Ernest Cook


Ernest worked for the Trust for Public Land from 1980-2018. He served in positions as varied as top budget manager, head of institutional philanthropy, senior real estate negotiator, and director of government relations and public finance. He is particularly recognized for founding a “conservation finance” program that has played a leading role in generating over $90 billion in new state and local government funds for parks and land conservation through legislative advocacy and ballot measures. Ernest is known for innovation, confident leadership and team building, with strengths in marketing, research and program development. As a grant maker, grant seeker and donor advisor, he has a keen understanding of the transformational potential of philanthropy.


Ernest can be reached at [email protected] 

Deb Kmon Davidson

Associate Director

Deb brings to the Network over 20 years of experience in conservation philanthropy and landscape conservation. Her work has largely focused on protecting wildlife corridors and large landscape conservation, with a specific focus on network development, connectivity policy, and science in western North America.

Deb serves as NLC’s Associate Director and the Vice President for Partnerships and Advancement for the Center for Large Landscape Conservation. Deb provides leadership on organizational governance supporting human resources, program administration, board development, and communications. She oversees the program and organizational development, directs fundraising, financial management, and strategic planning. At NLC, she ensures implementation of the regranting process.

Deb has served as program officer for the Wilburforce Foundation, program staffer for American Wildlands, the Ecology Center, and Montana Outdoor Science School. She has served on numerous boards, including as the Bozeman Community Food Co-op president and as an advisor to the Gallatin Valley Land Trust.


Deb can be reached at [email protected]

Jonathan S. Peterson

Program Manager

Jon brings to the Network more than 10 years experience in working to advance landscape conservation. Prior to joining the Network he coordinated the South Mountain Partnership, a regional landscape conservation project in south-central Pennsylvania, and spent three years on the staff of the Boston-based Kendall Foundation. He is also a senior fellow of the Environmental Leadership Program. A graduate of Middlebury College and the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, Jon lives in western Massachusetts with his wife and two young children.


Jon can be reached at [email protected]