Our Staff

We are a small, hard-working staff helping local people save local land. While we take on summer interns and part-time educators, the majority of our year is spent efficiently and effectively managing the acquisition, management, education, and promotion of our 2,100+ acres of green space.

  • Christopher J. Beichner

    President & CEO

    412.741.2750 x202

    Christopher J. Beichner has more than 15 years of experience as an entrepreneur, non-profit executive, regional planner, and community and economic developer. Chris is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Allegheny Land Trust. His role as CEO is to set a vision, fundraise, and measure results.

    He has held various leadership positions in community and economic development organizations including the director of a Pittsburgh-based community development corporation, and the director of a regional economic development agency. In his career, Chris has raised millions of dollars in direct resources, which has leveraged over $270 million in public and private investments.

    He holds a degree in Business Management from Clarion University, and graduated from the University of Oklahoma, Economic Development Institute certification program.

  • Lindsay Dill

    Marketing Communications Director

    412.741.2750 x206

    Lindsay joined ALT in 2014, and is the Marketing Communications Director producing the organization’s marketing, literature, photography, and events for the organization. She produced the organization’s first comprehensive communications plan.

    Native to Erie, PA, Lindsay moved to Pittsburgh to attend Point Park University, from which she graduated with degrees in Photojournalism and Global Cultural Studies. Lindsay fell for Pittsburgh whilst biking around each neighborhood exploring its city stairs, third places, and surprisingly expansive acreage of green space. Lindsay also runs her own photography business, and prior to working with ALT, worked with the Tribune-Review, the Erie Times-News, and various photo clients.

    In her free time, she can be found crafting personal documentary photo series on place, labor, travelers, and stairs; volunteering with local bike- and play-promoting organizations; and running, biking, climbing city stairs, and practicing yoga.

    Lindsay’s favorite conservation area is Dead Man’s Hollow because of its location along the GAP, rich history, dark tunnels, waterways, and stairs.

  • Tom Dougherty

    Vice President of Development & External Affairs

    412.741.2750 x211

    Tom joined the ALT team in January 2017 after a 31-year corporate business development and marketing career, coming to the conservation world from PPG where he had been a Director of Marketing since 2003.  He is responsible for growing public awareness of ALT, and expanding its base of support among individual, corporate, foundation, and public contributors.

    Tom redirected his career based solely on his deeply-held belief that ALT’s mission of helping local people save local land is vital to the quality of life in our region saying “I am honored to be part an organization that has preserved thousands of acres of green space, and excited about our amazing potential for additional land conservation and expanded environmental education programming in the years to come.”

    A native of Western Pennsylvania, Tom holds a B.S. Degree in Management from Penn State University and an M.A. in Corporate Communications from Duquesne University, and has been involved over the years as a member and volunteer of several area conservation and trail groups.  He loves hiking, running, paddling and skiing in the region’s woodlands, trails, waterways and mountains; and declines to name a favorite ALT conservation area saying “each one provides its own unique experience!”

  • Julie Halyama

    Development Associate

    412.741.2750 x200

    Julie is a Development Associate at ALT, and is responsible for managing the donor database, helping with special projects, and supporting ALT staff in their work. She is part time and in the office two days a week.

    Julie has a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminology and a Master’s Degree in Public Policy and Administration from The Ohio State University. She spent 10 years working in the criminal justice system supervising offenders, working with crime victims, and developing/administering programs for victims, offenders, and families of offenders. Although she loved her work, she felt she needed to be at home with her children. After several years at home and a move to Pittsburgh, she began looking for part time work and connected with ALT.

    Julie’s favorite conservation area is Dead Man’s Hollow. She finds the history, ruins, and ghost stories very interesting, and enjoys the challenge of the trails.

  • Jessica Kester

    Vice President of Education

    412.741.2750 x210

    Jessica joined ALT in June 2016 as the Vice President of Education. With more than 16 years of experience in education, she is tasked with starting ALT’s new outdoor environmental education department.

    Jessica holds degrees in Biology/Marine Science and Secondary Education/Biology from Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania, and is the PAEE State Coordinator for Project WET. She began her career as a field instructor in coastal marine sciences at the ChincoteagueBay Field Station in Wallops Island, VA. She moved westward to teach students from Chicago at the Lorado-Taft Field Campus of Northern Illinois University. Prior to her time at ALT, she ran The Outdoor Classroom in Pittsburgh’s South Hills for 10 years, which focused on educating youth about Southwestern PA’s variety of ecosystems and wondrous treasures.

    Calming sounds of ocean waves and wind rustling through tree canopies were commonplace throughout Jessica’s childhood. She carries memories of those sounds with her still as she educates green space visitors who are soaking up the sounds in their own natural surroundings.

