Who We Are
The Scenic Rivers Land Trust is a private, non-profit, non-governmental body chartered as a 501(c)(3) corporation in 1988 for the purpose of protecting land through voluntary land preservation agreements and educating landholders on issues of conservation and stewardship.
What We Do
The Scenic Rivers Land Trust is unique as the organization in the Severn, South, Patuxent, Rhode and West River watersheds able to accept small private conservation easements as well as large parcels. A conservation easement is a legal agreement between a landowner and a land trust that permanently protects property through the easement deed. The owner determines the amount and type of development that can take place in the future within the conservation easement deed. Desired special conditions or future plans are documented within the deed.
Protecting open space within the targeted watersheds is not an easy task. Our proximity to DC and Baltimore makes this area especially vulnerable to development pressures. While SRLT does not oppose appropriate growth, we urge balance. Every new development, whether residential, civic, or commercial, creates stress on our already fragile environment. Even small parcels are important to preserving the quality of our environment. Shoreline, woodlands, farmland, slopes and ravines, beaches and ponds are all key natural resources suitable for protection through an easement. Conservation easements are the most cost effective way to protect private property rights and preserve land.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – SRLT is part of the USFWS Partners Program that provides support to community conservation initiatives. USFWS provides SRLT with donated office space and furnishings as well as communications resources and a wide range of technical assistance.
Anne Arundel County Department of Recreation and Parks – The Department has been an invaluable partner, particularly with the South River Greenway initiative. They have allocated open space funding to purchasing numerous properties in the Greenway and have ambitious plans for the Bacon Ridge Natural Area. They offer an open door to SRLT staff, have assumed a leadership role in making the South River Greenway a reality and are a constant source of information and advice.
Biophilia Foundation – This Annapolis-based foundation has provided a three year challenge grant that matches every dollar we raise from the community. They provide staff support and technical advice on special projects and have invested in the continued professional development of SRLT.
National Fish and Wildlife Foundation – Two grants from NFWF have helped support our work in the South River Greenway. A new grant will support an expanded effort in the West and Rhode River watersheds.
Helena Foundation – This Crownsville-based foundation helped fund SRLT in its formative years and remains a constant and generous source of support.
Maryland Environmental Trust - As we move forward, SRLT looks to the Maryland Environmental Trust to remain a critical partner. As well as the incredible expertise and mentoring this organization provides to SRLT, their presence as a co-holder on larger easements offers landowners additional state tax credits.
Rick Leader, Executive Director
PO Box 2008, Annapolis, MD 21404
Rick, working with a ten-member board of directors, directs the easement and stewardship program of the twenty-one year old SRLT and oversees its growing portfolio of 48 easement properties covering over 2,100 acres. He is a former Vice President of the National Audubon Society, serving the Society’s 15,000 members and five chapters in Maryland and the District of Columbia. Rick is the former Assistant Director of the Chesapeake Bay Trust where he was active in the management of Maryland’s commemorative Chesapeake Bay license plate program and the Bay and Wildlife tax check-off. While at the Trust, Rick reviewed over 3,000 grant requests for Bay restoration projects. For five years he managed the Bay Bridge Walk festival in Sandy Point State Park. Rick is former president of the Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Educators and has served on a wide variety of regional boards and committees. Rick is originally from Cecil County, Maryland. He holds a Masters degree in Public Administration and a Bachelors degree in Political Science from the University of Maryland.
Scenic Rivers Land Trust, Inc
PO Box 2008
Annapolis, Maryland 21404
Phone: (410) 424-4000
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