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Welcome back, Mike Kline!

April 24, 2023 by Mike Kline
Remy Cretol, Erin De Vries, Hayley Kolding, and Mike Kline on the Wild Branch River in Wolcott, VT.

I’m excited to be back on the VRC Board after a 25-year sabbatical. It’s truly been a study-leave of absence. When I worked with Stephan Syz and Tom Willard to charter the VRC in 1995, I shared their deep interest in protecting access to Vermont’s special swimming holes and boating whitewater. I left the Board to focus my career on creating the Vermont Rivers Program at the Department of Environmental Conservation. I collaborated with an amazing team of scientists and engineers, to study and learn how rivers work, develop Vermont’s river corridor maps, and establish connectivity and equilibrium (natural stability) as organizing principles for river and floodplain management.

I retired from DEC in 2019 and consulted on fluvial matters in Vermont and around the country. It’s been interesting, but I’ve increasing felt my heart strings pulling me back to river conservation: to have a hand in protecting natural riverscapes for current and future generations. This is why I was so delighted by the call to leave sabbatical and focus my energies back at VRC.

Mike Kline, Erin De Vries, and Hayley Kolding monitor the Selawsky River Corridor Easement along the Wild Branch river in Wolcott, VT.

Mike Kline, Board Member, Erin De Vries, Conservation Director, and Hayley Kolding, Conservation Manager visit the Selawsky River Corridor Easement along the Wild Branch River in Wolcott, VT.

Seeing first-hand the depth of experience and commitment of the Board and the energy and professionalism of VRC staff has put a very big smile on my face. I’m excited to apply all that I’ve learned to further the mission of VRC through its strategic planning and outreach. I would like to help tell the stories of our conserved rivers, their natural and cultural histories, to deepen our common interest and appreciation for their value and the work ahead to protect them.

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