We are developing a workforce to undertake environmental improvement projects for a healthier Howard County.



Solutions for healthy streams and communities


Board of Directors*

  • Laurie Bulka, Community Volunteer (Secretary)
  • Josh Feldmark, Resource Evolution LLC (Chair)
  • Ishani Gandhi, CPA, CFE, PwC
  • Guy Hager, Retired, formerly Senior Director, Parks and People Foundation (Vice Chair)
  • Bob Marietta, Howard Community College
  • Christiana Mercer Rigby (Treasurer), Community Volunteer
  • Jaison Renkenberger, Teacher, University of Maryland / Anne Arundel County Public School System
  • Misty Sexton, Solutions Avocate
  • Rizwan Siddiqi, P.E., EBA Engineering

Advisory Member

  • Bill Mahoney, Howard County Office of Community Sustainability

*Institutional affiliations listed for identification purposes only.

Our People*

Lori A. Lilly, Executive Director

Lori A. Lilly has been with the READY program since 2014.  She originally came on as Operations Managerand became the Project Manager in September, 2015.  During her tenure with READY, she worked with the County to establish a native plant nursery at the Howard County Department of Corrections, developed and implemented a debris management program in the Ellicott City streams to help prevent flooding, and led the formation of Howard EcoWorks to ensure READY's long term sustainability in the County and provide leadership for social and environmental change.

From 2006-2009, Lori directed an NGO and implemented watershed restoration projects in Oregon.  From 2009-2014, she worked for the Center for Watershed Protection as a Watershed Ecologist / Planner.   Lori owned and operated her own environmental consulting business from 2014-2017.   As a volunteer, Lori was the first Chair  and is currently a member of the Ellicott City Partnership's Clean, Green and Safe Committee and she has been appointed by the Howard County Executive to serve on Ellicott City Flood Workgroup and Ellicott City Community Advisory Group.   Lori lives with her family at the Howard County Conservancy where her husband is the Caretaker.  For fun, Lori enjoys gardening, hiking, playing ultimate Frisbee and has a 1st degree brown belt in karate.

Nicole McDaniels, READY Program Manager

Nicole was born and raised in Baltimore City, MD and has been active in non profit management for 15+ years. Her professional career has always been about helping and serving the community. Nicole was the Medical Practice Manager of the HIV Clinic for People’s Community Health Center, serving the needs of the patients from medication, doctor appointments, to counseling newly diagnosed patients. She moved on to a new opportunity to embark on the mission of (then) Governor O’Malley to get inner city residents out into the state parks. She then joined Parks and People and partnered with Department of Natural Resources to help recruit 200+ youth for the summer 2008. At first, she was a contractual worker for Parks & People Foundation, but the program started to evolve into a year-round program. Parks & People then hired her as a full time employee to hire not only youth, but also an adult landscaping crew. As roles kept evolving within the Foundation, she was promoted to the Program Coordinator’s position for the Building Resources And Nurturing Community Health and Environmental Stewardship. She held that position for another 6 years before deciding to seek out new opportunities.

Irene Sadler, Nursery Manager / Landscape Designer

Irene joined the Howard EcoWorks team in July of 2017 as nursery manager and landscape designer. Her background includes a BS in Ecology and a Master’s in Landscape Architecture. She is from Chapel Hill, North Carolina and has worked for the North Carolina Botanical Garden, the National Park Service, North Carolina State University, several nurseries, and herself. She is excited to bring her knowledge and experience to the Chesapeake Bay watershed to help relieve flooding and pollution from stormwater runoff. Irene loves to explore nature and spend time with her family.

  • 443-518-7665
  • isadler@howardecoworks.org   

Recent News

  • Here's a roundup of recent headlines from our organization. 
  • Native Plant Fall Sale! Howard EcoWorks is selling our excess native plant stock!  Great pricing for bulk purchases!  Help put these native plants into their forever homes in your community!  Community / restoration projects are ...
    Posted Nov 6, 2017, 9:38 AM by Howard Ecoworks
  • Historic Ellicott City Channel Maintenance Brandt Dirmeyer, Watershed Action Team-member, 6 Oct 2017From Monday, October 2nd to Thursday, October 5th, the Watershed Action Team, a new program of Howard Ecoworks funded and supported ...
    Posted Oct 16, 2017, 5:58 AM by Howard Ecoworks
  • Greenleaf Bioretention Howard EcoWorks constructed our first bioretention facility in the Greenleaf neighborhood in Columbia. The facility was designed by Howard Soil Conservation District in 2015. Funding was obtained from the Chesapeake ...
    Posted Jun 20, 2017, 10:12 AM by Howard Ecoworks
Showing posts 1 - 3 of 13. View more »


READY employs Howard County residents ages 16-26 to build rain gardens and conservation landscapes that filter stormwater runoff and alleviate flooding from pavement and other impervious surfaces.

The investment Howard County makes in READY yields returns in four ways:

  • Provides living wage jobs for young adults who have a hard time finding work
  • Helps Howard County meet its federally mandated stormwater management obligations
  • Provides congregations and non-profit organizations with pollution and stormwater management help they might not otherwise be able to afford
  • Reduces pollution to local water ways and the Chesapeake Bay

You can find us around the County working 5 days/wk.