Call for Espy Land Heritage Award Nominations
Each year, as part of the annual Maine Land Conservation Conference, Maine Coast Heritage Trust presents the Espy Land Heritage Award. The award recognizes those who make outstanding contributions to land conservation in Maine while inspiring others. Recent past winners include Janet McMahon, Jerry Bley, and the Portland Water District. Today, MCHT is pleased to issue the call for nominations for the 2024 Espy Land Heritage Award.
On April 13 this year, a deserving conservationist will receive the 36th Espy Land Heritage Award during the plenary session at Orion Performing Arts Center in Topsham. Maine is home to so many talented, hard-working, and inspirational people, scientists, advocates and educators who are passionate about nature, the environment, and conserving the best of Maine’s outdoors. Who should this year’s winner be? We want to hear from YOU!
More information and a link to this year’s nomination form are available on our website now. Nominations are due by midnight on February 29th.
Angela, Jeff, and Donna
In-Person Land Stewards Gathering
Wednesday, March 6, 2024 (Snow date: Wed, March 20)
Augusta Elks Lodge, 397 Civic Center Drive, Augusta
From time to time, MLTN convenes a gathering of land stewards from across the state. It’s a chance for all the hard-working people who care for Maine’s conserved lands to compare notes and discuss issues of common interest. Anyone interested in attending can RSVP to . If you have topics you’d like to discuss with your peers or a presentation to share, please let us know by emailing the same address.
Disability 101 & Leadership
Thursday, February 8, 2024 via Zoom
Cost: $75 for LTA members, $115 for non-members
As accessibility and inclusion become a high priority for land trusts, many ask: where do we start? Thankfully, there are people within the disability community taking charge and leading the way into equitable, inclusive and accessible conservation work. The disability spectrum is wide and encompasses many forms of disability. This webinar will feature the founder of Disabled Hikers, Syren Nagakyrie, as they discuss ways our land trust members can center and uplift the voices and expertise of the disability community.
Staying Accredited: A Renewal of Accreditation Primer, East
Wednesday, February 14, 2024 via Zoom
Join other land trusts from across the Eastern United States for a complimentary session with consultant Sarah Naperala. After guiding her land trust through applying for both the first time and renewal of accreditation, Sarah now helps others succeed in this rewarding work. She’ll offer advice for you on systems to put in place to ensure you will be prepared when the time comes and make your organization hum in the meanwhile.
Learn more and register at LTA’s website.
This primer complements but is not included in our Accreditation Renewal Support Group‘s activities. If you’re preparing a renewal application in 2024 or 2025, check out our support group.
Best Practices for Complete Stewardship Documentation
Wednesday, February 21, 2024 via Zoom
Cost: $75 for LTA members, $115 for non-members
Creating, managing and maintaining stewardship records is one of the most important aspects of land trust work, especially given the perpetual nature of stewardship responsibility. Land trusts need accurate and easily retrievable records to meet legal and contractual obligations, track and evaluate activities and be prepared to defend their property interests through enforcement and litigation. A well-designed and implemented system of records management is essential, as are procedures that clarify when and how stewardship-related events should be documented. Guidelines and regular review can inform decisions about how recordkeeping may change over time, and how to incorporate digital information as technology advances.
Join colleagues Connie Manes and Julia Rogers for a presentation and discussion of considerations and strategies of stewardship recordkeeping. Bring your thorny questions and learn from colleagues what strategies have helped them.
Fire as a Forestry Management Tool
Wednesday, February 28, 2024
Presented by: Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District
There is a common misconception that forest fires are always a negative occurrence, when in actuality they can and do create positive forest health outcomes. Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District’s professional partners will offer clarification along with some promotion of how fire can be good in essential landscapes with a safe, healthy and controlled balance and how prescribed burns can be beneficial.
Presenters include Jon Bailey from The Nature Conservancy, Aliesha Black, Forest Ranger from the Maine Forest Service and Vice Chair of Maine Prescribed Fire Council, and Logan Johnson of Maine TREE.
Register online at www.piscataquisswcd.org.
Better Data, Better Stories: Data Strategy Series
Four Mondays, March 4 through March 25, 2024
Cost: $95 for MANP members*, $190 for non-members
This event is possible thanks to a partnership between Maine Association of Nonprofits and Montana Nonprofit Association
Many nonprofits spend years missing opportunities because they lack compelling data to tell the story of their work. Over the course of four sessions, participants will develop their impact statements, data strategy, and supporting documentation, so they can confidently communicate the value of their work. The training takes a hands-on approach and centers equity, efficiency and nonprofits’ core need to fund their critical work.
Learn more and get registration link at MANP’s website.
Most MLTN members are MANP members. Contact Donna to check your MLTN membership status.
Remote Monitoring Toolkit Webinar
Thursday, March 7, 2024 via Zoom
Remote monitoring has been found to increase efficiency of monitoring and decrease costs. Many land trusts are finding new and creative ways to engage with landowners and view protected land in unique ways. Learn more about the Land Trust Alliance’s new online toolkit that will help land trust practitioners discover and understand how remote sensing technology can benefit the land trust community. Here’s a look at what will be covered:
This demonstration will take users through the online toolkit to describe all sections and how they can be used for assessing how to best use this technology for their organizations.
With Poetry and Science: Revising the Language of Land
As we all work to be more inclusive and investigate our assumptions about conservation, traditions of land ownership, and the stories we tell, an important step is thinking about the words we use. The article entitled With Poetry and Science: Revising the Language of Land in Maine Audubon’s Winter 2023/2024 Habitat Magazine, written by Catherine Schmitt, explores this topic and is an engaging read.
Catherine is a Science Communication Specialist with Schoodic Institute at Acadia National Park, and she will also be presenting a workshop on this topic at the upcoming Maine Land Conservation Conference.
Jobs in the Conservation Sector
Look at these great positions available in Maine! And the full list is even more impressive. Visit our jobs page for all available positions.
Ecology Field Technician – Schoodic Institute
Seasonal Forest Research Technicians – Maine TREE Foundation
Land Access and Conservation Project Manager – High Peaks Alliance
Emergency Services Ranger – Acadia National Park
Stewardship Assistant (Temporary Full-time) – Kennebec Land Trust
Conservation Director – Royal River Conservation Trust
Washington County Community Outreach Manager – Maine Coast Heritage Trust
Land Conservation Specialist – Boothbay Region Land Trust
Northeast Project Manager – Forest Stewards Guild
Community Engagement Manager – Georges River Land Trust
Education Coordinator – Kittery Land Trust
Land and Water Outreach Internship – Lakes Environmental Association
Community Engagement Specialist – Downeast Salmon Federation
In Response to Recent Storm Damage – LWCF and RTP Deadline Extensions
In response to the recent climate related damage across the state, grant deadlines have been extended as noted below.
Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF)
The requirement to request a project eligibility assessment by Dec 31, 2023 for a June 30, 2024 application will be extended into this year. The request for an eligibility assessment must still be made and the assessment performed, but this will make the LWCF program available to projects for which the need wasn’t apparent until the storm raised the issue. Still, it is recommended that requests be made sooner than later in order to allow sufficient time to draft a competitive application. FMI: Visit the LWCF webpage.
Recreational Trails Program (RTP)
Also, in response to recent storm damage, the Recreational Trails Program will advance its project application deadline from the end of September, 2024, to the end of June 2024. This will make RTP assistance available to projects in a much timelier manner, with project agreements out in time for fall construction, if not also RFP’s resulting in contracts for early 2025 project commencement. This three-month adjustment makes funding available up to a full year sooner. FMI: Visit the RTP webpage.