Staff Spotlight: Nina Chomak

Discover Buzzards Bay Sponsored By primary sponsor logo

After 32 years in Portland, Oregon, New Bedford native Nina Chomak has returned to her hometown as Director of Public Engagement at the Buzzards Bay Coalition.

Discover Buzzards Bay Sponsored By

BBC: What is your connection to Buzzards Bay? 

NC: I was born in New Bedford and graduated from New Bedford High School. My affinity for the Bay is no surprise. There are baby pictures of me in a playpen (I’m dating myself) at the beach with my Mom! I was a regular at West and East Beaches and once I got my license, Horseneck. My Dad was a lifeguard at Horseneck while he was in college.  

BBC: What is your role at the Coalition? 

NC: As the Director of Public Engagement, I oversee the Coalition’s fundraising events, communications, and membership initiatives.  

If you’re familiar with the Buzzards Bay Swim or Watershed Ride we’re the team that make your event experience unforgettable. We’re also responsible for our monthly newsletter the Bay Buzz, collaborate with local and national media outlets to tell our story, and connect with our members across the watershed. 

BBC: What are you most excited about this year? 

NC: This year, we are laser focused on welcoming as many new members to the Coalition as we can. I am so excited to connect our community with the work that we do every day and help them realize the vital impact they have on our success.  

BBC: What does it mean to be a Coalition member? 

NC: Ours is not a typical membership, like that of a museum or other cultural institution. By becoming a member, you are joining a community of neighbors who care about the health of our natural environment and come together to protect and enjoy it.  

We host special events throughout the year so that our members can connect with each other and with the Coalition, ensuring that membership is first and foremost a community experience. 

BBC: How does someone become a Coalition member? 

NC: There are so many ways to become a member! We want every person on Buzzards Bay to join us, and encourage them to do so in their own way: 

  • Volunteer at least 2 hours of your time. Join a Land Stewardship workday, become a Baywatcher and help test water quality, share our mission at a local community event, or help us make the Swim and Ride a success. 
  • Set up a recurring or one-time gift to help support our work. 
  • Dive into the Bay at the 31st annual Buzzards Bay Swim on June 22. 
  • Run on Team Buzzards Bay at the Falmouth Road Race on August 18. 
  • Tour the scenic Buzzards Bay landscape on your bike at the Buzzards Bay Watershed Ride on October 6. 
  • Donate to a swimmer, runner or rider.
  • Send your kids to summer camp at the Onset Bay Center or participate in one of our paid programs like the Seal & Seabird Cruise.   

BBC: What does Buzzards Bay mean to you? 

NC: Buzzards Bay is my home; I want to make sure that my kids and their kids can enjoy this beautiful place just as I did. I think that’s why our members continue to support us year after year – we all want to take care of our home. 

BBC: What is your favorite Buzzards Bay “hidden gem?”  

NC: Dairy Maid on Cove Road in New Bedford. There’s nothing like ice cream on a hot summer night.  I’m there more than I’d like to admit. The strawberry, coffee twist cone is my go-to!  

Categories: On the Bay, On the Land

Working to Save Buzzards Bay

The Buzzards Bay Coalition is a membership-supported organization dedicated to improving the health of the Buzzards Bay ecosystem for all through education, conservation, research, and advocacy.

We work to protect clean water on the Bay and on the land: