Nancy McGill: 2023 Land Trust Volunteer of the Year Award

A woman receiving a framed certificate and ceramic vase form a man in an outdoor setting.

Gathering Waters presented Nancy McGill with the 2023 Land Trust Volunteer of the Year Award on August 12, 2023 at Groundswell Conservancy’s Hike at Hauge Historic District Park in Mount Horeb.

Nancy has volunteered with Groundswell Conservancy for over 10 years, surpassing a milestone of 2,000 volunteer hours. She has an aptitude for organization and project management, and has chosen to share her time and talents with her local land trust.

“When I think of Nancy, I think of someone who is humble, helpful, thoughtful, generous, caring, and kind. Groundswell is a better version of itself because of Nancy’s efforts, and, for that, we are eternally grateful,” said Angela West Blank, executive director of Groundswell Conservancy.

Nancy has done projects both big and small. Some of her more notable efforts include:

  • Supporting Groundswell Conservancy through two successful rounds of applying for national accreditation through the Land Trust Alliance.
  • Assisting with the protection of six properties for a total of 409 acres, including Groundswell’s highest valued land conservation project to date, valued at $6 million.
  • Documenting Groundswell’s conservation easement process, and assisting with policy updates and project research.

Working as a weekly office volunteer, Nancy has also been involved in some of the more mundane tasks that every organization needs to tackle at some point, such as digitizing 40 years of office records.

Many people may recognize Nancy from Groundswell Conservancy events like the Black Hawk Ridge Trail Run where she could be found flipping grilled cheese sandwiches for hundreds of participants.

“We’re so glad for this opportunity to recognize Nancy by presenting her with the Volunteer of the Year Award for all of her years of service to Groundswell Conservancy, one of the 40+ land trusts that protect land in Wisconsin,” said Mike Carlson, executive director of Gathering Waters. “Volunteers are invaluable to land trusts, and Nancy in particular has been a faithful and loyal supporter of land conservation over the past decade, and for that, we are incredibly grateful.”

Congratulations, Nancy! Thank you for your many years of service as a volunteer and your unwavering commitment to land conservation in Wisconsin.

About the Land Conservation Leadership Awards

The awards, presented annually to conservation leaders by Gathering Waters, recognize the outstanding achievements and contributions of people who devote their time and talents to protecting Wisconsin’s land, water, and wildlife.

About the Land Trust Volunteer of the Year Award

The Land Trust Volunteer of the Year award recognizes a land trust volunteer or group of volunteers who demonstrate commitment to supporting and serving a land trust through leadership, pursuits, projects, and partnerships that further a land trust’s goals.

Photo credit: Ben Lam, Groundswell Conservancy