On the Future of the Bay Area Open Space Council

San Francisco - The longtime regional conservation planning group stalled in 2018. Now we need to work together to build the future.

We can achieve more by working together.

It was this belief, this call to action, with which the Bay Area Open Space Council was formed in 1990. To raise the public funding necessary for significant and long-term land conservation efforts, nonprofits and public agencies needed to think bigger. We needed to work together as a region. In the late 1980s, an idea was born to form a regional coalition.

Everyone I have talked to about the beginning of the Open Space Council can agree that the mantra above was the starting point. And everyone agrees that Larry Orman, former Bay Nature Institute board member and founder of GreenInfo Network, served as the midwife that carried it from an idea to reality. From there, though, the consensus falls apart. I have heard several different creation stories told by different people, each saying they were central to the organization’s forming. I figure they’re all correct. What matters more is that these people, just like many other people since then, want to be associated with the Open Space Council. They see themselves in it, and like a mirror, the Open Space Council’s values and programs reflect them.

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