Hudson Highlands Environmental Consulting


DONALD J. SMITHNatural Resource Specialist

Once referred to as “Mr. Meadowlands”, Don Smith served as the Senior Natural Resource Specialist and Water Pollution/Environmental Inspector for the New Jersey (Hackensack) Meadowlands Commission (NJMC) for 26 years, from 1972 to 1998. His primary responsibility during that time was to document plant communities and wildlife use within the Meadowlands District. He worked with the US Fish and Wildlife Service to identify and map critical habitat areas, provided input on development plans within the District to identify wetland impacts, and assisted in wetlands mitigation design and habitat restoration plans. As an Inspector, Don patrolled the District and documented sources of water pollution and illegal discharges of waste. He worked in association with State and Federal regulatory agencies to identify hazardous spills in the Hackensack River Estuary and initiated response for containment and cleanup. Certified in the application of Habitat Evaluation Procedure (HEP) and Wetland Evaluation Techniques (WET), he worked on Advanced Identifications of District wetlands (AVID) with the Army Corps of Engineers, USEPA, NJDEP, USFWS and NOAA, and provided input into the selection of wetlands mitigation and restoration sites to compensate for in-District and out-of-District wetland impacts. Since leaving that position, Don has continued to provide consulting services to the NJMC, as well as other nonprofit environmental organizations.

Completed course training:

  • Wetland Evaluation Technique, Version 2.0
  • USF&WS Habitat Evaluation Procedures

A sampling of relevant recent experience includes:

  • Marsh Resources Inc., 1999-2001: Provided post-mitigation wetlands monitoring.
  • Marsh Resources, Inc., 2001-Present: Provide nuisance animal control for 200-acre intertidal wetlands mitigation site.
  • New Jersey Meadowlands Commission, 2008-2010: Post-mitigation monitoring for four constructed wetlands mitigation projects (200 acres) in the New Jersey Hackensack Meadowlands District.
  • NJ Conservation Trust, 2009-2014: Collected seeds of native marsh plants in the Hackensack Meadowlands.
  • NJ Conservation Trust, Currently monitoring eight open space parcels within the Hackensack River Watershed.
  • URS Corporation, Identified wetland mitigation sites to offset construction impacts at Teterboro Airport/Hackensack River Watershed.
  • Provided habitat characterization of sites, contributed to and reviewed proposed mitigation plans for selected sites.
  • Ridgefield Park Environmental Commission, Developed alternatives to offset potential impacts of a project on a bald eagle nest site.