The board of directors of the Ozaukee Washington Land Trust (OWLT) Thursday selected Thomas Stolp as its next executive director.
Stolp has worked for the Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters since 2008, first as a field organizer and most recently as deputy director.
He fills a position that was held for 13 years by Shawn Graff, who left to become Midwest director of the American Bird Conservancy. Under Graff’s direction, OWLT grew rapidly. It has placed more than 6000 acres of sensitive lands under protection.
“We feel blessed to win the services of Tom Stolp,” said Dan Dineen, OWLT chairman. “It‘s like going from Brett Favre to a young Aaron Rogers.”
Dineen said the OWLT search committee homed in on Stolp because of his passion for conservation and his demonstrated leadership, fund raising and management skills.
“I look forward to working with the OWLT board, staff and membership as we take the land trust to the next level,” Stolp said. “The trust has a lot on its plate, including several major land protection deals. I am looking forward to the challenge.”
Formed in 1992, OWLT’s mission is land and water conservation, with a strategic emphasis on the banks of the Milwaukee River and its tributaries and on stopover sanctuaries for migratory birds on the western shore of Lake Michigan.
It works in many partnerships at the local, state and national level as it protects upstream properties that improve water quality and flows downstream and lakeshore habitats.
Stolp graduated from St. Norbert College and worked in the British parliament during an international study abroad program.
He will begin his new position on Oct. 17.
John Capelle, retired community development director for the City of West Bend and an OWLT board member, is serving as interim executive director.