photo credit: Paul Redstone

photo credit: Kristin DeBoer

photo credit: Kristin DeBoer

photo credit: Kristin DeBoer

photo credit: Kristin DeBoer

photo credit: Kristin DeBoer

Conservation for Community Since 1970

Merger Overview


Dear Friend of Land Conservation,


We want you to be among the first to hear the news—The Kestrel Trust and Valley Land Fund are merging!

The combined organization will operate under a new name: Kestrel Land Trust. Valley Land Fund will become Kestrel's land acquisition fund. We will be serving a 19-town region surrounding Amherst, Northampton and Holyoke, but remain focused on our core mission of conservation in several areas:

• The Connecticut River and its tributaries;

• Prime river valley farmland;

• Scenic lands and wildlife habitat connecting to Mt Tom, Mt Holyoke Range, and Mt Toby;

• Woodlands, farmland, and wildlands in the Quabbin and Hilltown areas.

Our new service area doubles Kestrel's current 9-town region while placing some of Valley Land Fund's former area in the care of other land trusts.


Why Are The Kestrel Trust and Valley Land Fund Merging?

Kestrel and Valley Land Fund are old friends and have been collaborating on land conservation projects for 25 years. Together we have a total of 65 years' experience in the field; collectively we have protected more than 14,000 acres of land in the Valley. Both organizations feel an urgency to better meet the increasing demand for land conservation. Merging will allow us to accelerate the pace of land conservation, focus our strategic priorities, expand our professional capacity, promote efficiency, and retain the expertise found on both boards of directors.

This spring we are developing a Strategic Plan to guide the work of the new Trust over the next five years. As a long-time supporter, we hope you will share your thoughts about how we can better help conserve the land that makes the Valley such a special place. We will be contacting you as this strategic plan takes shape to solicit your feedback.


If you have questions in the meantime, please contact me at 413-549-1097 or You may also contact Robert A. Jonas, Valley Land Fund board member and donor to both organizations, who will serve on the Kestrel Land Trust's Board of Trustees. He can be reached at 413-588-1418 or

I am excited about the merger and the positive effect it will have on our work to protect the natural areas that matter so much to all of us. I look forward to your continued support!



Kristin DeBoer, Executive Director


Click here to view a PDF of the merger overview.