Land, money and conservation: New speaker series launched at Notre Dame

Author: Carol Elliott

Concerns over urban sprawl and loss of open land space has prompted a number of public programs and private land-use.  While sustainable development practices such as smart growth, brown field reclamation and urban in-fill development have gained momentum, there also has been an explosion of programs and important funding mechanisms to protect open spaces directly. 

Land conservation finance is the subject of a new spring speaker series offered by the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business. The Hartman Series in Land Conservation Finance features experts in land conservation strategies, which includes a range of topics from conservation-oriented development practices and the for-profit conservation industry, to public capital, tax incentives and local initiatives aimed at land conservation.  

“This series is going to look not only at some trends in real estate and land use practices, but we’re also looking at the mechanisms that conservationists use to conserve land,” said David Hutchison, director of the Opus Corp. Real Estate Program at the Mendoza College of Business.  “Primarily, we’re going to look at the financing structures that are available because ultimately, the money is a critical part of this process.”

Lectures, which are free and open to the public, will be held at 7 p.m. in Room 210 of the Edward J. DeBartolo Hall on the Notre Dame campus. The schedule is as follows: 

  • Feb. 24: Story Clark, a principle at Conservation Consulting who specializes in land conservation strategy and finance
  • March 3: Peg Kohring, Midwest director of The Conservation Fund, a group dedicated to land and water conservation
  • March 24: Kathy DeCoster, vice president of the Trust for Public Land, a national nonprofit land conservation organization that conserves land for parks, community gardens, historic sites and rural lands
  • March 31:John Turner, the Beverly and Eldon Spicer Visiting Professor of Environmental and Natural Resources at the University of Wyoming
  • April 14: David Hutchison, finance assistant professional specialist and director of the Opus Corp. Real Estate Program at the University of Notre Dame

The Hartman Series is supported with funding provided by Mary Louise Campbell Hartman, who has sponsored this program in memory of her late husband, Charles M. Hartman, a pioneer in the field of conservation financing.  Mr.  Hartman, a 1963 graduate of Notre Dame, served as a member of the board of trustees of the Delaware and Raritan Greenway Land Trust from 1993-2005 and as president from 1998-2005. Mrs. Hartman, also an active conservationist, has been a member of the Board of Trustees of the Delaware and Raritan Greenway Land Trust since 2007.   

For more information, contact David Hutchison at (574) 631-9084 or dhutchis@nd.edu.

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