our board of directors
Cheryl Joy Lipton, President, provides Landscape Designs and Ecosystem Restoration services in Chester, VT. She has a Bachelor’s in Landscape Architecture from SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry and a Master of Science in Ecology from Penn State. Her work includes landscape design, ecosystem restoration, and sustainable living consultation, in Vermont, Central Pennsylvania and Upstate New York, in the private and public sectors. Cheryl is a specialist in native plants and invasive non-natives, serves on the Chester Planning Commission and is a founding leader of Mountain Valley Climate Action 350VT. She has been gardening using organic methods since the 1980s. She and Melody Reed started the group Victory Gardening in the 21st Century, and together they run a weekly on-line gardeners’ support group. She is also a homeschooling mother, keeps chickens, 2 cats, a young dog and a geriatric guinea pig and is working on restoring a solar powered, 1850 Gothic Revival farmhouse and its 5 acres of land left fallow for about 17 years. Cheryl lives sustainably, making most things from scratch, necessary when eschewing plastic, single use packaging and various unnecessary additives.
Luna Burkland is enthusiastic about the well-being of the environment, and reversing climate change. She is an active member of the Environmental Club at Green Mountain Union High School, Mountain Valley Climate Action Group in Chester, Vermont, and she is a passionate composting advocate. She hopes to see the world repaired from the climatic damage people have instilled upon the earth, and she helps push towards that goal in any way she can. Luna lives in Chester, with her family, in a solar powered house.
Melody Reed, Secretary, is an artist and life-long organic gardener. She lives off-the-grid in a solar-powered house in the woods with her husband. She was a past Vermont Coordinator for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, and most recently Executive Director of the Gallery at the VAULT, a nonprofit state craft center in Springfield. She was one of the originators of the Springfield Steampunk Festival event. She’s an activist member of Mountain Valley Climate Action 350VT and is deeply concerned about climate change. She has a BA from the College of St. Joseph where she studied History and Studio Art. She enjoys making jewelry, pastel painting, and spending time with her family.
Join our Board
CCG&G is looking for a person with accounting experience to join our volunteer board and serve as Treasurer. Knowledge of grant research and writing would be a huge plus. Be part of an amazing community project!
Tim Roper, Vice President, recently retired after more than a dozen years in the solar industry, where he was instrumental in developing the market for residential solar in New England and New York state. Tim serves on the Chester, VT Planning Commission. He has owned or been a principal partner in several small businesses over the years and is currently the owner of an all organic and solar powered lawn and garden care company which utilizes all electric, commercial grade equipment that he recharges from his home solar system. Tim is passionate about working to mitigate climate change as well as working to protect the diversity of life within our local environment and believes that educating folks regarding the benefits of caring for the natural systems making up each person's piece of the landscape is crucially important to the health of our planet. Tim has lived and raised his family in Chester, VT for nearly 30 years.
Robert Nied, Acting Treasurer, is a musician and poet and has been a community, environmental and social justice activist for more than 40 years. He retired from his roles as the Director of Cyber- Security for Verizon, the CEO of the Robert Nied Consultancy Group, and the Town Administrator of Londonderry, VT. He also served as an advisor and contributing writer for the American Bar Association, Section on Science and Technology. Robert is a organic gardener and greenhouse grower and works as a gardener and garden designer for private clients. Robert served as Executive Director for the Center for Sustainable Rural Communities and a guest lecturer at the State University of New York, Cobleskill, NY Environmental Science Department, where he presented programs on the environmental impacts of fossil fuels. Robert is also the Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Whiting Library and lives in Chester, VT in a solar powered house, with his wife, a wellness specialist, writer and blogger.
Kate Matracia, Grant Researcher, moved to Chester, VT in 2019. Once she wandered the town
and surrounding area, she knew this is where she wanted to live in her little forever home. She has had a variety of careers from vice president of catalog and print production for several retail companies to certified pastry chef and owner of Angelina’s Fine Pastries. She also worked in public information for one of the seven national nuclear laboratories. Kate
recently retired from more than twenty years of copyediting, fact-checking, and proofreading for national and international retail and educational publishers. Now, when not creating main courses and desserts in her kitchen, she is concentrating on organic
gardening and bringing her recently purchased property from overgrown neglect to a place
of rustic perennial beauty and peace. Kate recycles, reuses, repurposes, and repairs everything she can in her home and on her property, so helping to rebuild this wonderful glass-and-steel community greenhouse has become an exciting goal in her new life in