Elizabeth Hagood will serve as interim director of the Lowcountry Open Land Trust as the conservation group conducts a national search for a new director.

Hagood was the trust's first director, from 1989-1994, and also has served as the Coastal Conservation League's land protection director. She also has chaired the state Department of Health and Environmental Control.

The trust works with land owners hoping to conserve Lowcountry forests, farmland, open spaces, wetlands and wildlife habitat. It has received 227 easements protecting about 81,000 acres to date. It also owns 20 properties either outright or with some restrictions.

The trust is the third-largest private holder of conservation easements in the state, behind The Nature Conservancy and Ducks Unlimited.