It is with great pleasure that the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay recognizes Sally Claggett as our 2022 Fran Flanigan Environmental Leadership Award Winner at “The Taste: Celebrate the Chesapeake” on September 22nd at the Annapolis Maritime Museum. The Fran Flanigan award is named after our longest-tenured Executive Director of 20 years. Fran Flanigan was a stalwart leader and visionary for the Alliance. Sally is honored for her 30-plus years of leadership with  the US Forest Service – dedicated to the restoration and protection of forests in Chesapeake. Sally has been a great supporter, funder, mentor, and collaborator of the Alliance’s forestry work over the last 15+ years. 


Sally’s infatuation with nature started at a young age, growing up on the Tred Avon River in Maryland.Her mom gifted her a small plant press when she was 10, and she took her first job at the Forest Service as a Botanist in the northwest. After time away from the Chesapeake Bay watershed, Claggett felt she needed to return to this area. “I wanted to get back to the Chesapeake,” she noted, remembering the unique Chesapeake Bay region. Claggett accepted a position as the US Forest Service Liaison to the Chesapeake Bay Program.


When Claggett began working in forestry in the Chesapeake Bay watershed 20 years ago, the forests looked much different. The US Forest Service saw a need to reach forest landowners directly, but they lacked the capacity to connect with the 800,000 forest landowners. However, the Alliance’s Forests for the Bay program had the amplitude to work across state lines throughout NY, PA, MD, DC, VA, and DC to educate about the direct correlation between forestry and water quality.


In a close partnership, the Alliance worked with the Forest Service to begin conducting educational outreach. The Forests for the Bay program enabled the Forest Service to connect landowners to the right resources and emphasize the importance of forest management to improve water quality work.


Sally is retiring from the US Forest Service after 30+ years of public service. Our Forest Team and our work has benefitted from the leadership, enthusiasm, and expertise that Sally has brought to our partnership.

Please consider joining us at The Taste: Celebrate the Chesapeake. on Thursday, September 22nd, to celebrate Sally Claggett!