Friday, 19 April 2024

Lake County Land Trust welcomes Koehler as new executive director

Catherine Koehler pictured at the Land Trust's Rodman Slough Preserve near Upper Lake. Courtesy photo.

LAKE COUNTY – The Lake County Land Trust is pleased to welcome its new executive director, Catherine Koehler.

After Executive Director Susanne Scholz announced her retirement plans for this March, the trust set about searching for someone to fill her shoes. “Not an easy task!” noted one board member.

But, as it turned out, Koehler with a strong background in science, and most importantly, a love for Lake County, was among the many qualified applicants who applied for the position.

Koehler will take over full responsibilities on March 1.

“We are extremely pleased to welcome Cathy as our new executive director and look forward to her working with us on our many projects,” noted the trust’s president, Pete McGee.

She has a bachelor of science degree in zoology and an master's degree in behavioral ecology.

Koehler currently works as the resident co-director, along with her husband Paul Aigner, for the Donald and Sylvia McLaughlin Reserve in Eastern Lake County. She will continue in this position as both it and the land trust executive director jobs are half-time.

She has an impressive background in the biological sciences and a deep appreciation of the combinations of geology and ecology that comprise the often rare and unique ecosystems of Lake County.

She is proud of her ability to work with diverse groups of people, fostering positive outcomes for common goals.

Koehler currently is chair of the Blue Ridge Berryessa Natural Area Conservation Partnership and has a background in developing and conducting science and natural history based public outreach and education.

She has worked on projects ranging from restoration projects for Inland Coastal Sage Scrub, to bird inventories on U.S. Navy Lands in Southern California and Arizona. She also was involved with an endangered species recovery project for the San Clemente Island Loggerhead Shrike, and developed community outreach programs for Rancho Santa Ana botanic Garden.

Locally, in addition to managing research and land stewardship at the McLaughlin Reserve, Koehler has conducted many outreach programs at the reserve, worked with educators to develop and implement science workshops for grades fourth through sixth, and mentored teachers. She has also been successful in acquiring grants for public outreach and facilities at the reserve.

“Lake County is a wonderful place, with a great mix of cities and small communities, agriculture, natural lands, and intact historical and prehistoric sites. I look forward to playing a part in helping ensure that our county continues to be a great place to live for generations to come,” Koehler said.

The Lake County Land Trust is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation of Lake County’s unique natural habitats and open spaces. The group owns and operates the Rodman Slough Preserve at 6350 Westlake Road, Upper Lake, as well as the Rabbit Hill park in Middletown.

For more information about the Lake County Land Trust, go to .

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