Land trusts of Northeast Ohio

The following list provides an overview of land trust capacity in Northeast Ohiothe organizations in existence, their budgets, staffing, and amount of land protected. The information was compiled by Joseph and Mary Chadbourne as part of a survey for EcoCity Cleveland and the Chagrin River Land Conservancy in August 2000.

Audubon Society of Greater Cleveland
The Park Building
140 Public Square
Cleveland, Ohio 44114-2213
Phone: 330-562-6190
Contact: Daniel H. Melcher, Vice President of Operations
Year founded: 1923
Staff: All volunteers
Members: 1,500
Annual operating budget: $25,000 - $50,000
Total acres protected: 500 - 600
Acres currently owned: 533
Acres under easement: 60
Purpose: To promote the conservation and appreciation of birds and other wildlife through habitat preservation and educational activities, focusing on the Greater Cleveland community.
Area of operations: Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, and Portage counties.

Chagrin River Land Conservancy
P.O. Box 314
Novelty, Ohio 44072
Phone: 440-729-9621
Contact: Rich Cochran, Executive Director
Year founded: 1986
Staff: 3 full-time, 2 part-time
Members: 1000
Annual operating budget: $350,000
Total acres protected: 2,102
Acres currently owned: 18
Acres under easement: 2,084
Purpose: Chagrin River Land Conservancy seeks to preserve the scenic beauty, rural character, and
natural resources of the Chagrin River watershed through direct land protection and promotion of the responsible use of land and water resources.
Area of operations: The entire Chagrin River watershed as well as communities that lie partially within the watershed.

Cleveland Museum of Natural History Natural Areas
Wade Oval, University Circle
Cleveland, Ohio 44106
Phone: 216-231-4600 x219
Contact: Jim Bissell, Coordinator of Natural Areas
Year founded: Natural Areas activity began in 1956
Staff: 2 full-time, 6 college interns, about 100 volunteers
Members: Members of museum
Annual operating budget: Average of $100,000
Total acres protected: 3,808
Acres currently owned: 2,925
Acres under easement: 503
Acres leased from State of Ohio: 240
Purpose: The purpose is to create a system of natural area reserves which best represent the broad spectrum of biological diversity within the Northern Ohio region. The reserves are managed by the Division of Natural Areas of the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.
Area of operation: East to the Pennsylvania border, south to Trumbull County, the Warren area, west toward Mansfield, and 300 acres in Hocking County.

Firelands Land Conservancy
PO Box 174
Oberlin, Ohio 44074
Phone: 877-281-8485 (toll free), 440-774-4226
Contact: Kate Pilacky, director
Year founded: 1999
Staff: Part-time director; volunteers
Members: 65
Annual operating budget: About $5,000
Total acres protected: None yet
Purpose: To preserve lands, especially farmland, for aesthetic, scenic, conservation, and educational value.
Area of operation: Lorain, Huron, Erie, and Sandusky counties.

Gates Mills Land Conservancy
P.O. Box 13
Gates Mills, Ohio 44040
Phone: 216-423-3242
Contact: Rob Galloway, President of the Board of Trustees
Year founded: 1988
Staff: All volunteers
Members: 300 families
Annual operating budget: Less than $15,000 per year; but receive $170,000 annually from the Gates Mills Open Spaces Levy Fund.
Total acres protected: 248
Acres owned: 124
Acres under easement: 124
Purpose: To preserve and protect the ecology, open spaces, rivers, fish, and wildlife, and to support the Village of Gates Mills
Area of operation: Gates Mills only.

Geauga Farmland Preservation Task Force
6970 State Route 88
Ravenna, Ohio 44266
Phone: 330-296-6432
Contact: Kevin OReilly, Agricultural Extension Agent, Ohio State University
Year founded: Not yet incorporated
Staff: None, yet; unlikely if publicly funded
Members: Not applicable
Annual operating budget: Possible in 2001
Total acres protected: With funding, potentially 1,000 immediately; none currently
Acres currently owned: None, with no plans to own
Acres under easement: None, with plans to purchase easements only
Purpose: To preserve arable land as open space.
Area of operation: All of Geauga County, with Bond issues funds requiring blocks of land.

