Founder and Executive Director
TEL: (512) 722-3390 / (512) 785-8950
Founded WVWA: 1996
David Baker is an artist, conservationist, and environmental advocate equally at ease with a brush in his studio or envisioning an environmental canvas the size of the Texas Hill Country. Since moving his family to the iconic Jacob’s Well Spring near Wimberley in 1988, he has dedicated his life and boundless creative energy to the land, water, and building a conservation network across the Cypress Creek and Blanco River watershed and the Texas Hill Country. He founded the Wimberley Valley Watershed Association in 1996 and has since served as the Executive Director, having assembled more than 400 acres of owned and managed conserved lands surrounding Jacob’s Well in honor of protecting it and the waters that feed it. As a catalyst, collaborator, and networker, David has inspired and driven the restoration and preservation of sacred artesian springs, protecting their recharge lands through advocacy, public partnerships, and determined removal of impervious cover to reclaim and restore open space and habitat in a sustainable model for generations.
In 2015, through his decades of work to protect Jacob’s Well, Cypress Creek, and the Blanco River, David envisioned and conceived the Hill Country Conservation Network, which resulted in creating a collaborative effort with Hill Country Alliance, where he served on the board for over ten years, to develop joint funding proposals and collective impact across the Hill Country. His service on numerous other boards and founding of several NGOs and public agencies, including the Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District, has led to collaborations with agencies and stakeholders in ongoing efforts to conserve land, and water, and to adopt a science-based public policy. David continues to create powerful outcomes and increase investment in conservation across the state through convening diverse partners and organizations to engage them in shared initiatives to address complex challenges facing our region.
Recently, David established Art4Water to tell powerful stories that communicate the value of water beyond words and engage artists in
environmental stewardship. Art4Water programming is designed to inspire diverse artistic expression to educate and connect our communities to a reverence for natural springs and water and motivate collective action toward expanded investment in the protection of watersheds and pristine waters across Texas and beyond.
Director of Operations
Director of Watershed Protection and Conservation Science
Joined WVWA: March 2020
Robin earned a Master’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin, Department of Geography and the Environment in 2005 for research focused on human-environment interaction in karst landscapes. Until 2009, she worked as a geographer for the U.S. Geological Survey, Texas Water Science Center doing data management, spatial analysis, and GIS, and she was part of the team that helped establish the spring flow gauging station at Jacobs Well. From 2009 to March 2020, she served as the Public Information and Education Coordinator for the Barton Springs/Edwards Aquifer Conservation District. It was a wonderful 11 years at the District. Some of the highlights during her career at the District include building an impactful and collaborative educational program (through at least three critical groundwater droughts); supporting and educating well owners and groundwater users; serving on the City of Austin Environmental Board and as a representative for the Regional Water Planning Group Region K; and researching and publishing methods to assess groundwater use, well drilling trends, and aquifer dynamics.
As a geographer, a groundwater scientist, a teacher, and a mom, she’s excited to work in a community that supports her family. It’s a small world, and ever since she was a child, Wimberley has held a tender place in her heart. She looks forward to learning, working, and collaborating to help make science more accessible, increase knowledge about watershed issues, and empower people to be part of a collective solution.
Director of Creative Strategy and Program Implementation
Aliya’s life and work have been devoted to cultivating spaces and offerings where people and the planet can reunify. From Peace Summits to equine facilitation, intentional farming, and regenerative organizational development, Aliya’s philosophy draws from nature-based biomimicry as a template for organizations to see the leadership tools embedded in the natural world. She thrives in that sweet spot, being both a visionary—able to plan for innovative growth– while also being an implementer— able to organize, manage, and execute the precise details to make a dream come to life. She believes that just like healthy soil, producing vital fruit, healthy teams and organizations are the soil that alchemizes to serve our communities with more meaning and more impact. She is passionate about helping us remember our inherent nature so that we can better care for our planet and its inhabitants. She’s known to be the calmest one in moments of chaos; known to intend every pun.
Texas Brewshed Alliance Program Director
Matthew is a social entrepreneur, author, public speaker, and consultant, and holds a Master’s of Divinity from Portland Seminary. His most recent project was that of the owner and operator of a microbrewery focused on social, economic, and community revitalization in West Central Illinois. After selling this business, Matthew and his family moved back home to Central Texas, where he joined the Watershed Association as the coordinator for the Texas Brewshed Alliance. When not creating he’s hanging out with his family, reading, or running.
Kelly is a passionate business development professional, a mental health advocate, an Award-Winning Documentary Filmmaker, and Co-Founder of the Austin-based film production company Folktale Creative. She enjoys weaving her love of visual storytelling, engaging with people, and developing fundraising strategies to support non-profit organizations.
Kelly holds a Masters in Human Dimensions of Organizations from UT Austin, a degree focused on human behavior and motivation with a foundation in qualitative and quantitative academic research methodologies, and a Bachelor’s in International Trade & Marketing with a Minor in Ethics & Sustainability from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City.
Kelly has been featured as a guest speaker at the University of Texas at Austin, Texas State University, and with IC2, engaging in conversations to destigmatize mental illness and offering a lens to view public art as a community engagement tool and economic driver.
In her free time, Kelly enjoys cheering on Austin FC, hiking, yoga, and spending time with her Fiance, Brian, and their dachshunds, Wesley and Whiskey.
Communications & Donor Relations Coordinator
Amber is a driven and passionate professional with a strong business development and sales background. With a proven track record of building and maintaining relationships, developing partnerships, and strengthening connections between organizations and the people they serve, Amber brings a wealth of experience and natural leadership talent to her work.
With over seven years of experience in various sales and business development roles, Amber has demonstrated a solid ability to identify and capitalize on emerging opportunities to build a business and expand its customer base. In addition, she has a strong understanding of market trends and is skilled in analyzing trends for new business opportunities.
Amber’s most recent experience was as Sales Manager at Kumakani Farm in Hawaii, where she directed and marketed all sales of products produced on the farm. Before that, she served as Business Development Director at Soil to Soul Solutions, Hawaii, and as Farmers Market Director at the Kohala Food Hub, also in Hawaii.
Amber is pursuing a B.A. in Business Administration from the University of Arizona. In her free time, she volunteers as Communications Chair for Hawaii Farmers Union United and enjoys reading, hiking, and practicing yoga.