From launching an effort toward the largest collaborative land return between a nonprofit and a tribal nation in U.S. history to helping a new generation of land conservation professionals forge the path of the future, we celebrated some incredible milestones and successes in 2023. In case you missed any, here’s a quick look back at a few of the biggest.
Help us keep the momentum going.
A Word from CEO Diane Regas
"Throughout our history, we’ve seen that land has meaning, that it connects us to our heritage, that it brings us together, and that it can unlock a community’s potential for positive change."
Disruption: The Key to Our Success
At Trust for Public Land, we’ve embraced plot twists. In some cases, we’ve instigated them. And that has made all the difference.
Celebrating the Multifarious Benefits of Green Spaces
From stormwater-capturing playgrounds in NYC to culturally significant street murals in Colorado, TPL-protected outdoor spaces pack the multitasking power to improve public health, climate resilience, and social justice in the communities they reflect and serve.
Powerful Partnerships You Might Not Expect
Learn how TPL has made its strong, trusting relationship with timber giant Sierra Pacific Industries work to protect land and serve the public for more than three decades.
When We Say Everyone, We Mean Everyone
We work to connect everyone to the outdoors—that means creating truly inclusive, accessible green spaces that serve people of all abilities. These projects exemplify how we’re doing that.
Heroism Begins at Home
We all have the power to create change where we live, just like these community heroes.
A New Generation Rises
“TPL specializes in the most complex, difficult, challenging projects that other groups turn away from. It’s a super rewarding experience," says New England Project Associate Hayden Smith. Explore how he and other early career conservationists are learning the ropes at TPL.
Parks Are Key to Healthy Communities
Our 2023 ParkScore® report provides important data supporting the crucial finding that green spaces are essential to our mental and physical well-being—making equitable access to them more important than ever.
TPL: The Rail Trail Champion You Never Knew
The 606 in Chicago? Santa Fe Railyard and Plaza? The Legacy Trail in Florida? Did you know we’re the second-most prolific organization in the country when it comes to converting defunct railways into vibrant public recreation corridors?
Engagement Leads to Advocacy
"It will be here and part of this community for years to come,” says Nikki Porter, principal at Stonewall Tell Elementary School outside Atlanta, Georgia. “The students initiated the schoolyard project, presented it to the community, and had their ideas represented in the design. That’s a significant learning experience.”
It Takes a Village to Make One
Who often owns the most land in a city? The cities themselves, of course. That’s why TPL partners with housing authorities to increase park equity nationwide. Creative thinking and problem solving are huge aspects of our success in these efforts.
Welcome, Dr. Ken Lucero
“I am fortunate for my Pueblo to be in the place our forefathers settled—where we are meant to be,” says Dr. Ken Lucero, TPL’s new Tribal and Indigenous Lands director, of his roots in New Mexico’s Zia Pueblo. “I want the same for other tribes and their people.”
Come to the Dark Side
At Saguaro National Park, the nighttime is the right time—for stargazing humans as well as foraging fauna. That’s why TPL is working hard to protect nature’s darkness and all it holds.
Mountaineer, Advocate, TPL Leader
In October, TPL announced a new member of the leadership team, Chief Impact Officer Luis Guillermo Benitez. Benitez brings a wealth of experience in the outdoor industry, government affairs, and academia and has long demonstrated his commitment to sustainability and outdoor advocacy.
Parks Bridge Divides
Americans are plagued by polarization and loneliness, but parks are remarkably powerful when it comes to healing these social ailments. TPL releases an impactful supporting report and paves the way for community engagement to forge bonds and engage citizens.
Election Results Favor Green
Voters across the nation approved critical ballot measures funding parks and conservation in November elections. See what outdoor enthusiasts put their ballots behind.
A Historic Land Back Effort
In an innovative land back project that centers Indigenous self-determination and land care, some 30,000 acres in Maine's Katahdin Region will be restored to the Penobscot Nation.
Listen Up, Outdoorspeople
Our very own podcast—People. Nature. Big Ideas., hosted by TPL Equity and Belonging Director Ronda Lee Chapman—launched in May, giving TPL a new platform for exploring, well, people, nature, and big ideas.
Welcome, Dr. Pooja Tandon
In September, we were thrilled to introduce Dr. Pooja Tandon as TPL’s new health director. With a distinguished background in pediatric medicine and health research, she believes, "parks are not just spaces; they are lifelines.” We couldn’t agree more!
National Parks Get Bigger and Better
Thanks to support from our generous donors, Trust for Public Land has helped expand or improve numerous sites in the National Park System over the years. Check out these recent successes and plan a visit in the coming year.
Protecting America’s History
TPL safeguarded 1.12 acres at Forks of the Road in Mississippi, the site of what was once the second-busiest slave market in the Deep South. This expansion of Natchez National Historical Park will deepen our understanding of a tragic time in our nation’s history.
Fishpond Access Protected in Perpetuity
Thousands of people visit Hawaiʻi's Halulu Fishpond every year, where one can connect with ʻāina (land), culture, and community. Together with our partners, we’ve preserved a quarter-acre property on the north shore of Kaua‘i to ensure access to and protection of Halulu in perpetuity.
A Groundbreaking Partnership
In San Juan Bautista, California, TPL celebrated the permanent protection of a historic ranch known as the Harvey and Gladys Nyland Property. This conservation success happened in tandem with a historic agreement between TPL and the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band that will revive traditional Indigenous land stewardship.
Everything Is Bigger in Texas
Working in partnership with the City of Dallas, TPL protected 282 acres of hills, cliffs, creeks, and forest known as Big Cedar Wilderness—home to 73 threatened or endangered species—as park space for the enjoyment of Texans today and for generations to come.
Fantasy Awaits in Tennessee
Neighbors, a parks department, and TPL rallied to protect Lockeland Springs Park, a place known for whimsical fairy houses built by children, outdoor learning, and respite in nature—as well as tornado damage that almost destroyed it.
Playgrounds Serve More than Students
In Georgia, TPL is helping close the outdoor equity gap by making outdoor space accessible to residents of all ages in the form of renovated schoolyards. These vibrant green oases provide cooling shade, a safe space to play, and opportunities to gather with family and neighbors after school hours.
1,250 Acres Protected in New Hampshire
Dundee Community Forest is now protected for the enjoyment of skiers, anglers, hunters, and anyone looking to benefit from time in nature. It also protects the source of drinking water for approximately 250,000 people in 35 nearby towns. Anyone for a celebratory hike?
Private Property No More
For decades, the largest inholding in the Green Mountain National Forest held an uncertain future. Recreationists were granted access, but for how long? In early 2023, TPL transferred 2,800 acres known as Rolston Rest to the U.S. Forest Service, ensuring it will remain forever accessible as part of the national forest.
In Florida, TPL has protected over 10,000 acres at Wolfe Creek Forest and Blackwater River State Forest, ensuring the critical longleaf pine habitat remains intact for many threatened and endangered species. In progress for human paddlers, our work here also protects a popular canoe and kayak trail called Coldwater Creek.
All of these milestones—and many more—are achieved thanks to Trust for Public Land supporters. Join us in our mission to bring the profound benefits of equitable access to the outdoors to millions of people across America.