From President Kathleen Leitner
Fifty years ago the Barrington Area Development Council determined the need for a conservation organization to address local environmental concerns. Citizens for Conservation was started by committed citizens with a recycling center at the Barrington Village Hall, but quickly became focused on the identified mission of protecting and improving the quality of life in the Barrington area through protection and restoration of land and education of the community. Initially, we worked with area landowners encouraging them in their efforts towards those goals.
CFC has come a long way since 1971. While we continue to encourage others to preserve and restore their land, we now own 476 acres in 12 preserves plus two that we restore, manage and protect, plus two additional preserves for which we are stewards. In addition, through the Barrington Greenway Initiative (“BGI”), we work with six partners to preserve and link 14,000 acres of native habitats including tall grass prairie, oak savanna, woodland, and wetland - all to create habitat corridors that support native plants and wildlife. CFC logged over 17,000 volunteer hours in 2019 and with our BGI partners collected 520 pounds of native seed. We have grown from encouraging others to preserve natural habitats, to becoming a regional leader in the movement.
In the following pages you will see our progress. As Barrington grew and changed, so did CFC. We share our restoration success stories, including our BGI projects, and we describe our vision for CFC’s future. We look forward to another fifty years of Saving Living Space for Living Things through protection, restoration and stewardship of land, conservation of natural resources, and education. We will continue to grow, and we know we can succeed with the support of the greater Barrington area community!