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The staff of Friends of the North Fork engages the enthusiasm of dozens of volunteers who provide hundreds of hours of support to our mission — and the health of our river — every year.

David V. Brotman, Executive Director

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A Virginia native, and graduate of Virginia Tech, David has broad experience in environmental field work, business, conflict resolution, and education.  Times spent in the Shenandoah Valley as a boy and young man — camping, hiking, fishing, and canoeing — are the very roots of his environmental interests, and his love of nature.

David is a natural public educator, and has taught all age groups in a variety of indoor and outdoor settings.  Subjects have included Chesapeake Bay ecology, Wild Edibles, and many more.  In Yellowstone NP, he trained citizen scientists in field methods.

In recent years in California, David logged thousands of hours on both public and private habitat conservation projects.  Training there too in conflict resolution, he practiced with Centinela Youth Services, and with the international mediation group, Mediators Beyond Borders.  Since his return, he has been active with the Woodstock Tree Board, Front Royal/Warren County Tree Stewards, Coming to The Table workgroup on race relations, and has helped at both Seven Bends and Shenandoah River State Parks.

David continues to be an avid hiker, camper, outdoor educator, and hunter of wild edible plants.  He finds great joy in studying our woods, wildlife, and landscapes, including the unique and historic, cultural heritage sites still scattered throughout the Valley.

Concha Mendoza, Operations Manager

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Concha joined the Friends staff in 2014. As a high school student, she assisted Friends with a water quality monitoring program. She developed an appreciation for the outdoors through recreation and through her volunteer experience, as she traveled to new beautiful places collecting water samples.

She holds a B.A. in Latin American Studies from Yale University. After college, she worked as a home-school liaison with the Shenandoah Valley Migrant Education Program, an editorial assistant for the Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness, and as an adult ESOL instructor.

At Friends, she enjoys working with volunteers, improving administrative systems, partnering with other organizations, writing and editing grants and other communications, assisting with fundraising and events, facilitating direct programs, and any chance to be in nature.

Julia Sargent,    Volunteer Coordinator

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Julia brings a diverse set of professional experience in mental health, human services, community organization, and the service industry to her role of Volunteer Coordinator at Friends.

With a passion for bringing people together around common interests that transcend political, economic, and social divisions, Julia is focused on furthering Friends’ mission and building a strong community of stewardship around the watershed.

Our volunteers do the dirty work and have a lot of fun in service to the river.

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