The Hitchcock Center’s Board of Directors is a diverse body of individuals carefully chosen for their varying backgrounds and skills to the work of the Board. They provide sound oversight and governance of the Hitchcock Center through strategic planning, policy development, oversight and management, budgeting and fundraising. We are grateful for their dedicated and committed service as volunteers to our organization and community.
Sarah laCour, President
Kate Lamdin, Vice-President
Marie Hess, Treasurer
Nancy Eddy, Clerk
Harvey Allen, Conservation Commission Liaison
Julie Johnson, Executive Director
Sarah laCour, President
Sarah la Cour is a landscape designer and planner with over 20 years of experience in landscape architecture, regional planning and historic preservation. Previously Director of Conservation and Planning at W.D. Cowls, Inc. Land Company, she is currently a Partner with Conservation Works, LLC, a multi-disciplinary, land conservation consulting firm. Sarah also teaches landscape planning and design in the Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning at UMass/Amherst. Sarah has served on boards of several not-for-profit organizations including the Saratoga Springs Preservation Foundation, the STAR Program at The Hood Center for Children at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, and the Chesterwood Museum. Sarah has also served on the Town of Amherst Historical Commission. Sarah is a graduate of Mount Holyoke College and holds a Masters of Landscape Architecture from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
Danielle Barshak came to Amherst in 1978 to attend Amherst College, and with the exception of several years spent in bicycle travel and attendance at law school, she has resided in the valley ever since. Danielle practiced law for 24 years, including at the Northwestern District Attorney's office, and most recently at the law firm of Stobierski & Stobierski. Danielle has taken a sabbatical from law to indulge her long-held desire to become a small-scale chicken farmer and spend more time exploring the great outdoors.
Merle Bruno is Professor Emerita of Biology at Hampshire College. She holds a B.A. from Syracuse University and an M.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard. She has a strong interest in science education reform at all levels. Merle currently works as a Senior Real Estate Specialist as part of a realtor team at Sawicki Real Estate in Amherst.
Casey Clark is a past member and President of the Board of Directors of the Loomis Communities; Retired Coordinator of Science Outreach and Minority Programming, Smith College; Emily Dickinson Museum Guide; Former member of Amherst Town Meeting, and member and Chair of Amherst and Amherst/Pelham Regional School Committees; Graduate of Wheaton College and Harvard University (M.ED.).
Carey Clouse is an Assistant Professor in Architecture and Landscape Architecture at UMass Amherst. She holds a post-professional degree (SMArchS) in Architecture and Urbanism from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a BArch from the University of Oregon. She teaches courses that address the overlap between social justice, environmental stewardship, and resilient urbanism. In addition to teaching, she is partner of Crookedworks, an architecture-design-build firm focused on projects addressing resilience and post-disaster cities.
Nancy retired as Vice-President for Administration and Finance at Holyoke Community College. Past President of Eastern Association of College and University Business Officers; Director of the National Association of College and University Business Officers; Vice-President for Finance of the American Association of Women in Community Colleges; Former Selectman of Amherst, President of Massachusetts Municipal Association, and Chair of the Governor's Local Government Advisory Committee; Past member of the Amherst Planning Board and numerous other Town Committees; Former member of Board of Directors, First Massachusetts Bank; published in areas of systems analysis of non-profit systems, college finance and business. She holds a B.A. from Mount Holyoke College and a M.P.A. from the University of Massachusetts.
Caroline Hanna has been a member of the Hitchcock Center Board since September of 2008, and served as clerk of the executive board from September 2010 to June 2011. She currently works in Public Affairs at Amherst College, where she directs the school's media relations program. When she's not in the office, she enjoys spending as much time as possible outdoors with her husband and daughter. The three of them call Amherst home, but their hearts also belong to the Adirondacks and Lake Champlain regions of New York, where they love to hike, run and camp year-round.
Marie holds a Bachelor’s degree in sociology from Elizabethtown College in Pennsylvania. She spent her junior year at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee and pursued graduate work in sociology at McGill University in Montreal. Marie received her MBA and Masters in Accounting from the University of Massachusetts - Amherst in 1998. Marie joined the University of Massachusetts-Amherst in 1978, first serving as an administrator in the L.I.F.T. program, then as an accountant in the Controller’s office and later as Deputy Director and Director of Finance for the Fine Arts Center. In 2003, she became the Treasurer and Business Manager of Five Colleges, Incorporated, a position she held until her retirement. Marie serves as chair of the Board of Directors of the UMass Five College Federal Credit Union.
You can usually find John on a trail somewhere either working or playing. As a kid, his summers were spent traveling out west, sitting around the camp fire, and talking to rangers. That got him excited about working in nature. He became a park ranger, and later a superintendent in the San Francisco Bay Area. After moving to Amherst he went back to school at UMass to finish a degree in Park Management and Natural Resource Planning. John has a part time business doing trail design, construction, and training projects, and is a full time Dad to his two boys.
