Partnering For Success

Arizona Land and Water Trust protects diverse landscapes and wildlife habitat throughout Southern Arizona including desert and riparian areas, grasslands and mountains. We work with private landowners and communities to protect land with important natural and cultural resources, to expand existing protected areas and to keep working agricultural landscapes intact.

With more than 60% of threatened and endangered species in the U.S. found on private lands, the interface with willing landowners is even more important. Private lands are host to important habitat including native grasses, riparian areas and streams, and forests and wooded areas. And because Arizona’s remaining open landscapes and agricultural lands are facing unprecedented development pressure so too are the critical remaining habitats that co-exist with agricultural operations that often span mountain, grasslands, stream and desert – the land we protect.

Success Stories



Arizona Land and Water Trust received renewal of accreditation after first being awarded accreditation in 2013. The Trust is one of a select group of like-minded organizations across the country committed to sound finances, ethical conduct, responsible governance and lasting stewardship of the lands we protect.


Arizona Land and Water Trust received the 2016 National Land Trust Excellence Award from the national Land Trust Alliance, which represents more than 1,100 land trusts nationwide. The Trust is the only trust in the lower Western states to receive this award in the award’s 10-year history.


The Nature Conservancy of Arizona awarded Diana Freshwater, Executive Director of Arizona Land and Water Trust, their Joseph Wood Krutch Award for the organization’s leadership role in a multi-year project to prioritize the Conservation Land System in Pima County in partnership with The Nature Conservancy.


Sunset magazine awarded Arizona Land and Water Trust (formerly Arizona Open Land Trust) and Pima County one of its 2007 Environmental Awards for their work in preserving the Santa Lucia Ranch, a 10,000-acre working ranch in the Altar Valley. Sunset magazine gives this prestigious award annually to ten “Champions of the West” whose extraordinary conservation work, “won by complex public-private partnerships,” has led to the preservation of “paradises.”


In 2005 the Sonoran Institute awarded Arizona Land and Water Trust (formerly Arizona Open Land Trust) the Conservation Collaboration Award for finding collaborative solutions to community issues, specifically for helping pass significant bond funds for conservation, prioritizing land preservation targets, and partnering with Pima County to secure thousands of acres of top priority conservation lands.


The Pima County Board of Supervisors awarded Arizona Land and Water Trust its “Partners in Conservation” award for its ongoing work with the County in open space acquisitions and working ranchland protection.