The Maryland Native Plant Society

2023 Board of Directors

President: Lauren Hubbard

Vice President: Judith P. Fulton

Treasurer: Diane Beedle

Secretary: Pru Foster, Ph. D.


Allen Browne
Karyn Molines
Sujata Roy
Rod Simmons
Jil Swearingen

Upcoming Board Meetings

  • Meetings are typically in the odd numbered months


Treasurer, Diane Beedle. Prince George's County. Diane is the chair and co-founder of the Cheverly Native Plant Project. She has a long history of advocacy, policy work, and direct service from the local to the national level.  She has worked as a community organizer, a recycling program's daily operations manager, and a legislative staffer on Capitol Hill and for a national non-profit before opening her own business selling vintage wares and her handwoven baskets and rugs from sustainable materials. She is currently completing the University of Maryland Extension's Master Naturalist program. Diane has a BA in philosophy from Boston College and spent five years in the University of Illinois-Chicago's College of Education PhD program studying political philosophy of education.

Allen Browne. Montgomery County. Current Board member; retired Informaticist, National Library of Medicine, NIH; MS & PhD-ABD in sociolinguistics; certificate in Natural History Field Studies, Grad School USA/ANS.

Secretary, Pru Foster, Ph.. D. Montgomery County.  Pru is a keen native plant gardener and is learning more, all the time, about the native species in Maryland and how to garden in the mid-Atlantic. She moved here in 2019 from the UK where gardening was relatively easy - no harsh winters, no dry summers, and no roaming herbivores - except a vast abundance of slugs. She earned a degree in horticulture from the Royal Horticulture Society and one in garden design from the Bristol, UK, Garden Design School. Pru started her professional life as an astrophysicist, but her abiding drive to protect wildlife pushed her to pursue climate change science for most of her academic career. To that end, she did research on the role of terrestrial ecosystems in the global carbon cycle and how climate change effects biodiversity. Pru is author of the book A Drop of Grace: Finding and Protecting Our Common Ground and writes a newsletter called The Prudent Lifestyle, which has articles ranging from gardening, to sustainability, to nature fascination

Vice President, Judy Fulton. Baltimore County. Judy specializes in native plants, invasive plants and ecology, as the founder and principal of EcoPlant Consulting. Her expertise includes selection of appropriate native plants for specific ecoregions and growing conditions, and management of invasive plants. She provides recommendations for transforming degraded properties from landscapes dominated by invasives to healthy ecosystems with native plants. She consults for both individuals and groups, and teaches workshops for organizations such as the University of Maryland Extension, the Maryland Master Gardeners, the Natural History Society of Maryland, and the Irvine Nature Center. Although her principal loves are native species and healthy ecosystems, she is also actively engaged in the invasive species arena. As chair of the Committee on Invasives Lists for the Maryland Invasive Species Council (MISC), she is implementing the Mid-Atlantic Invaders Tool and has coordinated a major update of MISC’s invasive species lists of plants, insects, other animals and pathogens. Additionally, she acts as an invasive plant expert on various legal cases. Judy serves on the Board of the Mid-Atlantic Invasive Plant Council. In a previous life, she earned a Harvard MBA and spent over twenty-five years in the business world, including as CEO of a start-up medical device company. The Daily Record selected Judy as one of Maryland’s Top 100 Women in 1998, 2001 and 2004, and inducted her into its Circle of Excellence.

President, Lauren Hubbard. Montgomery County. Current Board Member; Owner of Native By Design, LLC. With a particular interest in the preservation of genetic diversity in native plant populations, Lauren has served on the founding board of the Long Island Native Plant Initiative and has launched a project called Butterfly Bandwagon to promote the use of native plants in home landscaping. Lauren is a certified Chesapeake Bay Landscape Professional, Weed Warrior, and Master Gardener. She has worked with Howard Ecoworks, Muddy Branch Alliance and Urban Ecosystem Restorations providing program support, community outreach, and grant writing and management services that support ecological restoration and stewardship.

Karyn Molines. Charles County. Membership Chair; Past President, Vice President, Secretary, Fall Conference Chair; Southern Maryland Chapter. Division Chief, Calvert County Natural Resources Division. Received her BS in Zoology from University of Maryland, College Park, MS in Environmental Science & Policy from Johns Hopkins University and Certificate in Natural History, Grad School USA/ANS.

Sujata Roy, Montgomery County. Current Treasurer; Instructor for Spring & Summer Wildflower Identification and Botany for Naturalists, Grad School USA/ANS; certificate in Natural History Field Studies; Field trip leader for ANS; Naturalist with Montgomery Parks; interested in habitat preservation.

Rod Simmons. Northern Virginia. Rod is a plant ecologist who has worked extensively in the fields of conservation biology, natural resource management, and ecological restoration for nearly 30 years. He is a Research Associate with the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution; a member of the Virginia Botanical Associates; former contract botanist for NatureServe, National Park Service, and others; and works closely with the Virginia and Maryland natural heritage programs. He is the author of numerous technical reports, papers, and articles, and has published in scientific journals. He is a member and a past president of the Botanical Society of Washington, a past president of the Maryland Native Plant Society, serves on the board of the Virginia Native Plant Society, and is a regular field trip leader for all of these organizations. He is a frequent lecturer on native plants, natural communities, ecological restoration, and other related topics. He is the Natural Resource Manager and Plant Ecologist for the City of Alexandria, Virginia.

Jil Swearingen. Prince George's County. Jil is lead author of Plant Invaders of Mid-Atlantic Natural Areas, Field Guide (2022), editor for the Maryland Native Plant Society's newsletter Marilandica since spring 2021, and founder of the Mid-Atlantic Invasive Plant Council. Prior to retiring in 2017, she worked for the National Park Service for 22 years, serving as Manager for the National Capital Region's Integrated Pest Management and Invasive Species Program.

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