Continental Divide Land Trust and Colorado Open Lands Celebrate Merger

With Quarter-Million Dollar Investment in The Summit Foundation


October 23, 2019 —Colorado Open Lands and Continental Divide Land Trust announced today that they have merged operations, effective October 23, 2019.  The two groups have similar missions of permanently protecting Colorado’s wild and working lands.  At the meeting to formalize the merger, Continental Divide Land Trust (CDLT) Board President Kim Dufty said, “I hope our community sees this as an opportunity to continue and strengthen land conservation in Summit County.”

Colorado Open Lands (COL) and CDLT share long, successful histories of land protection.  While CDLT served Summit and Park Counties, COL serves landscapes statewide, with over half a million acres protected in its 38-year history.  Operating at the local scale, CDLT has been in business for 25 years, and has conserved 16 properties, including many that offer public recreation opportunities to Summit County residents and visitors.

CDLT Board member and Summit County Open Space Senior Resource Specialist Katherine King said, “CDLT is thrilled to see this come to fruition.  It’s been a long time coming.  COL will be an amazing partner in conservation.  We are excited to introduce them to our Summit County Community.”

To demonstrate Colorado Open Lands’ ongoing commitment to Summit County, the two organizations boards of directors enthusiastically agreed to add $250,000 to the existing CDLT funds at The Summit Foundation.  These funds will function as an endowment for the stewardship of CDLT’s conserved lands in perpetuity.  This ensures that the scenic views, healthy waterways, and wildlife habitat on these lands will endure for future generations.

“To see the land continued to be preserved is the goal,” said COL Board Member Susan Fox Pinkowitz.

Colorado Open Lands will continue to have dedicated staff in the CDLT Breckenridge office.  There were no layoffs or resignations associated with this merger.

Summit County Deputy Treasurer and CDLT Board Member Ryne Scholl added, “I’m confident we’ve chosen the right partner in COL.  Their resources are vast and expand our ability to protect our easements in perpetuity.”

President of COL Tony Caligiuri said, “Summit County is a very special place, full of scenic beauty and unmatched recreation opportunities. It’s an honor for our organization to be entrusted with the past accomplishments of CDLT. We pledge to continue that amazing conservation work, so that Summit County continues to be one of Colorado’s most outstanding places to live, work, and play.”

About Colorado Open Lands
Colorado Open Lands is a private, nonprofit land trust that works to enhance Colorado’s quality of life by protecting its most treasured asset: open lands.  Since 1981, COL has helped landowners conserve more than 545,000 acres around the state and fostered partnerships responsible for critical innovations in conservation funding, water management, and more.  In 2015, COL adopted an ambitious strategic plan to help interested landowners protect a total of 800,000 acres across Colorado by 2025.



What is a Land Trust?

A Land Trust is a non-governmental, non-profit charitable organization dedicated to the preservation of lands with significant natural qualities…

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