After a rigorous search that began this past summer, Hunterdon Land Trust’s Board of Trustees has selected Katharine Samberg-Lawrence as our new executive director.

Katharine brings a wealth of experience in the nonprofit sector to her new role at HLT. She most recently served as executive director at TRUE Mentors, Inc. a Hoboken-based youth development agency providing more than 80 at-risk, underserved youth with free one-on-one, group, and educational mentoring programs.

Prior to this she held numerous roles at The Fortune Society in Long Island City, New York, serving reentry services to more than 8,000 justice-involved adults annually. Her last position there was Manager of Transitional Programs in which she oversaw subsidized employment opportunities and training for more than 500 individuals per year.

Katharine’s appreciation for nature was nurtured through her time spent at a college in Vermont, where she was surrounded by mountains, beautiful vistas and communities that prized sustainability, and by her experiences working with urban youth.

“By working with kids in urban areas you realize the impact it has on those who do not have access to woodlands and open fields,” Katharine said. “I remember going on a fall hike with kids who had never been on one their entire lives and had never been deep enough in the woods where they’d been cut off from everything. Just seeing the calming impact being outdoors had on those kids was really interesting to watch.”

“Access to nature is just something we all need in order to flourish,” she added.

Katharine is looking forward to working with an organization that operates an award-winning farmers’ market, stressing how important it is to provide our local community with fresh, local food while giving farmers a venue to meet directly with consumers. She hopes to add diverse vendors to the market and beef up its offerings of programs and workshops that highlight our area’s rich culture and HLT’s mission, and to spotlight HLT’s partners.

“I’m also excited about the barns and these beautiful historic buildings here at the Dvoor Farm,” she said. “They offer us a really unique opportunity to teach people so much more about agriculture, nature and the history of this area.”

As executive director, Katharine will oversee and ensure the effectiveness of HLT’s program areas, operations and staff, while guiding the organization toward fulfilling its mission to protect the places we all love in the Hunterdon County area.

“The level of commitment by everyone — the staff, the volunteers and the donors who have been involved with this organization for so long — is a rare and wonderful thing. I think it shows what an incredible sense of community there is here, and how much Hunterdon County’s beautiful places mean to everybody. And I want to do everything I can to help protect these beautiful places.”

Katharine is a Kentucky native who also lived in Tennessee. She received her bachelor’s degree in Forensic Psychology and World Literature from Castleton State University in Vermont. In her spare time, she enjoys bicycling, writing, reading, and snuggling with her five cats. Katharine also volunteers as a grant writer and TNR helpers with Bordentown City Cats.

Katharine invites you to email her at

“I’m really excited to be here; I’m new to the area and trying to learn, so I will be going around making friends and getting myself involved in the community,” she said. “Don’t be surprised if you see me at various community events because I want to get around and make as many new friends as possible.”

Stop by our Farmers’ Market this Sunday (December 11) from noon to 1 p.m. and meet our new executive director. Katharine will be at the HLT booth meeting folks — and shopping for some delicious local food!