Andrew J. Mackie
Executive Director

Andrew J. Mackie

Andrew J. Mackie

Andrew grew up in New York State’s Hudson Valley. After graduating from the State University of New York College at Geneseo with a bachelor’s in biology, Andrew moved to Seattle. This is where his passion for the mountains began. However, graduate studies and scientific research pulled him away.

In 1992, Andrew started working for the National Audubon Society at a sanctuary on the Hudson River. Continuing to work for Audubon, he moved to Southwest Florida as the assistant director of Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary. While at the Sanctuary, he became involved with a regional land trust and a variety of land use issues, ranging from Everglades Restoration to a local conservation ballot initiative that successfully passed raising funds for land conservation projects. During this time, he also was recruited to serve on the board of directors for several organizations, including the Florida Native Plant Society, Collier County Audubon Society, Collier Environmental Education Consortium and the Southwest Florida Society for Ethical Ecotourism.

Andrew returned to New York State in 2002 as a project manager for Audubon. He was responsible for working with a variety of sanctuaries and nature centers across the state, including several new projects. During this time, he worked closely with the Montezuma Wetlands Complex in Central New York. Andrew left this position to complete his Masters of Environmental Management degree at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies in New Haven, Conn. While at Yale, Andrew worked with the Guilford Land Conservation Trust, creating a stewardship program for their holdings. He also worked with the Great Land Trust in Anchorage, Alaska. While in Alaska, he worked routinely with conservation easements. This included writing baseline documentation for new easements and monitoring existing easements.

Before accepting the position with Central Colorado Conservancy, Andrew worked under contract with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation managing several projects. He also completed oversight of a $3.5 million construction project resulting in the creation of the Montezuma Audubon Center. The Center is sited on a property with three created wetlands and restored grasslands.

Central Colorado Conservancy Executive Director Andrew Mackie can be reached at

Lucy Waldo
Conservation Director

Lucy Waldo

Lucy has lived in the mountains of Central Colorado since 1989. She first came here to attend Colorado State University after growing up in Maryland, where her father worked for the Department of Agriculture.

“I have fond memories of working on the farm where my father worked with dairy cattle, but I sure don’t miss the humidity!” Lucy recalls. “I was so relieved to get to Colorado!”

Lucy earned her bachelor’s degree in history from CSU and later returned to college to complete a master’s degree in natural resource policy. Before joining Central Colorado Conservancy, she served as executive director of the Gunnison Ranchland Conservation Legacy for 11 years. There, she helped ranching families complete 25 conservation easements that protect nearly 10,000 acres of productive ranchland. Prior to that, she was director of the Colorado Water Workshop, a western water policy conference hosted by Western State College in Gunnison.

Lucy finds conservation work to be challenging and rewarding. She is always striving to keep up with changing legal requirements, tax benefits, and new funding opportunities for landowners.

“We are so blessed to live in this beautiful place. I feel really lucky to work with landowners who want to protect Colorado’s land and water,” Lucy said.

“I also have great respect for people who work on the land in this challenging climate,” Lucy adds. “I watch my neighbors haying and see the long hours, sweat and dedication that go into the year’s crop. Those lush meadows depend on the hard work of the ranchers, and the recurring gifts of the water and the soil.”

When not working on Central Colorado Conservancy projects, Lucy enjoys riding horses and mountain biking, hiking and cross-country skiing.

Conservation Director Lucy Waldo can be contacted at or (970) 901-1816.

Julie Richardson
Membership and Common Cents Coordinator

Julie Richardson

Julie Richardson

Julie and her husband, John, moved to Salida in January 2013. She grew up in the Kansas City area, graduated with a degree in education from the University of Kansas, and taught grades fifth and/or sixth for more than 25 years in Kansas City.

Julie has been an active volunteer and board member with Wildwood Outdoor Education Center in LaCygne, Kan., and High Trails Outdoor Education Center, Florissant, Colo. Since 1962, Julie has worked most of her summers with High Trails Ranch/Sanborn Western Camps and The Nature Place in Florissant, Colo. She served as the assistant director of High Trails Ranch from 2000 to 2002, and full-time as director from 2003 through 2012. Julie has a strong background in education and youth development.

Julie has two children who live and work in Colorado.

