Growing up in the Thousand Islands
instilled strength in my heart that was - and still is - fueled by my surroundings. The River, its islands and land that surround it, provide a peace like no other, and we need to protect it. I stand by this, have for a long time and am grateful for these values that have led me to where I am today.
I’ve always found it perplexing what your mind decides to remember vividly. When I think of my experiences in reference to nature and how I arrived at today, like any valid reflection, a few memories reveal themselves. Though life is incredibly complex, it is truly rich when our eyes and mind are wide open to the beauty around us.
I recall floating about in the shallow waters at the foot of Carleton Island one sunny August day. A school of perch swam right up to me and I floated, trying not to move. We soaked up this moment together, moving gracefully back and forth with the pull of the waves, while sun rays pierced the water and danced about us. As I write this in April, the River is shedding its last bits of ice and I long for that August day again.
My appreciation for nature was not born that day but is weaved into my being from childhood. I attribute my love and dedication to the environment to my grandparents sending me outside to play every day…, my extended family taking me out in the boat, on camping and fishing trips…, to zoos…, my 6th grade science teacher taking my class outside to learn about the wetlands that bordered our school… and that big beautiful River and all it gives us - including that day with my perch comrades.
I have lived in different places in the world, the farthest being South Korea. I have been to South America, Europe and more - well traveled and always aching to see more of our world firsthand. I have found beauty in the landscape and culture everywhere I’ve traveled. So many places simply have to be seen to be understood - and so does the Thousand Islands and its St. Lawrence River.
Why is all of this so important? For me it’s about knowing we are just a part of this earth and that it is ours to steward. I feel we must impart this wisdom to our future generations. This place, the earth, is a gift and we must take care of it so that our children and children’s children will care for it with profound respect and dedication to conservation. I have never felt so accomplished as the moment when my one-year-old said the word “outside.” It was one of his first five words - at that moment I knew I was doing something right and quite beautiful. We truly don’t have to do much, just take our kids outside and provide them with opportunities to enjoy the experience and love the outdoors. And together we can do this.
I look forward to serving you as the Director of Development & Communications and am forever grateful for this opportunity. Together we will make a difference for future generations and hopefully touch the hearts and minds of many. Let’s help create those coveted vivid memories of this place we call home to cherish during our lifetimes and beyond.