Staff Highlight: Sara Ramotnik, Policy Manager
Where were you before your time with ESLC?
I grew up in Prince George’s County on the western shore of Maryland. My dad had a small farm with lots of woods, so we spent a lot of time hiking on any given day. Just about every weekend, we would go to Patuxent River Park (what we always refer to as Jug Bay) and go hiking, kayaking etc. to spend quality time outdoors. The time I spent there instilled in me a love of nature from a young age. As I got older, I spent a lot of time in Southern Maryland, getting to explore places like Breton Bay, Mallows Bay and Mattawoman Creek, all of which sparked my interest in estuarine ecosystems. I attended the University of Maryland’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources where I studied environmental science and policy with a concentration in economics. I chose my major because I wanted to make a difference in the world and advocate for the natural environment around me. My passion lies in the Chesapeake Bay and I want to spend the rest of my life bettering it for all.
How did you come to work for ESLC?
Before coming to ESLC, I worked for the Chesapeake Conservation Partnership as a member of the Chesapeake Conservation Corps. Working as a part of a large landscape collaborative exposed me to the importance of land conservation. I started applying for permanent positions midway through my service year and this position with ESLC caught my eye. Because of the strong connections many environmental organizations share with one another, I had heard of ESLC before and knew they were doing great and wonderful things for land conservation on the Eastern Shore. I hoped that my talents could bolster their efforts and the rest is history.
What is your favorite thing about ESLC?
Something I love about ESLC is the dedication staff have for our mission. We are all working towards preserving the Eastern Shore of Maryland because we think it is a remarkable place that should be protected. Everyone in this office is ready to rise to the occasion at any given moment and stand up for what they believe in order to best protect the places that we love. In my role specifically, I know I can bounce any idea I have off of folks and expect genuine, constructive feedback in return. As we engage in policy issues locally, statewide and nationally, I know I have the support of an exceptional team.
What is your favorite thing about the Eastern Shore?
The Eastern Shore is a place unlike any other in Maryland. I love the connection folks share with the natural environment around them. While I am not from here originally, I greatly respect the pride that folks have for their homes and their commitment to protecting the shore. I’m grateful for the opportunity to learn from these people and to work alongside them to advocate for and conserve the lands that we all love.