Island Dispatch | April 2017


Our 2017 Volunteers of the Year are Real Peaches

On a gray March morning, Barbara and Randy Schnabel launch into a familiar routine. They pull on their warm hooded parkas, leather gloves, and “Alaskan sneakers” (high rubber boots). Barbara checks her coat pocket to make sure she has a plastic bag for trash, and Randy grabs his bright-orange weed wrench. In spitting rain they set out for Peach Preserve, a five-minute walk from their home on Guemes Island.

Once there, they go to work…

Field Trip to American Camp | Will Fisher Photo


Let’s face it: Annual meetings can be dull affairs involving pie charts and rubber chickens. We try to make ours a little different, with entertaining speakers, a tasty lunch menu, and great shorefront views of Friday Harbor. Please join us on May 13 from 11:30am to 1:30pm at the San Juan Island Yacht Club, just a short stroll from the Friday Harbor ferry landing, for the San Juan Preservation Trust’s 38th official family gathering.

This year’s featured speaker is former Preservation Trust board member Jonathan White. His talk will center on the research he did for his new book, Tides: The Science and Spirit of the Ocean. Over a ten-year period, Jonathan traveled the world to gain insights into extraordinary tidal phenomena, including the higher flood tides that now accompany rising sea levels. Griffin Bay Books will provide copies of Tides if you’d like to buy one for Jonathan to sign.

Over lunch, Executive Director Tim Seifert will brief you on recent accomplishments and current projects. After dessert and adjournment, Stewardship Manager Kathleen Foley will lead an optional “Bluebirds and Butterflies” field trip to American Camp (limited to 20 guests). We hope to see you on May 13!

To register for the Annual Meeting and optional field trip, please visit our calendar and click “Sign Up” in the designated place. The cost is $25 per person, payable with your registration. Members may also register by mailing in the enclosed RSVP card with a check. Questions? Call 360-378-2461.


Our Trustees often log many hours a week in the service of the Trust and our mission to protect and care for island land. They represent you, our supporters, as they strive to ensure the effectiveness and integrity of our work.

This past year, the SJPT Board of Trustees has consisted of 21 members, the maximum allowed under our bylaws. Standing for re-election this year are three incumbents: Keith Gerrard (Shaw), Charles Givens (Lopez), and Mary Miller (Orcas). This year’s ballot includes no new candidates.

Two incumbents, Carolyn Haugen (San Juan Island) and Steve McKeon (Orcas) have decided to step down after many years of service. “I’ve relied upon Steve McKeon as a primary source of wisdom and moral support since we conspired to tackle Turtleback Mountain over 10 years ago,” says Executive Director Tim Seifert, “and Carolyn Haugen has a gentle genius for inspiring others and for asking the perfect, razor-sharp question at just the right time. I cannot recall a single significant success that this organization has had over the past decade that was not driven by one or both of these two remarkable people.”

We encourage all current SJPT members to vote in this year’s election prior to the May 13 Annual Meeting. Visit to read the candidates’ bios. To vote, complete and mail the enclosed ballot (must be postmarked no later than May 8).

SJPT Board on Waldron Island| Staff Archive