Colorado Family Creates Ranching Legacy Through Conservation
ARVADA, Colo. (Dec. 28, 2016) – With funding support from the Routt County Purchase of Development Rights Program (PDR), the Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust (CCALT) has partnered with the Meader family to conserve their 111-acre Routt County ranch located just west of Steamboat Springs.
Since 1975, the Meader family has been involved in ranching in northeastern Colorado. Charlie Meader and his son Justin work together to run and maintain more than 7,400 acres in Weld County. In 2008 and 2009, the Meader family chose to partner with CCALT to conserve the majority of their Weld County ranch, successfully conserving thousands of acres of shortgrass prairie.
Recently, the Meaders chose to expand their operation to northwestern Colorado, specifically Routt County. Charlie’s son Justin and his wife Tinisha spearheaded the effort. The young couple hopes to use the new property to enhance the Meaders’ existing agricultural operations in Weld County.
“Not only will conserving this property help protect agricultural land in an area experiencing significant development pressure, it will also assist a young ranching family in establishing and sustaining a viable agricultural operation into the future. CCALT is committed to helping build the next generation of farmers and ranchers and we are proud to partner with the Meaders and Routt County PDR to make this happen,” commented Courtney Bennett, CCALT project manager.
With an aging population of agricultural producers, Justin and Tinisha’s involvement in the Meader ranching operation is important to both their family and the agricultural community of Colorado. A conservation easement will enable them to continue their ranching heritage and impart their knowledge and passion back to the industry.
Conservation easements not only leave a legacy of land, and the stewardship of that land, but often times, they offer a solution to our nation’s urgent need to engage young farmers and ranchers. Someday, Justin and Tinisha’s young daughter Josie may choose to take over her family’s ranch the same way her parents have. When she is ready, that land and that legacy will be there.
Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust protects Colorado’s agricultural land, heritage and families for future generations by conserving working rural landscapes. For more information visit www.ccalt.org.
Routt County PDR Program has, to date, completed 54 conservation projects totaling 40,598 acres. For more information, please contact Helena Taylor at Routt County, 970-879-0108.