On November 16, 2023, we held our Annual Meeting. The event was a great success, with a fantastic turnout and a lot of positive feedback from attendees. The event featured a keynote speaker, updates on land acquisition, financials, and election of directors new to the board or continuing for another three-year term.
The event started with a warm welcome from our president Jay Burby. Our keynote speaker, Eva Vaughan, an environmental analyst for the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, then took the stage and delivered an engaging talk on backyard green infrastructure. Eva explained how simple landscaping modifications can turn a backyard or home garden into a rain garden, thus helping to control and purify stormwater runoff. A few native plantings can then attract pollinating insects, helping to preserve biodiversity.
After Eva’s talk, ALT President Jay Burby reviewed highlights from 2023, including the most recent donation of land from the Charron family, that put us above 500 acres owned by the ALT with an additional 236 acres protected for a total of 740 acres. The 12-acre Charron Farm Preserve will continue to be used for the production of hay, but will also be used to complete a trail that will connect to the adjacent Shaw-Denham Memorial Forest. The trail will open to the public once completed.
Veteran board member Ted Leach nominated members Brian Hatch, Roy Belcher, Paula Murphy, and Dawn Bender, whose terms expire in 2023, to serve for another 3-year term. Tarah Kinniburgh was nominated to her first term. Members present voted unanimously to elect all the nominees.
Juliet Teixeira, who is stepping down as ALT Vice President and Community Garden Lead, was thanked for her service and dedication to the work of the land trust, and the community garden, over the past ten years.
The ALT hopes to give renewed emphasis to education and outreach in 2024. Erin Connell, who joined the board last year, has agreed to chair the Education and Outreach Committee. Membership in this committee is open to any ALT member. You don’t have to be on the board. The same is true for most of the ALT standing committees.
Overall, the ALT Annual Meeting was a great success, and we are grateful to everyone who attended and made it such a memorable event. Thank you for your continued support of the Attleboro Land Trust!