Three new board members were elected by Stowe Land Trust’s membership at the 28th Annual Meeting celebration held on Sunday, September 27th. Catherine Drake, Mila Lonetto, and David Wilkens will join twenty existing board members responsible for governing the community conservation organization. Each year SLT has a limited number of openings available in its volunteer board. New members are recruited based on an identified need within the organization. The diversity of the Board is meant to represent the broad perspectives of our community and strengthen SLT’s position as a community asset.
Catherine Drake and her husband Rich Levine visited Vermont for decades and finally got to move to Stowe permanently in 2012. Born in Miami, Catherine graduated from Stockton University with a BA in Environmental Studies in 1982. Catherine then spent 28 years with the NJ Department of Environmental Protection where she developed a strong passion for land preservation and public access. As Executive Director of Liberty State Park, Catherine oversaw development of the 1,155-acre urban park adjacent to the Statue of Liberty. She went on to become a project manager for land acquisition for several counties in New Jersey, partnering with local governments and land trusts to acquire land for permanent protection.
Catherine has two grown daughters, one of whom also lives in Stowe with her husband and baby Nora, and the other living not too far away in Boston. Like nearly everyone else she’s met in Stowe, she enjoys hiking, tennis, skiing and traveling. Catherine was recently appointed to the Stowe Conservation Commission and looks forward to using her experience to liaise between the Commission and SLT and help continue to preserve lands for future generations.
Mila Lonetto has lived in Stowe since 2000 and has been grateful every day that this is where she landed. She is lucky enough to be able to count Stowe Land Trust property as an extension of her back yard (with a little imaginative navigation), and so is especially appreciative of the role the Land Trust plays in creating community land. She works with her husband (and sometimes their 6-year-old daughter) at Edgewise Elite Ski Service, a business they started here in Stowe. Mila sits on the Planning Commission in Stowe and is also involved with the Stowe Free Library and Mount Mansfield Ski Academy. Her favorite activities: skiing, biking, swimming, hiking, gardening, and reading.
David Wilkens and his wife Molly Pindell moved to Stowe in 2007 where they have been raising their two children, Juliette and Soren. In 2009, David, Molly and Katie Pindell started Sage Farm Goat Dairy; a small-scale artisanal cheese producer. He has been a part of the Mount Mansfield Ski Patrol for 7 years. When he is not at the farm, you can find him on the trails and in the hills throughout the year.