Trail Conservancy was formed by a group of outdoor enthusiasts who recognized the need to preserve and protect our trails. We found that while volunteer assistance is useful, it often times is not sufficient to meet the increasing demands to keep trails sustainable. By creating an organization dedicated solely to trails, we can focus our efforts on securing the necessary funds to help us accomplish more within a shorter time frame. We believe that communities everywhere should have trail opportunities near where they live. One of our goals is to help bring trails to the greatest number of people and to areas with the fewest trail options.
Most known for his role served from 1990 to 2005 as Superintendent of the Maryland State Forest and Park Service, President of the board, Rick Barton was responsible for creating a State Forest and Park Service after a reorganization. Under his direction, the Agency included 93 sites on 260,000 acres including state forest lands, 11 million annual visitors, 810 employees and a $40 million budget. Rick Barton’s leadership in the State Forest and Park Service resulted in programs such as Volunteer Rangers, Park Watch, Nature Tourism and Trash Free Parks. He also initiated an extensive citizen volunteer program. Rick’s service with the DNR began in 1977 as a Park Ranger at Elk Neck State Park, then Assistant Manager of Gunpowder Falls State Park, Manager of Gunpowder Falls State Park and Regional Manager of Northern Region Parks. The many facets of Rick’s career with the DNR have given him valuable experience in forest and wetland management, sensitive resources, historic properties and conservation sites. He was awarded the National Association of State Park Directors Distinguished Service Award in 2006, was the First President of the Maryland Rangers Association in 1988 and was a member of the Ridgely Parks Advisory Committee from 1995-2007. Rick holds a Master of Science from Michigan State University with a major in Natural Resources Conservation and a Bachelor of Science from Bryant College with a major in Business Management. Since his recent role as the Interim Secretary of Maryland Department of Natural Resources in 2007, Rick is serving as the acting County Administrator in Caroline County, Maryland.
Austin Steo, Executive Director and Founder of Trail Conservancy, Inc. holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from University of Maryland, Baltimore County. He managed a media business for nearly 20 years. During the decade prior to forming Trail Conservancy Austin pursued his love of trails by assisting parks and volunteer organizations lead trail work and maintenance projects. The last five years of those during which he was elected as Maryland Advocacy Director of MORE, Inc. (Mid-Atlantic Off-Road Enthusiasts) where he successfully received and managed several Recreational Trail Program funding awards. For over 10 years Austin has worked with Maryland park land managers developing and maintaining natural surface trails. He helped establish trial systems at Fairland Park and Rosaryville State–both in Maryland. At Fairland Austin assisted park staff in creating a trail plan, designing and laying-out the route and organizing a diverse group of trail users to ultimately build a trail system over 8 miles in length. At Rosaryville State Park, Austin worked with park staff and the Rosaryville Conservancy to create a trail plan and coordinate construction of a 10 mile perimeter trail loop which included hiring professional trail builders. Austin has provided trail design and layout Upper Rock Creek Park in Montgomery County and L. F. Cosca Park in Prince George’s County, Maryland, and led design and construction of the Hoyle’s Mill Connector Trail, which joins several parks together in Montgomery County, Maryland. Austin’s training includes trail building workshops provided by IMBA (International Mountain Bike Association). With his knowledge of video production he assisted MORE in the production of a basic trails training video series for the Maryland State Parks. Austin’s past experience working 8 years as a Cartographic Technician has been very useful in creating various trail maps used in trial planning and maintenance projects. Austin assists both parks and community in a variety of other ways. He served on East County Recreational Advisory Board in Montgomery, Maryland. He is a member of Weed Warriors, an invasive plant species eradication program and a member of the Volunteer Ranger Program, both in Montgomery County, Maryland. Austin is among a select few inducted as an Honorary Ranger in the Maryland Park Service for his work at Rosaryville. On behalf of MORE he also received a Certificate of Appreciation from MNCPPC (Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission) for trail work at Fairland Recreational Park. In tapping Austin’s trail experience, IMBA has hired him to help train members of the Virginia Conservation Corp in the basics of trail building.
Todd was the first MORE trail liaison for Rosaryville State Park in the early 2000’s. His outdoor interests include mountain biking, surfing, snowboarding, and motorcycle riding. Todd is a long time Ham operator, call sign: W3EME.
|Training and Education||Grant Writing Assistance|
|Design and Consultation||Maintenance|