Kalle Matso has been selected as the next director for the Piscataqua Region Estuaries Partnership (PREP), a UNH-affiliated program focused on protecting the health of the state’s estuaries — where rivers meet the sea. With a long history of working with New Hampshire’s coastal communities, Matso brings to this role his passion for connecting local decisionmakers with the data needed to inform their choices.
“Kalle has an unmatched passion for the PREP mission and making a difference,” says Diane Foster, director for the UNH School of Marine Science and Ocean Engineering (SMSOE). “His collaborative and engaged style of leadership will facilitate the growth of PREPs impact on our community partnerships.”
PREP, which receives its base funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and is part of SMSOE, concentrates on safeguarding the well-being of the state’s two major estuaries — Great Bay and the Hampton-Seabrook Estuary. Forty-two communities in New Hampshire and 10 in Maine are located within the 1,086-square-mile watershed that drains to these estuaries, and PREP collaborates with them to provide technical assistance, research, monitoring, restoration and conservation of critical habitats throughout the region.
Matso ’00G ’12G has served as PREP’s coastal science program manager since 2015, where he developed and managed PREP’s science-based programs and projects. He previously helped to manage the National Estuarine Research Reserve Science Collaborative and supervised the research portfolio at the Cooperative Institute of Coastal and Estuarine Environmental Technology — both of which are also affiliated with UNH. His new role as PREP’s director will draw upon his extensive experience working with people who have varying perspectives.
"I've loved working at PREP these last seven years, collaborating with all the great partners in the Piscataqua Region to keep our estuaries as healthy as possible," Matso says. "Many of us know that we are truly fortunate to live in an area with such beautiful and vibrant natural resources. What I've learned is that the people who live here are also amazing to work with. I feel very lucky."
Matso takes over for PREP’s previous director, Rachel Rouillard, who led the organization from 2010 to 2021.