From The President’s Desk

As I write, it is 75 degrees outside and feels more like mid-June than early March. But technically it is still winter...and late November, when we held our annual meeting, wasn’t that long ago. As always, at that event we summarized 2015’s accomplishments and activities, and went over our goals and plans for the year to come. For those of you who were unable to attend, here’s a brief resumé of what transpired.

It was a busy year for the Land Acquisition and Stewardship Committee. We were fortunate to obtain both the Strong Preserve on Above All Road, and the Bates easement on Tanner Hill Road. We continued to fulfill stewardship responsibilities on our existing properties with the help of a consultant. Goals for 2016 include effecting a leadership transition, as Jack Baker is stepping down after many years as chair. We will continue to carefully inspect our properties, determining which are best managed by a consultant, and which could be undertaken easily by volunteers or board members.

In the financial realm, our Treasurer, Barbara Page, was pleased to report a successful annual fundraising appeal. In addition, we participated for the first time in the CT Community Foundation’s online “Give Local” campaign, which also proved productive. We had two unusual expenditures this year – the Strong Preserve purchase and our contribution to the purchase of the East Kent Hamlet Preserve. Thanks to our supporters’ ongoing generosity and to continuous careful management, our finances remain in robust condition. In order to maintain this state of affairs, the Finance Committee will work with land stewardship and development representatives to establish a fundraising plan in alignment with our budget. Also a priority is a review of our investment policies.

You may have noticed enhanced outreach last year in the form of e-mail blasts and a more frequently updated website. In 2016, we will overhaul the website more thoroughly, making it more interactive. We have also set up a Facebook page – we hope you’ll “like” us! Last June’s CT Trail Days hike was our best-attended yet; see this newsletter for information about the 2016 event. We are adding a September Heritage Hike, carried out in conjunction with the Warren Historical Society, to our events calendar – see details on our website.

Finally, in the aftermath of accreditation (and with an eye to its renewal), we continue to pay close attention to governance, as well as to the nominating process. We are working with a consultant to make our record-keeping more streamlined yet thorough. We are also thrilled to have three new board members – see page 2 to better acquaint yourself with them.

If you have questions about our past activities and/or future plans, please don’t hesitate to contact us at


Rebecca Neary

Hilary Adorno