Leadership

Our Team Leaders:

Joel Dunn, President & CEO

Joel Dunn is president and CEO of Chesapeake Conservancy, a non-profit organization based in Annapolis, MD dedicated to protecting Chesapeake landscapes that are vital to the health of the Bay and its cultural heritage.  With a regional population approaching 18 million and growing and with tens of thousands of acres of open space vanishing each year, the Conservancy strives to restore the health of the Bay and its rivers by preserving working farms and forests and protecting the region’s rich history and character, ensuring a brighter future for the Bay for generations to come. Read More…

Susan Shingledecker, Vice President and Director of Programs

Susan runs the 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 Boat U.S. Foundation for Boating Safety & Clean Water since 2005. Read More…

Patty Allen, Office Manager

Patty has more than 25 years of administration and human resources experience. During that time, Patty served as employee policy coordinator and human resource director for several companies. She specializes in employment law, employee policy, compensation and performance management design and administration. As a resident of Annapolis, Patty has always supported efforts for the conservation of the Chesapeake Bay and surrounding areas.

Working for the Conservancy gives her the chance to take these efforts a step further and to help educate people about challenges facing our environment.

Jody Hedeman Couser, Director of Communications

A native of Annapolis, Jody oversees Chesapeake Conservancy’s public and media relations. Previously, Jody was principal of River Bay Communications, LLC and press secretary for a Maryland gubernatorial candidate.  She served on the cabinet for Anne Arundel County Executive Janet S. Owens as director of communications; as public information officer for the American Medical Association (AMA); director of communications and development for the National Association of Police Organizations (NAPO); and as production manager at The Kamber Group. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Roanoke College and a Master in Political Management from The George Washington University. Jody lives in Annapolis with her husband and two daughters. She enjoys traveling, boating on the Chesapeake Bay, and has a knack for finding arrowheads.

Jeffrey Allenby, Director of Conservation Technology

Jeff is the Director of Conservation Technology at the Chesapeake Conservancy. His team explores new ways to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of the Conservancy’s projects and focuses on developing new ways to empower partner organizations by providing them with innovative ways to access geospatial data and analysis tools that will create beneficial management outcomes. He is currently investigating the use of high-resolution imagery and LIDAR elevation data to map land cover at the large landscape scale and is constructing interactive tools to better target BMP implementation and riparian conservation and restoration projects.

Before joining the Conservancy, Jeff worked with the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources managing a competitive grant program that provided technical and financial support to local communities to realize and proactively adapt to climate change and coastal hazards. Jeff has a Masters of Environmental Management and Certificate in Geospatial Analysis from Duke University and a Bachelors of Science from the University of Richmond. Jeff enjoys running, mountain biking, and spending time with his wife, daughter, and two cats.

Melissa Ehrenreich, Director of Development 

As director of development, Melissa leads our fundraising efforts and outreach to foundations, corporations and individuals. She brings years of development and partnership expertise to our team, with a background in conservation. Most recently, Ehrenreich served as the executive director of the D.C. Social Innovation Project, a social enterprise and innovation incubator focused on tackling the root causes of poverty in Washington, D.C. She also served in numerous roles with the Ocean Conservancy from 2006 to 2013, including capital campaign manager, director of program effectiveness, and acting director of the Trash Free Seas initiative. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Maryland at College Park and spent her college years researching on the Choptank River. Ehrenreich lives in Greenbelt, MD and enjoys hunting edible mushrooms, native plant gardening, and forest hikes with her husband and three sons.

Our Board of Director leaders:

Anne W. Scott, Chair

Anne Scott is the Global Project Director for Act With Her, a multi-country program to empower adolescent girls and improve gender equity. The largest ever adolescent-focused grant made by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Act With Her is implemented by a consortium of partners led by Pathfinder International. Previously, Anne served as Executive Director of Programs at the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF) in London, where she was responsible for the performance management of CIFF’s portfolio of grants and other impact investments related to child health and education in Africa and South Asia.

Anne holds a PhD in Medical Anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania in the US, and an MBA in Finance, Accounting and Audit from the University of Kent in the UK. She completed post-doctoral fellowships in science and diplomacy with the American Association for the Advancement of Science and in health and child survival at Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health.

She lives in Charlottesville, Virginia with her two teenage sons, Labrador retriever, and Jack Russell terrier, making frequent visits to her family home in Chestertown, MD. She enjoys sailing, horseback riding, photography and writing.

Robert Gensler, Treasurer

Rob Gensler is a professional investor who retired in 2012, after 30 years working in investments. He joined T. Rowe Price in 1993 as a financial analyst, working also as a media & telecommunications analyst, and then as portfolio manager for the Media & Telecommunications Strategy, the Global Technology Strategy, and finally for the Global Equity Strategy during his 20 years with the firm.

Prior to joining T. Rowe Price, Gensler worked for Salomon Brothers and Smith New Court in global risk arbitrage management, and for several years with the Botswana Development Corporation.

Gensler earned his BS in economics from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, and his MBA from the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University, and studied for a year at the London School of Economics.

Robert G. Stanton, Secretary

Bob Stanton has more than 40 years of experience with the U.S. Department of the Interior, serving most recently as a senior advisor to the secretary of the Interior, and as Director of the National Park Service from 1997-2001. In 2014, he was appointed by the President to a four-year term on the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation.

Stanton holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Huston-Tillotson University and did his graduate work at Boston University. He has received honorary doctorate degrees from Texas A&M University, Huston-Tillotson University, Unity College, Southern University and Agricultural and Mechanical College and North Carolina State University.

Chesapeake Council leaders:

Chesapeake Council members are key advisors in the important effort to protect our cultural and natural resources and support our mission through fundraising, leveraging relationships, providing advice and being ambassadors for our organization.

Mr. David Blitzer

Mr. Keith Campbell

Mr. Charles H. “Chip” Collins

Dr. Wilton “Wilt” Corkern

Ms. Lavinia Currier

Dr. Sylvia Earle

Ms. Elinor Farquhar

Mr. Sid Jamieson

Ms. Amanda Savage Mahoney

Ms. Nancy Merrill

Ms. Joan Murray

Mr. Truman Semans, Sr.

Ms. Ann Swanson

Mr. John Turner

Mr. H.W. “Skip” Wieder

Mr. Steven Williams