Conservation Leadership NetworkConservation Leadership Network
December 11, 2018
Gateway communities steward the heritage and resources of public lands while providing lodging, food, and services to residents and people from around the world. Proximity to public lands heralds a responsibility while offering opportunities for economic well-being, community character, recreation, and enjoyment of the country’s heritage and scenic beauty.  Nevertheless, gateway communities are facing challenges: some loved so deeply that they are being overwhelmed, while others face such severe economic challenges that they may not even see conservation as a tool for economic growth or a future for their children in the land they love.

This three-day summit will bring together gateway communities, their partners and experts from conservation, community and economic development, recreation and tourism, planning, and other creative fields to highlight success stories and lessons learned while engaging in robust discussions that lead to specific actions for invigorating the future of gateway and rural communities. 

The meeting will combine plenary sessions showcasing best practices with discussion forums that challenge participants to seek solutions across sectors and to achieve better outcomes for thriving gateway communities. The summit will have up to 200 participants, committed to defining opportunities and developing solutions for gateway communities.

Together with our partners, we will celebrate the success of gateway communities across the country, drawing from their experiences as well as acknowledging challenges and needs.  We aim to strengthen interest in capitalizing on the economic and community opportunities of public lands while energizing on-the-ground conservation, instilling a sense of place, and enhancing scenic beauty.  The summit will generate strategies and recommend actions for supporting gateway and rural communities, and for creating a gateway community network to facilitate ongoing exchange and lasting results. 

Event Location

National Conservation Training Center (NCTC)
698 Conservation Way
Shepherdstown, WV 25443


sponsorship & Scholarship opportunities

Please click here for more information on summit sponsorship and scholarship opportunities.


Click here to register. For more information about course logistics, please contact Margarita Carey (304-876-7924 |