Letter from Diane Regas, President and CEO

There’s a new energy building around the outdoors. Across the country, more people are realizing what we have known all along: parks are not just a nicety; they are a necessity. Last year, park access garnered media attention like never before, with outlets like ABC and The New York Times spotlighting how green spaces make our communities healthier, resilient, and more equitable. You are a part of a growing movement that is gaining the momentum it deserves. While we have always seen the value in equal access to the outdoors, the rest of the country is finally catching on. It is our moment!

Your contribution to equitable access to the outdoors made a lasting impact in 2021, as you will read in this report. We are building parks where people most need them, transforming neglected schoolyards into neighborhood parks, protecting important cultural sites, and ensuring access to public lands and trails.

One of our most exciting endeavors in 2021 was working with communities to turn vacant asphalt lots into vibrant neighborhood hubs. We were honored and thrilled to be awarded the 2021 Olmsted Medal, the American Society of Landscape Architects’ highest honor, for our New York City Community Schoolyards™ work. In our tenth year of ranking the nation’s 100 largest cities’ park systems, our ParkScore® index added a new equity metric to see where parks are needed most. Our analysis shows that parks in low-income neighborhoods are four times smaller and are four times as crowded as parks that serve wealthier neighborhoods. Now, local officials and park agencies in places such as Charlotte and Detroit are using our findings to reduce the park equity gap.

For nearly 50 years we have advocated for equal access to the outdoors. In 2021, we led a coalition of 300 organizations to address inequity in the nation’s parks through policy change efforts such as the Parks, Jobs, and Equity Act—a bipartisan-supported funding bill to invest in parks.

We also redoubled our efforts to tell a more complete American story through preserving and activating Black historic and cultural sites. This year we celebrated the protection of Meadowood in Connecticut, where a young Martin Luther King Jr. spent summers working with fellow students from Morehouse College on the former tobacco field. It was King’s first time outside the deeply segregated South, and scholars say the experience was transformative.

And thanks to a $50 million gift from philanthropists Frank and Joann Randall, we are well on our way to protecting Banning Ranch, the biggest private open space on the whole coast of Southern California. The future park will offer recreational opportunities for over 8.4 million people who live within an hour’s drive and provide critical wildlife habitat.

Looking back on 2021, I am proud of our progress, and I am filled with excitement and hope for the year ahead, knowing that Trust for Public Land has your support.

Sincerely,

Diane Regas

 

 

 

Diane Regas
President and CEO
Trust for Public Land

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2021 Financials

The condensed consolidated financial information as of and for the years ended June 30, 2021 has been derived from The Trust for Public Land’s 2021 consolidated financial statements, audited by Hood & Strong, LLP. The condensed consolidated financial information should be read in conjunction with the 2021 audited consolidated financial statements and related notes. To obtain copies of The Trust for Public Land’s complete 2021 audited consolidated financial statements, please contact our National Office in San Francisco.