... to protect the land forever

Press Releases

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Sonoma Land Trust donates 1,665-acre ranch to Regional Parks
Doubles size of Tolay Lake Regional Park

March 3, 2017 ­— In November of 2007, Sonoma Land Trust purchased a 1,665-acre property in southern Sonoma County at risk of subdivision and vineyard development and named it Tolay Creek Ranch. The acquisition of Tolay Creek Ranch also completed the protection of a 7,500-acre wildlife corridor extending from the foothills of Sonoma Mountain to the bay. With sweeping views of San Francisco Bay, dazzling wildflower displays and plenty of space for hiking, the ranch was well suited to becoming a park — particularly since it is situated adjacent to 1,737-acre Tolay Lake Regional Park. Today, after nearly 10 years of resource assessments, habitat enhancement and creek restoration activities, Sonoma Land Trust has donated Tolay Creek Ranch to Sonoma County Regional Parks, a move that will double the size of Tolay Lake park.

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Towering old-growth forest … protected forever

February 21, 2017 ­— Back in 2014, Sonoma Land Trust began working to help a family on the North Coast protect their 1,380-acre property that includes one of the last remaining intact old-growth forests in Sonoma County. The property is also adjacent to Buckeye Forest, the former Preservation Ranch, and so provides desirable habitat connectivity. Thanks to the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, Sonoma Land Trust provided the landowners with a loan that enabled them to keep their forest intact until they could complete the sale of a conservation easement to our partner, the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District.

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$1 million gift to launch Sonoma Coast Forest Land Protection Fund

Pete and Patty Mattson plan a legacy to save coastal redwoods

SANTA ROSA, CALIF., October 25, 2016

Sonoma Land Trust has established the Pete and Patty Mattson Sonoma Coast Forest Land Protection Fund. Enabled by a legacy gift from the Mattsons, estimated at $1 million, this Fund celebrates a lifetime of memories and experiences that the Mattsons have shared from living among the Sonoma Coast redwoods and taking action to protect them. See press release

New 2.5-mile segment of Bay Trail to open at Sears Point

Public invited to celebration & ribbon-cutting ceremony at site of Sears Point Wetland Restoration Project

SANTA ROSA, CALIF., May 9, 2016

Sonoma Land Trust, the San Francisco Bay Trail and the San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge invite the community to join in the grand opening of the new 2.5-mile extension of the San Francisco Bay Trail, part of Sonoma Land Trust’s Sears Point Wetland Restoration Project. The new segment of Bay Trail will open to the public Sunday, May 15, from 2—6pm; the entrance is located on Reclamation Road, south of the Highway 37/Lakeville Highway intersection. See press release

Land conservation collaboration protects 547-acre Estero Ranch

SANTA ROSA, CALIF., January 7, 2016

Advancing their shared missions to protect scenic, agricultural and biologically significant landscapes, Sonoma Land Trust (SLT), the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation & Open Space District (District) and The Wildlands Conservancy (TWC) teamed up with the California Coastal Conservancy and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation to purchase the 547-acre Estero Ranch, located south of Bodega Bay. See press release

SEA CHANGE: Redrawing the map of San Francisco Bay

On October 25, Sonoma Land Trust will breach Sears Point levee to create 1,000 acres of tidal marsh

SANTA ROSA, CALIF., October 25, 2015

A major transformation is coming to the northern coast of San Francisco Bay. After 10 years of planning and raising $18 million, on Sunday, October 25, Sonoma Land Trust will breach the levee along the bay at Sears Point Ranch (located just south of the Highway 37/Lakeville Highway intersection) to allow salt water to fill the recently constructed 1,000-acre tidal marsh basin. This area will begin to evolve to tidal marsh, much as it was 140 years ago before being diked off from the bay. Read press release

Award-winning conservation leader Dave Koehler selected as executive director

SANTA ROSA, CALIF., March 3, 2015

The Sonoma Land Trust board of directors has chosen award-winning conservation leader Dave Koehler as the organization’s new executive director, succeeding Ralph Benson who retired at the end of February after 12 years. Read press release

Key property in Sonoma Valley Wildlife Corridor acquired for parkland by Sonoma Land Trust, Ag & Open Space District and Regional Parks

SANTA ROSA, CALIF., October 13, 2014

By the end of this month, Sonoma Land Trust expects to acquire 29 acres known as the “Curreri property” along Highway 12 in Glen Ellen, with partial funding from the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District. Upon close of escrow, the Land Trust will immediately transfer the property to Sonoma County Regional Parks to be added to the 162-acre Sonoma Valley Regional Park. Read press release

Ralph Benson to retire from Sonoma Land Trust after 11 years and the protection of 33,000 acres

SANTA ROSA, CALIF., July 17, 2014

Longtime Sonoma Land Trust Executive Director Ralph Benson has announced his intention to retire after leading the organization for the past 11 years. The Land Trust board of directors has initiated a national search for his successor. Read press release

Sonoma Land Trust saves Pole Mountain — the highest peak along the Sonoma Coast

SANTA ROSA, CALIF., June 30, 2014

Almost one year to the day of signing the purchase contract, the nonprofit Sonoma Land Trust has closed escrow on its new Pole Mountain Preserve, which, at 2,204 feet, is the highest peak along the Sonoma Coast. Read press release

Sonoma Land Trust and Ducks Unlimited kick off construction of Sears Point 960-acre wetland restoration project on San Pablo Bay

SANTA ROSA, CALIF., June 6, 2014

After nearly 10 years of planning and the raising of nearly $18 million, the 2,327-acre Sears Point Ranch along Highway 37, once intended for a casino resort and instead purchased by Sonoma Land Trust in 2005, will soon sport 960 acres of restored tidal wetlands along San Pablo Bay. This represents the largest private tidal marsh restoration project in the San Francisco Bay and one of the largest on the West Coast. Read press release
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Technology innovator behind Hotwire.com and TripIt joins Sonoma Land Trust board

SANTA ROSA, CALIF., April 7, 2014

Scott Hintz, co-founder of the popular mobile travel organizer TripIt (purchased by Concur Technologies in 2011), and former executive of travel website Hotwire.com (acquired by Expedia in 2003), settled in Kenwood last year and has recently joined the Sonoma Land Trust board of directors. Read press release


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