Hill Country Land Trust
February 25, 2014


Photographer: Stanley Farrar – from Left to Right: 2014 HCLT Board members Kevin Pickard, Bill Lindemann, Kassi Scheffer, Carolyn Vogel, Floyd Trefny, Paula Smith, Katherine Peake, Mike Krueger, Jill Nokes, Susan Armstrong, Steve Nelle, and Pam Mabry Bergman.

The Hill Country Land Trust (HCLT), a non-profit land conservation group headquartered in Fredericksburg, Texas, recently welcomed several new board and committee members.

Steve Nelle joined the Board in late 2013, and is a range and wildlife management specialist recently retired from the Natural Resources Conservation Service after a 35 year distinguished service record. Steve is a leading expert on managing riparian habitats; conducting seminars and workshops around the state and the Hill Country. Steve is a 5th generation Texan descended from some of the earliest Hill Country German settlers. Steve is already proving to be a great resource for HCLT landowner-partners during their easement process.

Joining the Board in 2014, among several others is Jill Nokes, noted author and horticulturist who lives part-time in Llano County. Jill is a landscape designer and author of two books. Most of her career has been devoted to the study and use of native plants in both the built landscape and in the wild places where they are found. Jill’s knowledge of native plants will be a great resource to our landowner-partners.

Another new addition in 2014 is Kassi Scheffer of New Braunfels. Kassi is currently an Education Program Specialist for the Texas Wildlife Association and also serves as the Program Coordinator for the Texas Brigades, a wildlife and leadership development experience that educates and empowers youths with leadership skills and knowledge in wildlife, fisheries, and land stewardship. Kassi grew up in Hays County, spends time in Gillespie County on family land, and currently resides in Comal County. Kassi’s youth and enthusiasm are a welcome addition to the Board.

Also new to the 2014 Board is Floyd Trefny of Bandera County. Floyd’s experience as a certified Master Naturalist since 2009 and treasurer of the Hill Country Chapter of the Texas Master Naturalists will be an added resource for the HCLT Board. Floyd is also a volunteer at the Old Tunnel State Park in Alamo Springs and can be found working with bat tunnel visitors most Thursdays during emergence months to preserve this unique bat habitat.

In addition, Mike Krueger has joined the HCLT Board. Mike is recently retired from the Wildlife Division of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department with 27 years of service; more than 15 as a Technical Guidance biologist providing wildlife management assistance to private landowners in the Edwards Plateau and Cross Timbers regions of Texas. He finished his TPWD career in Kerrville, serving five years as the District Leader for the 25-county Edwards Plateau Wildlife District. Mike’s Hill Country wildlife management skills and experience are a wonderful resource for HCLT landowner-partners.

Finally, HCLT also welcomes Professor Ernest Smith to the HCLT Land and Easements Committee. Ernest is a law professor at the University of Texas in Austin, specializing in oil and gas law. A former Dean of the Law School, Professor Smith has also been a Visiting Professor at several law schools including Harvard. Ernest and his wife Paula, also a HCLT Board member, have a conservation easement on their property in Edwards County and this process has led to his interest and support of the land easement and how it benefits legacy landowners.

The Hill Country Land Trust is delighted and proud to add such prestigious and hard-working individuals to our all-volunteer board. Each of these people is committed to preserving the Hill Country they call home.

The Hill Country Land Trust was founded in 1998 by a group of volunteer landowners. The mission of the Hill Country Land Trust is to conserve and protect agricultural lands, wildlife habitat, scenic beauty, and watersheds of the Texas Hill Country for present and future generations.

The Hill Country Land Trust is active in Menard, Kimble, Mason, Llano, Burnet, Blanco, Hays, Comal, Kendall, Gillespie, Bandera, Real, Kerr, Edwards, Schleicher, Sutton, Lampasas, San Saba, and McCulloch counties. For more information on the Hill County Land Trust visit their website athttp://www.hillcountrylandtrust.org or call 830-997-0027.