New hire at Coastal Rivers will build on conservation momentum

New hire at Coastal Rivers will build on conservation momentum

Above: Executive Director Steven Hufnagel, Land Conservation Manager Katie Beaver, and Land Conservation Director Joan Ray

We are thrilled to welcome Land Conservation Manager Katie Beaver to the team! Along with Land Conservation Director Joan Ray and Executive Director Steven Hufnagel, Katie will work directly with landowners to help them meet their conservation goals.

Katie’s position, fully funded by an anonymous funder for three years, is a reflection of our commitment to conserving an additional 5,000 acres in the Damariscotta-Pemaquid region in five years, from 2021 to 2026. We prioritize properties that connect to existing conserved areas, dovetail with community development plans, and are of particular benefit to wildlife, water quality, cultural heritage, or public access.

Coastal Rivers’ land conservation initiatives include Pemaquid Wild Pathways, at the heart of the Pemaquid Peninsula, and River~Link North, in the undeveloped area between Route 1 and the Damariscotta River in Newcastle and Edgecomb.

“Coming from a very urban area where my work took place over a large geographic scale, I’m really drawn to the local, grassroots approach to land conservation,” Katie says. “I’m excited to be part of a small community, conserving land with and for the community.”

A native New Englander, Katie recently returned to the area from Washington State along with her husband and two young daughters. For the past six years she worked for King County in Washington, leading land conservation and salmon restoration efforts within an urban river basin.

After graduating from the University of Vermont with a B.S. in Environmental Science, Katie attended the University of Washington in Seattle and received a dual master’s degree from the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences (M.S.) and the Evans School of Public Policy and Governance (MPA). Earlier in her post-graduate career, Katie worked for the City of Seattle managing its popular Trees for Neighborhoods program, which distributes trees to Seattle residents with the goal of increasing urban tree cover within the city.

When asked her impression of the area now that she’s been settling in, Beaver remarked, “I honestly have not gotten used to how beautiful it is here – and I’m just enchanted by all the small communities that make up the larger community.”