Tracy Emrick as its new executive director at Countryside Conservancy in Peninsula.

"We are delighted to announce that the Countryside Conservancy Board of Trustees has approved the new Executive Director to replace the late Darwin Kelsey," said Ernie Estep, Countryside's board chairman.

Emrick has been interim executive director since September. Prior to the interim role, Emrick was director of operations, core partnership manager and initiative coordinator since joining Countryside in 2012.

"Her background in farming, marketing and her active membership in farm and agribusiness organizations serves this role well," said Estep. "In addition, she is fully committed and attuned to the important partnership Countryside has with Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Tracy is extremely passionate about the future of local food and farming. She brings a wealth of experience that will keep the legacy of Darwin's vision alive --- in addition to adding a strong operating perspective that is critical for the sustainability of the Countryside Programs and the future Countryside Learning Center."

The purpose of Countryside Conservancy is to connect people, food and land by increasing awareness of how food and farming impact personal, community, and environmental health, and by inspiring commitment to building a resilient, sustainable food culture. Countryside pursues its purpose across Northeast Ohio through regional collaborations and a partnership with Cuyahoga Valley National Park. To learn more visit www.cvcountryside.org.