Michelle has been HHLT’s Executive Director for almost three years, after previously serving on the organization’s Board of Directors for several years. Michelle has more than 25 years of actuarial and finance experience, as well as many years serving in volunteer roles at environmental nonprofits. Prior to joining HHLT, Michelle was a Managing Director in the Investment Banking Division of Goldman Sachs, where she worked for more than a decade.
During her financial career, Michelle also held leadership roles with the Sierra Club and Georgia ForestWatch. She is currently on the advisory board of the Beacon Institute for Rivers and Estuaries and a founding member of Renewable Highlands, working to expand the use of renewable energy in the Hudson Highlands area.
In 2017 she was appointed to the Communities Council of the Hudson River Valley Greenway and elected to the governing Members’ Committee of the Terrafirma Risk Retention Group (Note: Terrafirma is the captive insurance company for land trusts nationwide, defending conservation rights through risk pooling.
Michelle has a BSc (Hons) from the University of Melbourne (Australia) and is a Fellow of the US Society of Actuaries and the Institute of Actuaries of Australia.
Katrina is the Director of Land Conservation at HHLT, where she is 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.
Karen joined HHLT in January 2018 as the Manager of Public Policy and Planning. In this role, Karen spearheads our efforts on natural resource planning, open space prioritization and watershed protection. She also serves as liaison to municipal bodies throughout our mission area.
Prior to joining HHLT, Karen practiced law representing municipalities in land use, zoning, public health and environmental matters. During her many years with the NYC Law Department, she worked with the NYC Department of Environmental Protection on watershed protection issues, earning recognition for outstanding achievement from the NYC Bar Association and the Corporation Counsel.
Karen’s history of local municipal service includes the Village of Cold Spring Planning Board and Special Board for the Comprehensive Plan/Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan. Currently, she serves on the Village’s Code Update Committee. Karen holds a JD from Brooklyn Law School and a BS in Economics from Hofstra University.
Ashley joined HHLT in early 2018 as Outreach and Events Manager, overseeing programming that educates and engages local communities in our conservation mission. Prior to joining HHLT, Ashley held communications and fundraising roles with various environmental non-profits, including Bedford 2020, Glynwood and GreenBlue.
She also has experience in marketing and investor relations within the financial industry. Ashley holds a Master of Public Administration in Environmental Science and Policy from Columbia University and a BA in Economics from Barnard College of Columbia University.
Mona joined HHLT in October 2018 to expand our fundraising efforts with a focus on foundation and government funders. Before joining HHLT, Mona managed her own consulting practice to provide Hudson Valley nonprofits with board and fund development as well as strategic communications services.
She previously worked with HHLT in a consulting capacity, in addition to local organizations like the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, Glynwood, The College of Westchester, and ETHEL’s Foundation for the Arts.
Before becoming a consultant, Mona held positions at CUNY/Kingsborough, the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Information & Culture (BRIC), Pearl Theatre Company, and Second Stage Theatre. She is a former newspaper reporter, a published author, a produced playwright and screenwriter, and a member of the national Dramatists Guild.
Previously our Conservation Stewardship Manager, Nicole is our Manager of Natural Resources. She develops strategies to build corridors of protected lands for wildlife and people, ensures protection of water supplies and provides key input into our public policy, planning and outreach efforts. She also manages our preserve lands. Nicole has a BA in Environmental Studies from UNC Chapel Hill and a Masters of Environmental Management (MEM) from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.
Prior to HHLT, Nicole served as an Environmental Education volunteer in the Peace Corps in El Salvador. Nicole is on the Appalachian Trail Conservancy’s Stewardship Council, the board of the Society for Wilderness Stewardship, and the Beacon Conservation Advisory Committee. Both her career and volunteer work focus on the intersection of protected areas management, natural resources preservation, and responsible recreation.
Jonathan joined the HHLT staff in 2014 as Program and Database Associate and is now our Operations Coordinator, supporting outreach and development efforts, in addition to managing land project data.
Jonathan was originally an HHLT volunteer for over a year, during which he became an integral part of the HHLT team.
Before volunteering with HHLT, Jonathan worked in pre-award research administration at Purchase College. Prior to that, he was Land and Development Assistant at Teatown Lake Reservation in Ossining. He has an undergraduate degree in rural sociology from Cornell and graduate degrees in sociology from the University of Wisconsin.
Julia joined HHLT as Stewardship Coordinator in March 2019. In this role, Julia monitors our easement portfolio, manages our digital conservation resources, and is streamlining our systems for property monitoring and management.
She has conservation experience from her previous involvement with two land trusts—Joshua’s Trust and the Lancaster County Conservancy—as well as her work on the Conservation Commission in the Town of Mansfield, CT. Julia holds an MSc in Natural Resources and the Environment from the University of Connecticut and a BA in Biology from Colby College.
Board of Directors
Nancy Berner, Chair
James Cross, Vice Chair
Tom Campanile, Treasurer
Ru Rauch, Secretary