Wetlands of the Rio Grande river in front of mountain range.
Wetlands in New Mexico Wetlands at Valles Caldera National Preserve. New Mexico’s Rio Grande and its tributaries supply water to more than half of New Mexico’s population. © Alan W. Eckert for The Nature Conservancy

Newsroom

New Leaders Join The Nature Conservancy in New Mexico

Two new employees at The Nature Conservancy (TNC) in New Mexico will help develop solutions for growing climate and other environmental challenges facing our land, water and well-being.

Paul Blaney will serve as TNC’s new director of development. He will set state fundraising goals and build strategies that will range from meeting new donors to leading multi-year fundraising campaigns. Our donor’s financial commitments support everything from land and water conservation to developing solutions to offset climate change.

Blaney is a seasoned nonprofit and fundraising executive with more than 20 years of leadership experience and success in organizations serving diverse, underrepresented and marginalized populations. Most recently, he supervised a team that led a $10 million capital campaign effort and upheld a $3 million annual fundraising goal.

My goal is to amplify the voices of the philanthropic community in New Mexico to strengthen the commitment to preserve the natural world and address our growing climate challenges.

Director of Development, The Nature Conservancy in New Mexico

On the conservation side, Matt Piccarello is TNC’s new forest and watershed health manager for New Mexico. In this role, Piccarello will focus on building collaborative and community-based solutions for forest and watershed management through such initiatives as the Rio Grande Water Fund. Building resilient lands and communities will help ensure our future generations can enjoy nature.

Community-based natural resource management...is about building relationships with people, communities, agencies, non-profits and leaders so you can collaborate on conservation projects that positively impact everyone.

Forest and Watershed Health Manager, TNC in New Mexico

“My passion for community-based natural resource management has taken me around the world,” Piccarello said. “It’s about building relationships with people, communities, agencies, non-profits and leaders so you can collaborate on conservation projects that positively impact everyone. By working together, we can make a difference,” Matt said.

Prior to joining the team at TNC, Piccarello worked for the Forest Stewards Guild on youth development and community-based forestry projects. He earned master’s degrees in community and regional planning and water resources from the University of New Mexico.

The two new positions bring TNC’s staff in New Mexico to 13 people.

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 76 countries and territories: 37 by direct conservation impact and 39 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.