Local nonprofit conservation organization Upstate Forever recently renewed its accreditation through the national Land Trust Alliance.
In 2008, the nonprofit became the first South Carolina land trust to receive this distinction. Of the more than 1,300 land trusts nationwide, Upstate Forever is one of 400 to have earned this accreditation. The accreditation renewal process reviewed the land trust organization’s finances, ethical conduct, governance, standards and stewardship.
“Accreditation verifies that we are doing our part with the best interests of our stakeholders like our donors, members and partners in mind,” said Scott Park, director of land conservation with Upstate Forever. “But first and foremost, national accreditation gives landowners confidence they can trust us with one of their most precious assets, their land, now and forever. Our land trust is stronger than ever for having gone through the rigorous accreditation renewal process once again. Our strength means our region’s natural assets, from iconic lands like Stumphouse Mountain, Chauga Heights, Lake Conestee Nature Preserve and Nine Times Forest to working farms and special places across the Upstate, will be protected in perpetuity.”
Upstate Forever’s land trust permanently protects more than 23,500 acres across the Upstate.