Karen Gautreax, state director of TNC in Louisiana.
Karen Gautreax Karen Gautreax in the state director of The Nature Conservancy in Louisiana. © TNC

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Louisiana Nature Conservancy Names New State Director

Karen Gautreaux will take the lead in Louisiana.

The Nature Conservancy is pleased to announce Karen Gautreaux as its new State Director of the Louisiana Chapter. Karen previously served as the Director of Government Relations for the Louisiana Chapter, and has extensive experience in environmental and natural resource issues and integrating policy development with project implementation. She served as the liaison for the Louisiana Chapter with federal, state and local government agencies, elected officials, and stakeholder organizations. She is currently a member of the Coastal Advisory Team for the 2023 Coastal Master Plan, Governor Edwards’ Climate Initiatives Task Force, and is Co-Chair of that Task Force’s Agriculture, Conservation, Forestry and Waste Sector Committee. Karen also serves on Governor Edwards’ Atchafalaya River Basin Enhancement and Restoration Task Force.Throughout her 13-year career at TNC, she has served on the Management and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion teams for the Chapter; the Mississippi River Basin Program; and the Southern Division Government Relations Team.

“We are thrilled to welcome Karen as our new State Director for Louisiana,” says Michael Lipford, Southern U.S. Division Director, The Nature Conservancy. “She will bring experience, enthusiasm, great communication skills and a fresh air to our organization. We feel very lucky to have her and look forward to having her at the helm.”

Karen’s passion for Louisiana’s natural systems and people, creativity, and inclusive, collaborative leadership style will help the Louisiana Chapter deliver on its ambitious conservation goals during this critical time. She is knowledgeable about the opportunities and challenges in Louisiana and is poised to advance TNC’s organizational goals.

“I am thrilled and honored to be named as State Director,” said Karen. “I have a deep love for Louisiana and care deeply about the future of our state’s human and natural communities. I look forward to continuing to work with so many great partners, both within The Nature Conservancy and throughout the state, to advance the important work of conservation in Louisiana.”

Karen holds a BS in Finance from Louisiana State University. Before TNC, she worked for four Louisiana governors over five administrations, in leadership positions in the Governor’s Office and Louisiana’s Department of Environmental Quality. She helped form advisory task forces to engage multiple constituencies from the public and private sectors and developed consensus-based recommendations, many of which resulted in legislation or other policy changes.

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 www.nature.org or follow @nature_press on Twitter.