New Director Takes Over at The Nature Conservancy’s Virginia Coast Reserve
Jill Bieri brings more than 24 years of environmental education experience to the Conservancy
NASSAWADOX, VA | March 05, 2014
After eight years of running an organization that connects kids with nature in the Chesapeake Bay, Jill Bieri has taken over the helm at The Nature Conservancy’s Virginia Coast Reserve as director. Prior to coming to TNC, Bieri started and led Chesapeake Experience, a non-profit environmental education organization that provides summer camps for kids, school trips for students in third through 12th grades, and works with teachers to integrate the Chesapeake Bay into their lesson plans. She also served as an education coordinator at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, where she helped award between $2 million and $3.5 million a year to different organizations within the Chesapeake Bay watershed to provide outdoor experiences for students and teachers.
“My experience working with students from all backgrounds and ages has given me great confidence that the next generation—with some help and navigation—will become great stewards of our natural world,” Bieri said.
Bieri’s new post at the Conservancy will tie together her interest in environmental education and her background as a marine scientist with a focus on seagrass restoration. Every year The Nature Conservancy works with the Virginia Institute of Marine Science to plant eelgrass seeds at the Virginia Coast Reserve. These efforts have accelerated the natural spread of eelgrass, which had all but disappeared, and helped bring back species that depend on seagrass for habitat, such as scallops. Bieri says her focus will be on continuing the Virginia Coast Reserve’s successful restoration work and research, while enhancing the program’s capacity to reach out to surrounding communities.
For more information, read a Q & A with Jill Bieri.
The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends. The Conservancy and its more than 1 million members have protected nearly 120 million acres worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the Web at www.nature.org