In February, Heritage Conservancy welcomed two new members to its board of directors: Mike Fitzpatrick, a former congressman, and Lizann Cooke, a marketing guru.

Mike Fitzpatrick represented Pennsylvania’s 8th congressional district in the United States House of Representatives from 2005 to 2007 and 2011 to 2017. He brings with him a proven track record of his commitment to land preservation. As a Bucks County commissioner before he became a congressman, he was a strong advocate for open space protection, which included co-chairing an effort to pass a ballot initiative authorizing Bucks County to borrow funding for open space preservation.

After working directly with Heritage Conservancy on many preservation projects throughout Bucks County during his tenure as a congressman, Fitzpatrick recognized the importance of continuing to make an impact in the county that he loves. In his role on the board, he plans to focus his efforts on maintaining and strengthening the programs and mission of Heritage Conservancy, with an emphasis on creative financing to preserve the special aspects of the region.

In his spare time, Fitzpatrick enjoys doing anything outdoors with his wife and six children, including hiking, camping, and small-boat sailing in Bucks County and the Adirondack region of New York.

“I was fortunate to have been born and raised in Bucks County,” said Fitzpatrick. “It is the home of my parents and my children and grandchildren. I have traveled all over the United States and to over 40 other countries, and no other place matches the history, geography, culture, or people of Bucks County. Our challenge as residents is to keep it that way for future generations, and Heritage Conservancy is the preeminent organization engaged in that effort.”

Lizann Cooke brings with her an extensive marketing background that will lend even more expertise to the board. She graduated from Villanova University with a degree in biology. A career in cardiac pharmaceuticals led her to a position as marketing director of a small, privately owned company where she devised innovative ways to promote their Pharmacy Benefit Management (PBM) product to large corporations throughout the country.  She continued in the PBM arena for the next 25 years before becoming a partner in a pharmaceutical consulting company in Bucks County.

Cooke grew up in the Somerton section of Philadelphia and attended high school in Bucks County at Villa Joseph Marie High School. Trips to Bucks County inspired her to want to serve on the Conservancy’s board of directors.

“Having grown up on the border of Philadelphia and Bucks counties, I was exposed to the Bucks County lifestyle very early,” said Cooke. “We often took drives to None Such Farm, New Hope, and Bowman’s Tower. I remember going to the top of Bowman’s Tower and looking for miles and seeing nothing but forest. Now, when you go to the top of the tower, you observe nothing but housing development.”

As a board member, Cooke is motivated to expand the Conservancy’s membership base, convey the importance of land preservation for everyone, and make Heritage Conservancy accessible to all members of the community.

In her spare time, Cooke focuses on her two passions: travel and wine. She has found a way to combine those passions by doing wine tastings wherever she travels. She has been to over 80 countries, and has visited 48 states.