Faces of Conservation

When The Nature Conservancy of Delaware’s Board of Trustees elected Brock Vinton for a two-year term as Chairman during the summer of 2010, it welcomed a leader with deep Delaware roots extending back to the 1700’s.

“It’s this connection that influenced me to seek out involvement with The Nature Conservancy,” says Vinton.

A native Delawarean, Vinton grew up in Dover, Rehoboth and Wilmington, leaving for a time to earn his BS in Banking and Finance from the University of South Carolina in 1970. After that, he served as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Navy, where he spent time in the North Atlantic, Caribbean and Mediterranean as a weapons officer. 

In 1972, Vinton returned to Delaware and founded Commonwealth Management Corp, now a fully integrated and diversified real estate investment and development firm known as The Commonwealth Group Ltd.

Running a development company is just one of many hats worn by Vinton. When he isn’t working, he can be found outdoors either hunting, riding or tending to his pasture.

“Getting outside and working with the Conservancy balances the work I do in my profession,” says Vinton. “First and foremost, I am a Delawarean – one who is very concerned about preserving the state’s natural heritage.”

The Commonwealth Group Ltd is one business in a long line of companies owned by his family over four generations.

“We’re entrepreneurs and have always supported such businesses, whether in health care, education or another industry,” adds Vinton.

In fact, communicating about The Nature Conservancy’s creative and entrepreneurial approach to conserving the state’s lands and waters is one of Vinton’s primary goals as the chapter’s board chairman.

“I’m not new to the Conservancy’s work, having served on the board, including as vice chairman, since 1998,” says Vinton. “The Conservancy has special places to preserve and offers a number of tools, such as easements, to help protect them. I want to raise awareness about that.”