MEET THE TEAM
Lauren's background includes a wide range of projects involving water resource engineering, agriculture, climate justice, and community building; she is excited to combine and continue to work on these topics as part of her new role as District Manager, which started in January 2021. In 2015, Lauren graduated from Smith College in her hometown of Northampton, MA and traveled for a few years until settling into Vermont in early 2018. Lauren recently spent the 2019 growing season in Franklin County, working on a small farm in Montgomery and serving the community at two local restaurants. She is incredibly eager to work in Franklin County again with folks who are dedicated to the land, water, and life around them.
Kate is originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and now lives in Richmond, Vermont. She graduated from UVM with a degree in Environmental Science and then spent two years as an ECO AmeriCorps member, first serving for a year with the VT DEC Lakes and Ponds program, and then with the Franklin County NRCD. She is excited to be staying on at the District as a project technician. In her free time you can find her hiking, gardening, baking, and exploring new places around Vermont!
Originally from New Jersey, Katy spent many years in northern California before moving to Burlington, Vermont in 2019. She holds an undergraduate degree in biochemistry from Villanova University (go Cats!) and a graduate degree in soil science from the University of California Davis. Katy has previously worked as a research scientist studying connections between soils and climate, and has also been involved in efforts focused on place-based education, science communication, and environmental justice. She is thrilled to combine these interests in support of northern Vermont’s incredible food systems, landscapes, and people. When she’s not thinking about soil, Katy loves mountain biking, trail running, gardening, and baking bread, which she swears she was into before the pandemic.
Mel gained a love for nature after growing up in the Southern Adirondacks in upstate New York. She originally studied and taught English and has lived in Brazil, France, and South Korea. After returning to the US, Mel decided to devote her career to environmental conservation. Since then, she has completed a masters degree in Environmental Sciences and Policy with a focus in environmental justice from Johns Hopkins University. She has also served with ECO AmeriCorps at NorthWoods Stewardship Center and the VTDEC Monitoring and Assessment Program, where she gained experience in water quality, aquatic ecology, and riparian restoration. She is excited to use these skills to work with community members and the Franklin County NRCD team to protect Franklin County's natural resources. In her free time, you can find Mel hiking, reading, and learning new languages.
Temporary email: FCNRCDstaff@gmail.com
MEET THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS
Richard began serving on the Board in the 1980s. Born in Connecticut to French Canadian parents, soon moved to Vermont to join farming relatives. He started haying when he was 9 years old and has worked on farms all his life. From 1972 to 1999 he ran his own dairy on the headwaters of the Rock River in Highgate, and continued haying until 2017. He likes to help the NRCS and District bring information to farmers. Because he knows the area so well, he brings local knowledge to staff who come from out of state. He still has a 45 acre farm where he sugars and hays. Reach Richard at 802-868-4162.
Molly grew up in St. Albans. She attended BFA and then UVM, where she received a degree in Chemistry. She worked three years in an environmental testing laboratory in Williston. Since then, she has been teaching physics and environmental science at BFA. Her husband owns and operates a farm with his brothers in Fairfield, on which they raise their three children.
Phil grew up helping his dad on the family farm in Enosburg, and as a high-schooler at Bellows Free Academy he was an active member of FFA and 4-H. On buying the farm from his dad in 1987, Phil quips, “That’s when he saddled me with debt forever.” Before joining the Conservation District in 2000, Phil was involved with a local group helping farmers with record keeping and nutrient management. Today he serves on the District’s board as a way to give a voice to farmers in the community and make a positive difference. Reach him at 802-933-2382.
Carissa resides on a forested hillside in Montgomery where she strives to learn from the land and all that inhabit it. Originally from a little farm in rural Virginia, she traveled place-to-place in the military while serving as a Weather Forecaster till 2009. After which she went to college in Bozeman, Montana for Rangeland Ecology. In 2014, she took residence in Vermont, happily found herself back in agrarian culture while working for farmers at Natural Resources Conservation Service till December 2021. Her hope is to serve the dynamic community with evolving balance and connection.
Vicky is originally from a small mining town in southeastern California. After traveling for a few months after high school, she landed at the University of Georgia where she earned a BS in Agronomy with an emphasis in soil science. She joined the Soil Conservation Service (now the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service) in 1983 as a student intern and continued to work for the agency for 38 years in Georgia, Rhode Island, and Vermont, along with temporary appointments in Virginia and Washington DC. She has worked with a variety of agricultural producers throughout her career on all types of natural resource issues. Most recently she served as the State Conservationist for VT NRCS, where she helped form the Vermont Ag Water Quality Partnership, and guided NRCS’ programs, policies, and staff to assist private landowners in addressing their water quality needs, as well as other high priority concerns. Vicky retired from NRCS in 2021. She and her husband Greg reside on a small farm in Georgia, Vermont, and both volunteer on several community based organizations. Vicky looks forward to using her knowledge of conservation, agriculture and state/federal policies to help guide the District in developing and implementing a strong conservation program in Franklin County.
Become an Associate Supervisor
Are you interested in serving as a Supervisor for the Franklin County Natural Resources Conservation District? We are seeking candidates to learn how to be a Supervisor without a present commitment in hopes that as our existing Supervisors retire, we will have folks lined up to continue to great work of the District.
Please contact us at info@franklincountyNRCD.org to learn more!
Doug is a trained forester and worked for UVM Extension for over 17 years on natural resources issues. On the Board of the Conservation District, he hoped to continue to serve the people of Franklin County related to water quality and natural resources management. The District is important, he says, because it provides support and knowledge to individuals in the county wanting to be better land stewards. Doug lives in Fairfax and began serving for the Franklin District in 2017. Doug's term ended in 2020.
Eileen became a supervisor in 2015. She grew up on a farm in Fairfield and went on to own and operate a dairy and maple farm with her husband Garry, which they still operate. They have raised four children there and now have one grandchild. Eileen is also a retired dental hygienist after 35 years in the profession. As a Vermont farmer, caring for the environment is just a part of who she is. Eileen's term ended in 2021.
Daton (center) began serving on the District board in 1967 and has farmed all his life. He served because he wanted to see what all the farmers are doing, and help them in any way that he could. At one point, he had the best manure storage system around, because it had a roof on it. This picture is at the close of the Vermont Soil Survey, in 1965. Daton served the District for over 50 years, many of them as the Chair of the Board!
Adrian is a retired lifelong dairy farmer in Franklin, VT who joined the Board of Supervisors in February 2021. He loves working with livestock, working with the land, and making improvements. His land is a great home to wildlife and birds that he enjoys watching and creating habitat for. He is driven to keep supporting farmers to work with nature and is excited to bring his ideas to the Franklin County NRCD.
Read about our Work
The mission of the Franklin County Natural Resources Conservation District is to promote land use that supports human livelihoods and sustains ecosystems in Franklin County, Vermont. We empower and convene landowners and land-users to prioritize and address natural resource concerns through USDA and locally-developed programs. We recognize water quality and the continuance of our land-based economy as key concerns for Franklin County today.