Spackmans Bring New Beacon Park to R Park

R Park is now home to a new community resource for backcountry snow safety thanks to the heartfelt generosity and adventurous spirit of the Spackman Family. The avalanche beacon training park features Backcountry Access’s wireless beacon training system and is now open for public use.

The Spackman Family are no strangers to the risks of backcountry sports. They generously sponsored R Park’s new beacon park through the Jarad Spackman Memorial Fund of the Community Foundation of Jackson Hole in memory of Jarad Spackman, who died in an avalanche in Grand Teton National Park in 2013. At the time of his passing, Jarad was on the Board of Directors for the Jackson Hole Land Trust and was passionate about the conservation of Jackson Hole’s open spaces. Jarad’s wife, Stephanie, his mother, Susie, and his brother, Brandon, are excited and honored to fund this community resource which will help others manage the inherent risks of backcountry travel, while still bravely pursuing what they love, as Jarad did. As Jarad once said, “Taking risks allows you to evolve. By stepping out of your comfort zone, you just might learn something about yourself that empowers you. Taking a risk might damage your ego, but it sure beats having regret over lost experiences.”

The beacon park will be open and operational throughout the winter as long as the weather allows. The beacon park is an addition to the Spackman Memorial near the East Pond Crossing at R Park. The Spackman Family has long had a special connection to R Park and a deep connection to conservation in Jackson Hole.

Backcountry skiing, snowboarding, and snowmobiling are becoming increasingly popular activities, making it critical that everyone who ventures out wears a beacon and knows how to assess and respond to the very real risk of avalanches. “As more people will venture into the backcountry due COVID-19 and usage limits at skiing resorts, we are ecstatic the Spackman Family underwrote this timely community asset,” said Jr Rodriguez, community conservation manager/R Park director. “We are hopeful that this beacon park will allow users to hone their transceiver skills without the need to buy a ski pass to access other beacon parks in the valley, all while enjoying the benefits of local conservation.”

“We feel very fortunate as a family to support this endeavor. It is so important for our community to have easily accessible educational tools and programs available for backcountry safety,” said Stephanie Spackman. “We hope this resource will be utilized, along with the many other tools offered in our community, to further support safe travel and a love for adventure in these mountains we are fortunate to call home.”

The beacon park features a Backcountry Access (BCA) wireless beacon training park with one control box and eight transmitters. Users will be able to efficiently practice single burial searches, multiple burial searches, probing, shoveling, and use of RECCO detectors. Each of the eight targets is equipped with an accelerometer so the control box will sound an alarm confirming each successful probe strike upon locating the beacon.

“Having a resource like this at R Park will allow for more people to get the practice they need. It is imperative that all backcountry users, novices, and professionals alike, practice their avalanche rescue skills every season. Regular practice will increase the likelihood of successful partner rescue in the event things take a turn for the worse,” said Liz King, Preventative Search & Rescue Manager for TCSR Foundation.

“As avid skiers ourselves and R Park being located at the halfway point between Teton Pass, Teton Village, and town, R Park has is an ideal place to host a beacon park,” said Ellie Stratton-Brook, R Park community outreach coordinator. “We’re excited for future collaboration opportunities with Backcountry Zero and Teton County Search & Rescue to add supplemental training to the beacon park that focuses on proper avalanche rescue training. We also encourage users to enroll in Avalanche courses in addition to utilizing the Beacon Park for practice.”

R Park is located at the intersection of Highway 22 and the Teton-Village Road (4270 River Springs Drive, Wilson). Participants are encouraged to use alternative forms of transportation to visit, such as START Bus or the community pathways.

Donor Profile: The Jaubert Family

Jessica Jaubert and her family are dedicated supporters of the JHLT’s community conservation efforts and give each year to R Park. We had the pleasure of hearing more about what community conservation means to her and her family.

JHLT: What does community conservation mean to you?

