Greetings friends, and welcome to the Fall 2021 edition of CONNECTIONS, the quarterly newsletter from Cold Hollow to Canada. These past few weeks have felt like fall isn’t quite ready to depart the stage yet (which, if you’re a procrastinator like me in getting outdoor chores complete, has been more then welcome), but winter appears to be nipping at its heels with flurries forecast for the next few days and our friends up the hill getting ready to start spinning the lifts this week for the upcoming ski season. Hopefully your wood piles are topped off, your gardens are put to bed, and you're ready for our world to turn white again.
Thanks to everyone who turned out for our Annual Gathering in October (click here to access the recording). It was a wonderful evening with Judith Schwartz, author of The Reindeer Chronicles, as well as Cows Save the Planet and Water in Plain Sight. Judith shared stories of landscape—and community—restoration from her travels in the United States and abroad, painting a vivid picture of working with nature to heal the planet and ourselves. Her inspiring words left us pondering what the future of this shared landscape here in our corner of the Northern Forest will look like, and what actions we can take to help guide it. Following our conversation with Judith, those present participated in a word cloud exercise were our members described what that future will look like, with themes of intactness, health, and conservation emerging from the collective ‘hive mind’ of the group. Common values which inform our work together towards our mission of ecosystem integrity, biological diversity, and forest resiliency.
Our gathering also gave us a chance to celebrate our members, who reelected our board of directors, and to thank one director, Lucy Rogers, who is stepping back after serving on our board for the last five years. We also had a chance to celebrate our amazing staff, without whom Cold Hollow to Canada would be lost. This fall Liza Morse, who had been with CHC since 2018 in a variety of roles from Program Director to Digital Coordinator, stepped back to focus on her doctoral work at the University of Vermont, and Lauren Honican, who came on board in 2020 and was integral to the development of our new 5-year strategic plan, moved on to pursue the next chapter of her work in the Green Mountain State. We know both Liza and Lauren will be tremendously successful wherever the land in the future, and wish them the best of luck! This fall also brought a new arrival to our team as Sophie Mazowita came on board to lead our wildlife tracking efforts and assist with the day-to-day administration of the organization. She’ll join Monica Przyperhart, our Woodlots Program Manager, as we look forward to expanding our work in 2022.
We hope you enjoy this edition. Inside you’ll find an introduction to Sophie, remarks from our co-founder Nancy Patch on her acceptance of the Vermont Natural Resource Council’s Art Gibb Award for Individual Leadership, a re-cap of our fantastic Wildlife Event in Waterville, an update in Vermont’s Climate Action Plan, and a reflection by Monica on her connections to land and stewardship. From all of us here at Cold Hollow to Canada, we wish you a great holiday season, and in case we don’t catch up in the woods beforehand, a wonderful and prosperous New Year.