SKWC Members

The Saw Kill Watershed Community (SKWC) is made up of concerned citizens, Bard College faculty/students/staff, farmers, scientists, fishermen, representatives from non-profits, and representatives from state and local governments.

SKWC Leadership Team

Finalized in December 2017, our Leadership Team (LT) will continue to work on securing funding, planning monthly meetings, and coordinating community projects.

Karen Schneller-McDonald, LT Chair

Red Hook resident and author of “Connecting the Drops: A citizens’ guide to protecting water resources” (Cornell University Press, 2015) and the companion website: Karen is the President of Hickory Creek Consulting LLC, where she is a wetland specialist and natural resources consultant. Karen’s local and professional expertise includes watershed monitoring, protection, and education.

Sheila Buff, LT Vice-Chair

Milan resident and author of eight national bestsellers in health and medicine. Sheila is a widely experienced freelance health writer specializing in consumer-oriented medicine, nutrition, and health. As a Saw Kill Watershed resident, the coordinator of SKWC’s predecessor Stream Alliance of Northern Dutchess (SAND), and expert wordsmith, Sheila is perfect as our media outreach person.

Eli Dueker, LT Member

Professor of Environmental and Urban Studies (EUS) and Biology at Bard College. Eli is a microbiologist focused on water quality in the Hudson River watershed. Eli was the lead author on the Hudson River Estuary Program grant application to get the SKWC started, a Hudson River Foundation grant to get the monitoring program started, and internal funding at Bard for SKWC-related work.


These are folks who have advised us in forming the SKWC, writing grants, running meetings, and starting our monitoring programs.

Ona Ferguson, Collaboration Building Institute and HRNERR

Betsy Blair, HRNERR and NYS DEC

Sarah Fernald, HRNERR

Dan Miller, Hudson River Estuary Program

Emily Vail, Hudson River Estuary Program

Emily Hauser, Hudson River Estuary Program

Maureen Cunningham, Hudson River Watershed Alliance

Jen Epstein, Riverkeeper

Dan Shapley, Riverkeeper

Laurie Husted, Red Hook CAC and Bard College Office of Sustainability

John Maddox, Vertical Lift Visuals and drone pilot

Hudson River Foundation

Students and Interns

Victoria Choy ’20, SKWC Intern

Tess Noble Strohm ’21 and Franklin Savulich ’19, Bard Water Lab Interns