Catherine Meehan Barner

Hawk Hill.

Catherine Meehan Barner, BA75

Catherine Barner is an accomplished nonprofit executive with more than three decades of experience managing large-scale civic projects across the United States. She currently serves as vice president of park projects and stewardship for the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy.

Barner, who earned a Bachelor of Arts with a major in Architecture in 1975, has been instrumental in developing public/private partnerships to transform national park landscapes, rehabilitate and reuse historic sites, build LEED-certified park facilities, and rejuvenate city landmarks. She began her career on the East Coast, including work as a project manager for the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Management and the Trust for Public Land. As president and founder of the consulting firm Heritage Partners, Inc., she led national park planning and design projects for more than a decade, developing long-term plans for sites such as the Statue of Liberty, Governors Island, and Acadia. She also led the effort to successfully create three new national parks, at Weir Farm in Connecticut and in New Bedford and Boston Harbor Islands, both in Massachusetts.

In 1996, Barner joined the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, where she directs a 60-person interdisciplinary team responsible for all phases of planning, design, and implementation of site, trail, and building improvements throughout the parks. She also manages a portfolio of park stewardship programs, focused on native plant nurseries, historic garden renewal, community-based habitat restoration, and conservation science. One of the Conservancy’s signature projects, Crissy Field, was transformed from a former military airfield into a vibrant environmental showcase that includes beaches, tidal marsh overlooks, and an environmental education center for youth. Other award-winning projects Barner has directed include the Fort Baker Cavallo Point reuse plan and program development, Lands End Lookout visitor center, the New Golden Gate Bridge Plaza and Pavilion, and the Presidio trails and overlooks.

Read the 2013 Awards for Distinction news release