The Maryland Native Plant Society

2018 Board of Directors


Kirsten Johnson

Vice President

Karyn Molines


Matthew Cohen


vacant (nominations welcome)

Board of Directors

Ken Bawer

Vanessa Beauchamp
Carole Bergmann
Allen Browne
Anne DeNovo
Michael Ellis
Marc Imlay, Ph.D.
Beth Johnson
Stephanie Mason
Liz Matthews, Ph.D.
Brett McMillan, Ph.D.
Christopher F. Puttock, Ph.D.
Sujata Roy
Rod Simmons
Jil Swearingen

Upcoming Board Meetings

  • Meetings are typically the second Monday of the odd numbered months



Kirsten Johnson, Baltimore City  Current President, 2009-2014; Marilandica co-editor; retired attorney; Master’s Degree in biology, lifelong interest in natural history.

Vice President

Karyn Molines, Calvert County Current Vice-President and Membership Chair; Past President, Past Secretary, Fall Conference Chair; Southern Maryland Chapter. Division Chief, Calvert Co Natural Resources Division.


Matthew Cohen, Montgomery County Current Treasurer. Owner of Matt's Habitats, a certified Montgomery County Green Landscaping Business, which focuses on landscaping with native plants, rainwater runoff mitigation, edibles, and other environmental strategies. Matt leads frequent field trips through his business and with MNPS.


Board of Directors

Ken Bawer, Montgomery County Current Board Member; IT specialist; Volunteer Weed Warrior Supervisor with Montgomery Co. Park Dept.; Board member of Watts Branch Watershed Alliance; pursuing Certificate in Natural History Field Studies, Grad School USA; BS Atmospheric & Oceanic Sciences, U. of Michigan; Graduate work in Developmental Biology, U. of Wisconsin-Madison. 

Vanessa Beauchamp,  Baltimore County  Plant ecologist and Associate Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Towson University. She received a B.S. from the University of California, Irvine and a Ph.D. in Plant Biology from Arizona State University. Her research looks at the effects of invasive plant species and habitat restoration practices on native plant communities. She has conducted research in forest, wetland, and riparian habitats in the mid-Atlantic and throughout the western United States. At Towson, she teaches Botany, Wetland Ecology, Community Ecology and an introductory course in Ecology and Evolution.

Carole Bergmann, Montgomery County Current Board Member; Past President; Forest Ecologist for M-NCPPC, founder of Weed Warriors; Montgomery Co Forestry Board member; Maryland Invasive Species Council Member; Mid-Atlantic Invasive Plant Council Board Member; Grad School USA Natural History Field Studies instructor; Conference, Education, Botany and Habitat Stewardship Committees; field trip leader for MNPS and ANS.

Allen Browne, Montgomery County New Board Member; Informaticist, National Library of Medicine, NIH; MS & PhD-ABD in sociolinguistics; certificate in Natural History Field Studies, Grad School USA/ANS.

Anne Denovo, Montgomery County Long-time wild edible and medicinal plant enthusiast; Montgomery Co certified Weed Warrior and Weed-Warrior Supervisor; leads field trips for MNPS; an attorney practicing in elder law, wills and estates.

Michael Ellis,   Prince George's County M-NCPPC Vegetation Management Coordinator, Department of Parks and Recreation. Associate Wildlife Biologist, field trip leader, iNaturalist Curator, Founding President of The Wildlife Society at UMD, Stewardship Field Supervisor for Sierra Club MD Chapter. Prince George's / Anne Arundel Chapter.

Marc Imlay, PhD, Charles County Current Board Member; Past Vice President; Conservation Biologist; Habitat Stewardship Committee Chair of the Sierra Club MD Chapter; biological control Chair, Mid-Atlantic Invasive Plant Council; Conservation Biologist, Park Ranger Office, Natural & Historical Res Div, M-NCPPC.

