By Mary Sojourner
This is the second in a series of postings introducing the staff of the Deschutes Land Trust.
Karyn is Queen of Outreach. She is a woman alive with passion for making and protecting beauty.
TTL (Trusting the Land): Let’s pretend that one of our members decides to throw a gala benefit pot-luck to raise money for the 15th Anniversary Campaign. What would you bring to the feast?
TTL: Tell us a few details about what touches you the most in 3 - 4 of your favorite Land Trust protected places.
Karyn: I really love Indian Ford Meadow. It’s a smaller preserve, but the first one the Land Trust protected and it has a little bit of everything. The spacious meadow is filled with purple wildflowers in the spring, the views of the Three Sisters is panoramic and in-your-face, there are ponderosa pine above the meadow and a trail that I helped build to a viewpoint, hummingbirds galore in the willows in the spring, and some beautiful Aspen groves.
I also enjoy the forests and the deep silence found at Metolius Preserve. And Alder Springs, although not a Land Trust Preserve, was a property we help to protect. My favorite things about Alder Springs are the classic high desert landscape and the beautiful rocks, river and canyons for exploring.
TTL: If the magical Save the Land Fairy dropped down, waved her wand and said, “You get one wish from me. What is it?” You would wish for:
Karyn: Skyline Forest of course! Lots of people think we’ve already protected this land because we lead tours out there and it is open to the public. However, we are still waiting for the landowner to put the property up for sale and beefing up our resources to be able to purchase it.
This significance of this land is its size and proximity to Bend and Sisters. If it were to be developed, we would lose our views up to the mountains and an important recreational and wildlife area. Most people probably take it for granted or think it is protected national forest land, but it isn’t and once you’ve spent a little time out there you start to understand what is at stake.
TTL: What's the form and essence of your work with the Land Trust?
Karyn: I’ve done a few different things for the Land Trust over the years, but right now my focus is outreach. I write the enews letter, press releases, content for our website, set up our blog (and occasionally contribute), work with volunteers on Skyline Forest tours, and work on social media projects.
TTL: How did you come to work at the Land Trust?
Karyn: I was a stewardship intern for the Land Trust back in 2003 or 2004. I worked on various projects out on the Land Trust Preserves. Eventually I came to work as the Member Services Director at the Environmental Center, of which the Land Trust is a member. Sarah (the Land Trust’s Outreach Manager) and I worked together a bit in that capacity. I was laid off from that position at the end of 2009 and shortly afterward Sarah contacted me about filling in for her while she was on maternity leave. I started working at the Land Trust at the end of January 2010 and was fortunate enough to be invited to stay on after Sarah returned.
TTL: This may be redundant, but tell us a little more about why you love the Land Trust.
Karyn: Besides being a great organization to work for, I really believe in their work and their mission. Land conservation is important and benefits our community ecologically, recreationally and economically. We live in a beautiful part of Oregon and because of that, people will always want to move here or vacation here. Our highest quality lands that are undeveloped will face pressure to be developed at some point as the region grows. It’s important to protect those lands from uses that could degrade them. It is important to keep this place we live and love special for people, wildlife and our economy. The Land Trust is one organization working to do just that and I’m glad to be a part of it in some small way.
Imaginary Potluck Recipe for Wine
Take off shoes
Stomp while listening to favorite tunes