The Nature Conservancy is proud to announce that the Rio Grande Headwaters Trust (RiGHT) is the 2011 recipient of their Phil James Conservation Award. The Phil James Conservation Award is given to an individual or organization for extraordinary contributions or achievements that further the mission of The Nature Conservancy. This award honors Phil James’ unsurpassed passion and dedication for conservation. Phil works tirelessly to support the Conservancy. His leadership and generosity has made an impact on us and for future generations.
The Nature Conservancy is paying tribute to RiGHT with this coveted award for its pivotal role in protecting the Rio Grande, Colorado's last intact major mountain river corridor that is home to many farms and ranches along its banks. RiGHT is the community’s land trust serving the entire San Luis Valley. They use voluntary conservation easements to keep working ranches and farms intact, along with the beauty of the scenic landscape and important wildlife habitat.
Since launching the Rio Grande Initiative in 2006, RiGHT has completed 14 conservation easement projects, permanently protecting over 16 miles along the river corridor and more than 7,200 acres of wetlands, wildlife habitat, open space, and working ranchland.
“RiGHT goes the extra mile when it comes to protection,” says Phil James. “This organization turns ideas into reality and, through effective partnerships with the Conservancy as well as local and statewide collaborations, has made lasting contributions to conservation.”
“Strong partnerships are the key to conservation successes,” says Nancy Butler, RiGHT’s Executive Director. “We know that together we can protect our landscapes, help sustain local agriculture businesses, and give future generations a chance to live the same quality of life that we value. All of us at RiGHT are honored to receive this award and proud to call the Conservancy a partner.”
The Conservancy presented the award to the Rio Grande Headwaters Trust leadership team this week in Boulder. RiGHT is the first organization to receive the Phil JamesConservation Award. The three previous winners were individuals.
To learn more about The Nature Conservancy, visit www.nature.org/Colorado.
To learn more about RiGHT, visit www.riograndelandtrust.org.
The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to protect ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people. The Conservancy and its more than 1 million members have protected nearly 120 million acres worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the Web at www.nature.org.