Grand River Partners, Inc.
Lake Erie College, Austin Hall Room 314, Box M25
Painesville, Ohio 44077
Phone: 440-639-4773
Contact: Chuck Ashcroft, Executive Director
Year founded: 1994
Staff: 1 full-time, 1 part-time
Members: 93
Annual operating budget: About $80,000
Total acres protected: 96.6
Acres owned: 96.6
Acres under easement: None, but have $450,000 available
Purpose: Organized and operated with the goals of preserving and restoring the ecology, the open spaces, the natural, recreational, agricultural and scenic resources of the Grand River watershed.
Area of operation: The 712 square mile Grand River watershed.

Headwaters Land Trust
P.O. Box 171
Hiram, Ohio 44231
Phone: 330-569-0091, x271
Contact: Stan Fischer, President
Year founded: 1990
Staff: All volunteers
Members: 60
Annual operating budget: $5,000 in the Trusts treasury
Total acres protected: 90 - 100
Acres owned: 30
Acres under easement: 70
Purpose: Preserve scenic highway views, villages, farmland and woodlands, areas too special or delicate for development
Area of operation: Basically southern Geauga County, essentially the headwaters of the Grand and Cuyahoga rivers and Silver Creek.

Holden Arboretum
9500 Sperry Road
Kirtland, Ohio 44094-5172
Phone: 440-256-1110
Contact: Roger Gettig, Landscape Consultant
Year founded: The land trust component of the Arboretum in 1991
Staff: 1/4th of one person full-time; 12 members of the Conservation Easement Committee
Members: None
Annual operating budget: Very small
Total acres protected: 4,413
Acres owned: 3,446
Acres under easement: 967
Purpose: The goal of the Conservation Easement Committee is to encourage conservation of significant
natural habitats, not only on land currently owned by the Arboretum, but also on land along the periphery of the Arboretum or in the vicinity of the Arboretum.
Area of operation: Route 6 to the north, Route 90 to the south, Booth Road to the west, Wilder to the east.

Hudson Land Conservancy
P.O. Box 1381
Hudson, Ohio 44236
Phone: 330-528-0688
Contact: Donna Studniarz, Trustee
Year founded: 1992
Staff: No full-time, 1 half-time, approved 1 full-time Executive Director
Members: 100
Annual operating budget: $100,000 - $250,000
Total acres protected: 80
Acres owned: 45
Acres under easement: 35
Purpose: Restoration of wetlands, outreach education, and protection of farmland, greenways, forests, rare species habitat.
Area of operation: All of Hudsons 25 square miles and any area impacting the watershed.

Medina Summit Land Conservancy
P.O. Box 141
141 Prospect
Medina, Ohio 44258
Phone: 330-772-7313
Contact: Chris Bunch, Executive Director
Year founded: 1991
Staff: 1 full-time
Members: 200
Annual operating budget: $60,000 in 2000; $110,000 for 2001
Total acres protected: 110
Acres owned: None
Acres under easement: 110
Purpose: To protect rivers and streams, forests, wetlands, open space, and farmland.
Area of operation: All of Summit County except areas covered by Tinkers Creek Land Conservancy and the Hudson Land Conservancy.

Portage Land Association for Conservation and Education (PLACE)
P.O. Box 3286
Kent, Ohio 44240
Phone: 330-673-4818 or 330-425-8520
Contacts: Rick Hawksley, Secretary, and Romi Fox, President
Year founded: 1989
Annual operating budget: $2,500, but obligated $6,000 for part-time staff in 2000
Staff: None full-time, 1 part-time
Members: 40
Total acres protected: 96
Acres owned: 69
Acres under easement: 27
Purpose: To conserve historic, ecological, agricultural, and recreational lands of significance, and to build an understanding among fellow citizens regarding the social, environmental and economic benefits of conservation.
Area of operation: Historically, Breakneck, Plum, and Fish Creek watershed, but now Ravenna Township, Brimfield Township, and Franklin Township, all in Portage County. Since Headwaters is working north of PLACEs area of operation, PLACE may work on land acquisition to the south of the county.

