Gathering Waters Land Trust Membership: Stronger Together

Graphic with blurry grass background and text overlay that reads Gathering Waters Land Trust Membership: Stronger Together

As a statewide alliance, Gathering Waters exists to support Wisconsin’s land trust community, and our team is available every day to help address challenges unique to land trusts. The land trust community in Wisconsin is 41 organizations strong!

Our member land trusts make a critical difference in protecting special places in Wisconsin. Together, we can accelerate the pace and scale of land conservation, adapt to emerging challenges, and defend against threats to protecting land in perpetuity.

Each year, land trusts renew their membership with Gathering Waters. Member organizations have access to a variety of support services, including advocacy and government relations, peer-to-peer networking, training and technical assistance, and publicity through our flagship event series (Wisconsin Land Trust Days).

In 2023, your land trust’s organizational membership will support these vital initiatives.

  • Wisconsin Land Trust Conference & other educational offerings: For the first time since 2019, we will offer a 2.5 day in-person conference—scheduled for May 3-5 in La Crosse. Join your peers to discuss the future of conservation funding in Wisconsin, inclusion in the outdoors, essential skills for success, and more! A series of Winter Webinars will also be offered (free for members).

  • Advocacy & research for land conservation funding: The Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Program remains Wisconsin’s best source of conservation funding, but it also faces significant challenges in our state’s divisive political environment. We will continue to lead the push for fixes to the program while supporting research into alternative conservation financing mechanisms.  

  • Legal expertise and assistance: In 2022, we launched the Land Conservation Law Program, which offers legal services to land trusts and seeks to foster a community of practice of attorneys with expertise in land conservation in Wisconsin. We’ll be sharing more information about this new program soon, and how you can tap into the legal services available to you.

  • GIS tools & resources: The GIS database of land trust holdings is available to all land trust members. We will roll out new tools and data layers in 2023 to help land trusts be more efficient and effective at identifying and targeting the greatest conservation needs and opportunities.

Thank you to all of our member land trusts for your contributions and commitment. If your land trust is not already a member, we hope you consider joining our community!

For information on these initiatives, or questions about membership, contact Meg Domroese.