  • Roy Kraynyk

    Vice President of Land Protection & Capital Projects

    412.741.2750 x203

    Native to Pittsburgh, Roy is ALT’s Vice President of Land Protection & Capital Projects.

    Roy is educated in landscape architecture from Penn State University. His career has involved land conservation, site planning, and community beautification. Over this 20+ year career, Roy has protected more than 4,000 acres and raised more than $15 million for land conservation. Roy founded the Hollow Oak Land Trust, and co-authored several award-winning publications.

    From 2001 to 2012, he served as the Executive Director for ALT. During his leadership, ALT achieved national accreditation and earned several awards: Pennsylvania Governor’s Award for Environmental Excellence, Western Pennsylvania Environmental Award, and American Society of Landscape Architects Special Recognition Award. In 2012, he received the Garden Club of America Conservation Commendation, and the Sewickley Herald named him the 2016 Man of the Year for his conservation work in the Sewickley Valley.

    Roy presents at regional and national conferences, and is one of several professionals featured in “Careers in Landscape Architecture.”

  • Keri Rouse

    Dead Man's Hollow Community Coordinator

    412.741.2750 x204

    Keri Rouse joined the ALT Team in 2014 through Public Allies Pittsburgh, an apprenticeship program offered through AmeriCorps. She now works as the Dead Man’s Hollow Community Coordinator­ implementing the DMH Management Plan by working with neighbors and volunteers to improve and build trails; keeping invasive species in check; and getting more folks out to discover the charm of the area for themselves.

    When she’s not growing, cooking, and eating vegetables with her two pet guinea pigs, she’s out running and getting lost in Pittsburgh’s many neighborhoods.

    Keri’s favorite ALT conservation area is Dead Man’s Hollow, and she’s not just saying that because she has to. Despite having spent a lot of time at the Hollow, Keri loves how every visit brings with it a sense of being the first to discover something secret– be it a scenic overlook, a historic remnant, or a hidden patch of wildflowers.

  • Emilie Rzotkiewicz

    Vice President of Land Resources

    412.741.2750 x201

    Emilie Rzotkiewicz is the Vice President of Land Resources. She manages ALT’s land assets, and directs the stewardship department in their care and management of the land.

    An undergrad degree in biology from Denison University and a Master’s Degree in Forest Resources from Penn State University, Emilie is equipped with the right knowledge for the job. With past work experience in the public, private, and non-profit sector of land conservation, Emilie develops and implements multi-disciplinary natural resource management programs and strategies that address the diverse natural lands of southwestern PA.

    Growing up in rural Pennsylvania, Emilie appreciates what the outdoors provides to children, adults and all other creatures. Emilie resides in the North Hills of Pittsburgh, and can often be found exploring ALT green spaces with her family and dog. Her favorite ALT conservation area is Fern Hollow, for this is where her husband Matt took her for their second date!

  • Caitlin Seiler

    Volunteer & Land Resources Director

    412.741.2750 x207

    After volunteering for several years, Caitlin joined the ALT staff in 2014. She now directs ALT’s “forest” of volunteers, and manages ALT green spaces.

    Caitlin has a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from Carlow University and a Master’s Degree in Environmental Science and Management from Duquesne University. Before joining ALT, Caitlin ran participation in a children’s respiratory health program at Healthy Home Resources, and provided environmental and safety regulatory education, consulting, and training in the United States and Canada at Printing Industries of America.

    She currently serves on the Trail Pittsburgh Board of Directors, and –when not covered in dirt on an ALT green space– she is likely to be found planning her next cooking or crafting project with her two Chihuahuas. Caitlin’s favorite green space is Sycamore Island, because it encapsulates the work of ALT’s mission with so much history, ecology, and stewardship activity in one, isolated location. It embodies a lot in a small package — like her dogs!

  • Julie Travaglini

    Education Program Director

    412.741.2750 x209

    Julie joined ALT’s brand new Education Department in June 2016 as the Education Program Director. Julie graduated from Muskingham University with a Bachelor’s degree in Biology and a Master’s degree in teaching.

    Julie’s entire adult professional career has been in environmental education. She has completed internships at Living Treasures Animal Park, The Dawes Arboretum, and the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden. She served as the Senior Program Facilitator at The Outdoor Classroom for almost seven years where she taught more than 5,000 pre-school children the joys of nature, planned community events, and wrote curriculum– lots and lots of curriculum. She is also a Specialty Discipline Instructor for the state.

    When not writing curriculum and playing with toys meant for her preschool students, Julie can be found horseback riding, kayaking, watching reality TV, reading, or collecting exotic pets such as reptiles.