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About the Door County Land Trust

Hikers at Stonefield Property- Photo by Julie SchartnerOur Mission

Protecting Door Countyís exceptional lands and waters forever.

In order to accomplish this mission, we use a variety of methods. We accept donations of land or conservation easements, we strategically purchase critical habitat, and we manage the lands we own to improve or maintain high-quality, healthy habitat. Door County Land Trust nature preserves are open to the public for nature-based recreational activities.   

Since 1986, the Door County Land Trust has protected over 7,300 acres from Washington Island through southern Door County and many points in between. 

Ethics Statement

The Door County Land Trustís Board of Directors is responsible for the governance of the corporation and for the formulation and maintenance of Door County Land Trustís general policies, management and administration. Its decisions are governed by an overriding requirement of honesty, good faith, and fiduciary responsibility for the organization and to the communities it serves.

In 2005, the Door County Land Trustís Board of Directors adopted the Land Trust Alliance Standards and Practices as the Land Trustís guiding principles, and committed to making continual progress toward implementation of those standards and practices. These principles help to ensure that our conservation efforts are effective and lasting.

All actions of the Door County Land Trust are in accordance with the established bylaws, and support the ethical operation of and public confidence in the Land Trust. Its policies and activities ensure that the nonprofit status of Door County Land Trust is not jeopardized and that the organization is an institution devoted to serving the public interest. Furthermore, the expenditure of funds is in accordance with applicable law and consistent with the mission of the organization and with the intentions of its donors.

What type of lands do we protect?

  • Natural areas including forests and wetlands that are home to wildlife and rare plants and animals.
  • Undeveloped shoreline on the peninsula and islands.
  • Scenic open space along highways and rural roads including old fields, meadows, farms and orchards.

How do we protect land?

  • We enter into conservation easement agreements with private landowners. The landowners retain ownership of the land while the type and amount of future development is permanently restricted.
  • We accept donations of land that possess high quality habitat or significant open space value.
  • We identify and selectively purchase from willing landowners those properties in Door County that possess exceptional scenic beauty and ecological significance. 
  • We manage the lands we own as nature preserves to maintain or enhance the natural systems and wildlife habitat.
  • We seek private monetary donations, secure state and federal grants, and forge cooperative partnerships with other conservation organizations and local units of government to accomplish our land protection mission.

How does our work benefit the community?

  • By preserving Door County's open spaces and natural areas, the Door County Land Trust is sustaining the quality of life enjoyed by residents and protecting the scenic beauty which attracts visitors to Door County.
  • Lands protected by the Door County Land Trust provide quality habitat for Door Countyís rare and unique wildlife and help to purify our surface and drinking water resources.
  • Lands owned by the Door County Land Trust are open to the public for recreation, education and scientific research.
  • By providing land protection resources and options for Door County landowners, we help to ensure the lands we all love remain in a scenic and natural state for generations to come.
  • Many of the lands protected by the Door County Land Trust stay in private ownership and remain on the property tax roll.

How are we funded?

  • The majority of our operating budget comes from individuals and families who make an annual membership contribution.  Find out how you can Become a Member.
  • The Door County Land Trust is a 501(c)(3) organization and donations are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.  Every penny stays in Door County, preserving the lands we love.
  • The Door County Land Trust applies for and receives grants from state and federal organizations including the Knowles Nelson Stewardship Fund and the US Fish and Wildlife Service. 

What is a land trust?

A land trust is a nonprofit, community-based organization that actively works to conserve land by undertaking or assisting with direct land transactionsóprimarily the purchase or acceptance of donations of land or conservation easements.

The Door County Land Trust is one of the more than 1,700 local and regional land trusts across the nation and a growing number of land trusts operating outside the U.S.


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The accreditation seal was awarded to the
Door County Land Trust for meeting
the highest national standards
for excellence and conservation permanence.

Door County Land Trust
Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235

Protecting Door County's exceptional lands and waters forever.

E-mail: info@doorcountylandtrust.org

Sturgeon Bay Phone: (920) 746-1359
Sister Bay Phone: (920) 854-47

Copyright © 2016 Door County Land Trust.  All Rights Reserved.  Last modified: 12/14/16

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