July 31, 2003 - Wet Mountain Tribune: Bolivia RPCV Brian Riley selected as executive director of San Isabel Foundation

Peace Corps Online: Peace Corps News: Headlines: Peace Corps Headlines - 2003: July 2003 Peace Corps Headlines: July 31, 2003 - Wet Mountain Tribune: Bolivia RPCV Brian Riley selected as executive director of San Isabel Foundation

By Admin1 (admin) on Tuesday, August 05, 2003 - 11:25 pm: Edit Post

Bolivia RPCV Brian Riley selected as executive director of San Isabel Foundation

Read and comment on this story from the Wet Mountain Tribune that Bolivia RPCV Brian Riley has been selected as executive director of San Isabel Foundation at:

San Isabel Foundation introduces its executive director*

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San Isabel Foundation introduces its executive director

Westcliffe, Colorado - Following a lengthy search process, the San Isabel Foundation recently hired Brian Riley as its executive director.

In his position, Riley will be responsible for the San Isabel Foundation's operations, including program development and implementation, fund raising, membership administration, and community outreach.

Based on his credentials and professional experience, Riley is well suited to the executive directorship.

"I'm a forester by education," said Riley, who holds a bachelor's degree in forestry from Stephen F. Austin University in Nacogdoches, Texas.

Following a stint working for the Bureau of Indian Affairs on the Jicarilla Apache Reservation in New Mexico, Riley signed on with the Peace Corps.

"I worked as a forester with the Peace Corps in the Andes," Brian Riley said, adding, "most of my career has been spent overseas as a director with the U.S. Peace Corps."

Besides serving in Bolivia, Nicaragua, and Ecuador, most recently Riley spent three years as the country director for the Peace Corps in Samoa."I decided to leave the Peace Corps," Riley explained, "my kids are getting to an age that we wanted a place to call home."

Riley also wanted to continue his education, so he and his family headed for the University of Idaho, in Moscow, Idaho, where he earned a master's degree in forest resources.

During his time at the University of Idaho, Riley said, "My goal was to learn about conservation easements so I did my master's thesis on conservation easements."

With his master's degree in hand combined with his knowledge of conservation easements and a strong management background from his years with the Peace Corps, Riley began looking for a career.

"I saw a posting on the Internet on the Land Trust Alliance website," Riley said, explaining how he learned about the position with the San Isabel Foundation.

Making a possible move to the Wet Mountain Valley even more appealing, Riley said he has a friend who works for the Bureau of Land Management in Canon City.

In addition, Riley said he has "been around ranches and involved in different land management activities," making him a good match for the Valley.

Recognizing the challenges of his new position, Riley said, "I know I'll have to wear a lot of hats."

As the executive director, Riley said he hopes to help the San Isabel Foundation continue progressing with its defined mission.

The Foundation "has been functioning with active board members. They hired me to move their vision forward," he said.

Riley said that he hopes people here "will see me as a friendly face."

He concluded, "part of our goal coming here was to call it home for a lot of years."

Riley and his wife, Margarita, have three sons: Daniel, 10, Thomas, 8, and Diego, 5.

He said that his wife is an elementary and language teacher who, prior to their move to the Valley, taught English as a second language to international students at the University of Idaho.While living overseas, Riley said, she owned her own business and worked as a facilitator/trainer for various organizations.

The San Isabel Foundation is the local land trust, founded in 1995 with the purpose of partnering with area landowners to preserve agricultural lands, wildlands, open space, wildlife habitat, water and other natural and historic resources.

Last year, the Foundation was awarded a $2.55 million Great Outdoors Colorado grant for its Wet Mountain Valley Ranchland Preservation project.

When complete, the project will preserve through conservation easements more than 10,000 acres of ag land on six operating ranches in the Valley.

For more information about the San Isabel Foundation or to speak with Riley, call 783-3018.

--Rayna Bailey
More about the San Isabel Foundation

Read more about the San Isabel Foundation at:

The San Isabel Foundation

The San Isabel Foundation is a nonprofit land trust,
based in Westcliffe, Colorado

The purpose of the San Isabel Foundation is to provide a local resource or partner for landowners to facilitate the stewardship and preservation of agricultural lands, wild lands and wildlife habitat, open space, water, scenic beauty, and other natural and historic resources now and for future generations.

Who Are We?
The San Isabel Foundation is a private, nonprofit corporation established in Westcliffe in 1995. The foundation is qualified as a charitable organization under the 501 (c)(3) rules of the Internal Revenue Service, and is a member of the Colorado Coalition of Land Trusts (CCLT) and the Land Trust Alliance (LTA). The area served by The San Isabel Foundation includes Custer County, southern Fremont County, and western Huerfano County in the upper Huerfano River drainage. It is bounded to the north by the Arkansas River, to the west by the crest of the Sangre de Cristo range, to the south by the Spanish Peaks, and to the east by the edge of the great plains. (Map of the targeted area.)
As a land trust, we seek the permanent protection of privately-owned land and far-sighted management that recognizes the interactions between private and public land. Watersheds, wildlife, plant communities, and scenic vistas all cross the boundaries between public and private ownership. Preservation of our natural resources and our rural way of life depend on recognition of our region as a continuous ecosystem and human community, in which the degradation of any one part will degrade the value of all.

Our Protected Lands
The San Isabel Foundation currently facilitates the protection of 9 properties, encompassing 5,100 acres of agricultural lands, wildlife habitat, riparian areas, wetlands and open space in Custer, Huerfano and Fremont Counties. The foundation holds conservation easements on 8 properties, and also owns and manages the 480-acre Wheeler Nature Preserve in the upper Huerfano River drainage. Each of these properties represents a collaborative effort between the foundation and private landowners who wished to protect their lands now and for the future. For some properties, funding and technical assistance has been provided by state and federal agencies with an interest in land and wildlife protection. For more information, click on Protected Properties.

What's Happening Now?
September of 2001 brought the San Isabel Foundation its most successful Art for the Sangres art show ever. Over 100 pieces of art were sold, totaling over $97,000, one third of which goes to SIF to help with the work of preparing conservation easements in the Wet Mountain Valley.

The San Isabel Foundation has just been awarded a two year grant of $35,000 from the Colorado Conservation Trust, a statewide community foundation for conservation, to help cover the cost of hiring an executive director for the organization.
2001 ended with the donation of two new conservation easements. Red Rock Ranch, an 820 acre parcel on the north side of highway 96, provides permanent protection of an extremely important view shed. The Nimnicht property is 105 acres in Eagle Peak Ranch and is an example of property owners in a development having the foresight to protect and preserve their land.
For more information, click on Newsletters.

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This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Bolivia; COS - Nicaragua; COS Ecuador; Country Directors - Samoa' NGO's; Conservation



By Fred ( on Sunday, February 13, 2005 - 5:17 pm: Edit Post

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