Linda J. Mead
President & CEO
Fun Fact: Linda loves to travel and counts among her best wildlife experiences a safari in South Africa where she says, “We got close enough to hear the breath of the lions!”
Linda has led D&R Greenway since 1997 through a period of phenomenal growth, achieving statewide and national recognition. Her vision led to creation of D&R Greenway’s Conservation Campus and its Johnson Education Center that supports land preservation and stewardship, with art galleries and programming that inspire a conservation ethic.
Over more than 30 years, Linda has affected over 20,000 acres of land preservation in Pennsylvania and in New Jersey, a state expected to reach total build-out in 30 years. She is adept at structuring complex land preservation transactions including Greenway Meadows and Coventry Farm in Princeton, and St. Michaels Farm Preserve in Hopewell. Her enthusiasm for fundraising has resulted in significant private/public partnerships to save land, and has ensured a stable organization for the future.
In 2012, Linda founded a national training program co-sponsored by the Land Trust Alliance and Morgan Stanley. She worked on two studies with the National Park Service that achieved designation of National Heritage Areas in PA and NJ. She founded the Delaware River Sojourn and was instrumental in establishing Bucks County’s (PA) Open Space Program. She is a graduate of Rutgers University and formerly worked for the Bucks County Conservancy, now Heritage Conservancy. Linda regularly speaks on land preservation and conservation finance at the University of Notre Dame, and has been a guest lecturer at Princeton University, Yale University and other educational institutions, state and national conferences. She has served on several Boards including Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve and the Bucks County Open Space Board. She is currently on the Land Trust Alliance National Leadership Council and the State of New Jersey Historic Easement Advisory Board. Locally, she was a founding member of the Advisory Council for AWE – the Alliance for Watershed Education for the Delaware River Watershed, and serves on the Abbott Marshlands Cooperative Stewardship Council.
Recognition of her work includes the prestigious 2002 International Paper Conservation Partnership Award from The Conservation Fund; the 2013 Environmental Achievement Award from Plan Smart New Jersey; the 2013 Women in Wildlife Leadership Award from Conserve Wildlife New Jersey; the 2014 Zone IV Civic Improvement Commendation Award from the Garden Club of America; the Mercer Women Leaders Environment Award presented in 2017 by Mercer County Clerk Paula Sollami Covello; and the YWCA Princeton’s 2018 Tribute to Women Award. Her innovative community conservation work at St. Michaels Farm Preserve in Hopewell was also recognized in 2019 by the Rotary Club of Princeton when a former resident of St. Michaels Orphanage spoke about the holistic healing that is happening thanks to the inclusive narrative of this work. In 2021, the Rotary Club of Montgomery/Rocky Hill, NJ recognized her achievements with a flag flown for 12 days in June in the Flags for Heroes celebration.
Click below to watch a video from the Princeton YWCA Tribute to learn about Linda Mead’s passion for the work of D&R Greenway Land Trust.
Executive Assistant to the President & CEO
Manager of Business Partners in Preservation and Special Events
Fun Fact: Ask Deb about her interests in eagles, antiques and dancing!
Deb came to D&R Greenway Land Trust in 2011 because she is committed to D&R Greenway’s mission of preserving and protecting natural lands, farm lands, and open space in New Jersey.
Deb’s responsibility for D&R Greenway’s Business Partners in Preservation grew from her former work of 18 years with the Princeton Regional Chamber of Commerce where her ultimate role was Director of Communications. Deb began her professional career as a Tax Examiner for the Internal Revenue Service. She has subsequently held positions at JDK Restorations; Jones New York; AA Matulay, Inc. and Ethix-Mid Atlantic. She is an accomplished business writer, publicist and editor, as well as skilled in greenhouse management. She studied Business and Photography at Bucks County Community College and later enhanced her skills at the Cittone Institute of Business and Technology.
In her spare time, Deb is the Sole Proprietor of an Antique business with the motto of Recycle, Restore, Relove. Deb maintains a close relationship with the outdoors and nature and enjoys dancing, swimming, gardening, birdwatching, walking and traveling. She is a volunteer for the NJDEP Division of Fish & Wildlife’s Wildlife Conservation Corps, providing updates on the eagles’ nest situated on the transmission tower on the D&R Canal in Lambertville and is a member of the Colonial Sportsmen’s Club in the Sourland Mountains and the Lambertville-based Kalmia Club. On any Saturday morning, you can find Deb with her camera and binoculars watching the wildlife on the canal or perusing local yard sales and antique markets in search of that very special find.
