Melanie Napoleon Welch joined the Freshwater Future team in April and is our new Associate Director of Program. She brings more than 14 years of experience in non-profits, museums, informal education, and environmental programs. Melanie may be a familiar face to some in the Great Lakes region, as she was formerly Senior Director of Great Lakes Conservation at John G. Shedd Aquarium in Chicago. She is also a member of the 2010 class of Catto Fellows, an environmental leadership program at The Aspen Institute in Washington, DC. The fellowship emphasizes the need for effective collaborative action to ensure the well-being of the environment. Melanie says “I developed a love for the Great Lakes at an early age, spending childhood summers swimming and climbing the sand dunes at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.” Based in Chicago, she continues to enjoy our regional beauty, “I live only blocks away from Lake Michigan and feel really good knowing that I am working with so many people who feel the same way I do about our precious freshwater habitats.” Welcome Melanie!
Becca Turner joined the Freshwater Future team in early June as Program Associate. Previous to Freshwater Future she worked as a naturalist educator, spent a summer working on dune restoration with The Nature Conservancy, and recently with a local retail store in downtown Petoskey. She received a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Michigan. “Growing up in Petoskey, I’ve looked at Lake Michigan most every day of my life, and every day I am thankful for its beauty. I look forward to supporting a team of people who work diligently to keep our waters healthy.” Welcome Becca!