Kristen Saacke Blunk, principal, Headwaters LLC, serves as a field liaison to funders and strategic program developers that seek environmental outcomes. Her clients include foundations, state agencies, and non-profit organizations. Her primary areas of focus are field based project development and assessment, strategic planning for environmental restoration, and facilitation of partnership-led water resource, habitat, and watershed management approaches engaging the public-, private-, and NGO sectors.
Prior to the launch of Headwaters LLC in 2012, she was director of the Penn State Agriculture and Environment Center, a Cooperative Extension service devoted to promoting science, policy, and partnerships to solve problems and resolve environmental challenges for working lands. Kristen has a bachelors of science in biology from Virginia Tech and masters of forest resources in fisheries and wildlife sciences from Penn State. Kristen has also served as director and lead educator for Pennsylvania place-based land trusts and conservation organizations including the ClearWater Conservancy, Penns Valley Conservation Association, and Millbrook Marsh Nature Center. Prior to returning to Pennsylvania in the early 1990s, Kristen served as the first environmental assistance manager for Tennessee’s Pollution Prevention and Environmental Awareness program, initiating and directing the state’s environmental justice assessment
Current areas of professional service to the region include: Chesapeake Bay Program’s Agriculture Workgroup, Member-at-large 2018-present, co-chair 2014-2016; Administrative Council for USDA Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (NESARE), 2015-present; Board of Directors, Sustainable Chesapeake, 2017-present.
Kristen is a native of Pennsylvania and has relocated to Virginia, where Headwaters continues to serve the Mid-Atlantic region. She and her husband Joel live a monastic life at Richmond Hill, an ecumenical, intentional community that is devoted to racial reconciliation and healing and is situated overlooking the James River at the fall line in the heart of downtown Richmond, VA.