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Greenbelt Land Trust Announces new Executive Director

January 12, 2010, Corvallis, OR

For Immediate Release

Contact Information:

Jessica McDonald, Development Coordinator
Greenbelt Land Trust
(541) 752.9609


Greenbelt Land Trust Announces new Executive Director

Corvallis – The Greenbelt Land Trust has named Michael Pope as Executive Director of the organization, effective February 1st.

“The Greenbelt Board of Directors is committed to continuing the organization’s tradition of excellence, and we feel that Michael has a unique combination of regional conservation experience, leadership skills and vision that will continue to advance the work that the Land Trust has successfully accomplished throughout the past twenty years,” said Cary Stephens, chair of the Greenbelt Board.

Pope has extensive state-wide and local conservation experience, having served as the Oregon Conservation Strategy Coordinator for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) and as the Bonneville Power Administration’s (BPA) Wildlife Mitigation Coordinator. “I’ve enjoyed an interesting career from conducting and coordinating research on species and habitats to providing direction and funding to restore and protect wildlife habitats,” said Pope.

“I am very excited about becoming the Executive Director of the Greenbelt Land Trust and look forward to the new challenges as this organization continues to grow and expand into new communities, “ said Pope, who has lived in Corvallis for the past 22 years.  “The organization has done tremendous work in the Mid-Willamette Valley and provided permanent protections for hundreds of acres of valuable habitat and open space.”

Pope has worked extensively in the Willamette Basin with Federal and state natural resource agencies and non-profits to implement restoration and protections of key habitats such as upland and wet prairie and oak savanna. Pope has been a key partner with the Greenbelt Land Trust and helped facilitate the acquisition of conservation easements on the Little Willamette, Willamette Bluffs and Lone Star Properties through Bonneville Power Administration funding.

Michael has a diverse background, ranging from a BA in Asian History to 13 years as a professional boat builder, practicing his craft from Maine to Maryland to Alaska. One day in Bristol Bay, Alaska, he straightened up from a boat he was repairing to watch a flock of tundra swans as they flew overhead.

“It was a cathartic moment,” he said. “I suddenly knew that I wanted to work with tundra swans and grizzly bears and fish and their habitats—I wanted to study the attributes of the natural world.”

In addition to his B.A. from the University of North Carolina, he earned a B.S. and an M.S from Oregon State University and a Ph.D. from Oregon State University in Wildlife Sciences.

More information about the Greenbelt Land Trust can be found online at


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