WPC Appoints New Vice President of Conservation Programs
Thu, Feb 12th 2009, 11:35. Filed under News Releases.
Pittsburgh, Pa. – February 12, 2009 – The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy (WPC) has named Shaun Fenlon its Vice President for Conservation Programs. Fenlon, who fills a recently vacated post, leads WPC’s Natural Heritage, Conservation Science, Watershed Conservation and Laurel Highlands programs. In this role, he directs WPC’s strategies and actions related to conservation science and planning, watershed protection and restoration, protection of rare, threatened and endangered species, and collaborative work with partner organizations.
“The programs that Shaun oversees are central to our organization’s efforts to conserve our region’s most important natural resources,” said Tom Saunders, president and CEO of the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy. “We’re very pleased to have found someone with such a high level of expertise to lead this important work.”
Fenlon brings significant experience in conservation to WPC. Prior to joining the Conservancy, he served as director of land acquisition and planning for the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. Previously, he was acting director of the state’s Rural Legacy Program and served as senior counsel for its Department of Natural Resources. Fenlon played an integral role in changing how the state of Maryland prioritizes regions for conservation and he led the successful reorientation of the state's land acquisitions toward ecological protection.
A graduate of The College of William and Mary (B.A.) and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (J.D.), Fenlon was recognized as an advisor for The Conservation Easement Handbook, the book most commonly used by land trusts around the country. He received an Exceptional Service Award from the Attorney General for Maryland in 2001. During his tenure at the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Fenlon also worked closely with the Park Service, the Forest Service and the Wildlife and Heritage Service, as well as the state agency that oversees zoning in tidal areas of the state.
“It was always my career goal to join a top nonprofit organization that protects and restores our natural heritage while connecting people to the natural world,” said Fenlon. “With its uniquely broad range of programs, from its conservation programs to the renowned Fallingwater, I think the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy is more than I could have hoped for. I look forward to adding to an already remarkable organization.”
About the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy
To date, the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy (WPC) has protected nearly 225,000 acres of natural lands in Pennsylvania. Now in its 77th year, Pennsylvania’s first conservancy continues to partner with grassroots organizations to protect land, restore watersheds and save natural habitats.
WPC preserves Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater®, which was designed in 1935 and entrusted to the Conservancy in 1963 by Edgar Kaufmann jr. A symbol of living in harmony with nature, Fallingwater is open to the public and offers a wide variety of educational programs to its more than 135,000 annual visitors.
Each year, WPC plants and maintains community gardens and greening projects throughout Western Pennsylvania. In 2008, WPC partnered with more than 8,300 volunteers and dozens of community organizations to plant 140 gardens in 19 western Pennsylvania counties.
Photos are available upon request.