Beth Johnson, Montgomery County Current Board Member; Past Treasurer; tax professional/ Enrolled Agent with IRS; interest in Lepidoptera and Odonata; organizes the Howard County Dragonfly Count. 

Stephanie Mason, Montgomery County Senior Naturalist for the Audubon Naturalist Society; has taught Intro to Spring Wildflower ID in the Natural History Field Studies Program, and currently co-teaches Eastern Forest Ecosystems in that program; leads many field trips, both locally and abroad.

Liz Matthews, Ph.D., Montgomery County  Botanist for the National Park Service’s Inventory and Monitoring Program. She completed a dissertation at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, where she studied alluvial plant communities; as part of her doctoral work, Liz sampled the best remaining examples of floodplain vegetation in the North Carolina Piedmont and produced a comprehensive vegetation classification for these plant communities. She also co-developed a tool to link vegetation descriptions, such as those in the US National Vegetation Classification, to riparian restoration efforts in North Carolina.  Following her graduate work in North Carolina, Liz worked with Dr. Susan Mazer at the University of California, Santa Barbara and established the California Phenology Project (, an on-going Citizen Science-based plant phenology monitoring program. In her current position with the NPS, Liz leads the forest vegetation monitoring program, which tracks forest vegetation at >400 monitoring sites distributed among eleven National Park units in the National Capital Region. 

Brett A. McMillan, PhD, Baltimore City Current Board Member; Upper School Science Teacher, The Bryn Mawr School. MS, U FL Research on invasive plant impact on central FL understory plants. PhD, Old Dominion U. PhD research on environmental variables/plant distribution, dunes of barrier islands on the eastern shore of VA.

Christopher F. Puttock, PhD, Prince Georges County Current Board Member. Research Associate and Contractor at the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution. 2012 President, Botanical Society of Washington; Executive Director of Chesapeake Natives; Board Member, the Hawai‘i Conservation Alliance Foundation. Broad interests in landscape restoration and wetland plants. Trained in plant systematics and currently has a contract working on invasive species of the tropics.

Sujata Roy, Montgomery County New Board Member; Instructor for Spring & Summer Wildflower Identification, Grad School USA/ANS; Earned certificate in Natural History Field Studies; Serves on NHFS Advisory Committee; Field trip leader for ANS and Montgomery Parks; interested in habitat preservation.

Roderick Simmons. Northern Virginia  Current Board Member. Plant Ecologist. Research Associate with the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution; Member of the Virginia Botanical Associates; works with the VA and MD Natural Heritage programs. Past President, Botanical Society of Washington; Past President of MNPS, field trip leader for MNPS and VNPS. Natural Resource Manager, City of Alexandria. 

Jil Swearingen, Prince Georges County Invasive Species Consultant/President, In the Weeds; Initiator/Coordinator, Mid Atlantic Early Detection Network; Initiator/Co-founder/Past-President, Board Member, Mid-Atlantic Invasive Plant Council; Chair, Plant Conservation Alliance, Alien Plant Working Group; Past Board Member/Conference Chair, Maryland Native Plant Society; Lead Author, Plant Invaders of Mid-Atlantic Natural Areas; Co-creator, Invasive Plant Atlas of the United States; Creator, WeedUS-Database of Invasive Plants of Natural Areas in the U.S.; M.S. Biology, George Mason University, research on ant transport of seeds of spring ephemeral wildflowers.

Directors Emeritus 

Lou Aronica, Tower City, PA Director Emeritus. Past Treasurer and past Vice President; MNPS field trip leader. Physicist; native woody plant grower; long-time natural design landscaper.

Joseph Metzger, Jr., Frederick County Director Emeritus. Past Treasurer. Field botanist; author of the Maryland Plant Checklist; field trip leader.

©2017 Maryland Native Plant Society 
PO Box 4877, Silver Spring, MD 20914

MNPS is a registered 501(c)(3) charitable organization incorporated in Maryland.
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