Annual Report - The Conservation Fund - The Conservation Fund



New Projects in
35 States


Acres Protected
Valued at $244M+


Acres of Naturally and Culturally Important Lands Returned to Tribal Communities


Received in 5K+ Private
Contributions from
Individuals, Foundations
& Corporations


In 2022 we completed one of our most ambitious conservation efforts ever — the permanent protection of over 44,000 acres of globally important fish and wildlife habitat in Alaska’s Bristol Bay region.

After a successful $20 million, 18-month fundraising effort, The Conservation Fund and the Bristol Bay Heritage Land Trust purchased three conservation easements on some of the most critical salmon spawning and rearing habitats on Iliamna Lake from the Pedro Bay Corporation. The easements safeguard pristine lands and waters in the heart of the world’s largest wild salmon fishery — places threatened by the proposed Pebble Mine. The lands remain privately owned by the Alaska Native village corporation and maintained for subsistence and traditional and cultural uses.

Thanks to our strong local relationships and diverse partnerships with foundations both large and small — including The Wyss Foundation, Patagonia’s Holdfast Collective and Alaska Venture Fund — as well as Alaska Native corporations, fishermen and women, businesses, individuals, seafood processors and other nonprofits, The Conservation Fund was uniquely equipped to take on the challenges of this successful $20 million, 18-month fundraising effort. This collaborative conservation solution embodies our mission to conserve the most important landscapes for economic and environmental vitality.

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Our founder, Pat Noonan, had a bold and innovative vision — to create an organization that would make conservation competitive in the fast-paced, aggressive world of real estate. This vision, together with a dual mission of environmental protection and economic growth, has been The Conservation Fund’s north star for the past four decades.

Growing our Revolving Fund is a top priority so we can be ready to secure the most critical landscapes for communities, wildlife and the fight against climate change and provide time to create practical strategies with local partners. Your support helps us to achieve these and even more critical conservation outcomes.

Expanding Access to Nature

Beebe River Forest, New Hampshire
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Marton Ranch, Wyoming
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Protecting At-Risk Black History Sites

Chattahoochee Brick Memorial Site, Georgia
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Elktonia Carr’s Beach, Maryland
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Conserving Land with Native and Indigenous Peoples

Bois Forte Band of Chippewa, Minnesota
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Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site, Colorado
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A healthier, more resilient food system requires accessible farmland and thriving farmers. But young farmers say buying affordable farmland was a top challenge in 2022, with over 40% of farmland in the U.S. leased.

Our Farms Fund program is trying to fix that, with a creative solution to help next-generation farmers forge a path toward affordable farm ownership and scaling up their farm businesses, specifically around metro areas where demand for locally grown food is growing. The program tackles major issues like land access, sustainable production and equity concerns, while protecting at-risk agricultural land from urban sprawl and development.

The Farms Fund launched in Atlanta in 2021 and expanded into Chicago in July 2022, quickly growing from an innovative concept to a successful and scalable model.

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America’s forests generate important life-sustaining benefits for people, wildlife and communities, and they are one of the most effective carbon removal systems operating at scale today. Yet these critical landscapes are at risk of becoming fragmented and lost by increasing demand for residential development and agricultural conversion.

We specialize in preventing forest conversion in the U.S. through our Working Forest Fund. By acquiring at-risk mature forests, we ensure ongoing sustainable management for timber products and local jobs while enhancing recreational opportunities, water quality, carbon capture benefits and wildlife habitat connectivity. To date we have secured conservation opportunities for nearly 1 million acres of U.S. forests.

Ten Mile River Forest, New York
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As America’s conservation challenges become increasingly complex and urgent, our experience delivering innovation and enduring impact will be more important than ever.

We must accelerate our efforts to address the dual problem of climate change and loss of biodiversity. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions is essential to combat climate change, and transitioning to renewable energy will be important to achieving lower emissions. However, developing sustainable energy infrastructure will also have environmental impacts on millions of acres of land. We can support this transition to clean energy and balance theses impacts by working with energy partners to implement conservation solutions that protect valuable ecological and cultural resources, especially critical habitat and working lands — like farms, forests and ranchlands — that continue to disappear at alarming rates.

We are proud of all we accomplished working with our partners in 2022, but there is so much more to do. We look forward to working together to help nature and people thrive.



