Mid-Atlantic Regional Office: Meet Our Staff

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Joy M. Oakes, Senior Director, Mid-Atlantic Region
Since 2001, Joy has overseen NPCA’s activities in the region’s five states and the District of Columbia. Joy was a leader in the Healthy Air Campaign in Maryland, which in 2006 resulted in the nation’s strongest state legislation to reduce pollution including carbon dioxide from power plants. She helped establish NPCA's healthy air campaign, and has led successful campaigns to add historically important lands to parks in the region, as well as to contest inappropriate developments next to and inside of national park boundaries. Prior to joining NPCA, Joy worked for the Sierra Club, and in the 1990s led a campaign to stop a proposed new town on the Potomac River downstream of Washington, D.C. The campaign resulted in enactment of Maryland’s landmark Smart Growth program, and creation of the 2,200-acre Chapman Forest State Park and related natural area. In 1997 Joy was a founder of the Coalition for Smarter Growth in Washington, D.C. A native Virginian with deep roots in rural culture, Joy graduated magna cum laude from Duke University with a B.A. degree in religion.


Pamela E. Goddard, Senior Manager, Chesapeake & Virginia Programs
Joining NPCA in February 2011, Pam helped head up two critical Mid-Atlantic Programs. The Chesapeake Watershed Initiative is part of our Landscape Conservation Campaign, with the goal of enhancing protection of national parks in the Chesapeake region. Pam will work with local, state and federal stakeholders to identify, restore, and conserve the 51 national parks, 5 national trails, and 4 national heritage areas of the Chesapeake watershed. Joining conservation partners, she will identify new potential park land that would enhance and connect the natural and cultural values of the Chesapeake. Special places like the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail and the proposed park at Fort Monroe are two resources NPCA will advocate to expand and protect. In Virginia, Pam will continue NPCA’s advocacy for clean air throughout the state by holding power plants to stringent clean air standards. The top of her list is Old Dominion’s proposed coal-fired power plant at Cypress Creek. She will also spearhead NPCA’s fight against inappropriate development on historic battlefields like the Wilderness Battlefield in Orange County. Before joining NPCA, Pam spent nine years at the Sierra Club’s Legislative Office in Washington, DC, working on clean water, property rights, and on the Club’s political action committee. For three years, she was the Campaign Manager of the National Breast Cancer Coalition, advocating for federal research dollars and spent five years as the Senior Grassroots Outreach Manager for the National Wildlife Federation. Throughout her career, Pam has brought thousands of citizens to Washington, DC to advocate for protection of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, the Florida Everglades, and other unique parts of America. Pam earned her B.A. in French at Grinnell College.


Carole Southall, Director of Development, Mid-Atlantic Region
“I spend my days surrounded by philanthropists, volunteers, and staff who contribute their resources to make the world a better place,” says Carole Southall, the new Director of Development for NPCA’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Office. Carole has been a fundraiser for more than 20 years, affiliated with organizations such as Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Royal Nature Conservancy (complete profile on LinkedIn). She loves major gifts for its deeply personal connection to individuals. “Most of America’s greatest Parks and Historic sites came about because of philanthropists who give major gifts of land, or regular citizens who fought to conserve an important aspect of American heritage.” Carole fondly recalls that her parents’ idea of the best vacation in the world was to visit a national park, and together they crisscrossed the country visiting hundreds of national parks in 49 states (Alaska someday!). Today she lives in Wilton, Connecticut, home to Weir Farm National Park, where she spends many weekend hours as an amateur painter.


Ed Stierli, Field Representative, Chesapeake and Virginia Program
Ed Stierli joined NPCA in July 2012 as the Steve & Roberta Denning Land Conservation Fellow for the Mid-Atlantic Region. Now, as the Chesapeake Field Representative he coordinates conservation outreach and restoration projects as a part of the National Parks in the Chesapeake campaign. He also manages the “Freedom to Float” campaign which advocates for expanded access to clean water in the Chesapeake.

Ed’s childhood experiences traveling the country and camping with his family inspired his love for national parks. After graduating from college, he taught middle school English in New Orleans. Since moving to Washington, D.C., he has worked as conservation and education grassroots advocate with the Alliance for Climate Protection and National Association for the Education of Young Children.

Ed has a B.S. in History and Political Science from Florida State University and a Masters in Public Policy from George Mason University. In his spare time, you can find him exploring the parks with his wife and two dogs.


Melanie McDowell, Senior Coordinator
Melanie McDowell joined NPCA in March 2015 as the Senior Coordinator, Mid-Atlantic Region. Melanie comes to NPCA from Washington University in St. Louis, where she provided administrative support to the Anthropology Department. Previously, she worked as an Environmental Education Intern with the Missouri Botanical Garden, a Literacy Tutor with AmeriCorps St. Louis, and an Assistant Team Leader with AmeriCorps NCCC. In AmeriCorps NCCC, Melanie worked with nonprofits throughout the southwest on issues related to education, conservation, disaster relief, and volunteer management. Melanie graduated from the University of Michigan with a BA in Sociocultural Anthropology, with minors in the Program in the Environmental and French. She is excited to work to protect our national parks at NPCA.


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