Meridith McAvoy Perkins

Executive Director


For the past 20 years, Meridith McAvoy Perkins has dedicated her career to promoting healthy urban forestry management, connecting people to trees in ways that transform both landscapes and lives. She has previously served in the public sector as the Urban & Community Forestry Coordinator for Utah’s Division of Forestry, and in the private sector as a principal consultant for Davey Resource Group, Inc. Meridith has the technical skills to assess tree risk, develop urban forestry plans, and offer expert witness testimony but her favorite thing is sharing the amazing power of trees with others. In her current role as the Executive Director of Forest ReLeaf of Missouri, Meridith advocates for tree planting and forest conservation across the urban, rual, and wild landscapes. Meridith has a degree in Forestry from the University of Missouri-Columbia, is an ISA Certified Arborist, and is an adjunct instructor at Meramec Community College.

Ellen Sulser

Volunteer Coordinator


Ellen joined the Forest ReLeaf team in fall 2021. She graduated Smith College with a Bachelors in Environmental Science and Policy and a deep passion for connecting people with the places around them. Ellen has previously worked with the USDA Forest Service conserving wilderness areas across the country. She’s excited to take the lessons learned in community engagement and forestry back to the place she grew up. Ellen helps connect Forest ReLeaf volunteers to meaningful experiences that support both individual and organization goals.

Amy Klein

Development & Marketing Manager


Amy has been with Forest Releaf since 2016. She received a Bachelors in Communications from Edgewood College in Madison, WI, and an MBA from Northeastern University in Boston, MA. Amy’s responsibilities include grant writing, marketing, social media, event planning, graphic design and more.

Jake Roeckle

Nursery Manager


Jake Roeckle joined the Forest ReLeaf team at the end of 2021. He has a Bachelors in Environmental Science from Southeast Missouri State University and a Horticulture Certificate of Proficiency from STLCC – Meramec. He has been in the horticulture industry for over 12 years, with more than half of that at Kirkwood Gardens, a retail and wholesale nursery in St. Louis County. Jake’s passion for growing plants, love of the outdoors, and nursery experience help him in the Nursery Manager role where he oversees the growing of quality trees and shrubs and assists with volunteer operations.

Mark Halpin

Forestry Manager


Mark Halpin joined the Forest ReLeaf team in 2020. He is an ISA Certified Arborist (TRAQ) and received an Associate’s Degree in Horticulture from St. Louis Community College – Meramec. Mark has 13 years of experience in the green industry and has previously served as a Horticulturist at Forest Park Forever and as the Urban Forester for the City of Brentwood, MO. Mark brings a passion for connecting people, plants and landscapes to Forest ReLeaf and works to organize volunteer planting events, workshops, education and outreach efforts.

Rebecca Hankins

Partnerships Coordinator


After spending 16 years in the outdoor industry, Rebecca shifted her focus from outdoor recreation to environmental stewardship. She earned a Certificate of Proficiency in Horticulture at St. Louis Community College – Meramec. She has spent the last 3 years gaining experience in various organizations including Missouri Botanical Garden, Urban Harvest and DTLS Studio. She is passionate about plants and what they teach us about resiliency, diversity, partnership, and community. Rebecca will use her skills to grow Forest ReLeaf’s mission impact and advocate for social and environmental justice.
Forest ReLeaf of Missouri