Ecological and Support Services for Conservation Organizations

Helia Environmental has over two decades of experience working for and in partnership with conservation organizations. Helia’s Lloyd Raleigh worked seven years as a Regional Ecologist for The Trustees of Reservations. Since then, he has consulted with or worked for a wide variety of non-profits, such as World Wildlife Fund, The Nature Conservancy, and many organizations working at local or regional levels.


“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see”                                                     



~Henry David Thoreau

As staff in a conservation organization, you have budget constraints, deadlines, and goals. With that in mind, Helia can help you accomplish your objectives the way you’d like with turn-key solutions.



A video with a honed message can be highly effective. For example, its impact can deter a proposed transmission line, encourage donors, or convey a compelling message.

Designed to meet your objectives, Helia’s work is award-winning and backed by fifteen years of professional experience as a videographer, editor, and producer. 

“I was thrilled to hear Conservancy leadership praising the [Southern Blue Ridge Forest Block Analysis] video as ‘amazing— . . . succinct, concise, . . . incredibly well-presented . . . , wonderful work!’  Lloyd’s patient guidance and attentive execution led to the creation of a valuable tool for our communications arsenal.” ~ David Ray, TNC.


Helia can provide conflict resolution or team-building facilitation. Skills in World Café, circling, relational exercises, and public participation are useful in natural resources planning. As an example, see the case study on Community Integrated Nature Reserves below.

full suite of ecological services

The services Helia Environmental can provide you and your organization include creating Baseline Documentation Reports and related ecological reports for conservation easement and conservation lands. For each report, a full suite of conservation values will be uncovered. And we use our experience in finding rare species and natural communities, in GIS analysis, and in ecological research to craft these reports.

For these same lands, we can develop forest stewardship plans or other management plans. Once these plans are created, we can implement them. This can involve, for example, habitat restoration projects or ecoforestry projects certified by Rainforest Alliance and the Forest Stewardship Council. This provides you with turn-key services that can go hand-in-hand with any in-house stewardship you do.


Helia can provide award-winning photography for websites, posters, annual reports, articles, and calendars. His photographs have been published in all those ways and also in The New York Times, Asheville Citizen-Times, and Wings of China, among many others.

Project Management

Have a monitoring, stewardship, or ecoforestry project need? Helia can help you with these and has worked on dozens of sites spanning thousands of acres.

Case Study

Box Creek Wilderness

Box Creek Success Story

The protection of the 7,000 acre Box Creek Wilderness against a major transmission line is a conservation success story. It shows how biological research and education about conservation values can help projects succeed.

impactful videos

  Click above to view Box Creek Wilderness Forever, a Helia Environmental production documenting the amazing conservation values of Box Creek and the impacts a power line would have on these values.    

Team of Professionals

Helia Environmental, as one of the primary researchers on the project, worked with a team of dedicated professionals. This team included Unique Places, the project managers, and fellow biologists, Kevin Caldwell and Chris Wilson. We mapped natural communities, rare species, primary forests, and many other attributes. We crafted management recommendations. We found and proposed new-to-science natural community subtypes. The photograph shows a new-to-science spiderwort species from Box Creek WIlderness.
I’ve had the opportunity to work with Lloyd Raleigh on a nature conservation project spanning over 20,000 acres of North Carolina land and have been continually impressed by his diligence and enthusiasm, both for the work in the field and in meetings with conservancies and their constituencies.  His efforts in both areas played a decisive role in securing the protection of 7000 acres of Box Creek Wilderness in Rutherford and McDowell Counties in partnership with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service and others.
Tim Sweeney

CEO of Epic Games and largest conservation landowner in North Carolina

Most significant

Once our research was completed and compiled by the Natural Heritage Program, Box Creek Wilderness ranked in the top 1% of Natural Heritage Areas in the state in terms of biological significance and richness. Findings included over 130 rare and watch-list species, including 13 new-to-science plant and wildlife species. The landscape included 18 rare natural communities including three new-to-science natural communities. McDowell Times photograph by Lloyd Raleigh.

Guided hikes

Lloyd Raleigh also led walks through the property for a variety of stakeholders to inspire people to protect the land. Photograph courtesy of Elly Wells.

Case Study


Community Integrated Nature Reserves

The Shangri-la Institute invited Helia Environmental’s Lloyd Raleigh to act as key speaker and facilitator for the five-day national seminar launching the ‘Community Integrated Nature Reserves for a Sustainable China’ project. This project involved 15 nature reserves in five Chinese provinces.

public participation and engagement

Lloyd Raleigh facilitated sessions on community engagement in national parks, methods of public participation and engagement, management planning and environmental education, World Café exercises, conflict resolution, and many other related activities.

Project Goals

“For effective and sustainable environmental governance, the meaningful participation and input of communities in their entirety is vital.” “The project is designed to facilitate the community-empowerment process through capacity building, training and activities to enhance knowledge, skills and values.” ~ Shangri-la Institute

Facilitation training

Lloyd Raleigh is trained through the Duke Environmental Leadership Program and recieved his certificate in NEPA Planning, which included training in facilitation. He is trained in circling through the Integral Institute.
What impressed me the most about Lloyd Raleigh was his ability to organize workshops with different kinds of people – students, local villagers, even monks!  He was able to work with a very diverse group in a complex, sometimes difficult situations.  He could handle the relationship with all the staff very well with great cultural sensitivity, and was helpful and unselfish, really working to pass on his knowledge and teach his skills.
Liu Yunhua

Director, Shangri-la Institute for Sustainable Communities, China