After seven years (give or take), I’ll be leaving the Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust (CCALT). Finding the words to thank the CCALT community and adequately commemorate this phase of my life is challenging to say the least. I’ve put pen to paper many times at the land trust, but these words are harder to come by.
First and foremost – thank you.
I’m indebted to CCALT and to this community for many reasons. I want to thank Chris West (CCALT Executive Director from 2006-2015) for agreeing to hire me when I came to him as a 22-year-old searching for a job in Denver. Chris offered me a volunteer position and I gladly accepted. It’s one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I want to thank every coworker I’ve had the honor of working beside during my time here. It’s well known at this point, but these people are the reason that CCALT is exceptional and I know that I will search for the same cohesion and dedication that I found on this team in every future job and endeavor.
I want to thank all of the landowners who have conserved their land, are actively working to conserve their land, or who will conserve their land in the future. Your decision to partner with CCALT and pursue conservation has and will positively impact all of us. Thank you for the commitment you have made to Colorado. It’s been an honor to work on your behalf.
Thank you to every partner, donor, and CCALT supporter. You have become my Colorado community and my Colorado family. Thank you for sharing your advice, your expertise, your time, and your passions with me. I’ve enjoyed meeting and getting to know each of you, and I hope the work we’ve accomplished together in the last seven years is something you are proud of.
Finally, I want to thank Erik Glenn. There are a lot of bosses to be had in the world and I will always be grateful that I was lucky enough to call Erik Glenn my boss. I’m a better leader, a better coworker, and a better person because of Erik’s guidance as CCALT’s Executive Director.
Besides gratitude, I’d like to leave CCALT with one final thought: I recently asked a university admissions officer what she thought set her program apart from other graduate programs in the state. She answered that what distinguished their program from the rest was “heart.” Her answer reminded me of CCALT. The Cattlemen’s Land Trust and the people who surround it have heart. Our mission and our founding are rooted in heart, and while many organizations complete impactful conservation work across the state, few do it with the amount of heart that can be found at CCALT.
Working for the Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust has been an honor of a lifetime. Now, I’m ready to find my seat in the audience and watch CCALT’s future successes unfold.