Amy Wyant
Executive Director

Amy Wyant joined OCCA as Executive Director in January, 2020. She has a background in clean energy, economic development and business with a passion for sustainability and local food. Amy is a strong advocate for community resilience and works with municipalities to prepare them for natural, economic and world change. She offers experience in community building and outreach and has a vested interest in helping the agriculture sector achieve their pollution reduction goals.


Jeff O’Handley
Program Director

OCCA Welcomes New Program Director-2013

A long-standing interest in nature and animals led Jeff O’Handley to a degree in Wildlife Management from Cook College, Rutgers University. After a summer job at a local natural history museum, O’Handley discovered a love for environmental education. Over the next 15 years he taught thousands of people in such diverse environments as a state park located on Long Island’s “Gold Coast”; the heart of New York City; and the black widow-infested woods of East Hampton. O’Handley moved to Hartwick in 2003 and formed Wildlife Learning Company with his wife, Susan. They soon became a familiar sight, bringing permanently-injured birds of prey along with a small collection of turtles, snakes, frogs, and marine invertebrates to schools, libraries, and special events. The O’Handleys worked closely with the Otsego County Conservation Association to develop Burn Barrel Biology, a school program focusing on the hazards of trash burning, and on events such as Earth Festival and Lake Festival. Jeff O’Handley joined OCCA in October, 2013. He is looking to expand the EcoTeam program and to establish closer relationships with schools throughout the county.


Jeff Water Chestnut

Anna Rutenbeck
Project Coordinator

Anna Rutenbeck is the Project Coordinator at OCCA. Anna hails from Denver, Colorado and Williston, Vermont, but now calls Cooperstown home. She fell in love with the Mohawk Valley during her graduate program in science museum studies at the Cooperstown Graduate Program, from which she graduated in May of 2021. Her love for the natural beauty of the region and passion for environmental justice is what led her to OCCA. In her free time, she loves hiking with her pets (Mabel, Pippin, and Kristofferson the cats and Lantern the dog), advocating for natural funeral practices, and watching horror movies. You can contact her about any project OCCA is involved in, or for recommendations on cat backpacks. 


Liv Kuss
Jr. Sustainability Planner

Liv Kuss is the Junior Planner for OCCA. They grew up in the Hudson Valley and fell in love with the natural beauty of the Mohawk Valley since moving to the area to study environmental sustainability. They joined OCCA to assist to local municipalities in mitigating and adapting to climate change. In their free time, Liv enjoys exploring with their dog or relaxing with a book and their cat.


Natalie Reyes
Outreach Specialist, HeatSmart Mohawk Valley

Natalie Reyes is the Outreach Specialist for HeatSmart Mohawk Valley. After earning her master’s degree in museum studies from the Cooperstown Graduate Program, she joined the HeatSmart Mohawk Valley team to explore her passion for community engagement. As a longtime resident of the Mohawk Valley, Natalie is passionate about climate change in the region.


Patricia Seybolt
Administrative Assistant

How You Can Help Protect Our Local Environment

Donations provide the foundation for our work throughout Otsego County. By becoming a supporter of OCCA, you become a part of a unique countywide environmental organization whose mission is to protect local natural resources for the benefit of all. 


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7207 State Highway 80, PO Box 931 • Cooperstown, NY  13326
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