Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust opens new regional office in Del Norte

Courtesy photo CCALT’s Del Norte office will enable the organization to engage more effectively with communities and partnering landowners in the southern part of the Centennial state.

DEL NORTE — The Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust (CCALT) has opened a new regional office in Del Norte. Having an office and staff member dedicated to the San Luis Valley and Southern Colorado will enable CCALT to better deliver land conservation services and collaborate more efficiently with communities and landowners in the region.

The new CCALT office sits in a remodeled section of the old Del Norte hospital on the north side of Highway 160 where local business owners Stan Johnson and Ryan Black are remodeling and revitalizing the building for local businesses. This office location complements CCALT’s headquarters in Denver and its Northwest Colorado regional office which opened in 2019 in Steamboat Springs. The Del Norte office enables CCALT to expand its ability to offer services to the southern part of the state where CCALT has had a strong presence since 1998.

“By having a physical office presence in Southern Colorado, CCALT can more meaningfully engage in important discussions about conservation needs specific to this region,” said CCALT Executive Director Erik Glenn. “CCALT can better serve the growing number of ranch and farm families who are interested in exploring conservation opportunities by increasing accessibility to services and staff.”

The new office location addresses a need for deeper engagement and support for landowners and partners, particularly concerning pressing water issues in the San Luis Valley and across the Southern region. CCALT currently holds 172,964 acres in conservation easements across 20 counties in South and Southwest Colorado, of which nearly 50,000 acres are within the San Luis Valley. The entire region encompasses landscapes with productive agricultural lands and natural wildlife habitat.

The Trinchera Blanca Foundation provided funding for the new office location and the new staff position filled by Del Norte resident Jocelyn Catterson. As CCALT’s conservation and outreach manager, she will manage the new office and CCALT’s services for Southern Colorado.

“Having a local person to serve the needs of the landowners and conservation community here in the San Luis Valley and Southern Colorado is incredibly important,” Catterson said. “I am excited to step into this new role and serve the regional needs of CCALT from a local perspective.”

Prior to starting at CCALT, Catterson was awarded the Colorado Art, Science + Environment Fellowship and has been working closely with conservation and water-related organizations throughout the San Luis Valley on an artistic and educational outreach project tied to groundwater. Through this fellowship, she developed strong relationships with farmers, ranchers, public agencies, and conservation organizations throughout the area.

The Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust (CCALT) is a nonprofit land conservation organization whose mission is to “…conserve Colorado’s western heritage and working landscapes for the benefit of future generations.” CCALT has worked with over 400 families to conserve more than 770,000 acres to date statewide.

The Trinchera Blanca Foundation, the Colorado affiliate of The Moore Charitable Foundation, founded by Louis Bacon in 1992, supports organizations committed to protecting land, water, and wildlife habitat in Colorado’s San Luis Valley. The Trinchera Blanca Foundation also supports community programs dedicated to improving quality of life in the region.