RENSSELAER LAND TRUST INC

Rating: 4.91 stars   23 reviews

Issues: Environment

Location: 415 River Street Troy NY 12180 USA

Mission:

2012 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

This organization has gone great lengths to help the community and the environment. Besides hosting great events, workshops, and meetings, the Rensselaer Land Trust has been helping land owners preserve their property for over 25 years. This past year (2014) was exceptionally exciting because RLT reached over 1,000 acres of conservation in Rensselaer County. I'm happy to be involved in this organization and recommend it to any nature lovers in the area.

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Rating: 5 stars  

RLT has embarked on a major project to establish and promote an urban preserve of 20 acres in South Troy. The project has become a collaborative effort including the donor family, LTA-EPF funding, the City of Troy, the local neighborhood, the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, local nurseries and the Capital District Community Gardens. So far we estimate RLT has donated at least 450 hours of volunteer effort to make this preserve available to the community including removal of invasive species and trash, construction of a fence and kiosk and planting of 500 trees and shrubs.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I have been involved with the Rensselaer Land Trust for a little over a year as a volunteer and have found the staff, board, volunteers, and donors to be active, committed, and dedicated to the agency's mission . Preservation of lands and water and improvement of access have been ongoing accomplishments by this energetic and committed group. The organization strives to reach out to the public to provide opportunities to get involved and learn of resources offered in Rensselaer County lands.

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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

I am a donor to Rensselaer Land Trust and a volunteer. Rensselaer Land Trust not only preserves land for future generations, it provides a sense of community and love for the land through hikes and other activities. The organization does a great deal with very little money. I highly recommend it for recognition.

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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

I have been a Board member for several years and have seen the organization go from strength to strength. RLT has articulated a clear mission and built the infrastructure to support it. It has protected over 1,000 acres in Rensselaer County. It has won reaccreditation from the Land Trust Alliance. It has established a core group of committed donors. It has made strategic use of social media. It has added an urban preserve in Troy and collaborated with the Capital District Community Gardens and the Rensselaer Plateau Alliance. It has added popular programs on foraging to its rich array of outings. Although it has only one full-time and one part-time employee, both are extraordinarily talented and dedicated and do tremendous work.

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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

The Rensselaer Land Trust is a small organization with a big impact. With just two (great) part-time staff people, and a core of dedicated volunteers, it promotes the preservation of Rensselaer County's significant natural areas through education, outings, advocacy, and, most important of all, by partnering with landowners to conserve private land and create public preserves. It works to preserve open space for the benefit of city as well as countryside. It is an honor to be associated with this organization.

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Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Unsure

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 5 stars  

Much of the Rensselaer plateau is forgotten, abandoned, and abused. As the Moose seeks it's home there, so do developers wishing to profit from selling homes to people from nearby cities. This of course, places pressure on the entire eco and infrastructure. The Rensselaer Land Trust is an important advocate to maintain a degree of balance in a situation essential to preservation of these
lands for the future.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I became a Board member in 2012 after being a donor for many years. I am very glad that I did! The organization is growing in a responsible manner and fulfilling its mission to preserve Rensselaer County open spaces and to entice the public to use and appreciate them.

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Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Rating: 5 stars  

The RLT is a clearing house for ideas and news about land conservation efforts in Rensselaer County. It serves a function that the State and the County have failed to fulfill. It organizes hikes and focuses attention on the natural resources of the county. It does useful work.

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Was your donation impactful?

No

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Likely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Likely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Rating: 4 stars  

I have been involved as a donor, officer and board member with the Rensselaer Land Trust for over twenty years from its founding through December 2010 when I resigned due to a job relocation. In that time the organization has grown tremendously and matured. The RLT works to preserve the lands of Rensselaer County, to protect habitat, preserve fields, forests and watersheds though easements with landowners and in so doing, it promotes environmental awareness through public outings and outreach efforts. A land trust has the responsibility to steward its easements in perpetuity and early on, we recognized the importance of stewardship by allocating 10% of income to a reserve fund set aside for that purpose. The board takes their responsibility seriously and the RLT became accredited, the smallest land trust to do so, by the Land Trust Alliance. The RLT's dedicated board serves voluntarily, though its staff is paid.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I've enjoyed outings and events organized by the RLT and deeply appreciate and value the open space and habitat preserved for the benefit of wildlife and future generations.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Provide for an endowment to reduce the never-ending need to spend resources and energies to raise funds for necessary operating and administrative expenses. An endowment would fund staff, pay rent and keep the lights on.

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

What specific problem, purpose, priority, or project prompted your gift?

I grew up on Long Island and witnessed the never-ending encroachment of development of suburbia into the open farmlands, woods and forests. The ocean shorelines became inaccessible. This pattern of development followed me to Florida where I lived near the ocean and orange groves near Fort Pierce/Vero Beach. As lands developed and malls sprouted, man encroached, wildlife became displaced and farmlands became lost forever. I witness the scaring of our land and a loss of its beauty and serenity; my gifts appease my conscience.

Why did you make your donation at this time?

I make my donations when I have some money available to give. My last donation was in response to a routine appeal for operating funds.

What would you tell others about this organization?

The RLT does valuable work that goes unseen. We are all indirect beneficiaries of its work to preserve the habitat and character of the rural landscape.

Rating: 5 stars  

I am 15+-year member and former board member and have seen (and hope helped) the Rensselaer Land Trust work to achieve its mission. The organiztion has achieved accreditation, increased the number of acres of land to be conserved/protected through easements, heightened local awareness of significant natural resources such as the Tomhannock Reservoir watershed, expanded public programs that encourage an appreciation of our natural environment, and earned increased support in the forms of grants, donations, and corporate gifts. The organization, while yet relying greatly on volunteer effort, has accquired several paid positions over the last 6-7 years. The Rensselaer Land Trust cooperates with and supports the work of many organiztions having similar objectives such as the Ag Stewardship Association and the Rensselaer Plateau Alliance. We are important to the long-range goal of keeping Rensselaer County a great place to live and work.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Its efforts to protect natural resources important to the place I call home and preserve scenic open space I so cherish.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

increase efforts to reach out to town governments to solicit financial support or services.

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

What specific problem, purpose, priority, or project prompted your gift?

Concern that our natural environment and resources are at risk.

Why did you make your donation at this time?

I know the organization relies on it!

What would you tell others about this organization?

If you value our beautiful area, support the Rensselaer Land Trust.

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