Women’s History Month at the Chesapeake Bay Trust: Sadie Drescher
Let our female leaders tell you their stories!
When the Chesapeake Bay Trust was created in 1985, our goal was to help improve the watersheds of the Chesapeake Bay, the Maryland Coastal Bays and the Youghiogheny River. Part of this mission involves fostering the inclusion of individuals and groups from diverse backgrounds, including women. This year for Women’s History Month, we would like you to take a look at three women at the Trust who are leading in environmental work. Today, we will focus on Sadie Drescher, Director of Programs for Restoration.
1) Can you tell me a little about yourself and what your role is at the Trust?
Sadie: I have worked in the environmental field for over twenty years from my beginnings in the laboratory and field to “behind the desk” to manage the Trust’s restoration programs. I love my job. My favorite thing to do is to connect people, ideas, and resources and that is a big part of working at the Trust.
2) What inspired you to become involved in Environmental work?
Sadie: Growing up in rural eastern Tennessee on well water and using a septic system made me very aware of the importance of clean drinking water and water conservation. I also loved going on hikes with my family. These hikes are where I started to love and appreciate nature. These early experiences shaped my appreciation for the environmental field. I have always been interested in water. In fact, my middle name is “Rain.”
3) What advice would you give a woman who wanted to pursue a career similar to yours?
Sadie: Go for it! There is nothing holding you back. Always look for mentors to give you feedback. Ask questions and learn from the many mistakes/obstacles you will encounter.
4) What barriers have you faced as a female leader?
Sadie: I would not label myself as a “leader” but that is a kind sentiment. I am always learning so sometimes I am leading but most often I am learning from others. As far as barriers I have encountered – there have been too many to count and with hard work, I believe that any barrier can be overcome.
5) What do you think are the qualities of a great leader?
Sadie: This is a great question. Leaders hold others up and help them grow. Leaders hold us accountable for the quality of our work, our actions, and our words. Leaders have empathy and curiosity.
6) Who is a woman that inspires you now or in the past? How have you used their lessons in your growth?
Sadie: My aunt Sandy has always inspired me for her strength, compassion, honesty, and humor. Sandy is a Mennonite preacher in Pennsylvania with a background in social work who pushes the envelope as a woman in this position (people left her congregation when she became pastor just because she was a woman) and she supports progressive social positions that are not always popular in her circles. In summary, she is her own person and charges her own path which I greatly admire.
Thank you for celebrating Women’s History Month with the Trust! We encourage you to look at women in your life who have influenced you and thank them for their inspiration.