The slogan “Run Phyllis” took Phyllis Marchand through 22 years of elected office, including 14 as Princeton Township Mayor. An open space enthusiast who partnered with D&R Greenway as Mayor to preserve Greenway Meadows, Phyllis is still running to ensure that we protect as much open space as we can before it disappears.
Shortly after leaving office in 2009, Phyllis was invited to join the Board of Trustees of D&R Greenway Land Trust. This spring, Marchand, who served as Vice-Chair, was elected by the Board of Trustees into the leadership role as Chair of the Board. She succeeds Brian Breuel.
“Going back to the late 1990s when we worked together to protect Greenway Meadows and the land that is now home to the Johnson Education Center, Phyllis has been extraordinary in her commitment to land preservation,” says President & CEO Linda Mead. “I am excited about the charismatic leadership she brings to D&R Greenway.”
Among the Board achievements Phyllis is most excited about is the Revolving Land Fund, which will enable D&R Greenway to purchase a property when it becomes available, protecting it from development and reselling it to replenish the fund for the next acquisition.
A New York City native, Phyllis is enthused about D&R Greenway’s work in creating Capital City Farm in Trenton, which just received a Smart Growth Award from New Jersey Future (see related story on page 4). “It’s so important for urban residents to have a taste of nature and be a part of the local food movement. I hope the Smart Growth Award will encourage other conservation groups around the country to similar projects that provide local jobs, beautiful natural settings, health benefits and food that doesn’t have to be shipped across the country.”
In 2015 the YWCA Princeton Breast Cancer Resource Center became the first partner on D&R Greenway’s Conservation Campus at Greenway Meadows, making the essential connection between healing and nature, another subject about which Phyllis is passionate. Looking ahead, she hopes to increase partnerships with other nonprofits.
“We are very good at making connections with the arts and nature,” says Phyllis. “Our thought-provoking art exhibits showcase regional fine artists, and the educational panels inform everyone who visits about topics related to nature, birds, plants and the landscapes that are exhibited. We have also held concerts with music that relates to the natural world, as another way to celebrate nature and draw people in to inspire a conservation ethic.”