NEW YORK (May 20, 2013) – The National Audubon Society has named Peter H. Ross of Jericho, Vt., vice president and executive director for its Vermont state office, Audubon Vermont, effective today. Ross will lead and implement conservation goals and strategies in the state and will expand the geographic reach of Audubon Vermont’s programs across the state and the region.
“Peter is a proven and experienced leader with a strong conservation ethic,” said Audubon President and CEO David Yarnold. “He’s uniquely positioned to build on Audubon Vermont’s strengths with a new vigor and energy.”
Audubon has 3,000 members and seven affiliated chapters in Vermont. With an annual budget of $820,000, Audubon Vermont employs 12 biologists, educators and advocates and is headquartered at the Green Mountain Audubon Center in Huntington. The Green Mountain Audubon Center is Vermont’s oldest nature center and provides environmental education programs to more than 5,000 people each year.
Audubon Vermont’s statewide conservation programs help Vermonters manage the landscape as a haven for breeding birds. Recently, Audubon Vermont’s Foresters for the Birds conservation project – a partnership with Vermont Forests, Parks and Recreation – won the Wings Across the Americas Habitat Management and Partnership Award from U.S. Forest Service.
Ross comes to Audubon from the Greater Burlington YMCA, where he was vice president of community relations and development and created the structure for a multi-million dollar capital campaign to renovate and expand the facility. Before that, Ross served as the director of advancement for the Sharon Academy, a head of school for Vermont Commons School, as director of alumni and development at South Burlington High School, and in several leadership roles at Purnell School, where he managed a $3 million annual budget and oversaw a $5 million construction program.
“Peter grew up in Vermont, knows the state well, and is a strong environmental advocate and a proven leader. He is excited about the Atlantic Flyway vision and Vermont’s leadership role, our education programs, and the work we do with landowners ‘keeping birds and people on common ground,’” said Audubon Vermont Board Chair Debby Bergh.
A native Vermonter, Ross firmly believes in promoting environmental sensitivity and awareness and educating future generations about maintaining diverse and healthy ecosystems, which underlie healthy communities and a healthy economy.
“I grew up hiking, camping and swimming in Vermont’s magical outdoor spaces, and from my father, I learned it’s important to leave the world a better place for our children,” said Ross. “I believe in Audubon’s mission and values, and I’m excited to support and expand the great conservation work Audubon does here in Vermont and across the hemisphere.”
Ross has a master’s in environmental science education from the University of Michigan and is an avid skier and cyclist. He will be based in Huntington.