Natural Lands announced that Regina A. Hairston has joined its Board of Trustees.

Ms. Hairston is president and chief executive officer of the African American Chamber of Commerce of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware (AACC). Her leadership guides the organization’s vision, policies, and programming with passion and creativity. AACC has promoted the voice, vision, and value of black-owned businesses for nearly three decades; Ms. Hairston has taken that spirit of innovation and applied it to the needs of the Chamber’s growing members. Under her leadership, the Chamber has launched programs to increase and provide direct access to capital, established a unique CEO peer group and mentorship program, and leveraged corporate partnerships for the success of the Chamber’s members.

“We’re thrilled that Regina has agreed to bring her passion and expertise to our Board,” said Board Chairperson Peter Hausmann. “Her goals for and interest in our region are aligned with Natural Lands’ strategic vision. We look forward to benefiting from her involvement for years to come.”

Ms. Hairston—named one of Philadelphia Magazine’s 2021 Most Influential People in Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Business Journal’s Power 100, and the Metro Philadelphia’s Power Women list—is eager to apply her record as a strong networker with a history of cultivating and managing strategic partnerships to her new role leadership role at Natural Lands, the Greater Philadelphia region’s oldest and largest land conservation organization.

“I am excited to join the Board of Trustees for an organization that’s been creating opportunities for joy and discovery for generations, and especially during these unprecedented times when people need connection and community more than ever,” said Hairston.

She added, “The business of preservation is an opportunity to demonstrate the relationship between commerce and our most sacred spaces. Protecting our natural assets is one way we can enhance the financial success of small businesses and local economies. Business-Community conservation partnerships that focus on doing good and doing better business send a message that we are equally committed to a sustainable future. I am excited about the opportunity to synchronize efforts and demonstrate how small business ownership contributes to this compelling ecosystem.”

Prior to leading AACC, Ms. Hairston served as chief deputy register for Philadelphia Register of Wills and Clerk of the Orphan’s Court, where she successfully invoked her skills to initiate the online probate and marriage license process during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic closures. Previously, Ms. Hairston was a senior associate at Bellevue Strategies where she advanced client objectives by developing and executing government affairs, community relations, and media and communications strategies.

Before joining Bellevue Strategies, Ms. Hairston held multiple roles in public relations and external affairs within the Philadelphia education system.

“Regina is widely recognized as a gifted and respected leader,” said Oliver Bass, president of Natural Lands. “We are very fortunate to have her involvement and know that we will benefit immensely from her experience and wisdom.”

Ms. Hairston received a Bachelor of Science degree with a focus in political science and public relations from Saint Joseph’s University. She holds a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of Pennsylvania.