Meet our new Executive Director

Kristen Schlemmer | July 1, 2021

Join us in welcoming our new Executive Director, Ayanna Jolivet Mccloud, who started with Bayou City Waterkeeper earlier this week.

Ayanna brings over twenty years in nonprofit administration, leading programs and building infrastructure at environmental and cultural institutions. Before joining BCWK, she worked at Houston Botanic Garden as director of education and public programs, overseeing the launch of the organization’s first-ever educational offerings including virtual lectures and tours, a community garden, classes, a docent program, school programs, and a summer camp. In addition to program development, Ayanna brings experience in capacity building, development, and fundraising at institutions including University of Houston, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and Project Row Houses. Building on her background in arts, Ayanna uses creative thinking in advocating for and connecting with the environment.

“Houston is at a crossroads in how we see resiliency, sustainability, and natural resources management,” says Ayanna. “Now more than ever, we are thinking of how we live with and access water, but there are still considerable challenges. As a native Houstonian, I am elated to lead collaboration around restoring connections to our watersheds and the incredible biodiversity that they support, encouraging reciprocity in our relationship with nature.”

“It is not enough to talk about the environment without framing the people connected to these spaces and the inequities that many face in relation to nature. I am inspired by the waterkeeper model, which works across disciplines — law, science, and community outreach — to protect those in vulnerable communities and ensure access to clean water. BCWK is a regional leader bridging the worlds of conservation and environmental justice, which are often separated. I look forward to advancing our organization’s unique and essential mission of ensuring clean water in the Lower Galveston Bay through water quality improvements, wetlands preservation, and nature-based solutions.”