In the face of unprecendented population growth locally, the Conservation Leadership project will be providing an opportunity for Millennials and Gen-Xers to become the influencers that will protect and grow local access to the outdoors, and engage in land conservation challenges regionally.
Funded by a grant award from Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO), this eight to ten member advisory board is open to local community and business leaders, recreationists, and influencers between the ages of 24 and 49.
"This important demographic has a vested interest in what this community looks like tomorrow," says Anais Spitzer, Director of Operations. "We have to do a better job of engaging this majority of our community to identify and pioneer today's solutions."
Those selected for the advisory board will have the opportunity to influence the message of conservation in our region, engage with leaders and advocates, network, and guide future conservation work. Prior conservation knowledge is not necessary.
El Paso County is expected to see a 58.6 percent increase in population by 2050 to become the largest county by population in the state, eclipsing Denver. This unprecendented growth places additional pressures on existing land and open space. Already, users, many of whom fall into the Conservation Leadership cohort, see busier trails, and more crowded spaces. Conversely, recreation deserts exist in parts of our region where communities could benefit economically and physically from added opportunities.
"In 10 years, 5 years, the opportunities we have today will have passed and the conversation will be much more limited. We have to keep the conservation conversation at the forefront," explains Spitzer. "Conservation doesn't happen overnight."
Interested candidates for the advisory board should contact Palmer Land Trust at [email protected] for more information. The selected group is expected to convene in February.