HHLT Announces Leadership Transition and Promotion of Land Team

HHLT’s Board of Directors has announced that Michelle Smith, Executive Director since 2016, will step down as of May 31, 2021. Katrina Shindledecker, longtime Director of Conservation, has been named to succeed her.

“We are grateful for the five years of Michelle’s dynamic and far-sighted leadership and look forward to a new chapter with Katrina and the whole HHLT team, continuing the important initiatives Michelle began and embarking on new endeavors,” said Nancy Berner, Chair of the Board of Directors.

Michelle will remain Executive Director for the next five months, overseeing the changes in the organization’s management. During the transition, Katrina’s title will be Deputy Executive Director. Nicole Wooten, who has been with HHLT for five years, has been named Director of Natural Resources and will continue leading the New York Highlands Network, HHLT’s Preserves, and the organization’s Diversity and Inclusion initiatives (the latter with Ashley Rauch, Community Engagement Manager). Julia Rogers, most recently Stewardship Coordinator, will become Conservation Manager, assuming much of the land acquisition role previously carried out by Katrina, as well as continuing with her current stewardship responsibilities. To strengthen the organization’s financial and operational capabilities, HHLT will hire a Manager of Finance and Operations in the coming months.

You can read the full press release here.