JHLT Protects 68.5 Acres of Wildlife Habitat along the Wind River

The Wind River Program of the Jackson Hole Land Trust (JHLT) announced today that 68.5 acres in Fremont County along the Wind River have been protected through the Wind River Rookery conservation easement, now held by the JHLT’s Wind River Program.

Protected in perpetuity on April 23, the Wind River Rookery contains important open space that supports working lands, riparian, and big game habitat. Its permanent conservation contributes to the long-term ecological viability and connectivity of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

“We are pleased to participate in the ongoing conservation protection of important wildlife habitat along the Wind River,” said the anonymous landowners, who generously donated a portion of the easement’s value. “The JHLT’s plan for protecting important land complements the other conservation easements like pieces of a larger puzzle for wildlife moving through the Wind River Valley.”

The Wind River Rookery contains 4,300 feet of both riparian and aquatic habitat along the Wind River, a Class II trout fishery of statewide importance. The conservation of this property directly benefits native wildlife in this section of the Wind River corridor, as well as the species in the arid region through which the river flows.

The property’s working agricultural lands provide diverse wildlife habitat — irrigated, hay-producing meadows, wet meadows with associated shrub-scrub wetlands, cottonwood forest, and tall-shrub communities where water seeps from sloped sagebrush-grasslands. These varied habitats benefit several of Wyoming’s Species of Greatest Conservation Need, including bald eagles and great blue herons.

Wind River Rookery’s location also promotes wildlife resilience by expanding connectivity with neighboring protected lands that stretch from the Wind River Mountains to the Wind River riparian corridor. This connectivity is of particular importance for a core population of Wyoming’s bighorn sheep, which live in the nearby Whiskey Basin, Dubois Badlands, and Spence & Moriarity wildlife habitat management areas. Wind River Rookery supports the migration of large game and contains Winter Crucial Range for pronghorn and mule deer, and year-round habitat for elk, moose, and pronghorn. The easement also permanently protects nesting, feeding, and shelter habitat for waterfowl and other birds, as well as for small mammals.

“This is a significant conservation gain for the Wind River Valley and Northwest Wyoming,” said Liz Long, JHLT director of conservation and interim co-director. “The property has been incredibly well stewarded by the current landowner. Its working lands, riparian and wildlife habitat, and adjacency to other conserved properties established the property as a priority conservation project for the JHLT. We are thrilled that the ecological and cultural values created by this dynamic open space are now protected forever and we are grateful to our funding and landowner partners who each played a critical role in completing the project.”

The Wind River Rookery conservation easement was accomplished with funding from Wyoming Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust and the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service Agricultural Conservation Easement Program. In addition to this public funding, the landowners donated a portion of the easement’s value.

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.

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.

Employment Opportunity: Major Gifts Officer

The Jackson Hole Land Trust is seeking to fill the position of Major Gifts Officer. Please see the attached job description for details.

To apply, email your resume and cover letter to alowery@jhlandtrust.org.

No phone calls, please.

JHLT protects 191 acres in Teton County in 2018

THe JHLT protected three properties totaling 191 acres throughout Teton County over the past year, with conservation gains for wildlife habitat, migration corridors and ranching heritage. This acreage adds to the existing 55,000 acres of Land Trust protected conservation easements across Northwest Wyoming.

Read the full press release, here.

Fall/Winter Open Lands Newsletter available online

The most recent installment of our biannual newsletter, Open Lands, is now available online.

Read about our accomplishments this summer, new programming, an interview with Joe Riis, a spotlight on the importance of private land protection, and much, much more.

Catch a glimpse before it hits newsstands, here.