Stronger Together Networking Series

The Stronger Together program is comprised of two types of learning experiences, Learning Collaboratives and informal discussion / networking Sessions. See descriptions below.

Networking Sessions

These informal one-hour discussion are intended for staff and board members of non-profit land conservation organizations, with a focus on exchanging information on topics of common interest. The conversations are facilitated by Robb Johnson, Executive Director of MLTC, with occasional guest hosts. Sessions are not recorded.

To receive log-in information, register for each session that interests you. 

Past Networking Sessions

Leadership Succession Planning for Land Trusts
Four 90-minute sessions: January 26, February 2, February 9 and March 9, via Zoom
At its heart, succession planning  is not about replacing people but a way to facilitate change and growth, making your mission more enduring. Through a series of virtual sessions with separate tracks for staffed and all-volunteer land trusts, this Land Trust Alliance (LTA) seminar series will give you tools and resources to build new leaders, transform your organization and create a timeline for thoughtful succession processes. Cost: $95 for LTA members; $125 for non-members. Learn more and register.This series is co-sponsored by the MLTC's Stronger Together program, which will provide a significant discount for Massachusetts land trusts. Contact us for details at admin@massland.org

Fielding and Responding to Concerns about Safety of Trail Users
Wednesday January 19, 2022, 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m., via Zoom 
Have you heard increased concerns about trail user safety in the wake of the late November attack on a woman hiking at the Middlesex Fells? If so, have you been wondering about an appropriate response? Are more group hikes a good idea? Additional signage or social media messages? This "Stronger Together" networking discussion provides an opportunity to share thoughts and ideas with peers. Facilitated by Robb Johnson, MLTC Executive Director. This discussion will not be recorded. Sponsored by MLTC. Free, but advance registration required. 

Help MLTC Work for You: A Forum for All-Volunteer Land Trusts 
Monday, November 15, 5:00 - 6:00 p.m. via Zoom 

Join us for this networking discussion that provides an opportunity for board members of all-volunteer land trusts to provide input on MLTC's 5-year strategic planning process that is currently underway. How can MLTC be a better advocate for you? Or help with your technical, funding, communications or other needs? Hosted and facilitated by Robb Johnson, MLTC Executive Director. This discussion will not be recorded. Please spread the word among your board. Free, but advance registration required here. If you are unable to attend but would like to provide input, please let Robb know at robb@massland.org

Help MLTC Work for You: A Forum for Leaders of Single-Town and Smaller Staffed Land Trusts 

Wednesday, November 10, 4:00 - 5:00 p.m. via Zoom 
This networking discussion provides an opportunity for leaders of land trusts with 1 to 3 staff people or trusts that work within a single town to provide input on MLTC's 5-year strategic planning process currently underway. How can MLTC be a better advocate for you, or help with your technical, funding, communications or other needs? Hosted and facilitated by Robb Johnson, MLTC Executive Director, with Janet Milkman, MLTC Board Member and Executive Director of Barnstable Land Trust. This discussion will not be recorded. Free, but advance registration required here. If you are unable to attend but would like to provide input, please let Robb know at robb@massland.org

COVID and Your Fall Events

Wednesday, September 22, 4:00 - 5:00 p.m. via Zoom
This informal "Stronger Together" networking discussion sponsored by MLTC provides an opportunity for conservation leaders to share questions and ideas about how news regarding COVID breakthroughs and variants is impacting plans for your fall meetings and events. Go live or virtual? Hybrid? Masks or no masks? Exchange ideas with peers on this timely topic. This discussion will not be recorded. Advance registration required here.

Learning Collaboratives

Learning Collaboratives are multi-session workshops that bring together teams of peers representing different land trusts to study a topic of common interest and support one in applying lessons learned to set and advance objectives for their respective organizations. Participating land trusts are asked to send at least two staff or board members to participate and commit to attend all sessions.

Past Collaboratives

Advancing Racial Justice, Equity and Inclusion for Land Trusts

Wednesdays September 15, September 29 and October 20, 4:00 - 5:30 p.m., via Zoom.

This interactive three-part learning collaborative is for land trusts leaders interested in exploring ways to advance equity and inclusion initiatives. Led by Dr. Neenah Estrella-Luna, a dynamic researcher, educator and advocate for racial equity and environmental justice, this series will help participants examine opportunities, clarify challenges and set concrete objectives for meaningful next steps. At the end of this series, participants will be in a position to draft a plan of organizational learning and relationship building to support strategic priorities specific to their organization. 

To foster a supportive peer cohort, participants are asked to commit to attend all three sessions and set aside adequate time to read materials and participate in exercises before and between sessions. Materials to be reviewed and exercises to be completed before and between sessions may require as much as 8-10 hours of additional time across the entire series. Due to the discussion-oriented nature of these sessions, they will not be recorded. Content will include: 

  • Basic concepts and history related to racial justice and the implications for land conservation of systemic displacement and residential segregation; Racial self-awareness; 
  • Identifying the historically excluded and oppressed populations within or near your organization’s service area; 
  • Practice explaining ideas or concepts to stakeholders who may be resistant to addressing racial justice; 
  • Reviewing organizational structures, policies and programs to identify areas where exclusion and inequity are fostered; 
  • Understanding microaggressions and responding to them in a manner consistent with one’s position and personality; 
  • Understanding the stages and kinds of change needed to plan for and build an anti-racist, equity-centered organization over the short, medium, and long term; 
  • Understanding the kinds of relationships needed to engage in anti-racist, equity-centered practice. 

A confidential and lightly moderated discussion space will be created for participants to interact with and support one another between sessions. As an optional final deliverable, participating organizations may submit a draft set of organizational objectives for feedback from Dr. Estrella-Luna.  

To enhance the likelihood that organizations will be positioned to put ideas into action, each participating organization is asked to register at least two representatives to attend. Cost: $20 per attendee for MLTC members, $40 per attendee for non-members. (Please contact robb@massland.org regarding scholarship assistance).

Models for Land Trust Collaboration

Three sessions, beginning Monday May 10, 10:00 am – noon, via Zoom
Next sessions Monday May 17, 10 am – noon; and Monday June 14, 10 am – noon

This interactive three-part workshop is for land trusts leaders interested in exploring the possibility of formalized collaboration with other conservation organizations. Could formalized collaboration (i.e. beyond occasional advice, networking and project-specific partnership) be a tool for sustaining and strengthening your organization? Learn from peers as you clarify motivations and reservations about collaboration, hear lessons learned from those who have implemented various models, and set concrete objectives for next steps you can take if you want to explore further. Facilitated by Robb Johnson, with guest speakers sharing experience with models including paying for staff time or services from a larger or umbrella organization; sharing staff or office space; and fiscal agency or legal affiliation. Agenda details will be sent in advance. Sponsored by the Massachusetts Land Trust Coalition with support from UMass Amherst's Working Forest Initiative and the Compact of Cape Cod Conservation Trusts. Note: Each participating organization is encouraged to send least two representatives to participate. Free of charge to MLTC members; Non-member fee: $30 per organization. For more information contact Robb at robb@massland.org. Advance registration required here. (Registrants will receive a follow-up email with registration links for sessions 2 and 3.)