Where are they now? | Julia G. King, from Intern to Full-Time Staff

August 24, 2023

By Julia G. King


Growing up in Hampton Bays, I knew there was a local land trust that conserved farmland and wooded spaces throughout the East End. I went on to learn about conservation easements in college. Yet I had no real concept of what it took to manage them until I became an intern at that local land trust, the Peconic Land Trust, in 2011.

As an intern, I was tasked with organizing files for easements held by the Trust. These folders contained page upon page of legal jargon sprinkled with some maps. Not always easy for a new person like me to understand! The real understanding came when I tagged along on monitoring trips to a property that had an easement, or protection, on it. Armed with a checklist and clipboard, we walked the property looking for violations to the easement. This is key to making sure current landowners are upholding the easement and not doing this like clearing trees in an area that is to remain wooded.

My most vivid memory of that summer was mowing the lawn at the North Fork Stewardship Center in Cutchogue and having the McCall cows grazing in the nearby pasture following me. It had always been hard to describe where I grew up to friends I met at college. Yes, the East End is only 70ish miles from New York City, but the environment is completely different. Here I was walking trails, visiting farmers and community gardeners, and working for an organization that ensured this way of life could continue.


Going into college undeclared, my summer at the Trust helped reaffirm my decision to major in a dual degree of Environmental Studies and International Affairs. As I continued my education and co-ops with other environmental organizations, I recalled my time at the Trust. Although I held more traditional office jobs of filing, writing articles, and updating websites, I couldn’t forget all the hard work that was needed to maintain these places we know and love. Someone had to weed-wack for you to walk on that trail or access a community garden plot.

I went on to other jobs and parts of the world, but in 2020 found my way back to the Trust. Having recently returned to Long Island, I saw a job posting for a Marketing and Communications Assistant offered by the Peconic Land Trust. It was the perfect reintroduction to the Trust. I was able to learn about all the new projects the Trust had been working on since I was there in 2011. And the staff had grown tremendously. Now I hold the position of Digital Communications Associate and get to grace your inboxes with news of the Trust, share photos of what we’re up to on social media, and meet with all of you at Connections programs.

I hope to meet you one day soon!

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