Eastern Shore Land Conservancy


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Mission Statement
Conserve, steward, and advocate for the unique rural landscape of the Eastern Shore.

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eastern shore maryland farmland conservation


Staff Highlight: Owen Bailey, Towns Project Manager

Where were you before your time with ESLC?

I grew up on the Eastern Shore in a Victorian house in Chestertown. Some of my favorite memories from growing up in town were riding my bike to nearby parks or to the Chester River to go fishing. I spent a lot of time outdoors. My parents made me and I both enjoyed and appreciated that. I studied for two years at Western Maryland College (what became McDaniel). I loved the hills and the landscape of that part of Maryland and went hiking most weekend in the Catoctin Mountains. But the school was not for me so I transferred to Washington College and graduated with a degree in American Studies. I thought I was going to be an English professor and later got my Masters in English Literature focusing on 19th American and European Gothic Literature.

How did you come to work for ESLC? 

I worked at the Rose O’Neill Literary House at Washington College for 7 years and really enjoyed my time there. But while pursuing that career I kept reading about the effects of Climate Change and the coming climate crisis. I also realized that I did not want to teach. I knew then that wanted to work in environmental sustainability, so I left the college and came to ESLC in summer 2015. It wasn’t until 2 years later when I ran for town council in Chestertown (I lost my race) that I became interested in Towns work. That interest has stayed with me ever since.

What is your favorite thing about ESLC? 

What I love most about ESLC are my co-workers. Was true the day I started in 2015 and it is still true to this day.

What is your favorite thing about the Eastern Shore?

I love seeing the sunset over the bay.

If you were given a million dollars, what would you do with it? 

I would use a portion to convert my house into a zero carbon emissions home with a food forest so I could grow food for my family, and to share with friends and neighbors. The rest I would donate to local charities who make our communities better for everyone.

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