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10/03/2010

Maine conservationist Jay Espy named Kingsbury Browne Fellow

For immediate release
Contact: Anthony Flint 617-503-2116
  
  HARTFORD, Conn. (October 3, 2010) -- Jay Espy, executive director of the Elmina B. Sewall Foundation, and former president of the Maine Coast Heritage Trust, was named the Kingsbury Browne Fellow at the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy.
  Espy, who has been active in collaborative and large-scale land conservation for some 20 years, was also named the winner of the Kingsbury Browne Conservation Leadership Award by the Land Trust Alliance in recognition of outstanding leadership, innovation and creativity in land conservation. The announcements were made on the first day of the Land Trust Alliance’s Rally 2010: The National Land Conservation Conference, the largest annual gathering of professional and volunteer conservation leaders in the US.
  The fellowship, named after Boston attorney and land conservation pioneer Kingsbury Browne and in its fifth year, has previously been awarded to Jamie Williams, director of The Nature Conservancy’s Northern Rockies Initiative, Laurie A. Wayburn, co-founder of the Pacific Forest Trust, Mark Ackelson, president of the Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation, and Darby Bradley, president of the Vermont Land Trust.
   Espy was selected for the award for the way he has pioneered a collaborative approach to land conservation, set the trend for other land trusts, made an impact across the land conservation movement, and has served as a mentor. In the fellowship, he will engage in researching, writing and mentoring.
   “Having invested more than twenty years in the effort to conserve land on a large scale, I am proud to have shared in the successful conservation of thousands of acres of our cherished landscapes," Espy said. "I am honored to be a part of a wonderful community of people from all walks of life, willing to stand up and work together to conserve land that fosters healthy communities for all to enjoy for generations."
  Espy joined the Elmina B. Sewall Foundation as its first executive director in January 2008.  The Sewall Foundation is a private, grant making foundation focusing on conservation, animal welfare and social needs, primarily in Maine.  For the prior two decades, Jay served as president of Maine Coast Heritage Trust, a statewide land conservation organization. During his tenure, Maine Coast Heritage Trust accelerated its land protection efforts along Maine’s entire coast, conserving more than 125,000 acres and establishing the Maine Land Trust Network, which helps build capacity of local land trusts throughout Maine. He also led the Trust’s successful Campaign for the Coast, raising more than $100 million for conservation and doubling the amount of protected land on Maine’s coast and islands.
  Espy is a graduate of Bowdoin College and holds Master’s degrees from the Yale School of Management and Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. He serves on the boards of the Maine Philanthropy Center and the Canadian Land Trust Alliance, and is a former chair of the Land Trust Alliance.
  Kingsbury Browne and the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy had a long history together.  In 1980, as a fellow at the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, Browne first envisioned a network of land conservation trusts, and convened conservation leaders through the Lincoln Institute, which ultimately led to the formation of the national Land Trust Exchange -- later renamed the Land Trust Alliance -- in 1982.  Browne is considered the father of America’s modern land trust movement, a network of land trusts operating in every state of the nation. Together these land trusts have conserved more than 37 million acres, an area the size of New England.
  The Lincoln Institute of Land Policy began the Kingsbury Browne Fellowship in association with the Land Trust Alliance offering its first Kingsbury Browne Conservation Leadership Award in 2006. Winners are chosen from a group of their peers, honoring lifetime contributions to the field of land conservation and work reflecting the values that Kingsbury Browne brought to his own seminal achievements.
  Armando Carbonell, senior fellow and chairman of the Department of Planning and Urban Form at the Lincoln Institute, said he looked forward to having Jay Espy serve as the Kingsbury Browne Fellow, as his expertise can enhance many ongoing initiatives in regional collaboration and development.
  The Lincoln Institute of Land Policy is a leading resource for key issues concerning the use, regulation, and taxation of land. Providing high quality education and research, the Institute strives to improve public dialogue and decisions about land policy.

About The Land Trust Alliance
The Land Trust Alliance is a national conservation organization based in Washington, D.C. that works in three ways to save the places people love -- increasing the pace of conservation, so more land and natural resources get protected; enhancing the quality of conservation, so the most important lands get protected using best practices; and ensuring the permanence of conservation through legislation and resources to  protect land over time.

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