After the San Juan Preservation Trust’s 40th annual meeting on Saturday members and friends went down to the Friday Harbor marina and formally christened their new boat “Island Steward” which will enable the Trust stewardship staff to visit their different protected properties among the San Juan Islands. The christening included the breaking of a bottle of champagne across the bow, decorated with a leafy branch, and some appropriate comments from those present.
The Preservation Trust, a private non-profit organization, is the oldest land trust in Washington State. It protects more than 18,000 acres across 20 islands through conservation easements and ownership, sometimes partnering with the San Juan County Land Bank, a county agency funded by a one percent real estate excise tax on sales of property in the county. The two organizations have often collaborated on major projects such as Turtleback, Watmough, Mount Grant, and Zylstra Lake.
The San Juan Preservation Trust was founded in 1979. The executive director is Angela Anderson, who has been in the position for the past year. This 40th annual meeting featured Andrew Bowman, the president of the Land Trust Alliance, a national organization whose membership includes 1000 land trusts across the country.