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Conservancy wins the 2023 Outstanding Partnership Award

In December, the Central Colorado Conservancy received the Outstanding Partnership Award from the Colorado State Land Board at the agency’s annual awards ceremony in Denver.  The award was accepted by Buffy Lenth, Watershed Restoration Specialist and the Conservancy's lead on the project, and recognizes a partner whose collaboration with the State Land Board has helped the agency more successfully fulfill its mission to be intergenerational stewards of working trust land.

Created at statehood, the Colorado State Land Board stewards three million acres of trust land for the benefit of Colorado schools. In the past five years the agency has generated more than $1 billion for public schools by issuing surface leases for assorted uses. The State Land Board partners with more than 3,400 customers and grants four awards to exemplary lessees or partners annually.

Since 2017, the Conservancy has collaborated with the State Land Board and the Badger Creek Partnership to improve riparian areas and associated wildlife habitat in the Badger Creek area. Located in Park and Fremont Counties, the Badger Creek watershed encompasses 100 square miles and drains into the Arkansas River. The area includes over 31,000 acres of state trust land that is leased for cattle grazing, hunting and fishing access, and private recreation. In addition to riparian restoration, the Conservancy has facilitated hydrologic monitoring, alternative livestock watering, and new fencing to enhance grazing management. The partnership works across ownership boundaries to mitigate historic impacts, increase water infiltration, and minimize erosion and downcutting.  

“CCC and the Badger Creek Partnership is a model for sustainable and collaborative land management,” said Lindsey Brandt, Stewardship Trust Manager for the State Land Board. “I’m grateful for Buffy’s leadership and the work of the Partnership to improve not only state trust land, but all lands in Badger Creek. This work will have a lasting, intergenerational benefit for the entire watershed.”

“It is an honor to have our work recognized by the state,” said Lenth, who was present at the ceremony to receive the award. “These results are truly the work of the entire partnership, including multi-generational landowners and ranchers, ecologists and hydrologists, land management agencies, and nonprofits. It’s rewarding to have these groups come together to accomplish goals across the Badger Creek landscape.”

Learn more about the Badger Creek Watershed Partnership by viewing this storymap.



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