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Bainbridge Island Land Trust earns national recognition

The view from Hilltop, the most recent community acquisition effort by the Bainbridge Island Land Trust. The trust learned last week its efforts to obtain national accreditation have been successful.  - Thomas Fenwick photo
The view from Hilltop, the most recent community acquisition effort by the Bainbridge Island Land Trust. The trust learned last week its efforts to obtain national accreditation have been successful.
— image credit: Thomas Fenwick photo

The Bainbridge Island Land Trust earned national recognition last week when it was formally accredited by the independent Land Trust Accreditation Commission.

Officials with the land trust said the national accreditation capped a rigorous two-year review of all of the land trust’s records, conservation easements, and standards and practices.  The accreditation seal confirms that the Bainbridge Island Land Trust meets the highest standards for excellence, upholds the public’s trust, and ensures that its conservation efforts are permanent.

The Bainbridge Island Land Trust is one of only 201 land trusts from across the country that has been accredited since fall of 2008.

“The accreditation process challenged us every step of the way and, in the end, we have come through it as a much stronger and more competent organization,” said Connie Waddington, a member of the land trust's board of directors.

“We are delighted to be recognized among organizations nationwide that meet the highest standards for land conservation and stewardship,” she said.

The Bainbridge Island Land Trust was founded in 1989 and has worked with 54 conservation-minded property owners to protect more than 1,250 acres of woodlands and shoreline on Bainbridge Island. The land trust holds 47 conservation easements (permanent land protection agreements on 42 private and five publicly owned properties) that encompass 708 acres, with an additional 80 acres owned outright by the land trust.

“Bainbridge Island Land Trust’s accredited status demonstrates our commitment to permanent land conservation that benefits the entire community,” said Tom Goodlin, president of the land trust.

Accredited land trusts are authorized to publicly display a seal indicating that they meet national standards, and each accredited land trust submitted extensive documentation and underwent a rigorous review.

“Through accreditation, land trusts conduct important planning and make their operations more efficient and strategic,” said Tammara Van Ryn, executive director of the Land Trust Accreditation Commission. “Accredited organizations have engaged and trained citizen conservation leaders and improved systems for ensuring that their conservation work is permanent.”

Community Events, April 2014

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