Delaware Associate Director of Philanthropy, CJ Walsh
CJ Walsh grew up outside Philadelphia, where the Main Line’s suburban sprawl intersects Willistown’s equestrian community. Before joining the Conservancy in March 2013, CJ spent seven years developing relationships with Fortune 500 financial services firms as a Client Relations Manager at Drinker Biddle & Reath, a nationally recognized law firm. Previously, CJ held business development roles at Comcast Spotlight and dmg world media.
Since 2006, CJ and his brother have raised funds and awareness for LIVESTRONG and Movember, raising more than $150,000 since 2006 for their cancer survivorship programs. CJ serves on boards at the Curtis Institute of Music and Duke University while completing his Master’s Degree in Early American History at the College of William and Mary. He also enjoys saltwater fishing, paddleboarding and cycling.
Nature.org: What are your job duties as the chapter’s Associate Director of Philanthropy?
CJ Walsh: In a word (or two), raising money. More broadly, I work with our generous donors to identify opportunities where their personal conservation goals and potential financial support align with the Conservancy’s work in ecosystems here in Delaware and around the world. We are lucky that so many corporations, government agencies and benevolent Delawareans share our interest in preserving unique landscapes in the First State and beyond.
Nature.org: Have you always had an interest in conservation?
CJ Walsh: I’ve been a conservationist since kindergarten, when Rulon Wetherill, my elementary school science teacher, led 17 six-year olds on nature walks around the Episcopal Academy’s Devon Campus. We spent countless days in local fields and creek bottoms looking at birds, plants and animal tracks. Subsequently, I spent ten summers working in a bait-and-tackle shop in Avalon, New Jersey, and later signed on as a deckhand on a local charter boat, cementing my lifelong passion for saltwater fishing. Several years ago, a mentor introduced me to duck hunting, adding to my time in the salt marsh. I cherish the relationships developed in the blind between flights of teal and black ducks.
Nature.org: How did your career path lead to working with The Nature Conservancy?
CJ Walsh: I learned about the job via a friend of a friend. I applied to combine my interest in the outdoors and skills as a fundraiser.
Nature.org: What do you hope to tackle over the next couple of years?
CJ Walsh: I look forward to visiting the Conservancy’s projects in Delaware and developing relationships with generous trustees, valued partners, amazing volunteers and talented colleagues. The Nature Conservancy has positioned itself as a leading organization in preserving the Delaware estuary, from the River’s headwaters in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York all the way to the mouth of the Bay at Lewes. I am excited to work with potential donors interested in protecting and restoring significant places in and around the region, whether in forested wetlands far upstream or at area beaches hosting the annual gathering of horseshoe crabs and red knots along the Delaware Bayshores.