Land Preservation and Stewardship
Linda Mead brings over 30 years of experience in acquiring land and easements to directing D&R Greenway’s Land Preservation work. She is assisted by staff and expert advisors who have the financial and legal skills to enable complicated and beneficial land transactions. In addition, those who are dedicated solely to these responsibilities are noted below.
Director of Land Preservation
Fun Fact: Danielle is an avid baker; for the past three years she has baked cookies for an annual historic tractor parade in Burlington County. Last summer, she baked over 500 cookies!
Danielle oversees land preservation for D&R Greenway’s properties where she partners with the state, counties and townships to preserve lands for open space and farmland. Danielle has been preserving farmland for almost 15 years in Burlington County, NJ and Montgomery County, PA. She is a Penn State Extension Rural-Urban Leadership Program (RULE) graduate. She has negotiated with landowners, worked with appraisers and technical consultants, monitored easements, administered a county program, and created farm-to-table outreach events and marketing materials. She received a Bachelors of Science degree from the Stockton University. When not walking around on farms, she’s chasing after her little superhero, her son Brandon.
Director of Land Stewardship
Fun Fact: In college, Tina hiked the Adirondacks, Catskills, and the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge surveying trees.
Tina oversees the stewardship of D&R Greenway’s preserved properties where she manages reforestation efforts along with the Stewardship Team. Previously, Tina founded the Office of Sustainability at Drew University, where she spent over a decade tracking and working to reduce the carbon footprint. She also managed trees on the extensively forested campus, as well as the creation of native no-mow areas and meadows and managed the annual fern restoration event with student and faculty involvement. She has worked extensively with contractors and coordinated grants with the development office. Tina regularly presents to the local community to educate about conservation and sustainability. Tina received a Bachelors of Science degree from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry.
Fun Facts: Amy is a musician and writer, and works in a Hospital Emergency Department on weekends.
Amy Martin became acquainted with D&R Greenway when she represented PSEG on the team that prepared the 2010 Cooperative Stewardship Plan for the Abbott Marshlands. Amy is responsible for the yearly monitoring and reporting of D&R Greenway’s permanent conservation easements, and recently completed the St. Michaels TravelStorys in Hopewell, New Jersey.
Amy brings sixteen years of environmental policy and permitting experience at PSEG where she prepared a weekly Environmental Monitoring Report that identified emerging power generation and utility regulations and their impacts to air, water, land and waste. At PSEG she also completed environmental site assessments and applications to the NJDEP, the Army Corps of Engineers, Soil Erosion & Sediment Control and Municipal and County Site Plan applications. Previous to this power-utility work, Amy designed environmentally sustainable project solutions for municipal site plans, and prepared planning reviews for the Bucks County Planning Commission.
Amy has a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Design (Landscape Architecture) from Cook College-Rutgers University. Amy is also a full-time Seminary student and moving towards Board Certification as a Chaplain. With this diverse background she brings a broad outlook in support of D&R Greenway’s land preservation.
Site Manager, St. Michaels Farm Preserve
Fun Fact: A committed conservationist who walks the walk, Bill and his family preserved thousands of acres of their family-owned farms known as Princeton Nurseries.
Bill has a background in nursery management, having worked with his family-owned business Princeton Nurseries that supplied the northeastern United States and beyond with landscape plants for generations. When closing the family business, Bill, his siblings and partners made a landmark decision to permanently preserve their family property. In 2012, D&R Greenway recognized the family for this decision with our annual Donald B. Jones Conservation Award. Today, Bill can be seen regularly at our St. Michaels Farm Preserve, where he is responsible for stewardship of the land and trails that are enjoyed by the public. Bill also uses his expertise to assist with D&R Greenway’s Native Plant Nursery and Capital City Farm, as well as stewardship of other D&R Greenway preserves. His other passion is playing bluegrass and country music with a variety of local bands.
Richard is joining us with a background as a Rutgers Master Gardener, Certified Rutgers Environmental Steward, and the trail coordinator for the Abbott Marshlands trail network.
Johnson Education Center & Facilities Management
Laurie J. Emde
Director of Operations
Fun Fact: Laurie divides her time between New Jersey and Upstate New York where she and her grown family are restoring a 1912 Adirondack Foursquare on Lake Champlain.
Laurie joined D&R Greenway Land Trust in May of 1995. With more than twenty-five years of financial experience and certification in non-profit management, Laurie is responsible for financial and facilities management, office administration, and compliance. Laurie’s responsibilities are multi-faceted, including managing rentals and scheduled events at the Johnson Education Center. She supports the land preservation process and general operations by providing document review and paralegal expertise. Formerly, she was a partner in a family business, Tri-Boy Beverage, Inc.