National Office

(Arlington, VA)

Sami Aboulhosn
Assistant Secretary and Regional Counsel

Peter Afambo
Accounting and Retirement Plan Manager

Nina Balter
Research Manager

Madison Barbee
Assistant Secretary and Business Process Manager

Christopher Bell
Assistant Secretary and Deputy General Counsel

Holly Cannon
Executive Vice President and General Counsel

Jacob Cooke
Government Relations Representative

Luisa Cortes
Senior Grants Administrator

Jason Dorsey
Accounting Manager

Kai Fang
Director, Brand Strategy

Andrea Ferri
Conservation Loans Manager

Hillina Fetehawoke
Accounting Manager

Kaitlyn Fisher
Development Database Manager

Raul Garcia
Desktop Systems Administrator

Monica A. Garrison
Senior Vice President, Finance and Treasurer

John S. Gilbert
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

Moira Harris
Development Assistant

Naomi Harris
Human Resources Manager

Minh Ho
Systems Administrator

Ali Humnah

Michael Johnson
Senior Government Relations Representative

Mouna Kamoun
Senior Accountant

Valerie Keefer
Media Relations Manager

William Kelleher
Senior Government Relations Representative

Chai Young Lee
Staff Accountant

Margaret A. McCants
Board Secretary and Director, Real Estate Operations

Erik J. Meyers
Vice President, Climate and Water Sustainability

Elizabeth Palmer
Vice President, Human Resources and Administration

Ainsley Pittman
Development Director of Operations

Arielle Plavcan
Government Relations Associate

Kelly M. Reed
Senior Vice President, Government Relations

Iris Sanchez
Creative Director

Lawrence Selzer
President and CEO

Abigail A. Spring
Senior Vice President, Strategic Engagement

Stacia Stanek
Associate Director, Government Relations

Angelo Tan
Finance Manager

Yeti Taye
Senior Finance Manager

Scott M. Tison
Assistant Secretary and Regional Counsel

Jamie Tribble
Office Manager

Carla Tufano
Human Resources Generalist

Lesley White-Kayser
Director, Development Systems

David Williams
Vice President, Chief Information Officer

Conservation Acquisition Directors

Mark W. Elsbree
Senior Vice President and Western Director

Blaine T. Phillips, Jr.
Senior Vice President and Mid-Atlantic and Northeast Regional Director

