New Directors Named

January 25, 2017
For Immediate Release
Contact: Kara H. Whelan, Vice President
914.234.6992 ext. 12,


Bedford Hills, NY – Westchester Land Trust continues a long run of talented leaders with the election of Bruce Churchill as the new Chairman of the Board of Directors. Westchester Land Trust (WLT) is a regional land conservation organization that has been protecting the natural beauty of Westchester and eastern Putnam Counties from its home base in in Bedford Hills since 1988.

Churchill will replace Jonathan Wiesner, who will step down after serving five eventful and productive years as chairman during which time the organization has expanded its reach and influence as a professionally staffed and nationally accredited conservation organization. Wiesner will co-lead WLT’s Advisory Board, which draws on the talent and experience of local experts who volunteer their time to guide the work of the organization and act as ambassadors to the community. Wiesner is the CEO of Sustainable Apparel Group, LLC and Chairman Emeritus of the International Rescue Committee.

Churchill, of Pound Ridge, recently retired after a 30-year career in media. He has filled executive roles at Paramount Pictures, Fox Television, STAR TV in Hong Kong, and DIRECTV in both the U.S. and Latin America. Churchill currently serves on the Board of CSC (Computer Sciences Corp.), a NYSE-listed IT services company.

“It has been a great honor to contribute to WLT’s mission as a member of the Board of Directors and I am eager to begin my new role, working more closely with WLT’s talented staff and dedicated Directors  during this exciting time for the organization,” said Churchill. “It will be difficult to fill the shoes of Jonathan, but I am glad we will have the benefit of his continued advice and vision as he assumes a leadership role on our Advisory Board.”

During Wiesner’s tenure, WLT completed 24 land-conservation projects, protecting 735 acres in Westchester and eastern Putnam Counties, was reaccredited by the Land Trust Accreditation Commission, and scored an important conservation victory by successfully garnering State funding for the protection of Stuart’s Fruit Farm in Somers – the oldest working farm in Westchester County.

Churchill has been a WLT Director for three years. In addition to serving as treasurer, he has had a key role in contributing to the growth and success of WLT as a member of its finance, audit and land-preservation committees. Churchill and his family live on land protected by a conservation easement held by WLT and have been enthusiastic and active supporters of WLT for more than a decade.

“Bruce Churchill has helped to shape the vision and future of WLT. He has contributed to the growth and success of the organization by sharing his knowledge of the conservation community, vision and his leadership. He is a terrific person to lead our organization. Bruce’s wealth of business, financial and strategic experience will be a key asset as we continue on a path of success,” said Wiesner during a meeting of the Board in December.

Mount Kisco resident, Jerry Goldstein, who has devoted more than two decades of faithful service and leadership to WLT’s Board of Directors, has also moved to a slot on the Advisory Board.

In addition to naming a new leader, WLT welcomed three new members to its Board of Directors and one member to its Advisory Board. “Our newest Directors are Pound Ridge resident, Joe Edgar; Bedford resident, Beth Crowell; Mamaroneck resident, Marjorie Kaufman; and Stamford, CT resident Ron Burke,” said Lori Ensinger, President of the Westchester Land Trust (WLT). “We have been fortunate to work with each of them in various capacities over the last year and they all have contributed greatly to our organization. We feel fortunate that they will lend their time, talents and geographic diversity in support of our mission that is as important now as it has ever been.”

Beth Crowell (Bedford, NY) served as co-chair of WLT’s successful 2016 annual benefit and expands her support of local conservation by helping to identify and cultivate strategic community partnerships to promote WLT’s outreach programs.  Crowell manages her own residential interior design business.  She began her career at Christie’s Auction House and Peter Marino Architects. Crowell recently moved to Bedford with her young children and husband after living in London for seven years. In addition to her volunteer work with WLT, Crowell currently serves as an advisor for the renovations at Rippowam Cisqua School in Bedford.  She holds a degree in Art History from Boston University.

Joseph Edgar (Pound Ridge, NY) is Managing Director and Corporate Counsel for the Pataki Cahill Group, a specialized development firm. He also maintains a private legal practice and is a co-founder of H2envirO, a distributed water disinfection technology provider and serves as a Board Member of the New York League of Conservation Voters, Westchester.  He joined WLT’s Advisory Board in 2016. As a newly appointed Director is an active member of the Land Committee and assists with community conservation initiatives. Edgar received a B.A. in Political Science from Northeastern University, his J.D. from Pace University School of Law, and his M.E.M. in Energy Economics and Policy from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.

Marjorie Kaufman, CFA (Mamaroneck, NY) joins WLT with more than 30 years of experience in the investment management and investment banking industries.  She is the Senior Consulting Principal with NexTier Companies. Kaufman served in leadership roles at Guggenheim Global Trading, Kingdon Capital, J. & W. Seligman, and Towneley Capital Management.  She holds a BA magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from the University of Chicago.   In 2010 Kaufman was named one of the 50 Leading Women in Hedge Funds by the Hedge Fund Journal. Currently she serves as Chair of the Hilltop Cares Foundation and Vice Chair of the FWA Directorships and Governance Committee. Kaufman is a former Board Director of the Young Women’s Leadership Network and High Water Women.

Ron Burke (Stamford, CT) comes to WLT with a 30 year career in environmental law and environmental risk management—with GE Capital and previously the United States Environmental Protection Agency. Burke is an environmental risk management leader with experience in global M&A activities and financing transactions involving a broad range of asset types. He is using his background in environmental law and risk management to advance the work of WLT’s Advisory Board and land acquisition committee.


The Westchester Land Trust works with public and private partners to preserve land in perpetuity, and to enhance the natural resources in Westchester and eastern Putnam counties.  WLT’s conservation efforts impact the long term health of these communities through the protection of watershed areas, air quality, and food supply.  In total, WLT has preserved almost 8,000 acres of open space including approximately 700 acres of preserves owned by the organization.

To stay up to date connect with us on Facebook & Instagram (@WestchesterLandTrust) as well as Twitter (@WLT_NY).







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