Clearwater Welcomes Jen Benson as Environmental Action Director Following Retirement of Long-time Director, Manna Jo Greene

Beacon, N.Y. – Clearwater welcomes Jen Benson as their new Environmental Action Director. Benson is a seasoned advocate with nearly a decade of experience working to restore the Hudson River, watershed and tributaries.

Benson is set to lead the organization’s efforts to defend the Hudson River, succeeding Manna Jo Greene, who retired from the role in May 2023.

“As the Hudson River continues to face formidable challenges and threats both new and old, Clearwater, our partners, and the communities along the river remain steadfast in our commitment to achieving a swimmable, fishable, drinkable Hudson River. I’m inspired and grateful to have the opportunity to follow in Manna Jo Greene’s footsteps and continue Clearwater’s mission.”

Jen Benson holds a Masters of Science in Environmental Policy from Bard College and a Bachelors of Arts in Literature from SUNY Geneseo. Prior to joining Clearwater, she worked for the Hudson River Watershed Alliance as the Watershed Program Specialist, facilitating capacity building for watershed groups and supporting watershed characterization processes. Jen also spent seven years at Riverkeeper, beginning as a FAO Schwartz Fellow, then organizing on Hudson River issues including Hudson River PCBs contamination, the proposed NY/NJ Harbor storm surge barriers, and managed the largest day of service for the Hudson River, the Riverkeeper Sweep.

Clearwater’s Executive Director, David Toman, commented, “I am thrilled to have Jen onboard! We are working closely on plans for the future and prioritizing the tasks ahead of us. Her experience in Hudson River environmental issues, as well as organizing community members, speaks wonderfully to Clearwater’s legacy in rallying a community wide effort to protect the river. While many are already aware that we welcomed Jen to the team in July, her first official presentation on behalf of Clearwater will take place at our Annual Meeting in October. With the support of the Environmental Action Committee, Jen will unveil Clearwater’s advocacy priorities and the first steps towards their implementation.”

The Hudson Valley became home for Jen in 2015, when she moved to the area from New York’s Finger Lakes region. In her free time she enjoys hiking, running, and exploring the Hudson Valley. Clearwater is proud to welcome Jen Benson to the team and excited for her leadership as we enter a new era of advocacy on the Hudson River.