I’m a full-time volunteer – a very busy one. It’s just me and my red pickup truck. I’m on my community board where I focus on erosion control and stormwater runoff. Since 2013 I’ve been planting selections of native plants in my home landscape – lots of them. I’m trying to grow every plant in the U.S. Fish & Wildlife – Chesapeake Bay Watershed guidebook, especially those that can solve problems like prevent erosion, filter runoff or sustain a butterfly population. Studying plants, properly siting them, challenging the literature that says ‘drought tolerant’ or ‘withstands inundation’, I learn by growing. The more I learn the better I can help others. I am an incessant reader and I attend lectures year-round; being a life-long learner is how you learn to adapt and improve your value to others. I believe native plants are what is going to save the Bay, its tributaries and all the species that live in, on and around it.
I’m a Master Watershed Steward, Master Gardener, Master Naturalist and a graduate of the Howard County Legacy Leadership Institute for the Environment and the Chesapeake Bay Landscape Professional Program. I write a monthly column ‘Latin for Gardeners’ for the Master Gardeners of Maryland and have been a naturalist correspondent for the Annapolis Capitol Gazette. As a volunteer I create educational material for schools and organizations, teach, design landscapes using only native plants and frequently procure native plants for people in the mid-Atlantic states and Washington DC. My goal is to create connected habitat corridors to support local fauna and bird migrations. I’m a global birder; I’ve traveled to >50 countries photographing native flora and fauna. A U.S. Air Force veteran, I earned a B.S. and a M.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Colorado and the University of Texas at Austin, respectively. I spent over twenty years in industry, most recently as Executive Director at JHU Whiting School of Engineering.
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Listing Title: Alison Milligan