Renata von Tscharner, Founder & President

Founder of the Conservancy in 2000, Renata has more than 35 years of experience in non-profit leadership, project and fiscal management, marketing, and organizational development. She trained as an architect and urban designer in Switzerland, and her professional life has focused on planning and improving public spaces. Among her many accomplishments, Renata has worked on the Covent Garden Market in London, co-authored several books, and taught at various colleges in the United States. Renata enjoys playing tennis and bicycling along the river.



Email:     Phone: 617.300.8174

SJ Port, Director of Development and Communications

An avid park explorer and advocate, SJ comes to the Conservancy with a decade of communications and public policy experience. Prior to joining the Conservancy, SJ served in Gov. Deval Patrick’s administration for seven years, leaving to assist then State Rep. Martin Walsh in his successful bid to be Mayor of Boston. It was as Press Secretary for the Department of Conservation and Recreation where she learned of the Charles River Conservancy and its mission. Although these days she spends more time traversing Jamaica Plain with her husband and dog, for the better part of the last decade SJ’s nights and weekends were spent working on political campaigns.


Contact SJ with press inquiries, questions about the Lynch Family Skatepark, the Anderson Bridge Underpass Project, or if you are looking to sponsor one of the Conservancy’s programs.

Email:               Phone: 617.300.8172


Vanessa Nason, Operations and Development Associate

IMG_0141Vanessa joined the Conservancy in February 2016 after several years living away from the Boston area and she is happy to be back, working to improve the parklands along the River that she has spent countless hours walking, running, and relaxing beside. She enjoyed several years working at a Cambridge architecture firm but is excited for the opportunity to impact the natural resources of this urban area. In her spare time, Vanessa volunteers with a nonprofit that provides free technology to seriously ill children and loves swimming, hiking and reading.



Contact Vanessa with questions about a recent donation or questions about the Swim Park Project.

Email:               Phone: 617.300.8162


Sasha Vallieres, Volunteer Program Manager

CRC Headshots-Sasha V copyAs an environmentalist and nature lover, Sasha believes that stewardship of the land comes through enjoyment of the outdoors and public parklands.  Sasha worked for the Trustees of Reservations during summers in college and after graduating from the Indiana University of Pennsylvania interned with the Student Conservation Association and the National Park Service.  After moving to Boston she worked in the Development Department of the YMCA of Greater Boston, where she learned about non-profit management and fundraising.  In her free time Sasha enjoys gardening, hiking, and swimming.


Contact Sasha if you are interested in scheduling a corporate volunteer event or attending the next open volunteer day. Please note that group volunteer days are typically scheduled one month in advance.

Email:               Phone: 617.300.8173


Rebecca Hoffman, Project Coordinator

Rebecca is the newest addition to The Conservancy as a co-op from Northeastern University. She is a fourth year student and is currently pursuing an environmental science degree with a business minor. She has past work experience in the fields of restoration ecology and GIS, but she is looking forward to learning all about local parkland conservation efforts. Rebecca recently studied abroad in Monteverde, Costa Rica, but is excited to be back in Boston where you’ll find her running, biking, or reading in the parks. 



Contact Rebecca with questions about the summer swim event or the Swim Park design charrettes. 

Email:              Phone: 617-300-8171


Staff photos courtesy of Aaron John Bourque.