Jessica Jaubert: Connecting people to place is an essential part of community conservation, one that has a meaningful impact on our daily lives. Community conservation has the opportunity to listen to what is needed and provide spaces that reflect recreation and preservation needs.

 

JHLT: What originally inspired you to support R Park and the Jackson Hole Land Trust with your first gift?

JJ: Giving to R Park every year is important to our family. Spaces such as R Park provide a critical connection to nature and people, and the Jackson Hole Land Trust has taken an active role in bringing our community together to share in these experiences.

 

JHLT: What are your favorite things about R Park and how has your family used the space over the years?

JJ: Whether biking, paddleboarding, sledding, participating in the Winter Solstice Party, or the Kid’s Fishing Day; our family connects to nature, each other, and the community through R Park and its events. The JH Land Trust has empowered our community and organizations to interact with nature and take responsibility for cultivating a place where we can all participate in conservation.

 

JHLT: What is your vision for the next generation of conservation in Northwest Wyoming?

JJ: R Park is the result of reclamation work, community support, and conservation that has become a unique, nonprofit park that supports the valley’s vision. Hopefully, the future of conservation will revolve around discussions and engagements of what the community wants and how achieving those goals will instill a love of our open spaces, nature, and the connections these spaces bring to our lives.

Announcing our New President: Max Ludington

After a comprehensive nationwide search for the Jackson Hole Land Trust’s next leader, we’re thrilled to announce that Max Ludington will take on the role of president beginning next month.

Ludington comes to us as a proven leader in Northwest Wyoming conservation known for his commitment to collaboration. Most recently, Ludington launched and led Teton LegacyWorks, a regional initiative of the LegacyWorks Group focused on collaborative conservation projects and strategies to maximize the conservation impact of philanthropic and capital investments throughout the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

“I am thrilled and humbled to be stepping into this position,” Ludington said. “When I first moved to this region 20 years ago, the dramatic open spaces and wild character of the area motivated me to pursue a career in conservation. As I have moved through that career, I have continued to admire the Jackson Hole Land Trust’s careful stewardship of our region’s resources.”

Following Laurie Andrew’s announcement that she would be stepping down as president in December 2019, the board of the JHLT established a search committee led by Second Vice Chair of the Board Lori Fields and selected Russell Reynolds Associates to lead the search and work with the JHLT board to select the best candidate possible for the position. Throughout the transition, Director of Conservation Liz Long, Chief Financial Officer Derek Schaefer, and Director of Advancement and Outreach Jenny Wolfrom Holladay provided strong leadership amidst a global pandemic as interim co-directors.

“While our search spanned from Washington D.C. to Alaska, we are excited and very pleased to have found such remarkable talent right in our backyard,” Fields and Shawn Smith, incoming chair of the JHLT’s board said in a statement. “Max not only has a love and passion for the mountains, valleys, and rivers we all call home, but also has a tremendous background in creating conservation and community partnerships across our region.”

The Jackson Hole Land Trust is wrapping up its 40th year of protecting the community open spaces, wildlife habitat, and agricultural heritage of Northwest Wyoming. With a thoughtful 5-year strategic plan adopted in 2018, incredible momentum on recent community conservation projects like Save the Block and the protection of 18 acres on High School Butte, as well as steadfast support of donors, partners, and the broader community, the Jackson Hole Land Trust is incredibly well poised for its next era of conservation impact with Max Ludington at the helm.

The Jackson Hole Land Trust anticipates Ludington’s start date in late October and will offer several opportunities for you to get to know him in his new capacity.

“I recognize that the Jackson Hole Land Trust’s legacy has been built through the incredible vision, generosity, and passion of this community,” Ludington reflected. “As I move into this role I am excited to meet the supporters, partners, and advocates who have made the JHLT’s work possible.”

Position Specification for JHLT’s Next President

The Jackson Hole Land Trust Board of Directors and contracted search consultant, Russell Reynolds Associates, are pleased to share the Position Specification for the next president of the Jackson Hole Land Trust. Qualified candidates are invited to apply by contacting JHLT@russellreynolds.com.