Active in her local community, Laurie has facilitated the preservation of more than 200 acres in Lawrence Township, NJ. She currently serves as Treasurer for Lawrence Township Conservation Foundation, ex-Chairperson of the Lawrence Township Open Space & Stewardship Advisory Committee, ex-Treasurer for Sustainable Lawrence, and is a voting member of the Mercer County Agricultural Development Board.
Development and Community Relations
Director of Donor and Community Engagement
Fun fact: Goat Hill Overlook is Nancy’s go-to vista for inspiration and strength.
Nancy Faherty is a public relations consultant with more than 30 years experience working with organizations in the areas of marketing, communications, programming and development. A 1989 graduate of the College of New Jersey, Nancy was presented with its Humanitarian Award in 2005 for her work with Angel’s Wings, a non-profit organization she co-founded in 1999 to care for children in crisis while developing foster families. She built upon that work from 2012-2018 as Director of Advocacy & Development at YWCA Princeton. Born in Trenton, Nancy currently lives along the Delaware River in Lambertville with her husband, Flip. They recently took up kayaking as they learn more about the 2020 River of the Year and the lands surrounding it. Nancy was a participating artist in the 2020 Jim Hamilton Memorial Shad Fest Poster Auction which funded two local scholarships despite the challenges of the pandemic.
Database Manager and Website Wizard
Fun Fact: During Zoom calls, Sharon’s parrots sometimes…usually participate!
Sharon comes to D&R Greenway with an extensive background in business management and administration through her long-time involvement as a senior vice president and founding member of several area community banks. She is happy to be contributing to D&R Greenway’s mission in her role as Database Manager and Website Wizard, drawing on her previous experience in marketing, administration, and new product development to bring consistency to donor data collection, maintenance and reporting, as well as developing new content and improving functionality of the D&R Greenway website. She has also served on the board and as Chair of a number of local nonprofit organizations.
Education and Outreach Support
Fun fact: Susan is the author of AMC’s Best Day Hikes Near Philadelphia
Susan Charkes has been assisting D&R Greenway with various communications projects since 2010. A writer and poet, she is the author of AMC’s Best Day Hikes Near Philadelphia and Outdoors With Kids–Philadelphia. She works in easement stewardship with Brandywine Conservancy, a Pennsylvania-based land conservation organization. She is a long-time volunteer with community environmental organizations in Pennsylvania, has worked as an attorney and in information management, and has been in the nonprofit environmental field since 2006, with prior positions at New Jersey and Maryland organizations. She has served on the Stewardship Council of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy. Susan holds a BA from The University of Chicago, a JD from Columbia University, and an MLS from Rutgers University. She leads hikes and is a volunteer Appalachian Trail maintainer. See more on her website, www.susancharkes.com.
Strategic Community Conservation, AlumniCorps Project 55 Fellow and
Manager, Kayak-Supported Delaware River Education Program
Heather will be managing D&R Greenway’s new kayak-supported Delaware River education program and overseeing planning for the re-creation of gardens at the former Joseph Bonaparte estate of Point Breeze in Bordentown.
Heather reveals, “In the Princeton University Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, I spent a lot of time learning the amazing biodiversity of our planet. However, delving more deeply, I came to realize the myriad of ways in which development threatens, –not only these species–, but also various aspects of human life, –from our food system to our ability to access clean water and recreation spaces. D&R Greenway’s dedication to preserving land in perpetuity will not only protect the biodiversity that I am so passionate about, but also provide the opportunity for New Jerseyans to live healthy, happy lives, even in one of the most densely populated places in the country.”
Strategic Community Conservation, AlumniCorps Project 55 Fellow and
Ayame notes: “I’m thrilled that my work with D&R Greenway will give me a chance to engage a wide range of my skills and experience, –from art to historical research and writing to volunteer work– and to contribute to the amazing preservation work being done here in New Jersey.”
Special thanks to our prior AlumniCorps Project 55 Fellows for their legacy work:
2020-2021 Maria Stahl – Strategic Community Conservation, mentorship with LALDEF’s FUTURO students and Bordentown Kayaking Program
2019-2020 Nadeem Demian – Community Conservation, Bordentown Public Art Mural
2016-2017 Kelsey Kane-Ritsch – Abbott Marshlands TravelStorys tours
2015-2016 Allegra Lovejoy – Capital City Farm