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Farewell, Benée!

It is with mixed emotions that we announce the departure of Benée Hershon, Cheshire County Conservation District’s Community Engagement Director. She will be venturing on from this role to explore different farming operations across the United States, an exciting and fitting next step in her journey to help build a sustainable future!

Picture of Benée standing in a restored pollinator meadow, representing CCCD at our 2022 Fall Tour.
Benée in a restored pollinator meadow during our 2022 Fall Tour

During her time with CCCD, Benée created all external communications coming from the Conservation District, led several important regional initiatives and built key community partnerships. Her creativity and eagerness to support our community is obvious to all who interact with her and has been crucial to the success of CCCD programs. “Benée was a welcomed energy at the table and I am very thankful for her efforts in creating the Pollinator Palooza in Ashuelot River Park” shared Andy Bohannon, Parks, Recreation & Facilities Director for the City of Keene.

One of the pollinator booths at the 2022 Pollinator Palooza in Keene, NH
Benée helped organize the 2022 Pollinator Palooza shown above

Benée is known for her warm personality and keen eye for organization. Speaking of his experience collaborating on the annual Seed Sale, CCCD Associate Board Member Tom Beaudry said, “Everything went smoothly thanks to Benée's attention to details, making it an enjoyable experience.” This sentiment has been shared by so many others. Nicolette Gagnon, Urban Ag & Gardens Coordinator for the Community Garden Connections voiced “Working with Benée was such a joy. Her friendly demeanor and caring attitude made working together feel like catching up with an old friend.”

Benée greatly increased the impact of the Conservation District and our ability to meet the needs of the Cheshire community. Her efforts include growing the popularity and impact of our monthly newsletters, increasing our reach across various social media platforms and working with partners to create and share resources and events to support community conservation. “CCCD would not have grown without her knowledge and social media skills. Benee always seems to remain cool, calm, and collected and take on whatever was necessary with positive energy and a warm smile,” remarked Peter Renzleman, CCCD Board Member.

Benée speaking at CCCD's 2022 Annual Celebration
Benée speaking at CCCD's 2022 Annual Celebration

She channeled her passion for urban agriculture, equitable food access, active living and more to form lasting community initiatives and relationships with partnering organizations. Vice Chair of the CCCD Board, Amy Bodwell, summed it up well “Her reach into the community, whether working with food, farms, markets, education, signs, outreach, people, etc., was extensive.” She continued, “Benee is a gift CCCD will not forget. In her short time, she left a huge impression. I consider her a colleague and a friend…I will miss Benée and I know CCCD will as well.”

“It was such a joy getting to know her during my time as a new Associate Board member on the CCCD Board. During all of my interactions with her, she was very sincere and thoughtful,” shared Jenna Rich, CCCD Associate Board Member. “Her smile is infectious and her passion for this region’s conservation is inspiring. I am thrilled for her new adventure and can only hope that she circles back to our area some time in the future and teaches us some of what she’s learned. Best of luck!”

We are very grateful to Benée for all she has done for CCCD and our community and wish her well on the next adventure! Benée will be succeeded by Matt Smetana, CCCD Community Engagement Coordinator. He can be reached at or (603)756.9282.

Picture of restored pollinator habitat in Roxbury, NH
Restored pollinator habitat in Roxbury, NH



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