Meg Rasmussen, Executive Director
Meg Rasmussen comes to Georges River Land Trust (GRLT) after a successful 20-year career as a landscape architect. Most recently, she served as the Senior Park Planner for Scenic Hudson Land Trust in Poughkeepsie, New York, the largest environmental group working to preserve and restore the Hudson River and adjacent landscapes, including 45,000 acres in the Hudson River Valley. She has successfully led 21 major capital projects totaling over $15.88M involving over 50 consultants, municipal partners, contractors and staff.
Her experience informs her passion for land conservation and community collaboration, and she is looking forward to working with GRLT to preserve and celebrate our local watershed. Meg’s connection to Maine runs deep. Her parents, John and Jane Rasmussen, were longtime residents of Tenants Harbor, and continue to be dedicated supporters of the Georges River Land Trust. Meg will begin her new role as Executive Director on January 1, 2018.
Meg and her husband, Brian, will be relocating to Maine with their 6-year old daughter, Alita. They are excited about the future, and look forward to engaging in, and contributing to, our community. Meg and her family love the outdoors, and she especially enjoys running and hiking.
John grew up in southern California through his school years and first arrived in Maine after enlisting in the U.S. Coast Guard. His 22-year career included assignments in northern and southern California, Key West, Boston, and ultimately brought him back to Maine to serve aboard an icebreaking tug and a buoy tender, both based in Rockland. His shipboard experience in Maine exposed him to the natural beauty of the Maine coast throughout Penobscot Bay and along the Kennebec, Penobscot, and St. George Rivers.
Over the last decade, John became involved with community groups developing volunteers to care for local trails, fostering a passion and deep appreciation for all of the community benefits that trails provide. This work resulted in establishing thoughtfully constructed and cared for trails for all users to enjoy. He also volunteers his time supporting a local summer youth mountain biking program, helping kids unplug and connect with each other in “nature’s social network.” By encouraging outdoor exploration and connecting more people to the outdoors, he believes it will cultivate strong values in conservation, while working to support economic, physical, and social health throughout local communities.
John joined the Land Trust in 2017 and feels most at home when he is outdoors. He spends a great portion of his time hiking, skiing, snow shoeing, and mountain biking.
Sharon and her husband moved to Maine in 1989 from the Boston suburbs, to enjoy a quieter life style. They settled in Camden and immediately became involved with the community and town government. With her previous administrative experience, Sharon started her own business to bring office and bookkeeping support to small businesses. Her professionalism was appreciated by private businesses and non-profits in the midcoast over the last 25 years.
Sharon enjoys a high-energy hobby of canine sports with her Miniature Australian Shepherds. For more than 13 years she has trained and excelled in Canine Agility, handled three dogs active in the sport, and moved to the championship level with one dog. She and her dogs also exceeded in the Rare Breed dog ring where she brought two of her dogs to their breed championships. Rusty and Bella are the offspring of the dual champion dog Brandi, and are now following in their mother’s footsteps and excelling at their favorite sport of agility.
Sharon came to Georges River Land Trust in November 2016, with enthusiasm and willingness to participate and support the organization with her years of administrative and financial experience.
Annette has always enjoyed being around water. She grew up in southern Connecticut with a stream running through her backyard, where she spent many hours exploring and learning about the beauty and diversity of nature. She was hooked. In Connecticut’s coastal town of New London, she attended Connecticut College to earn a degree in developing economics but also studied with William Niering, a well-known botanist and wetland ecologist. Fortunate to have such an inspirational mentor, Annette recognized she would ultimately be led to work in the environmental field. After spending some time to work with youth at an apple orchard, and in campaigns to end world hunger, she entered the Yale School of Forestry to earn a degree in Environmental Studies.
The next stop along her watery path was the coast of Maine where she took a summer position at the Island Institute preparing natural resource inventories for island owners, which also included herding flocks of sheep, developing trails and managing timber harvests. Annette eventually led their Science and Stewardship Program for the next 12 years, spending much of her time out on the water, working with island communities and landowners to manage their natural resources. In 2001, the Georges River Land Trust created its first program position in land protection. For six years Annette managed the land conservation projects as well as the stewardship efforts of this growing organization. On a part-time basis she also worked as an organic gardener. She now works full time as the Director of Conservation. Annette loves to swim, hike, ski and generally be outdoors. She lives in Rockland and enjoys tending her own vegetable and perennial gardens.
Cynthia Trone completed a 150-hour internship at the Langlais Sculpture Preserve in the summer of 2017, as part of her Masters Degree program in Mindfulness Studies at Lesley University (the first of its kind in North America). As the former Director of Education at the Lighthouse ArtCenter School of Art in Tequesta, Florida, she comes to us with experience and enthusiasm. A Colby College alumni, she is happy to return to the coast of Maine to be closer to her parents. She was the Project Lead on Expedition Florida 500, a 365-day award-winning clean water awareness initiative in Florida in 2013. She has three children, and can often be found on her paddleboard, in the woods, exploring the coast, or planning her next trip to India.
Brent, a native Mainer, grew up in the western mountains near Sugarloaf. Growing up exploring this area led to his love of wild places. Following this passion, Brent earned his undergraduate degree in Wildlife Ecology at the University of Maine.
Soon after graduation, he worked for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for five years conducting wildlife surveys of migratory birds across North America. This included banding waterfowl on marshes in the Northwest Territories and conducting surveys across the northern prairies.
Through his experience working on wildlife surveys, the need for a methodology to accurately estimate the populations of the American Woodcock became abundantly clear. Through a collaboration with the U.S. Fish and Wife Service and the University of Maryland, Brent earned his Master’s degree in Ecosystems Health and Natural Resource Management while developing the first-ever population estimate of American Woodcock.
Brent is an avid outdoorsman who now enjoys focusing his attention on conserving the wildness of his home state. He spends all of his free time in wild places: foraging for mushrooms or wetting a line – nature is a part of who he is. He also enjoys making maple syrup, raising backyard poultry and pigs and has a huge vegetable garden. Sometimes he even manages to ski or hike. Brent joined the Land Trust team in 2016.