We benefit from the diverse expertise of our board members in communications, fundraising, education, strategic planning, organizational branding, financial management, and administration, as well as from their deep commitment to our mission, and to setting a course that will ensure a vibrant future for the Conway School.
At its October 2017 annual meeting, the board of trustees elected the following officers: Keith Ross, re-elected Chair; Theresa Sprague ’08, elected Vice-chair; J. Nicholas Filler, elected Treasurer, and Stephen Thor Johnson, re-elected Clerk.
Keith Ross, Chair, has parlayed degrees in forestry and environmental law into a career in innovative land conservation. As senior adviser within the Real Estate Consulting Group of Boston-based LandVest, he focuses predominantly on conservation transactions of land and conservation easements, donations and bargain sales, fundraising, and family estate planning. His pragmatic experience in working with clients and donors makes him an exceptional adviser to Conway. A founder and former executive director of the Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust, he held similar positions with Massachusetts Audubon and the New England Forestry Foundation. He is also an invaluable adviser to larger land planning projects in Conway’s winter term.
Theresa Sprague ’08, Vice Chair, is President of the Ecological Landscape Alliance, a nonprofit, member-based organization that advocates for environmentally responsible stewardship of land and natural resources in landscaping and horticultural practices of both professionals and the public through education, collaboration, and networking. She is also the owner and lead designer of BlueFlax Design LLC, which focuses on creating ecologically sound and sustainable gardens and landscapes, restoring ecological function and integrity to the built environment while thoughtfully creating habitat that supports the needs of both people and wildlife. Theresa has an MALD from the Conway School, and a BA in English from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth.
Nicholas Filler, Treasurer, is an attorney and recently retired president of Argotec, Inc., who is an adjunct instructor at the University of Massachusetts Isenberg School of Management. Nick is a resident and the town moderator of Conway, Massachusetts, and serves on the boards of several businesses and nonprofits. He brings a high level of expertise in business, educational administration, teaching, and finance to the board.
Stephen Thor Johnson, Clerk, brings more than 25 years of experience in resource conservation, sustainable development and coalition building to his position as President of North American Land Trust. He has also had a rewarding consulting practice as founding principal of Sage Advisors, a Boston-area professional services organization providing landowners, land trusts and communities with strategy and program design services. From 2010 – 2011, he was honored as the Charles Bullard Fellow in Forest Research at Harvard University, where he researched the challenges and opportunities facing smaller land trusts. He served as Executive Director of the Gallatin Valley Land Trust in Bozeman, MT from 2005 – 2010 and as Executive Director of Sudbury Valley Trustees, a Massachusetts land conservation organization, from 1992 – 2002. He previously held positions in land and water planning and policy in the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs. Stephen earned a BA from Dartmouth College in Biology and Environmental Studies, and a Master of City Planning from MIT with a concentration in Environmental Policy.
Image at top: A wintry view from the kitchen at our Mill 180 campus in Easthampton, where the October 2017 board meeting was held.