Michael Cipra, Executive Director, first moved to Humboldt County in 2004 to serve as the Community Partner Liaison for Humboldt State University, where he worked to connect students and classes with community organizations. He has worked at the intersection of community and conservation for most of his career, first as a education park ranger for the National Park Service, and then as the California Desert Program Manager for the non-profit National Parks Conservation Association. In this non-profit management role, he built diverse coalitions of business leaders, ranchers, farmers, conservation organizations, hunting groups, animal rights activists, wildlife and plant ecology researchers, and government agencies to find common ground and achieve the shared goal of long-term land protection. Most recently, he worked as a land-use planner and environmental specialist for the 3.4 million acre Death Valley National Park, working with four counties, two states, the Timbisha Shoshone Tribe, the Bureau of Land Management, private landowners, ranchers, and the Department of Defense to craft regional conservation plans that balance recreation and multi-use land preservation. Mike has worked internationally as well, as an English-language radio DJ in Indonesia, where he was hugged by a wild orangutan. He is honored to be able to contribute his passion for community-based conservation to the mission of the Northcoast Regional Land Trust.
Dan Ehresman, Project Manager, first moved to the forested coast of Humboldt County in 1998. Dan has over 15 years of experience working in the non-profit sector with numerous conservation-based organizations in Northern California – most recently serving as Executive Director of the Northcoast Environmental Center. He is a board member of the Rose Foundation’s Northern California Environmental Grassroots Fund and currently serves on the McKay Community Forest Advisory Group. He is committed to creating more sustainable communities, protecting and celebrating the ecological systems that sustain us, and supporting one another to create a more resilient future for life in all its forms – human and wild. Dan lives just above the shore of Humboldt Bay in Eureka and enjoys canoeing, hiking, birding, biking, gardening and building.
Connie Low, Administrative Assistant, first moved to Humboldt in 2007 from southern California. Coming to Humboldt with a decade of administrative and accounting experience, she found work in a Eureka law firm. She was employed there for nearly 7 years while she earned an AA at College of the Redwoods and a BS in Environmental Science from Humboldt State University. Her studies focused on policy and the effects of land use on environmental, community, and human health. Connie found NRLT when she was looking for work with an organization that serves the ecological stewardship needs of our area and strives to improve our social, ecological and economic environment for future generations. She enjoys the ocean, the forest, hiking, watching wildlife, rainy days, reading and adventures with her nephew in Seattle.
Kerry McNamee, Project Manager, joins NRLT for her second time - after serving on the Projects team in 2013, she returned in 2015. In the interim Kerry served as an Americorps/CCC Watershed Stewards Project member where she worked on the Scott and Shasta Rivers in Siskiyou County with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife collecting field data towards the management of the Klamath River salmon fishery. She also gained brief experience in groundwater hydrology and contamination remediation with a consulting firm on the east coast. Kerry, a cum laude graduate of HSU, earned the Most Outstanding Student award in the Environmental Management and Protection department for her academic achievements and simultaneous involvement as a water quality analyst intern with Humboldt Baykeeper. Kerry is also a published author in the Humboldt Journal of Social Relations where she examined a tract of vulnerable coastal land in Eureka and assessed land use options to bolster the areas resiliency to sea level rise. Kerry enjoys working with landowners to find a common ground in achieving conservation, environmental stewardship and preserving Humboldt County’s cultural identity. In her free time, Kerry enjoys participating in the community, playing volleyball, river rafting, and exploring the great outdoors of Northern California and beyond.
Sarah Pilkington, Outreach and Development Director, grew up in Sonoma County, California and went to college in San Luis Obispo at Cal Poly, where she received her BA in Elementary Education and a minor in English. She has worked as a teacher and trainer and has had professional experience in the non-profit sector working for the Northcoast Mentor Program and coordinating Redwood Community Action Agency’s AmeriCorps*VISTA program. Sarah has a background in organizational development, outreach, public relations, event coordination, building collaborative partnerships, mediation and fund development. She intermittently works as a guest faculty for Humboldt State University and as a consultant/trainer for other local organizations with a focus on fundraising, leadership and community building. Sarah enjoys being outdoors, whether it is river rafting, hiking or gardening, and focuses her work and play on her love for the land.
Shayne Green, Projects and Stewardship Consultant was born and raised in Humboldt County, and holds a B.A. in Natural Resource Management and Geography from the University of California at Santa Barbara and an M.A. in Biological Sciences from Humboldt State University. Since 1995 he has earned his livelihood "traipsing" across the privately and publicly-owned forests of northern California working as a timber cruiser, forest inventory technician, and consulting botanist. Shayne's goal at NRLT is to "strategically design conservation programs and build relationships that enhance the protection of the North Coast's natural landscapes, economies, and quality of life."