Maryland/DC chair Joe Lipscomb was first introduced to The Nature Conservancy and its preserves in Ohio, where his mother Barbara served as a volunteer trustee for more than 30 years.
Morgan Swamp Preserve is one of 11 natural areas that benefited greatly from Barbara Lipscomb's efforts as chair of the $1 million “Ohio Lands Forever” campaign in the 1980s.
After graduating from college, Joe became involved with the Conservancy's local chapter on New York's Shelter Island. He and his wife even arranged a tour of Mashomack Preserve as part of their wedding festivities.
Block Island's designation as one of the Conservancy's Last Great Places lured Joe and his future wife there for a visit before they were married, and they keep returning.
"We regularly go out hiking along the Potomac on Bear Island," says Joe. You may also see kayakers and rock climbers when you venture into the Potomac Gorge.
The Lipscombs have also enjoyed exploring western Maryland's Sideling Hill Creek Preserve and Cranesville Swamp Preserve (pictured here), which stretches into northern West Virginia.
“I’m trying to get my kids actually out into the environment more," explains Joe. The family's backpacking adventures started with 2- to 3-day trips on West Virginia's Dolly Sods plateau.
The Lipscombs spent about five days trekking along the West Coast Trail in Canada's Pacific Rim National Park Reserve.
Rainforest meets ocean on Costa Rica's Osa Peninsula. Maryland/DC staffers have encouraged Joe's interest in international conservation projects.
Andros Island in the Bahamas offers an unspoiled backdrop for boating and fishing. “Andros is another of those places where you go and can’t imagine a place like that still exists because it’s so pristine," says Joe.
"Looking at this incredible natural environment as far as the eye can see — it’s wonderful to experience yourself, but even more wonderful to experience through the eyes of your kids,” Joe says. Return to story.