Randy Repass and Sally-Christine Rodgers, a husband and wife team who are active in ocean and farmland conservation, were recognized on Dec. 5 by the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County as co-recipients of the Land Trust's Conservationist of the Year award.
“The award recognizes the work of individuals in our county to protect its beauty and natural resources,” says Stephen Slade, the deputy director of the Land Trust.
The Land Trust of Santa Cruz County is a Watsonville-based organization that partners with the community to protect both working lands, such as farms and timberland, and natural lands with strong environmental and cultural value.
Repass and Rodgers are recognized for their donation to the Land Trust of a conservation easement on 90 acres of prime farmland in the Pajaro Valley. A conservation easement keeps land in private hands and productive use while protecting the land for agricultural use forever.
The Conservationist of the Year award, says Slade, is based on “extraordinary contributions to the conservation of Santa Cruz County and the work of the Land Trust.”
Repass and Rodgers are also recognized for contributing to global ocean conservation. In 2004, the couple founded Sea Life Conservation, a local nonprofit dedicated to taking people out on the Monterey Bay to learn about marine conservation.
Rodgers is a board member of Oceana, the largest international ocean conservation organization in the world. She is also responsible for initiating the environmental focus of West Marine, a nationwide nautical supply company founded by Repass.
Repass is a co-founder of Action Pajaro Valley, which assisted in the development of a community consensus and helped pass a ballot measure balancing urban growth and farmland protection. He is a co-advisor on the Land Trust Agriculture Committee.
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