In 1951, Jim and Betty Woodford bought a 185-acre parcel of land, in what were then the wilds of Medford Township, to use as a summer getaway.


They quickly fell in love with the beauty of the Pinelands and decided to live here full-time. By 1957 they built their first home with a view of the lake, and founded Cedar Run Wildlife Refuge. Betty became a local authority on the flora and fauna of the NJ Pinelands, and quickly began teaching others what she knew.

The rehabilitation of animals at Cedar Run started when a resident brought an injured Great-Horned Owl to Ms. Woodford to see if she could help. Over the next 40 years, Betty and Jim devoted their lives to Pinelands preservation, environmental education, and wildlife rehabilitation. Betty became an expert botanist, naturalist, nature photographer and wildlife rehabilitator. She was renowned for her Pinelands education programs. In 1997 the Woodford’s ultimate dream was realized when a Green Acres grant preserved Cedar Run’s land and buildings for future generations.


What began as one woman’s passion for the NJ Pinelands quickly grew into a more than full-time endeavor. Today, our staff and board members continue Betty and Jim’s work, along with their daughter, Jeanne, who is Cedar Run’s Co-Founder. We welcome visitors throughout the year to our Wildlife Housing Area, where you can see Bald Eagles, Great-horned Owls, raccoons and many other resident wildlife that cannot be returned to the wild due to their injuries. Our Nature Center and Education Department offer fun and educational programs for all, while our hiking trails offer an opportunity to explore native Pinelands habitats.

Cedar Run has since expanded its programming and services and today, Cedar Run engages in habitat preservation, operates a state- and federally-licensed Wildlife Rehabilitation Hospital, and provides nature and STEM-based education programs for more than 30,000 students and Scouts each year. Cedar Run has been a vital force on all matters related to wildlife and habitat for more than 60 years. Our work with individual wild animals has a positive impact on wildlife populations and habitats well beyond our borders.

Cedar Run also serves as a trusted resource to a wide and varied community in central and southern New Jersey on all wildlife, habitat, and environmental protection-related questions and issues, and a valuable member of the local community.