New Director to Lead The Nature Conservancy in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota

Minneapolis, MN

Ann Mulholland
Chapter Director Ann Mulholland © 2020

The Nature Conservancy is pleased to announce that Ann Mulholland has been chosen to direct TNC’s work in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota.

“I feel like I’m going home,” says Mulholland, who previously helped lead TNC’s work in the three states during separate stints as board chair, trustee and marketing executive.

“Climate change and protecting our lands and waters—these are the big challenges of our time and I look forward to working tirelessly on them with our partners. The Nature Conservancy is an incredible organization, with the ability to make a significant impact both locally and globally.“

Mulholland, who currently works as executive vice president of the St. Paul & Minnesota Foundation, Minnesota’s largest community foundation, will begin working for TNC again on March 23.

She previously served as deputy mayor in St. Paul, as a Minnesota-based marketing director for TNC, founded a family-owned local consulting business and worked as communications manager for General Mills.

Mulholland steps into the role held by Peggy Ladner, who recently stepped down as director of TNC in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota after serving for more than 13 years in the position and an additional 10 years as assistant state director and philanthropy director.  

“I am thrilled that Ann will lead The Nature Conservancy in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota,” says Ladner. “Ann has the experience, leadership skills, passion, energy, talent and vision to help us build on our legacy of land and water protection. She’ll help us take on new challenges including tackling climate change and providing food and water sustainably.”

Mulholland says she’s particularly excited about TNC’s efforts to help protect and restore the Mississippi River’s headwaters and its commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.

“The Mississippi River and the lands surrounding it provide clean drinking water to 44 percent of all Minnesotans. The river is an economic engine in the state and a haven for fish and wildlife. We must protect it for present and future generations.

“And we must build a larger and more inclusive community for conservation. We cannot make a difference if we’re not open and welcoming to people with different experiences and perspectives.”

Originally from Ohio, Mulholland developed her love of nature after moving to Minnesota in 1991. It was here that she was introduced by her husband Steve Cerkvenik to fishing, camping, harvesting wild rice and the Boundary Waters.

Mulholland resides in St. Paul with her husband. They have four daughters: Sofia (24), Mary (22), Frankie (20) and Ruth (17). Mulholland says whenever she’s not working, she enjoys spending time outdoors with her family and at their cabin on the Iron Range.

The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world's toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at an unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in 75 countries and territories: 37 by direct conservation impact and 38 through partners, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit or follow @nature_press on Twitter.