Long Time Resident Gives Back to an Important Cause
by Jesse Imse
As a resident of Simsbury for twenty years, Deb Barberi has also been a member of the Simsbury Land Trust for as long as she can remember. Throughout her membership, she has come to realize the importance of conserving land for our town. The Land Trust has provided a major voice in conservation efforts. In addition to her support of this organization, Deb had a strong desire to volunteer in their efforts.
As a manager of computer programming at Bristol Myer Squibb in Wallingford, Deb’s work scheduling and commute did not appear to allow for an abundance of time to dedicate to volunteerism. She realized that there are many opportunities for volunteer work with the Land Trust that fit into her busy schedule.
For the past two years, Deb has contributed as a steward of the historic Wegner Property. The role of a steward involves visiting the property to become familiar with it and to observe changes. Stewards also make recommendations for managing or improving the property. In addition, Deb monitors the Bluebird houses on the property, discouraging invasive species such as House Sparrows that disturb the shy and beautiful Eastern Bluebirds and Tree Swallows that use the boxes to nest. She does a great job with this because of her love and interest in birds. As a volunteer for the Land Trust, Deb does not have to spend many hours a day caring for a property; instead, she can drop by anytime during the day to ensure the conservation of this area.
Computer science, math, and conservation of land are not Deb’s only interests. Her love of birds and gardening is a passion in her life. Deb’s focus in gardening is on native plants of the east coast. She has transformed her backyard into a beautiful habitat of native species and it is crawling with life. She installed a pond and a flowing brook along with native aquatic plants. She welcomes critters such as, frogs, dragonflies, butterflies, bears, deer, and many species of birds. In achieving this spectacular transformation, Deb’s property has been certified as a Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation.
In her effort to become the best gardener, she has enrolled in the Connecticut Master Gardener program and is in the process of becoming a Master Gardener. She has already done volunteer work at the extravagant gardens at the Hillstead Museum and at the Hartford and Litchfield County Extension Master Gardener Offices.
Deb strongly encourages others to volunteer for the Simsbury Land Trust. She is a perfect example of a busy, hard working person who still has time in the day to help this conservation process. Many jobs can be done in short visits. Deb has always been a strong believer in the conservation of property and feels that it is her duty to help in the cause. She conserves the land for the wildlife, hiking, open space, and the history of the town.
Deb Barberi is an important asset to the Simsbury Land Trust as her volunteer work is greatly appreciated. She lives with her husband, Jay Barrett who is also an avid Simsbury Land Trust member and conservationist along with Morgan and Timmy her two dogs.