Membership and Common Cents Coordinator Julie Richardson can be reached at

Buffy Lenth
Watershed Restoration Specialist


Buffy Lenth

Buffy joins Central Colorado Conservancy as the Watershed Restoration Specialist, managing our work on the South Arkansas River near Poncha Springs, as well as additional restoration projects.

She is also project coordinator for the Salida Trail Ecological Restoration Project (STERP), a joint effort created to restore the Monarch Spur Trail to a natural habitat, where native plant and wildlife species can thrive alongside residents’ recreational use of the trail.

As the Watershed Restoration Specialist for Central Colorado Conservancy, Buffy is coordinator of the Upper Arkansas Wetland Focus Area Committee, which is a collaboration of organizations and agencies in the Upper Arkansas River watershed that focuses on riparian projects.

Buffy holds a masters degree in ecology from Colorado State University. She is a former resident of Westcliffe, where she taught high school, lived on a ranch, served as a board member of the Wet Mountain Valley Food Coop and Sustainable Ways, and helped found the Cliffs’ Park Community Garden.

She has worked as a wildlife technician for the City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks, the U.S. Forest Service in Steamboat Springs, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Montana on a grizzly bear study, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, and served in the Peace Corps as a conservation specialist in Mexico.

She and her husband moved to Salida in August, 2015, with their three children. Watershed Restoration Specialist Buffy Lenth can be reached at

Pam Nelson
Development Director

Pam Nelson

Pam hails from Lancaster, Penn., where she started her conservation fundraising and marketing career as Development Director for the Lancaster County Conservancy, whose mission is to protect open areas in their natural state. The organization had 28 nature preserves at the time amidst significant development pressure in a region known for Amish tourism. Pam helped to grow the organization from a staff of two to seven while increasing annual revenues through multiple fundraising strategies.

In Pennsylvania, Pam also worked for the Lebanon Valley Conservancy as a consultant, launching its first Annual Appeal to raise funds to hire its first Director and outlining a development plan for future revenue streams.

Pam was excited to relocate to Salida. She is quite familiar with the community from her most recent Director of Development development position at the Orient Land Trust in the San Luis Valley, where she helped increase membership, raised funds for upgraded wastewater facilities, obtained a successful grant for a firetruck, and orchestrated regional donor events to build organizational capacity, among other accomplishments.

Pam brings a wealth of more than 15 years of experience in other kinds of non-profit development, PR and marketing to this new role at the Central Colorado Conservancy. Her career began in arts marketing and fundraising for theatres and has included a Major Gift/Corporate Relations role at a large rescue mission in Pennsylvania, prospect research for a university, a county-wide workplace giving campaign for an alliance of 11 healthcare agencies, and fundraising contractor or staff positions with faith-based nonprofits, including a health ministry, and several Christian schools as well as conservation organizations.

She loves engaging in outdoor recreation as a skier, hiker, runner, cyclist and former triathlete and is passionate about protecting the stunning landscapes and ranching heritage for which Colorado is known.

Development Director Pam Nelson can be reached at

Sally Waterhouse
Volunteer Naturalist 


Sally Waterhouse

Sally is keen on helping people develop deeper personal connections to the natural world.

As Central Colorado Conservancy’s Volunteer Naturalist, she leads hikes and walks on properties the organization holds in trust. Some of these locations cannot be accessed by the public, so the events can be a one-time chance to see certain, special lands.

Sally’s primary task is to increase opportunities for our members to experience important lands and receive an interpretation of their conservation values.

“I’m really enthusiastic about how the world works and I love sharing that with other people,” she says. “I love following their interests, getting them excited.”

With a master’s in zoology, Sally taught general ecology classes at Ohio Wesleyan University for nearly 20 years. Before that, she worked as a naturalist for a decade, for the state of Ohio, Acadia National Park, and a private nature center in Cincinnati. Sally has been teaching since high school, when she worked as a camp counselor. But her love of the natural world started in her childhood backyard in western New York, outside of Buffalo.

“I played in the creeks and had a rock collection and an insect collection,” she says. “I started looking at birds in elementary school but in those years, I didn’t know anyone else who did that sort of thing. It was just me, catching frogs.”

Now retired, Sally lives in Chaffee County with her husband, Denny. Volunteer Naturalist Sally Waterhouse can be reached at