Ocean Conservancy Names Lankford Interim Director

Kara Lankford

NEW ORLEANS – A career ecologist and restoration manager, Kara Lankford will assume the role of interim director for Ocean Conservancy’s Gulf Restoration Program. Lankford will guide Ocean Conservancy’s work across the Gulf Coast to ensure comprehensive, science-based and community-supported restoration of the Gulf ecosystem by engaging and connecting public officials, fishermen, conservation partners, members of affected communities and others. She succeeds Bethany Carl Kraft, who served in this role since 2011.

         “I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to lead this dedicated team,” said Lankford. “As the Ocean Conservancy Gulf Restoration team goes through this leadership transition, we remain strong and ready to tackle the important work that lies ahead. We are committed to ensuring monitoring programs and protocols are in place, maintaining the integrity of the open ocean funding and advocating for coordination among the different restoration programs to better leverage resources and avoid duplication.”

         Lankford began working for Ocean Conservancy as a constituent outreach specialist in 2011 and then was promoted to associate director of the Gulf Restoration Program beginning in March 2015, until assuming the role of interim director. Before joining Ocean Conservancy, Lankford served as a natural resource planner for the Baldwin County Commission in Alabama, where her accomplishments included implementing the county’s response efforts after the BP oil disaster and managing the county’s Coastal Impact Assistance Program. Prior to working for the Baldwin County Commission, she served as project coordinator for the Mobile Bay National Estuary Program, where she managed projects from marsh restoration to stream restoration.

         Lankford holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Science from the University of South Alabama and she grew up in Mobile, AL.

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