Putnam County Land Trust Earns National Recognition Strong Commitment to Public Trust and Conservation Excellence

For Immediate Release
Judy Terlizzi – 845 743 3187
Brewster, New York 10509
March 18, 2024

One thing that unites us as a nation is land: Americans strongly support saving the natural
spaces they love. Since 1969, Putnam County Land Trust has been doing just that for the
people of Putnam County. Now Putnam County Land Trust announced it has renewed its land
trust accreditation – proving once again that, as part of a network of over 450 accredited land
trusts across the nation, it is committed to conservation excellence.

“Renewing our accreditation shows Putnam County Land Trust’s ongoing commitment to
permanent land conservation in Putnam County” said Judy Terlizzi, Board President. “We are a
stronger organization than ever for having gone through the rigorous accreditation renewal
process. Our strength means special places will be protected forever, making eastern Putnam
County an even greater place for now and in the future.”

Putnam County Land Trust provided extensive documentation and was subject to a
comprehensive third-party evaluation prior to achieving this distinction. The Land Trust
Accreditation Commission awarded renewed accreditation, signifying its confidence that PCLT’s
lands will be protected forever. Accredited land trusts now steward over 20 million acres – the
size of “Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island combined”

From its inception in 1969 under the leadership of Paul Fitchen who saw the development
pressure that would take place in Putnam with the construction of Route 684, the trust then
known as Southeast Open Spaces, endeavored to protect valuable conservation lands. In 1974,
the trust became Save Open Spaces and in 1994, Putnam County Land Trust: Save Open
Spaces Inc. From Field Farmstead in Southeast and the Laurel Ledges Natural Area and Ice
Pond in Patterson, the trust has protected both historic and incredibly beautiful natural areas.

“We are proud to recognize PCLT’s continued commitment to conservation excellence,” said
Melissa Kalvestrand, executive director of the Commission. “The accreditation seal is a mark of
distinction that stands for excellence, trust and permanence. PCLT is part of a network of over
450 accredited land trusts that are united by their strong ethical practices. Accredited land trusts
inspire confidence and respect among their peers and in their communities.”

PCLT is one of 1,281 land trusts across the United States according to the Land Trust Alliance’s
most recent National Land Trust Census. The Land Trust Accreditation Commission inspires
excellence, promotes public trust and ensures permanence in the conservation of open lands by
recognizing organizations that meet rigorous quality standards and strive for continuous
improvement. The Commission, established in 2006 as an independent program of the Land
Trust Alliance, is governed by a volunteer board of diverse land conservation and nonprofit
management experts. For more, visit www.landtrustaccreditation.org.

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