The Severn River Association is pleased and excited to announce that native son and environmental attorney, Jesse Iliff, joined our team as Executive Director on March 1, 2022.
Jesse brings a wealth of experience as an environmental advocate and Riverkeeper to lead SRA, the nation’s oldest river group, to ensure that we achieve our new strategic vision — to ensure that the Severn River is thriving by 2050.
By joining SRA, Jesse is literally coming back home to the Severn River where he grew up and where he still has deep family roots along the shores, from Rays Pond to St. Helena Island.
Most recently, Jesse served as the South Riverkeeper for the Arundel Rivers Federation. In that role, Jesse spoke at our John Wright Speaker Series in 2019 to call for tougher stormwater compliance at development project (see picture at left).
In his Riverkeeper role, Jesse distinguished himself as a respected environmental leader, tireless advocate for oyster, stream and shoreline restoration, and fierce proponent of tighter control over stormwater runoff that is the key source of the pollution that harms all of the waterways in Anne Arundel County.
Jesse served on the Maryland Oyster Advisory Commissionl. Currently, he chairs the Board of Waterkeepers Chesapeake, serves on the Anne Arundel County Citizens Environmental Commission, The Mayoral Creeks Cabinet for the City of Annapolis and the Maryland Commission on Climate Change.
In announcing Jesse’s new role, SRA President Mark Lister said, “Jesse will lead SRA into a new era, one that focuses on restoring water quality in the Severn River by targeting priority areas for watershed restoration.”
Jesse will lead an SRA that is currently engaged in river-based scientific endeavors, which include a robust, water quality monitoring program, a long-term commitment to oyster restoration in the Seven River, oyster reef research, and a Floating Classroom program to raise environmental awareness for students.
“With his experience and skill set,” Lister added, “Jesse will lead SRA as expand staff and expand SRA’s capabilities to ensure that it is indeed ‘A New Day @SRA!’”