KCD sponsors AmeriCorps members every year to work on projects that increase our ability to spread our message and connect with new partners and cooperators. The contributions of our AmeriCorps members have been essential in expanding KCD’s ability to serve our community.
Renee Shapiro, our 2019-2020 AmeriCorps Education Projects Coordinator, proved adaptable and flexible through the many upsets brought on by Covid-19. Renee planned and recruited teams for Envirothon and updated the website and online resources available to teams. She improved other conservation districts’ ability to participate by building a central, online location to house Envirothon resources.
Renee also spearheaded KCD’s efforts to move our educational content online and make them more accessible, engaging, and effective. Researching options for e-learning and building out KCD’s first pilot online learning module was no small feat as Renee jumped into the complex world of online education platforms and delivery tools. Thanks to her hard work, KCD will soon launch our first online learning module.
Natalie Quist, our 2019-2020 AmeriCorps Community Engagement Projects Coordinator, also adapted to the many changes this year and developed creative solutions to engage community members. Natalie helped KCD recruit volunteers, develop content, and facilitate webinars. She did an amazing job recruiting partners for the KCD Native Plant Sale & Community Fair. And, when the Community Fair had to be dropped suddenly due to the onset of Covid-19, Natalie successfully shifted the fair online.
Natalie’s array of projects also included helping the KCD Farm Team develop a Farmer Help Line to assist King County farmers with navigating the changing landscape and resources available to them in these uncertain times. Natalie’s passion for Community Agriculture came through in her work on KCD’s Culturally Relevant Seed Start Program, direct service to City Soil and other community gardens, and her work producing and editing Dig In, a radio program showcasing local gardening, food, and agriculture.
Thank you to Renee and Natalie for bringing creativity, ingenuity, and hard work to their year of AmeriCorps service with KCD.
Mark joined KCD in the spring of 2018 as Outreach Coordinator. A transplant from Montana, Mark brings with him a decade of experience in conservation and land-use issues. After graduating from the University of Montana, Mark spent several years teaching natural history in and around Glacier National Park. He also completed two terms of service as an AmeriCorps Volunteer with the Montana Conservation Corps. Most recently, Mark channeled his passion for the outdoors working to engage communities on wildlife and conservation issues while working for the Montana Wildlife Federation. When not developing KCD’s outreach program, Mark can be found hiking in the mountains with his wife Tia and their dog River.