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Race, Justice, and the Land: A Message From Kestrel’s Board

Boys&Girls Club Holyoke group at Mt Tom

The protests against systemic racism taking place across the country in recent weeks have focused attention on the ongoing and urgent need to transform our society into one that is more just and equitable. Kestrel Land Trust stands in solidarity with people of color and those who condemn the acts of bigotry, bias and violence against them.

Like land trusts nationwide, Kestrel’s board and staff realize that we all have a shared responsibility to serve rural, suburban, and urban communities alike, including people from all socioeconomic backgrounds and racial identities. Our work together to protect land is deeply rooted in the belief that everyone should have access to the land for health, happiness, recreation, and basic human rights like clean water and healthy food.

As a member of the national Land Trust Alliance, Kestrel Land Trust is committed to working with other land trusts across the country to build a land conservation community that understands, values, and embraces diversity. Learn more here.

There is much we need to learn and do to achieve this goal, and we commit to examining our priorities and practices as a board and staff, and to seek out and listen to those marginalized people who have not been heard in the Pioneer Valley and around the nation. We hope this act of listening and introspection will help us ensure that there are parks, conserved forests, farms, riverways, and trails throughout the Valley that are relevant to all communities and meaningful to everyone’s life.

Scott Jackson, Chair

Kristin DeBoer, Executive Director

on behalf of the Kestrel Land Trust Board and Staff


Share Your Experience

We at Kestrel Land Trust want to listen and learn how to do better. If you care about the Valley’s lands and have personal experience or professional expertise related to equity and inclusion issues, please email us with your thoughts at Thank you for helping us ensure all people can enjoy the benefits of the land.


Positive Steps

Outdoor Afro is a national nonprofit network that celebrates and inspires Black connections and leadership in nature. They connect thousands of people to outdoor experiences to change the face of conservation. This is just one example of how land conservation can become more inclusive and welcoming to people from diverse backgrounds.

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