Following Laurie Andrew’s announcement that she would be stepping down as president in February 2020, the board of the JHLT established a search committee led by Second Vice Chair of the Board Lori Fields. The search committee has identified the current leadership team—Director of Conservation Liz Long, Chief Financial Officer Derek Schaefer, and Director of Advancement & Engagement Jenny Wolfrom Holladay—to serve as interim co-directors of the organization. The committee selected Jamie Hechinger and her team at Russell Reynolds Associates to assist with the search, working with the JHLT board and staff to select the best candidate possible for the position.

The position specification is the result of a thorough needs assessment conducted by Russell Reynolds Associates with thoughtful input from all members of JHLT staff, board members, and many members of the larger JHLT community, including landowners, donors, and people who JHLT partners with on an ongoing basis.

“We are confident that the position specification we have put forward will be a blueprint for the JHLT’s next president and will attract a deep pool of quality candidates,” said Lori Fields. “We look forward to this next phase of our search, and to ultimately introducing our next leader in the coming months.”

The search committee is committed to advancing the search process, but will continue to monitor the impacts of the current COVID-19 pandemic and prioritize the health and safety of all involved.

Jackson Hole Land Trust’s Response to COVID-19

Dear Community and Supporters,

It is times like these that the power and camaraderie of this community become clear as we band together to prioritize the health and safety of our local, national, and global populations. The Jackson Hole Land Trust (JHLT) is monitoring the status of COVID-19 in Northwest Wyoming and doing our part to prevent the risk of exposure and potential spread of the virus. In order to safeguard the health of our staff, board, partners and community, JHLT has implemented the following policies based on the recommendations made by state and local government and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

  • Mandatory office closure and remote work for all staff, including the Jackson and Green River Valley Program office in Pinedale. All JHLT staff are actively working in a remote setting and can be reached by email, or through voicemails left via JHLT’s messaging system by calling the office at 307-733-4707. This will be in effect through March 31, 2020, and extended if necessary.
  • All internal and external meetings will be conducted through video and teleconferencing technology in order to limit close person-to-person contact within a confined area.
  • Temporary hold on nonessential, work-related travel for employees through April 2020.
  • Cancellation of all community events through April 2020 including:
    • WYLD Beacon Search with Teton County Search and Rescue at R Park on 3/19/2020
    • Eastern Egg Hunt at R Park on 4/10/2020
    • GRVP Happy Hour at Wind River Brewing Company on 4/22/2020
  • Rendezvous “R” Park will remain open to the public at this time, although the office will be closed to staff and visitors and office hours will be cancelled through at least March 31, 2020. We do recommend and request that visitors to R Park implement preventative measures recommended by the CDC, which include social distancing of at least 6 feet from other individuals and families, washing or sanitizing hands before and after visiting the park, and staying home if you or a member of your household are feeling sick.  We are proud to offer a safe, community greenspace that can provide residents with a positive connection to nature and open space- which has been directly linked to enhancing the function of the immune system and increasing mental health- in these times of uncertainty and isolation.

As the situation is changing daily, and sometimes hourly, we will adjust our policies and procedures to reflect recommendations made by local, state, and national entities. Meanwhile, our talented and dedicated team will continue their work towards fulfilling our vision of a legacy of protected open spaces, wildlife habitat, working lands, and community spaces across Northwest Wyoming that inspire current and future generations.

Please use the online staff email directory to contact the appropriate JHLT team member with questions and concerns.

Thank you,
JHLT Interim Co-Directors Liz Long, Derek Schaefer, and Jenny Wolfrom

Laurie Andrews,President of the Jackson Hole Land Trust, Announces Departure

Laurie Andrews will continue career as a community leader as President of the Community Foundation of Jackson Hole

Jackson, WY –It is with gratitude and commendation that the Board of Directors announces today the departure of Laurie Andrews as President of the Jackson Hole Land Trust, effective late February 2020. Andrews will be starting her new position as Executive Director of the Community Foundation of Jackson Hole in March 2020.