Matthew  S. Sexton
Senior Vice President and Southeast Regional Director


Phillip Howard
Program Manager, Civil Rights People and Places


Christopher Little
Conservation Associate

Brad Meiklejohn
Senior Representative

John Wros
Project Manager


Kirste Kowalsky
Field Representative

Megan M. Mustoe
Assistant Secretary and Regional Counsel


Jonathan Brunner

Lauren Fety
Forest and Climate Project Manager

Benjamin Fryer
Project Manager

Steven Hobbs
California State Director

Samaria Jaffe
Regional Director of Fundraising

Christopher Kelly
Program Director

Lynsey Kelly
GIS Specialist

Scott Kelly
Timberlands Manager

Dan Medeiros
Conservation Project Manager

Holly Newberger
North Coast Program Coordinator

Barbara Ortega

Derek Ostensen
Project Manager

Joaquin Quintana

Evan H. Smith
Senior Vice President, Conservation Ventures

Blake Tallman
Forest Technician

Jordan Wills
GIS Analyst

JaCodie Young-Thompson
Forest Technician


Kelly Ingebritson
Project Manager

Emily Payne
Brand and Communications Director, Leading Harvest

Christine Quinlan
Colorado Associate State Director

Elizabeth Slokar
Office Manager & Conservation Associate

Justin Spring
Colorado State Director and Southwest Regional Director


Gretchen Hoffmann
Blog Manager

Lucas Bladen
Major Gifts Manager – Northeast


Josh Mottola
Data Associate


Lauren Day
Florida State Director

Erin Miller-Carter
Digital Marketing Manager

Rebecca Perry
Senior Field Representative

Matthew S. Sexton
Senior Vice President, Southeast Region


Brian J. Dangler
Senior Vice President, Director, Working Forest Fund

Kelsi Eccles
Urban Conservation Communications Manager, Parks with Purpose

Stacy Funderburke
Georgia State Director

Ralph Knoll
Tennessee State Director

Shannon Lee
Senior Major Gifts Officer

Roberta Moore
Field Representative

Elizabeth Renfroe
Office Manager

Andrew Schock
Alabama and Georgia State Director

Krisztian Varsa
Georgia Farms Fund Program Manager


Mark W. Elsbree
Senior Vice President, Western Region


Elizabeth Brawley
Great Lakes Regional Director & Illinois State Director

Aimee Collins
Program Associate


Andrew Lauver
Director, Programs and Strategic Alliances, Leading Harvest


Jennifer Blattman
GIS Analyst

Ginevera Moore
Kansas State Director


Sarah Hargrove-Howard
Conservation Associate

Ray Herndon
Vice President, Lower Mississippi and Gulf Coast Region


Thomas  R. Duffus
Vice President and Northeast Representative

Brian Schneider
Forest Operations Manager


William Crouch
Maryland State Director

Catherine Eason
Operations Manager, Leading Harvest

Amelia Matthews

Wendy Taylor
Senior Director of Development

Theresa Zseleczky
Field Representative


Michael Kelly
Director, Great Lakes

Margaret Kohring
Senior Project Manager

Joshua Lynsen
Media Relations Manager


Kim Berns-Melhus
Minnesota State Director

Scott Hansen
Director, Standards and Education, Leading Harvest

Clinton Miller
Missouri State Director and Regional Director, Central Midwest

Emilee Nelson
Minnesota Associate State Director

Matthew VanDyke
Graphic Designer


Gary Sullivan
Montana State Director

Gates M. Watson
Vice President, Montana and Northwest Director


Mike Ford
Nevada and Southwest Director

Gavin Kakol
Field Representative

New Hampshire

Sally Manikian
Field Representative

North Carolina

Justin Boner
Field Representative

Claire  R. Cooney
Vice President, Development and Marketing & Communications

Erin Crouse
Field Representative

Gretchen Gaskill
Office Manager

Bill Holman
North Carolina State Director

Paul F. Hurt
Assistant Secretary and Deputy General Counsel

Michael Leonard
Senior Advisor

Carolyn McCoy
Senior Paralegal

David Proper
Urban Program Director

Resourceful Communities Headquarters (NC)

Tatia Ash
Capacity Builder

Salem Carriker
Healthy Communities Coordinator

Margaret Conrad
Capacity Builder

Aaron Hayworth
Faith and Food Coordinator

Alexandria Huber-Disla
Healthy Economies Coordinator

Kathleen Marks
Director of Program Strategy

Monica McCann
Resourceful Communities Program Director

Olivia Percoco
Local Food Project Manager

Donna Pratt
Operations Director

Matthew Rouse
Faith & Food Coordinator

Dave Walker
Associate Director

Working Forest Fund, National Headquarters (NC)

Caroline Durham
Land Protection Specialist

Kevin Harnish
Director, Analysis and Carbon Development

Bethany Olmstead
Director, Conservation

Catherine Rohrbaugh
Operations Assistant

Jenna Schreiber
Forest Operations Manager

Michael Scott
Forest Analyst

William Vaughan
Director, Forestry

Lindsey White
Senior Land Protection Specialist


Matt Purdy
Director, Climate Finance

Bobbi Reierson
Annual Giving Manager

Kaola Swanson
Columbia Gorge Program Manager


Laura Bower
Field Representative

Susan Elks
Program Manager, Balancing Nature & Commerce

Blaine T. Phillips, Jr.
Senior Vice President, Mid-Atlantic and Northeast Regions

Kyle Shenk
Pennsylvania State Director and Northeast Regional Director

Ann Simonelli
Director, Media & Communications

South Carolina

Jason Johnson
South Carolina State Director

Nicholas Morgan
Director, Mitigation Solutions


Callie Easterly
Regional Director of Fundraising

Ellen Gass
Texas Field Representative

Andy Jones
Senior Project Manager

Alyssa Kirk
Conservation Acquisitions Data Specialist

Tonia Lorenz
Finance Manager

Kristin Moss
Sabine Ranch Coordinator

Julie Shackelford
Texas State Director

Hilary Toma
Director, Field Financial Services


Elizabeth G. Engle
Assistant Secretary and Deputy General Counsel

Zhivko Illeieff
Senior Digital Strategist

Rachael Joiner
Regional Director of Fundraising

Heather Richards
Virginia State Director and Mid-Atlantic Regional Director

Natasha Skelton
Field Representative


Kenneth Fahey
Principal, Working Lands

Greg Good
Program Manager, Mitigation Solutions

West Virginia

Rodney Bartgis
Conservation Associate

Joseph  A. Hankins
Vice President, West Virginia State Director


Daniel Schlager
Wyoming State Director

Conservation Leadership Network, National Headquarters (WV)

Margarita Carey
Program Associate

Freshwater Institute National Headquarters (WV)

Abhinav Choudhury
Environmental Engineer

Shanen Cogan
Facilities Manager

Curtis Crouse
Research Support Specialist

John Davidson III
Senior Research Scientist

Kayla Fairfield
Fish Culture Technician

Christopher Good
Director of Aquatic Veterinary Research

Anna Knight
Fish Culture Technician

Christine Lepine
Research Support Specialist

Travis May
Aquaculture Production Manager

Megan Murray
Environmental Laboratory Technician

Rakesh Ranjan
Research Scientist

Natalie Redman
Environmental Laboratory Manager

Michael Schwartz
Senior Environmental Associate

Kata Sharrer
Engineering Technician

James Stanley
Facility Operations Specialist

Sullivan Steele
Data Science

Scott Tsukuda
Director of Operations

Brian Vinci
Freshwater Institute Director

Wendy Wilson
Project Accountant


David Grusznski
Program Director, Greenseams Program

Meghan LaPointe
Milwaukee Project Coordinator

Allen Patterson
Program Associate

Laura Robey
Manager, Partnerships and Programs, Leading Harvest