Don Riepe has 30 years of experience as a naturalist and manager of the National Park System’s Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge. Don is highly knowledgeable about and a staunch defender of wildlife and habitat in the urban littoral zone.
Don became the director of the Northeast Chapter of the Littoral Society in 2003. During his years as director he led the Society’s efforts to coordinate the annual International Coastal Cleanup for the state of New York, initiated the derelict boat removal program known as Jamaica Bay Clean Sweep, and coordinated countless community-based marsh restoration efforts in Jamaica Bay.
Don retired his role as director at the close of 2021, but still frequently leads domestic and international field trips for the Society.
Don continues to hold the honorary title of Jamaica Bay Guardian on behalf of the Littoral Society, a role he assumed in 2004 due to his exceptional role in promoting the protection, conservation and understanding of the natural and cultural resources of the Jamaica Bay ecosystem.
Don has written many articles on natural history subjects and his photographs have been published in many journals, including Scientific American, National Wildlife, Audubon, Defenders, Underwater Naturalist, Parade and The New York Times.
He holds a Master of Science in Natural Resource Management from the University of New Hampshire and has taught a course in Wildlife Management at St. John’s University. Currently, he serves as an advisory board member for NYC Audubon, Co-Chair, Jamaica Bay Task Force; and Chair, Wildlife Hazard Task Force, JFK Airport.
If you find yourself out on the waterways of Jamaica Bay there is a good chance you will catch sight of Don out on the Littoral Society’s - Jamaica Bay Guardian boat, from which he is likely conducting a regular survey or patrol of the Bay that he loves so much.
• Flamenco dancing
Don sits on the Board of the NYC Audubon Society and the Rockaway Waterfront Alliance and is a founding member and Secretary/Treasurer of the NYC Butterfly Club.
Don's work has been published in Scientific American, National Wildlife, Audubon, Defenders, Underwater Naturalist, Parade and The New York Times
Jamaica Bay Guardian
American Littoral Society
28 West 9th Road
Broad Channel, NY 11693