Traci Deen, Esq.

Executive Director –

A 6th generation Floridian born in Homestead, Florida, Traci is passionate about protecting Florida’s wild and working lands for the generations of Floridians to come. She leads our team as Executive Director, overseeing statewide land conservation efforts. Her work with CTF includes fostering strategic partnerships, engaging the community and community leaders, and facilitating large-scale land transactions.

Traci is an environmental lawyer and an active member in the legal community. She was appointed to the Florida Bar’s Governmental and Public Policy Advocacy Committee for 2017-2018. She’s also a member of the Environmental & Land Use Law, Public Interest Law, and City, County & Local Government Law sections, and a member of the Orange County Bar Association & Legal Aid Society. Traci is currently serving as Legislative Chair for both the Florida Association for Women Lawyers and the Central Florida Women Lawyers Association.

In the community, Traci is an active member of the Junior League of Orlando and serves as the Chair-Elect of the Junior Leagues of Florida State Public Affairs committee, advocating to improve the lives of Florida women, children, and families. Additionally, she serves on the Board of Directors of AMIKids Orlando and the Salvation Army of Seminole County.

She enjoys a good book, horseback riding, exploring trails with her dog Maggie Sue, and bike rides with her husband Michael.

Cyndi Fernandez

Assistant Director –

Cyndi is a Florida native who is passionate about protecting the working lands and wildlife habitat. She is a communications specialist with broad nonprofit management and organizational development experience. Before joining the Conservation Trust for Florida, she worked for the Whidbey Camano Land Trust in Coupeville, Washington and the Poynter Institute for Media Studies in St. Petersburg, Florida. She holds an associate degree in graphic arts and a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass media communications. She spends her free time traveling, taking pictures, and visiting with her family and friends.

Charles “Butch” Parks

Senior Director of Conservation –

Butch comes to CTF from the Jackson Hole Land Trust (JHLT) in Wyoming, where he worked as Regional Lands Director protecting crucial open space in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Prior to working for JHLT, Butch served as the Commercial Property Manager for Wyoming State Lands and then as the Land Administration Supervisor for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department. Originally from Houston, Texas, Butch graduated from the University of Houston with a B.S. in electrical engineering technology. Butch has a diverse background in business ownership and management including ranching, aviation, veterinary medicine, construction, renewable energy, and real estate. Butch holds an Airline Transport Pilot Certificate, Flight Instructor Certificate, and is a licensed Real Estate Broker. He served honorably in the Marine Corps.

His greatest love is sharing his life with his wife, Sandy, and following the lives of his four children and his new grandson. Butch enjoys sports, hiking, biking, kayaking, skiing, wildlife viewing, and exploring the world.

Keith Fountain

Real Estate and Conservation Strategies Consultant (Contractor)

Keith Fountain is founder and manager of Conservation Advisors LLC, and a member of The Florida Bar. He has over 20 years of experience in real estate transactions and the development and implementation of conservation strategies that have protected hundreds of thousands of acres of land for both public and private ownership and management. Read more about Keith Fountain here.

Valerie Anderson

GIS Consultant with Anderson Geospatial (Contractor)

Valerie Anderson is a GIS consultant that makes many of our maps and monitors our conservation easements. She has a B.S. in Horticultural Science from the University of Florida and a M.S. in Geographic Information Science and Technology from the University of Southern California. Before striking it out on her own, Valerie worked for the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, incentivizing farmers and ranchers to protect the environment on their own property. She founded Friends of Split Oak, and she loves birds, nature, rowing, cycling, swimming, and surfing.

Emily Hesterman

Land Easement Stewardship Intern

Emily is from Santa Cruz, California and moved here when she was 13. She instantly fell in love with the beautiful Cypress swamps and the towering Live Oaks. She is a student intern at Conservation Trust for Florida currently studying Botany at Santa Fe college and plans on transferring to University of Florida after she earns her A.A. She provides help managing and accessing land conservation easements as well as event planning and office organization aid. She has experience working with animal management, conservation education, and sustainability focused programs at the Santa Fe Teaching Zoo. She enjoys spending time outdoors and sharing her appreciation for nature with people.