The strength of our organization is its people. We are grateful to have an outstanding team of smart, kind, innovative individuals committed to conservation in Central Alabama.

Libba Vaughan
Libba VaughanExecutive Director
Elizabeth Sims
Elizabeth SimsConservation Programs Director
Liz serves as Conservation Programs Director and works with landowners interested in conserving their properties through easements or donations. She also handles purchases, mitigation, flood buy-outs, and other property transfers. Previously, Liz served as Development Director for the Freshwater Land Trust and Sustainability Coordinator for the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham. Her early work with Regional Policy and Land Use with Region 2020 connected her to many different constituents in Central Alabama. From Pennsylvania, Liz earned her B.A. from the University of the South and her J.D. from the University of Richmond.

Liz is pretty cranky if she can’t start her Saturday with a walk or run on Jemison Trail! “I always feel like I have more to give to my two busy girls if I take that time for myself to get outside and be active.”

elizabeth.sims@freshwaterlandtrust.org

Tina Simonton
Tina SimontonOperations Director
Carolyn Buck
Carolyn BuckRed Rock Trail System Director
Carolyn is in charge of all things involving the Red Rock Trail System. She works with a wide range of partners to develop new trails throughout Jefferson County. Her work includes promoting “complete streets” for our cities and encouraging individuals to explore the trails and parks in their communities. Carolyn is from the great state of Texas and received a B.S. in environmental science from Baylor University (Sic ‘Em, Bears!). She spent two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Central America where she learned about community development (and the joy of an afternoon nap). After returning to the United States, Carolyn transitioned to the environmental sector where she protected wetlands and streams.

When she’s not busy building partnerships and trails, you can find Carolyn hiking with her dog or searching for Birmingham’s best burger.

carolyn.buck@freshwaterlandtrust.org

Jeffrey Drummond
Jeffrey DrummondStewardship Director
As the Stewardship Director, Jeffrey manages our 7,000 acres of conservation property, identifying and overseeing restoration and public access projects and engaging the community through public outreach and scientific research. Jeffrey inherited his Cherokee grandfather’s passion for wildlife and conservation, which has kept him outdoors his entire life. After completing his Master’s degree in ecology and evolutionary biology, he turned his passion into a career. Jeffrey has worked with Western Carolina University and N.C. State University as a biology instructor and the U.S. Forest Service as a wildlife biologist. At Freshwater Land Trust, he uses his skills and passion to conserve invaluable natural areas in the beautiful, biodiverse region of Central Alabama.

jeffrey.drummond@freshwaterlandtrust.org

Mary Beth Brown
Mary Beth BrownCommunications Director
Sally LaRue
Sally LaRueAmericorps Member
Sally is our Outreach Coordinator and one of our current AmeriCorps members. She represents the Freshwater Land Trust at public and partner events, coordinates internship and volunteer opportunities, assists with communications, and helps monitor our conservation properties and trails. Sally grew up in the woods of southwest Alabama and graduated from UAB with a B.A. in English. After serving a year with AmeriCorps at Railroad Park Foundation, she joined the Peace Corps and taught English in Mongolia for two years.

In her free time, Sally enjoys exploring the woods and reading by the river near her residence in Blount County.

sally.larue@freshwaterlandtrust.org

Caleb LaRue
Caleb LaRueAmericorps Member
Caleb is our Red Rock Trail System Assistant and one of our current AmeriCorps members. He helps manage and promote the terrific trails of Jefferson County. Caleb grew up in the foothills of northeast Alabama and is most at home in the green spaces of the Appalachians. With a degree in psychology and a passion for nature, he has pursued a variety of positions from a recreational backpacking guide to a hiking assistant in mental health. Caleb served in the Peace Corps in Mongolia for two years as a Youth Development Volunteer. He enjoys reading in the boughs of magnolias, running on the banks of the Locust Fork, and mountain biking on the trails of Birmingham.

caleb.larue@freshwaterlandtrust.org