Luke Longanecker, TJSWCD
Luke’s favorite riparian plant: Alder trees
How does your work support healthy streamside ecosystems in the James River watershed?
We work directly with farmers and landowners to protect and enhance riparian areas while improving upland management at the same time.
What do you love most about your work?
I love working one on one with landowners to improve and protect their land. Every farm is very unique and I love to meet new people and work with them to accomplish their goals while improving water quality, soil health, and habitat at the same time.
What was your journey/career path that led you to the work you do now?
I grew up on a farm and spent my childhood learning and exploring in nature which gave me a deep respect and appreciation for the land and the unique ecosystems that surround us. I quickly learned how closely these ecosystems are connected and how they can be easily affected which led me to a career aimed at protecting our natural resources.
What do you value most about the Consortium? How has it positively impacted your work?
The people and the partnerships!!! It has been great to meet so many new people and learn more about the collective effort to improve and protect the James River Watershed and the Chesapeake Bay. The consortium has helped put a primary focus on riparian buffer tree establishment and has streamlined the installation process which has greatly increased plantings in our area.