Lake Champlain Sea Grant Welcomes New Land Use and Water Quality Educator, Michelle Lockhart
In October, Michelle Lockhart joined the Lake Champlain Sea Grant team as our Land Use and Water Quality Educator. Michelle will work with homeowners, community members, and real estate professionals to enhance water quality practices in the Lake Champlain basin.
Michelle has a B.S. in Landscape Architecture from Purdue University and received a permaculture design certificate from Oregon State University. She spent time in Vermont for a college internship supporting the redesign of Burlington’s City Hall Park. She looks forward to returning to the area and to Lake Champlain.
Michelle comes to Vermont from Washington State where she served as a Natural Resources Technician for Foster Creek Conservation District. In this role, she mapped invasive weeds and riparian plantings, presented at local schools, and led communications initiatives for the program. Before that, she held roles in several states involving environmental education, outreach, and landscape design including sheep and flower farming, working for the United States Fish and Wildlife Department, and the Montana Department of Natural Resources.
“Working in a variety of regions has helped me understand that we all have an impact on the watersheds we live in, whether we reside in urban or rural areas,” said Michelle. “I’m thrilled to return to Burlington and work directly with the public to combat local stormwater issues.”
Her role will focus on two Lake Champlain Sea Grant projects. She will be the BLUE program coordinator, conducting site visits and working with Burlington (and other Lake Champlain) residents to support the adoption of green stormwater infrastructure on their properties. She will also lead the Real Estate professional workshops that Lake Champlain Sea Grant has been offering since 2016. Through these trainings, real estate professionals gain valuable information about state and local resources that they can pass on to their clients and are given the tools to communicate regulations around wetlands and river corridors, potential flooding risks, septic requirements, and shoreline protection.
“We are so excited to welcome Michelle on board,” said Jill Sarazen, Lake Champlain Sea Grant’s Green Infrastructure Collaborative Coordinator. “I look forward to seeing her engage with landowners and real estate professionals in the Lake Champlain basin to raise awareness about water quality issues and ways to steward our land and waterways.”