Hundreds of cellphones were held aloft in the spirit of conservation solidarity before busy fingers sent the above text to Washington lawmakers.
Combining public and private dollars to acquire thousands of acres in the Teanaway River Valley near Cle Elum was a big theme at Forterra’s Annual Awards breakfast Wednesday at the Washington State Convention Center.
The 18th annual awards gathering drew nearly 1,800 people to honor former Rep. Norm Dicks, who represented the 6th District and the state for 36 years in Congress. He received Forterra’s Frank Pritchard Lifetime Achievement Award for decades of civic stewardship on behalf of the state’s economy and environment.
Other awards for innovation and public service went to The City of Seattle, David and Gay Santerre, the Tacoma Housing Authority and Washington Green Schools.
Forterra specializes in creative packaging of land conservation deals, finding willing buyers and sellers eager to combine commerce and preservation of green space, waterways and vistas. To reinforce the point, the breakfast closed with Forterra and Pope Resources signing a purchase and sale agreement on stage to protect 534 acres of forestland and 1.5 miles of shoreline along Port Gamble Bay and State Route 104.
Forterra’s goal and vision is the recognition “that by creating great communities in which people choose to live, work and raise their families, we can protect rural working and natural lands from sprawling development.” The concept and the value has lots of supporters, as evidenced by the vast convention space filled with true believers.