Quail Hollow Land Conservancy
13340 Congress Lake Avenue
Hartville, Ohio 44632
Phone: 330-673-6213
Contact: Judy Semroc, President

The Nature Conservancys Northeast Ohio Program
3500 Lorain Ave., Suite 501
Cleveland, Ohio 44113
Phone: 216-631-0878
Contact: Kay Carlson, Northeast Ohio Program Manager, or Jennifer Hillmer, Land Steward
Year founded: Ohio Chapter in 1960s
Annual operating budget: $150,000 - $200,000
Staff: 2 full-time; 1 part-time; and 1 part-time seasonal assistant
Members: Ohio Chapter membership only
Total acres protected: 1,524
Acres owned: 1,444
Acres under easement: 80
Purpose: To protect representative biodiversity using Baileys 88 eco-regions as selection criteria.
Area of operation: Northeastern Ohio, with details to be mapped.

Tinkers Creek Land Conservancy
PO Box 805
Twinsburg, Ohio 44087
Phone: 330-425-4159
Contact: Marion Olson, President
Year founded: 1995
Annual operating budget: $2,500 - $2,600
Staff: All volunteers
Members: 40
Total acres protected: 48
Acres owned: 33
Acres under easement: 15
Purpose: To preserve rivers & streams, forests & farms, wetlands, wildlife habitat, natural ecosystems, archaeological sites, geological formations
Area of operations: The entire Tinkers Creek watershed, approximately 100 acres in Portage, Summit, Cuyahoga Counties, and a small portion of Geauga County.

Trust for Public Land
Hanna Building
1422 Euclid Avenue, Suite 446
Cleveland, Ohio 44115
Phone: 216-928-7518
Contact: Chris Knopf, Director, TPL Ohio Office
Year founded: 1998
Staff: 2 full-time; 2 more to be added in late 2000
Members: Part of national organization
Annual operating budget: Not provided
Total acres protected: 985 acres transferred to others within months from 1998 - 2000
Acres owned: None
Acres under easement: None
Purpose: To acquire important parcels of land from owners and transfer them to an agency that will then make it available for public use.
Area of operation: Erie, Lorain, Medina, Cuyahoga, Summit, Stark, Tuscarawas, Portage, Geauga, Lake, and Ashtabula Counties.

Waite Hill Land Conservancy
9494 Smith Road
Willoughby, Ohio 44094
Phone: 440-951-6960
Contact: Brian Sherwin, Chairman
Year founded: 1986
Staff: Volunteers
Members: Not provided
Annual operating budget: Not provided
Total acres protected: Under 100
Acres owned: Not provided
Acres under easement: Not provided
Purpose: To protect open spaces in Waite Hill and lands adjacent to the family farms.
Area of operation: Waite Hill Village.

Willoughby Natural Areas Conservancy
5198 Karen Isle Drive
Willoughby, Ohio 44094
Phone: 440-951-5649
Contact: Joseph K. Bole, Treasurer
Year founded: 1994
Staff: All volunteers
Members: None
Annual operating budget: None (volunteers pay out-of-pocket expenses)
Total acres protected: 15
Acres owned: None
Acres under easement: 15
Purpose: To preserve open spaces.
Area of operation: All of Willoughby and any adjacent areas.


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Cuyahoga Bioregion
(216) 961-5020
Copyright 2002-2003

Land trusts of Northeast Ohio
What is a land trust?
What is a conservation easement?
Land and Dreams: a family tale

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