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Mission & Vision

The Western New York Land Conservancy was founded in 1991. We serve eight counties, including Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans, and Wyoming. The four founders included John Daleo, Ken Koehler, Lee Oprea, and John Whitney. Henry Kreher joined the group shortly after it was formed. We are grateful for their inspiration and leadership. 

Our mission is to permanently protect land with significant conservation value in Western New York, for the benefit of future generations.

Our Vision 

We envision a future in which forests, farms, meadows, and waterways are connected, cherished, and protected in Western New York. Our clean air, clean water, and fertile soils will equitably support the health and wellbeing of future generations of every living thing.

We have a plan to make this vision a reality. Read our 2021-2026 Strategic Plan. 

Land Acknowledgement

The Land Conservancy recognizes that we serve on the traditional and ancestral lands of the Seneca, Tonawanda Seneca, and Tuscarora Nations and other indigenous communities. We are thankful to the Haudenosaunee who have been and continue to be the stewards of this land. We are committed to the Haudenosaunee Seventh Generation Principle which asks us to honor the lessons of the last seven generations as we work in partnership to shape and heal the world the next seven generations will inherit.  This acknowledgment, while important, is just a start.  We are listening, learning, and taking actions to address injustices that have impacted the Haudenosaunee and the land. 

Our Values 


We believe in reciprocity. We strive to
care for nature as nature cares for us.


We make conservation decisions based
on the best available science.


We promote an organizational culture that is respectful, creative, and values diversity.


We embrace teamwork and opportunities for learning.


We center our conservation efforts on the needs and values of our community.


We value the input, commitment, and support of each member and volunteer. Every contribution matters.


We hold ourselves to the highest professional, business, and ethical standards. We commit to upholding the public trust by conducting our work with integrity and reliability.

You can support this work by becoming a member today! 

Image by Oliver Fetter
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