As State Director of The Nature Conservancy in New Jersey, Barbara Brummer heads a team of scientists, conservation practitioners, policy experts and fundraisers addressing the key challenges facing nature and people in the nation’s most densely populated state. As we move rapidly towards a world with nine billion people, she has focused the Chapter on demonstrating the critical role that nature plays in the health of both people and nature – through the forested lands and great rivers that provide freshwater, marshes that protect the state’s extraordinary coast and support a bounty of marine life, and natural expanses that help mitigate the impacts of climate change. .
With an academic background in science, a long and successful career in the consumer products industry, and a passion for the natural world, Barbara’s strength in organizational management has been central to the Chapter’s success in taking on increasingly ambitious goals to forward work on the ground and to influence conservation statewide and beyond New Jersey’s borders. This is reflected in the Chapter’s long-standing investment in government relations efforts, which she established soon after joining the Conservancy in 2004, a successful marketing/communications program, and numerous successful partner collaborations. She has also helped spur cooperation among Chapters in the Conservancy’s multi-state Delaware River & Bay Whole System and Mid-Atlantic Seascape.
Barbara has created, promotes and maintains strong relationships with local, state and regional partners, including state and federal agencies, non-profit organizations, individuals, and other Conservancy chapters and programs. She currently represents the Conservancy as a member of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Endangered and Non-Game Species Advisory Council. She was instrumental in the formation of a new statewide dam removal working group, modeled on one she brought together to guide the successful removal of the Columbia Dam near the juncture of Paulins Kill, a river in northwestern New Jersey, with the Delaware River. And she teamed with philanthropy thought leaders in New Jersey to teach a course on Globalization & Philanthropy at New York University.
Barbara has a long record of community service and commitment to educating scientists in New Jersey, where she was born and raised. She chairs the Advisory Board of the Montclair State University College of Mathematics & Science, and for many years, while working full time and raising a family, was an adjunct professor of Field Herpetology at NYU. She served for 17 years on the Board of the New Jersey Audubon Society and for more than 25 years has been a trustee of the Pocono Environmental Education Center, which educates more than 20,000 students and educators in New Jersey every year.
Barbara holds a Ph.D. in Biological Sciences from New York University (1980); MS from New York University (1976) and undergraduate degree from Montclair State University in Biology, Chemistry and Physics (1968). She also completed the Advanced Manager Program at Harvard University (1997).
Prior to joining The Nature Conservancy, Barbara held the position of Worldwide Vice President of Women’s Health & Wellness for the Consumer Group at Johnson & Johnson, retiring at the end of 2002. This worldwide franchise position was created to globalize various Women’s Health leadership brands. Prior to this assignment she was the President and Managing Director of Johnson & Johnson Inc., Canada from January 1998 until July of 2000. Canada markets most of the brands of the Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies. During her tenure in Canada she more than doubled the consumer sales for the company. Barbara joined Johnson & Johnson at the Advanced Care Products Company in November of 1990 and, including her career at Johnson & Johnson, she worked in the Consumer Products industry for more than 30 years. Barbara has 2 daughters and four grandchildren and lives in Sussex County.
Solace in Nature
There is an old saying: “You can walk the same trail twice, but you’ll never take the same hike.” I cannot think of another phase in our lifetimes that this statement has had more resonance. The pandemic has often made existence feel like the same routine on repeat.
Even in these difficult times, though, we have nature to buoy us and give us hope. This month we honor Earth Day, a global celebration of healthy, sustainable habitat and a conscious reminder of how important it is to protect our fragile planet.
I invite you to honor Earth Day by taking appropriate safety precautions and making a specific effort to get outside and experience nature near you. It is vital for people to be able to experience the mental and physical healing benefits of nature—always, but particularly now.
The Nature Conservancy has protected more than 60,000 acres of New Jersey’s lands and waters, and many of these special places are open to the public for hiking and recreation. From sandy beaches to steep mountain summits, our preserves in New Jersey offer a wide range of experiences.
Nature is for everyone, and that means you. On behalf of all of us at The Nature Conservancy, I invite you to visit any of our preserves this spring and summer—or in any season—and keep coming back. Bring your family and friends, and at some of the locations, even your dog! You will never take the same hike twice.
Yours in conservation,
Dr. Barbara Brummer
New Jersey State Director
The Power of Nature
The Great American Outdoors Act
July 23, 2020
The U.S. House of Representatives passed the Great American Outdoors Act, which would finally permanently and fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and make critical investments in our national park system and other public lands. The bill, which passed the U.S. Senate last month, now goes to the president for his promised signature. After years of work from all of you and so many others around TNC, this is big news. Not only does the bill fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) at $900 million per year forever, it also dedicates $1.9 billion every year for five years to meet maintenance needs at national parks and other public lands.
I cannot begin express what an exciting moment this is for nature, our economy, and our future. This passage is the most important U.S. conservation bill in a generation, creating a lasting path for the future of this state and the country’s public lands while supporting jobs and our well-being. I would like to acknowledge that this victory would not have happened without the dedication of so many champions who worked tirelessly over many years to see this day come to fruition. LWCF funding has brought in nearly $350M in land preservation funding to NJ alone over the past 50 years.
This is truly an historic moment and I am excited to share this news and celebrate with you.
Yours in Conservation,
Dr. Barbara Brummer
New Jersey State Director