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Swaner Preserve & EcoCenter appoints new executive director

Lewis Kogan is the new executive director of the Swaner Preserve & EcoCenter

SUMMIT COUNTY, Utah — The Swaner Preserve & EcoCenter announced the appointment of Lewis Kogan as its new executive director, effective April 1. Kogan takes over from Nell Larson, who left the organization in October 2023 to pursue a new opportunity in Los Alamos, NM.

Kogan brings a wealth of experience from his previous roles in the non-profit conservation sector, including positions with the U.S. Forest Service and National Park Service, research roles at the University of Montana, and in natural resources management for Salt Lake City Corporation.

In expressing his enthusiasm for his new role, Kogan highlighted his commitment to the EcoCenter and Preserve’s mission, emphasizing the importance of wildlife and habitat conservation and nature education. “I am thrilled to join the team at Swaner and continue the powerful work of the organization, including wildlife and habitat conservation, and providing our community with top-notch nature education at the EcoCenter and the beautiful Preserve,” Kogan said in a press release.

Founded in 1993 as the Swaner Memorial Park Foundation, the Swaner Preserve has grown to encompass 1,200 acres of protected open space, a 10,000-square-foot LEED Platinum nature center with rotating exhibits, 10 miles of trails, and numerous environmental education opportunities. Since 2010, the Preserve and Nature Center have been part of Utah State University Extension, offering a wide range of programs and facilities across Utah.

Kogan’s vision for the EcoCenter includes fostering the connection between ecosystem restoration, human health, and access to nature. “I’ve become increasingly interested in working at the nexus of applied ecosystem restoration, human health, and access to nature,” Kogan explained, expressing eagerness to engage with community members and partners further.

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