(STOCKBRIDGE, Mass.) – Barbara Erickson will become the next president of The Trustees of Reservations (The Trustees), the first woman to lead the nation’s oldest statewide land trust and one of Massachusetts’ largest nonprofits. Following a nationwide search led by Boston firm Isaacson, Miller, Erickson was selected from a wide field of candidates to succeed Andrew Kendall, who served as president for twelve years.
As The Trustees’ first female President, Erickson will lead Massachusetts’ largest conservation organization, which has experienced a decade of tremendous growth and accomplishments, doubling its membership to more than 100,000 supporters and protecting and caring for 106 diverse, publicly accessible properties across the state – iconic natural and cultural landscapes, popular beaches, working farms, urban community gardens, and historic homes and gardens. Erickson will join the organization in late June, and will oversee an annual operating budget of $20 million, an endowment of more than $125 million, and 180 year-round staff, 400 seasonal staff, and more than 1,500 annual volunteers.
A former long-time Boston resident, passionate conservationist, and accomplished nonprofit business leader, Erickson comes to The Trustees from Save The Children, a leading international nonprofit, where she served as Vice President, overseeing the organization’s fundraising and engagement functions. She is credited for helping to raise a record $200 million in philanthropic revenues in 2011. Before that, Erickson served for six years as Chief Development Officer at the Boston-based Earthwatch Institute, the world’s premier environmental volunteer organization, where she led the rapid growth and diversification of the organization’s revenue and funding streams, oversaw volunteer engagement and external affairs, and served as primary strategic advisor to the CEO.
“Through both my life experiences and work at Earthwatch, I know firsthand how the intersection of people and nature is critical to creating advocates for community conservation – and how imperative and exciting it is to invite more people to become stewards of our environment,” says Erickson. “The Trustees are a trailblazer in convening people to care and speak up for the special places in their own communities – whether they live in a rural, suburban, or urban area – and empowering them to become ambassadors for open space. I am humbled and energized by the opportunity to build on The Trustees’ considerable legacy and work with its talented staff and volunteers to make an even deeper, lasting impact in Massachusetts and beyond.”
“We’re excited about Barbara’s experience and passion about our mission, as well as her love of the Massachusetts outdoors,” says David Croll, Chair of The Trustees’ Board of Directors. “Barbara brings a proven track record of leadership, strategic development and fundraising to build on the many accomplishments and partnerships fostered by Andy Kendall during his tenure. Based on her experience leading and managing large development and growth initiatives, and her strength in creating successful outreach programs, we believe we have found the bold and dynamic leader we need to move The Trustees’ mission forward as we work to conserve more special places, inspire more people to join us in our work, and carry on our exemplary conservation and stewardship.”
Erickson’s lifelong love for our cultural and natural resources and appreciation for conservation was fostered as a child and has been one of her primary passions. Growing up on a ranch gave Erickson access to and appreciation for open space, while frequent hiking and camping trips with her family fostered a love of travel, adventure, and exploration. After becoming a Boston resident in 2001, she fell in love with the Commonwealth’s rich diversity of recreational and cultural resources. Erickson has spent extensive time with her family at The Trustees’ properties in all corners of the state, particularly Nantucket, Martha’s Vineyard and the Berkshires. As a mother of two young children, she feels more strongly than ever that our society needs to reinvigorate its love of the outdoors, work to protect our iconic and open spaces, and inspire a sense of community and connection to place.
The Trustees of Reservations is the nation’s oldest statewide land conservation organization founded by open space visionary Charles Eliot in 1891 to “hold in trust” and care for properties of scenic, cultural and natural significance. Supported by members, donors and thousands of volunteers, The Trustees own and manage 106 spectacular “reservations” located on more than 26,000 acres in 76 communities throughout Massachusetts for current and future generations to enjoy. The Trustees work to promote healthy, active, and green communities locally across Massachusetts by providing hundreds of year-round programs, events and engagement opportunities for all ages. Most property entry fees, programs and events are free-of-charge or discounted for members. Accredited by the Land Trust Accreditation Commission, The Trustees are an established leader in the conservation movement and model for other land trusts nationally and internationally. One of the largest nonprofits in Massachusetts, The Trustees employ nearly 200 year-round and 400 seasonal staff with expertise in ecology, education, historic resources, land protection, conservation, land management, and planning. To find out more or to become a member or volunteer, visit The Trustees of Reservations (The Trustees).