Since 2005, Andrews has played a critical role in land conservation for Northwest Wyoming and beyond. During her 15-year tenure at the Jackson Hole Land Trust, Andrews was responsible for the protection of over 8,000 acres of conservation land, led the organization through multiple forward-thinking strategic plans, and expanded the reach of the Jackson Hole Land Trust to encompass the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

“Laurie has been an exceptional President and leader for the Jackson Hole Land Trust” said Jason Snider, Board Chair. “We are grateful for Laurie’s visionary direction, which embraced inclusivity, produced strong results, created strong partnerships and prioritized the conservation needs of the whole community.”

“Under Laurie’s leadership, the staff of the Jackson Hole Land Trust more than doubled, the organization successfully completed two significant fundraising campaigns – Forever Our Valley and Save the Block, and we experienced record-breaking annual fundraising and asset growth benchmarks. While we are sad to see her go, we are excited about what her new role means for Jackson’s community and network of non-profits,” continued Snider.

The Board of Directors of the Jackson Hole Land Trust have created a search committee to identify an Interim Director and hire a new permanent leader for the Jackson Hole Land Trust. While the search is underway, the organization is in an excellent position with its accomplished senior leadership team of Jennifer Wolfrom Holladay, Director of Advancement and Engagement, Liz Long, Director of Conservation, and Derek Schaefer, Chief Financial Officer.

“I feel so fortunate to have been a part of such a strong and impactful organization for the past 15 years,” said Andrews. “The Jackson Hole Land Trust has taught me so much about what community means and the passion and generosity that I’ve seen shine through over and over again has been incredibly inspiring. I’m excited to continue my journey as a leader in this special place, and to continue working with extraordinary partners on meaningful projects.”

Continued Andrews, “While it is bittersweet to leave the Jackson Hole Land Trust, I know that the organization is in good hands. The current board and the leadership team are knowledgeable and talented and I will miss working with such a tremendously effective team. While my career is changing directions, my commitment to protecting open spaces is steadfast and I know I will be working with the Jackson Hole Land Trust in some capacity in the future.”

Lori Fields, Vice Chair of the Board of Directors for the Jackson Hole Land Trust, will head the committee that will conduct a wide ranging and broad-based search for a new Executive Director.

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About the Jackson Hole Land Trust

The Jackson Hole Land Trust is a private, non-profit organization that was established in 1980 to protect and steward the treasured landscapes of Northwest Wyoming including Fremont and Sublette counties. With over 55,000 acres protected, our vision is a legacy of protected open spaces, wildlife habitat, working lands and community spaces that inspire current and future generations. For more information, please visit jhlandtrust.org.

R Park Ribbon Cutting Celebration

R Park is excited to announce the official unveiling of new park amenities and photos from the 2019 Slide into R Park program this Friday, September 27, for its 5th Anniversary Celebration.

Read the full press release, here.

Summer Solstice feat. FoundSpace

Join us Friday, June 21, from 5-8 PM, for our 6th Annual R Park Summer Solstice Celebration featuring FoundSpace – a family-friendly celebration if interactive art, protected public-access land, and the longest day of the year.

Enjoy place-based art installations in partnership with JH Public Art, while enjoying live music from StrumBucket, $2 treats from Streetfood, and free adult beverages, The first 200 attendees to visit all of the FoundSpace installations will receive a custom-designed Chico bag.

For full event details, read the press release, here, or check out our Facebook event.

 

2018 Annual Report

Our Annual Report from our 2018 fiscal year is now available online.

Read about our yearly highlights, accomplishments, programming, and much, much more.

Check out the full piece, here.

Genevieve Block Project

For project details, fundraising timeline, and to stay up-to-date on announcements, visit the Genevieve Block Project website.

Read the cover article from the Jackson Hole News & Guide, here.

Learn the call-to-action and project partners in the editorial section’s guest shot from April 17, 2019, here.