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Our Mission

Plastic Free QAC is committed to educating, raising awareness, and bringing clarity to the choices each individual can take to improve our environment.

Board of Directors

Courtney Leigh

Board Member, is Membership Coordinator for ShoreRivers. She worked for 11 years with the Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center (CBEC) in many different roles engaging citizens of all ages in environmental education and stewardship.  In her free time, Courtney gets outside for triathlons, kayaking, hiking, and camping. She loves connecting with her community as a volunteer with several nonprofits.  

Elle Bassett

Elle grew up on the South River in Annapolis and has a passion for being outdoors and introducing others to their local rivers. Elle received her bachelor’s degree from Washington College in environmental studies with a concentration in Chesapeake regional studies and has a Master in environmental education from Concordia University. She is a certified "Natural Leader" by the Children & Nature Network and has previously worked with the Chesapeake Bay Trust and NOAA.

Sara Shelley

Board Member and Vice-President. Since moving to Grasonville in 2017 Sara has remained naturally invested in making a difference in our Chesapeake Bay Watershed area.  Shortly after completing the Legacy Institute for the Environment (LIFE) training, she joined the newly formed Plastic Free QAC team where she has been responsible for Outreach and Program Development. Sara also serves on the QAC Local Management Board as a community representative.  When not volunteering, she finds great joy spending time in nature, kayaking, biking, hiking and traveling the world with family and friends. 

Courtney Leigh

Board Member, is Membership Coordinator for ShoreRivers. She worked for 11 years with the Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center (CBEC) in many different roles engaging citizens of all ages in environmental education and stewardship.  In her free time, Courtney gets outside for triathlons, kayaking, hiking, and camping. She loves connecting with her community as a volunteer with several nonprofits.

Bente Cooney

Founder and President, grew aware of the need to protect our fragile earth while sailing for 18 years before settling on the Eastern Shore. Bente worked on Capitol Hill and later with non-profit organizations. She co-founded a non-profit organization in Washington, DC to advocate for the rights of nursing home residents.

Peggy Young

Margaret “Peggy” Young, Plastic Free QAC’s Treasurer, grew up on the Chesapeake and has spent much
time sailing, crabbing, and skiing on the Bay. She worked for BoatU.S for 20 years in product marketing,
and retired after 13 years as Vice President of Marketing and Product Management for SECU Credit
Union. Peggy is dedicated to doing whatever is possible to protect our environment, especially from the
plastic mess we humans have created.

Jenny Vadrani

Team Member and Sustainability Consultant.  Jenny has lived all over the globe and settled in Maryland in 2014.  After 20+ years in Human Resources, she took a leap of faith and launched Refill Goodness, an eco-friendly market and refillery.  Her passion for sustained living runs deep, and her love of the outdoors made her keenly aware of just how important it is to protect our natural resources.  When not at a marketing or event educating on sustainable swaps, Jenny is likely seeing a favorite band, boating, hiking, reading or spending time with her family.