Audubon Society of Rhode Island
Land and Water Partnership
URI Cooperative Extension Audubon Society of Rhode Island Rhode Island Land Trust Council

Land and Water Conservation Mini Summit

Register Here!

On Saturday, April 8th, 2023 from 9-1 p.m, URI Cooperative Extension is joining forces with the Rhode Island Land Trust Council and the Audubon Society of Rhode Island to bring you a half-day Land & Water Conservation Mini Summit at URI! 

Note: The 2023 Mini-Summit will take place in the Center for Biotechnology & Life Sciences, NOT the Memorial Union. 
Ian McSweeney

This year, we are excited to welcome Ian McSweeney, Director of Agrarian Trust to give our Keynote address. Ian will speak about the Agrarian Commons- a necessary and innovative land-ownership model that addresses the current realities of how land is owned, how tenure and equity are conveyed, and how land stewardship is carried out. This model challenges corporate and large-scale agriculture land-ownership models, and offers a new, sustainable approach for the small farmer. We will be encouraged to consider how to apply these methods to land and water conservation in Rhode Island. You’ll leave feeling inspired, more connected with your peers, and equipped with new information to bring back to your organization! 

Read more about Ian McSweeney.

The Mini-Summit will also feature a panel discussion on engaging & retaining volunteers, a marketplace and sponsor showcase, and various opportunities to network with other attendees. We will be offering breakfast and coffee at the event.

We will be offering three breakout sessions:
  • Navigating Federal Funding Opportunities
  • Water is Life
  • Native Plants and Pollinator-Friendly Gardening

In an effort to reduce waste, please bring your own reusable mug!

In order to keep the Mini-Summit accessible to all, we are offering a pay what you can option.

Register Here!

History: The Rhode Island Land and Water Conservation Summit is the premiere annual conservation conference, traditionally held on a Saturday in March. Developed to meet the needs of land trusts, watershed organizations and municipal conservation commissions, the Summit typically offers dozens of hands-on workshops and panels designed to enhance technical and organizational effectiveness, and to discuss the most pressing conservation topics affecting Rhode Island today. Since it began in 2004, the Summit has annually attracted hundreds of leaders from throughout Rhode Island for a day of learning and networking. Local conservation leaders come from all walks of life - banking, industry, academia - and are preeminent leaders from throughout the state. The Summit presents an unsurpassed opportunity to network with people who are both passionate about the state's natural resources and outstanding community and state leaders.

Interested in Sponsorship/Vending for this Event? Contact Kate Sayles at

2023 Organizer Information:

The URI Master Gardener Program is the flagship program of URI Cooperative Extension that engages adult volunteers as community educators, connecting people and organizations to gardening information and resources. 

The Audubon Society of Rhode Island is an independent, not-for-profit environmental organization dedicated to statewide environmental education, conservation, and advocacy.

The Rhode Island Land Trust Council works to permanently conserve open and natural lands in Rhode Island by supporting land trusts, promoting responsible use and stewardship of conserved lands, and advocating for sound conservation policy. 

Tentative Schedule:
Schedule (Subject to change)

8:00 a.m.      Breakfast, Marketplace

9:00 a.m.      Welcome, Land Acknowledgement                                                       

9:15 a.m.      Keynote: Ian McSweeney, Agrarian Trust                            

10:15 a.m.    Panel: Engaging and Retaining Volunteers 

11:00 a.m.    BREAK: Networking and Marketplace                                          

11:30 a.m.    Breakout Sessions

  • Federal Funding for Land Conservation, Jackie Ridgeway, Highstead
  • Water is Life, Silvermoon LaRose, Tomaquag Museum
  • Native Plants and Pollinator-friendly gardens

12:30 p.m.    Breakout Recap, Discussion 

1:00 p.m.      Adjourn


Thank you to our 2023 lead sponsors, they help us keep registration costs low.

Click on the sponsor’s logo for their website.

Lead Sponsor: $3,000 and above

Conservation Stewardship Collaborative

Caldwell & Johnson

Revolution Wind: Orsted
Hazard Family Foundation

Champion: $1,500 - $2,999


Collaborators: $1,000 - 1,499

Land Trust Alliance

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