Programs Team


Susan Shingledecker, Vice President and Director of Programs

Shingledecker runs the Chesapeake Conservancy’s programs, which include community-based conservation initiatives throughout the Chesapeake Bay watershed. She also provides leadership to the organization as a whole, working with the Annapolis-based nonprofit’s president and board of directors to determine and administer the organizations strategic direction in accomplishing its mission. Susan brings over 15 years of professional experience in consulting, public policy, state government and nonprofit management. She has worked in a number of positions for BoatU.S. Foundation for Boating Safety & Clean Water since 2005. Most recently, Susan served as Vice President, where she oversaw day-to-day operation of the nonprofit and led environmental efforts at BoatU.S. and GEICO Marine Insurance. She also supervised the Foundation’s boating safety and clean boating programs including the development of interactive online learning courses, boater outreach and fundraising. Susan holds a Master of Environmental Management from Duke University and a Bachelor of Arts in international studies from American University. In her free time Susan loves getting out on the Chesapeake Bay with her husband and two boys on their family sailboat or fleet of kayaks.


Carolyn Black, Interpretation and Partnership Associate

Working in partnership with the Chesapeake Conservancy and the National Park Service Chesapeake Bay Office, Carolyn assists with communications and outreach for the lower Chesapeake Bay segment of the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail. Stationed at Historic Jamestowne in Virginia, she coordinates interpretive and educational programming for Werowocomoco and other Virginia partners who are featured on the Chesapeake Trail. Carolyn worked with NPS Chesapeake Bay in the summer of 2015 as an intern with the Student Conservation Association in the Cultural Resources program and returned as a Chesapeake Conservation Corps intern the following year. Carolyn holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Thought & Political Economy from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She was raised in the Greater Boston area where she was taught a respect for the outdoors through fishing, canoeing, and volunteering for environmental sustainability initiatives.

Carly Dean, Project Manager

Carly Dean is a project manager at the Chesapeake Conservancy where she facilitates data-driven collective impact throughout the Chesapeake Bay watershed. After completing her M.S. in Environmental Science at Towson University in Baltimore, Maryland, she researched sustainable development for a real estate developer in Beijing, China and social resilience at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis near Vienna, Austria. Her B.S. in Environmental Science is from Baylor University in Waco, Texas. At the Conservancy, her work is focused on creating and delivering innovative, customized datasets and tools for diverse partners to help restore farmland and improve urban stormwater management. She lives in Baltimore where she enjoys city life and spending time with her niece, Ruby.


Adrienne Gemberling, Susquehanna Technical Coordinator

Adrienne serves as the key on-the-ground coordinator for the Chesapeake Conservancy’s Implementing Precision Conservation in the Susquehanna River Watershed Project. As the Susquehanna Technical Coordinator, she collaborates with local partner agencies, universities, stakeholder groups, businesses, and conservation organizations to pilot precision conservation practices, assess best management practice effectiveness through data collection, and develop tools for local partners. Adrienne comes to the Conservancy with a breadth of local, on-the-ground knowledge of watershed management, natural resource needs, and data gaps within the Susquehanna River Basin. She is a graduate of Lebanon Valley College with a degree in Biology and has a master’s degree in Biology with a focus on freshwater ecology from Missouri State University. Adrienne is a native of central Pennsylvania and currently resides in the small town of Mifflinburg where she enjoys kayaking, fishing, hiking, and gardening.


john-griffinJohn Griffin, Chesapeake Conservation Partnership Program Manager

As Partnership Coordinator, John works to advance large landscape conservation initiatives in the Chesapeake Bay watershed by convening diverse, multi-disciplinary stakeholders. The Partnership seeks to extend the conservation of large landscapes throughout the region to benefit multiple values, including sustainability; scenic, historic and cultural heritage; working lands; important bio- diversity and wildlife habitat; water quality and supply; and overall quality of life. John is the former Secretary of Maryland Department of Natural Resources under two Governors, the Deputy Secretary of the department, the General Manager of the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, and served as Chief of Staff for Governor Martin O’Malley. He brings decades of experience with resource conservation and environmental protection as well as relationships across the Chesapeake watershed. John holds a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from Niagara University and Master of Arts in social work from the Catholic University of America. He has five children and three granddaughters and lives in Annapolis with his wife Michele and their twin boys.


Joseph McCauley, Chesapeake Fellow

Retired from the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, Joe brings vast conservation experience, both at the policy level and in the field, to the Conservancy. As Chesapeake Fellow, he serves as a mentor to the Conservancy staff and enhances the organization’s conservation efforts in Virginia. Joe most recently served as regional chief, Division of Realty, Northeast Region, USFWS, where he was responsible for overseeing real property acquisition within the 13 Northeast States. His accomplishments included adding nearly 18,000 acres to the National Wildlife Refuge System, working with the Rivers of the Chesapeake Landscape Conservation Collaborative, the Conservancy’s Envision the James Core Team, and the Chesapeake Conservation Partnership Steering Committee. A graduate of West Virginia University, Joe lives in the Richmond, VA area. He and his wife Julia have two grown sons. In his spare time, Joe enjoys fishing, gardening and birding.