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Michael Collins

IMG_2703Executive Director

Michael Collins (center) has been the Executive Director of The Center for Natural Capital since 2012, when he led the merger of Conserv with Public Policy Virginia, Inc. (PPV), a non-profit organization focused on the use of biomass for combined heat and power. The Center is the recipient of the 2014 Sanctioned Event of the Year from the American Canoe Association and a 2015 Commendation from the Virginia General Assembly, sponsored by Virginia Delegate Ed Scott and State Senator Emmett Hanger. With four colleagues he founded the forerunner of the Center, The Association of Conservation Real Estate – Conserv, in 2006. From 2004-2009, he led the creation of a new Planning Department for the Town of Orange, Virginia. As the Town’s first Community Development Director working with a great group of citizens, the Town of Orange completed its first Capital Improvements Plan, Proffer Policy, Joint Proffer Policy, and an American Planning Association (APA) award winning Comprehensive Plan leading to later adoption of a new Form-based Zoning Ordinance . For his conservation work with the Town, in 2005, Mike received the Chairman’s Award from the Culpeper Soil and Water Conservation District. In 2009 Conserv partnered with the Rappahannock River Basin Commission and the Virginia Department of Forestry on several market-based conservation programs and projects.

In 2002, he and Dr. Nick Evans formed Virginia Groundwater, LLC, a science-based well drilling firm that continues today as The Center for Sustainable Groundwater (CSG). In 2000, he began working as a water resources consultant and led several hydrogeologic and EPA award winning source water protection studies. In 1998, he and his family opened Healthy Home, LLC, a sustainable goods general store in Charlottesville, to provide environmentally friendly construction supplies to the Charlottesville region. From 1990-1998, Mike worked as an Environmental Planner for the Thomas Jefferson Planning District Commission in Charlottesville and led several groundwater, surface water, and sustainability projects and programs including the Rivanna River Basin Roundtable and the State of the Basin Report, the Interfaith Roundtable on Sustainability, and the Thomas Jefferson Sustainability Council and the Sustainability Accords of 1998. The Sustainability Council was selected as a Case Study of the President’s Council on Sustainable Development. He began his career as a tenured science teacher with Culpeper County Public Schools.

He is a former member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) and a Class C contractor.

Please contact Mike at the Center at 540-672-2542 or at