About Ann Hayden

Ann Hayden

Vice President, Climate Resilient Water Systems


Areas of expertise:

Water policy, adaptive management and watershed resilience, strategic planning, stakeholder engagement, environmental markets, riparian and wetland habitat, river and delta systems.


As vice president of Climate Resilient Water Systems, Ann drives EDF’s efforts to ensure sustainable water supplies for people and nature. Ann leads a team of experts focused on advancing partnership-based, data-empowered approaches that ensure adequate water for ecosystems, agriculture, and communities on the frontlines of climate change. Ann applies her extensive experience in California to lead a growing suite of EDF initiatives across the arid West and globally that help farmers transition to a future with less fresh water while addressing the needs of disadvantaged communities and strained ecosystems. By fostering relationships with government agencies, nonprofit partners, landowners, local stakeholders and the private sector, Ann has developed an inclusive, balanced approach to resource management that mobilizes a wide array of perspectives and disciplines.


For more than 17 years, Ann has been building broad coalitions to advance pragmatic solutions that benefit both people and the environment. She is an expert in the development and implementation of environmental markets that help enhance healthy freshwater and terrestrial ecosystems. Throughout her career, Ann’s work has focused on finding the right balance between ecosystem protection and the prosperity of communities.

At EDF, Ann has been instrumental in advancing smart, incentive-based water management strategies in California. She also has played a major role in the establishment of the Central Valley Habitat Exchange, which was developed to incentivize farmers and ranchers to restore important habitat on their land while maintaining, or even increasing, agricultural productivity.


  • M.A., Environmental Science and Management, UC Santa Barbara
  • B.A., Marine Biology, UC Santa Cruz