The Northfield based Cannon River Watershed Partnership has welcomed a new face as the interim executive director.

Kristi Pursell, recently the CRWP's community engagement coordinator for the past two years, is getting ready to have a lot more on her plate. As interim executive director, she will be continuing her previous role while adding on a new list of responsibilities. Pursell's focus will now be to make sure the needs of the organization are always put first.

"Having the interim in the title makes everyone feel more comfortable in the transition," Pursell said. "We're sort of figuring out where CRWP is. That's nice for me, I get to test and see what this job might entail."

From community engagement opportunities like the annual watershed-wide cleanup to the agriculture program and the Southeast Minnesota Wastewater Initiative, the organization does a lot to ensure the Cannon River watershed is kept clean and safe.

"I just think that all of the work in the three areas are so crucial and so important," said Pursell. "I see that there's more need and more opportunity to expand and keep working those areas."

Pursell also hopes to see more opportunities to partner with other groups that are connected to the water in southeastern Minnesota.

"The main focus is to make sure we're really doing our job and following through in these program areas for the time being," she said.

When it comes to her daily work, Pursell has been handling the new position with every challenge put in front of her.

"It's been a lot of problem solving," she said. "We are figuring out how we want to structure and hire so that we can make sure all of that work gets done still."

While change is not always easy, Pursell is taking advantage of the new transition and continuing to look at ways to help the non-profit organization grow.

"I just want to invite everyone in our watershed and organizations to be in touch with us and know that the lines of communication are wide open," Pursell said.