice in 2009 when she moved to Cold Spring with her family. As a consultant, she has worked with many local nonprofits, including the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, Glynwood, College of Westchester, Philipstown Depot Theatre, Paramount Hudson Valley Arts in Peekskill, and San Miguel Academy in Newburgh. Before moving to the Hudson Valley, Mona held leadership positions for 20+ years at arts and education nonprofits in New York City, including CUNY/Kingsborough, the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Information & Culture, ETHEL’s Foundation for the Arts, and the Pearl Theatre Company. Mona’s first career was in journalism, and she continues to write books, plays, and screenplays. When she’s not working or writing, she plays tennis, hikes, or bikes with family and friends.

If you have an idea for a story you think HHLT needs to tell, please contact Mona!

Jonathan Leitner

Operations Coordinator
Jonathan Leitner

As Operations Coordinator, Jonathan is the backbone of the office. His work includes managing HHLT’s supporter database, overseeing financial accounts, supporting acquisitions and development staff, and coordinating office operations.

Before stepping into his current role, Jonathan was an HHLT volunteer from 2012-2013 and officially joined the team in 2014 as our Program and Database Associate. Jonathan’s wry wit keeps us all on our toes and in good cheer.

If you want to learn more about how you can support HHLT’s work, please contact Jonathan!

Edward (Ted) Warren

Public Policy Coordinator
Edward (Ted) Warren

As HHLT’s Public Policy Coordinator, Ted specializes in helping municipalities preserve their vital open spaces through effective planning, zoning, and collaborative community engagement. Ted works with municipal boards, conservation committees, and community organizations on community preservation planning, local, state, and federal public policy initiatives, and coordinating a network of conservation organizations within the Highlands region.

Ted’s passion for protecting vital open spaces can be traced back to his time working in Philadelphia, where he was involved in clinical education and public policy, community organizing, and neighborhood preservation and zoning. In addition to his work for HHLT, Ted currently serves on the Cornwall Conservation Advisory Council, where he creates and implements conservation and land use planning projects. During his free time, Ted enjoys hiking with his family, playing guitar, and reading about history.

If your community wants to learn about conservation planning tools and strategies that help preserve natural resources, drinking water, and open space, please contact Ted!

Cory Tiger

Conservation Easement & GIS Manager
Cory Tiger

As the Conservation Easement and GIS Manager, Cory works directly with conservation easement landowners to assist their land management efforts that improve the region’s biodiversity and habitat connectivity and create more opportunities for accessible open space. She walks each of our conservation easement properties annually, answers landowner questions about what is a permitted or prohibited use in the conservation easement protecting their land, documents if/when a significant change occurs on a property, and is our first line of defense if/when HHLT needs to defend a conservation easement. Cory started her career in conservation and natural resource preservation when she lived and worked in Queensland, Australia, completing her master’s degree and conducting her thesis research on the impacts of citizen science on conservation management practices in UNESCO World Heritage Areas.

Before joining HHLT, Cory worked as the Project Coordinator for the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference, collaborating with volunteers, partner organizations, and land managers to complete trail improvement projects. During her free time, Cory enjoys hiking in the Hudson Highlands and Adirondacks, fishing, paddling, camping, and riding horses.

If you want to learn more about the benefits of conservation easements on your property, please contact Cory!

Board of Directors

Nancy Berner, Chair
James Cross, Vice Chair
Tom Campanile, Treasurer
Ru Rauch, Secretary
Jeff Bunzel
Seamus Carroll
Michael Clarke
Chris Davis
Lizabeth Dunn

Phoebe Geer
James Hartford
Pascale Hutz
Lew Kingsley
Dan Kramer
Doug Land
Claudio Marzollo
Ed McGowan
Angelica Patterson

Thad Pitney
Fred Rich
Bill Schuster
Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff
Kristin Sorenson
Bente Strong
Anne Symmes
Bon Turner
Glenn Watson