Community ecologist Jody Thompson spent his youth exploring the swamps and longleaf forests of south Alabama and his teenage years in the mountains of western North Carolina. With this foundation in the outdoors, Thompson’s dedication to natural spaces has been fortified by years of conservation service to Kentucky. Woods & Waters Land Trust has chosen Thompson as the new executive director for the organization. 

Jody Thompson

Jody Thompson

“The mission of WWLT aligns well with my goals and efforts in both my professional and private life. Helping others to conserve lands and waters through community building, training and education has been a priority of mine for a long time now. It certainly also helps that the WWLT service area is essentially in my backyard, and I’m very familiar with the ecology and different land uses in this part of Kentucky,” Thompson said.

Thompson moved to Frankfort 11 years ago to manage the Forest Health program for the Kentucky Division of Forestry. Among his conservation experience, Thompson has worked in program administration, assisted landowners across the state, and practiced natural-areas management from Kentucky to the Gulf Coast.

He’s been involved with WWLT for several years, too, collaborating on conservation events and involving WWLT speakers in the annual Kentucky Habitat Management Symposium, organized by his The Habitat Workshop consulting firm.

WWLT supporters will have the opportunity to hear from Thompson at the annual Land Extravaganza event, being held online this October, as well as during smaller in-person events later this summer.

Woods and Waters Land Trust, nationally accredited by the Land Trust Accreditation Commission, is dedicated to protecting and connecting forests and streams through voluntary conservation agreements with private landowners in the lower Kentucky River watershed. Established in 2007, WWLT currently holds seven conservation easements on over 600 acres and owns 34 acres. 

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