Kate Lamdin's relationship with the Hitchcock Center began in 1979 when she completed an internship in the Center's school program while working on a Master's Degree in elementary and environmental education at Antioch New England in Keene, New Hampshire. Over a thirty year teaching career in Amherst, she brought her interest in environmental education into the classroom in many ways. She joined the Hitchcock Center's board to more directly support the kind of work she did with children when she first began teaching: bringing them into the outdoors in order to stimulate their curiosity, learn about interdependency and sustainability, and develop a love and sense of responsibility towards the natural world.
Susan Loring-Wells has been involved in the Hitchcock Center for over 20 years, as a mother of 3 daughters who all attended Colleen Kelley's nature preschool; as a volunteer; as staff at vacation camps, and as a leader of ponding trips. She has a passion for the outdoors, plants and textile arts. Susan maintains a studio at the Leverett Crafts and Arts Center where she teaches fiber art to all ages and was the Executive Director of the Fiber Art Center in Amherst, MA from 2002-2007. Susan holds a BFA in Fiber Arts from the Program in Artisanry at Boston University and completed the requirements for her Master Weaver Certificate from the Hill Institute.
Doug Marshall is a staff architect and campus planner at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Prior to moving to Amherst in 2011, Doug practiced with Sasaki Associates in the Boston area, working mostly on college and university buildings. He is a graduate of Dartmouth College and holds an M.Arch. from Yale.
Michael’s lifelong interest in environmental issues stems from his childhood; his father was a research chemical engineer at the USDA Forest Products Lab, trying to find and promote non-chemical ways of producing paper pulp. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin he joined the International staff of the US National Student Association, where his major tasks were writing and editing a series of Political Background publications on major international issues of the day (South Africa, Angola and Mozambique, the Latin American left). He taught English and History in Uganda with the Peace Corps, after which he served in the 8th Army/UN Headquarters in Seoul, Korea in the Public Information section, which included covering the negotiations over the Pueblo crew in Panmunjom. He holds an EdD from the University of Massachusetts and retired from there as the head of the Undergraduate Advising Office in the School of Education.
Pamela Stone has a BS from Hampshire College and a Master’s and PhD in Anthropology from the University of Massachusetts.Her academic interest is in the interrelationships of human communities and the ways in which we can learn from past populations how to think about our impact on the environment. In addition, her research examines biocultural narratives of health in the past and present. She has served as the President of the Leverett Coop, was a member of the School Committee in Leverett, and has also served on a number of committees for the American Anthropological Association. Her work with the Hitchcock Center brings together her interests in people, landscapes, and teaching children and adults to respect and consider their place on the planet.
Donna Wiley is Senior Executive Vice President of Grenzebach Glier & Associates, Inc. (GG+A), a philanthropic management consulting firm headquartered in Chicago. She has provided counsel to universities, colleges, independent schools, cultural institutions, and medical centers across the country since she joined the firm in 1999. She previously served as Deputy Director of the Indianapolis Museum of Art, as a senior development officer for the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, and worked in development for Bryn Mawr College for 20 years. She is the Executive Editor of the Grenzebach Glier Quarterly Review, a member of the Editorial Review Board for Giving USA, and a Director of the Clowes Fund, a charitable foundation in Indianapolis, and a member of the Whately Historical Commission. Donna earned her B.A. at Bucknell University, M.A. at City College of New York, and Ph.D. in history of art at Bryn Mawr College. She lives in Whately.
Dan is a lifelong resident of Amherst with a love for plants and a passion for birding. As the Nursery Manager at the Hadley Garden Center for 25 years he enjoys teaching people about plants. His interest in birding was nurtured through Hitchcock Center classes with Steve Stanne and he currently hosts a daily radio segment dedicated to teaching the public about the birds in our backyards. Now with two children of his own he appreciates all the programs and classes offered for families. Serving as a member of the Hitchcock Center Board of Directors he feels he is doing his part to support an organization that helped to foster his love for the environment and which will help future generations appreciate the special world we live in.
What Makes a Seed Tick? Biology and Adaptations of Seeds
with Elizabeth Farnsworth
Senior Research Ecologist
New England Wild Flower Society
Thursday, August 21
Native Wildflowers of the Valley
with Nancy Goodman
Saturday, August 23, 10am-2pm
Hitchcock Center – Amherst
(no school for Amherst schools)
Friday, November 21, 8:30am-3pm
Ages 6-9, Grades 1-3
Nature Play Afterschool
Ages 6-9, Grades 1-3
Wednesdays, September 10-December 17
3:30pm - 5:30pm
Hitchcock Homeschool Program
Homeschool I & II Classes
Homeschool Discovery Days
Nature Discovery Preschool
Fridays, 9:30am-11:30am or 1pm-3pm
New 50 Places for 50 Years Blog
In honor of the Hitchcock Center’s 50th year, Hitchcock staff and friends will be sharing favorite places to experience nature in the Pioneer Valley.