More than 38 years have transpired since the start of the Dutchess Land Conservancy in May of 1985. Our founding, like many other conservation organizations across the country, was inspired by the threat of a large development on several farms in the very rural and bucolic landscape of Dutchess County. Neighbors and community members banded together to form the DLC in response to this threat. Little did they know at that time that they would start a movement and organization that would change how this area looks and feels, mostly by keeping it much the same. There are now more than 12,000 acres of contiguously protected land where the DLC first began its work, and more than 46,000 acres in total protected by the DLC since its inception.

To accomplish our mission the DLC concentrates its efforts in five key program areas:

Land Conservation

The DLC works to strategically and proactively protect high-priority, strategically important conservation lands that include our most important natural resources, watersheds and drinking water sources, working farms and forestlands, and outdoor spaces for recreational use.

Community Engagement through Education

The DLC engages the community in learning about the importance of land protection, land management and stewardship, and the natural environment through programs and experiences to foster a better understanding, appreciation, and care for the land.

Climate Resiliency

The DLC serves as a resource for landowners and the community about climate resiliency practices and benefits and promotes best practices on land stewardship and management with regard to climate mitigation.

Stewarding the Land Under Our Care

The DLC holds more than 400 conservation easements on more than 46,000 acres of land. We engage our landowners on best land management practices in order to deepen their commitment to their land and provide for a healthy landscape. We strive to ensure that our conservation work lasts in perpetuity.

Organizational Excellence

The DLC works hard to ensure organizational excellence and is accredited by the national Land Trust Accreditation Commission. Being accredited signifies our commitment to national quality standards, is a symbol of excellence, trust, and permanence, and shows that we have systems in place to keep to our promise of forever protecting the land under our care.