2400 acres of Ashley River Headwaters Permanently Protected

When we speak of the Ashley River, images of the historic plantations, Middleton and Drayton Hall may come to mind; or perhaps the wide tidal river that flows boldly along the peninsula of Charleston into Charleston Harbor; but to truly know a river is to understand its beginnings. The Ashley River begins miles from the Harbor in rural Berkeley County, just outside the rural community of Cross. It meanders through the Cypress and Wassamassaw Swamps until all of its tributaries come together in unison outside of Summerville.

The headwaters of the Ashley provide an incredible service to the thousands of residents downstream. The bottomland hardwood forests allow the river to expand during times of peak flow and contract during a drought. They slow the flow of water allowing sediment to deposit along the way, resulting in clean water downstream. What happens to these forests upstream has a direct impact on the river downstream, which is why the Ashley River headwaters are an important focus area for Lord Berkeley Conservation Trust.

We’re honored to share that we worked with Weyerhaeuser to secure a conservation easement on nearly 2,400 acres in the Ashley River headwaters near Cross. The Big Run Mitigation Site has been managed for much of the last century for commercial pine production. Weyerhaeuser proposes to restore the natural hydrology of the site through the removal of commercial pine plantations, and the reconnection of the streams found on site with their historical channels. The Big Run Mitigation Site contains approximately six miles of braided streams which come together to form Big Run Creek. Big Run Creek, along with Black Creek and Mill Branch Creek, form the Ashley River.

While this conservation easement protects significant acreage, our work in the Ashley River headwaters is far from complete. The Ashley River Watershed incorporates nearly 900 square miles and is under tremendous development pressure. Your gift to Lord Berkeley ensures that we have the capacity to respond to the urgent needs of the region. Please consider making a contribution to support this critical work.

We are hiring!

The Lord Berkeley Conservation Trust is currently accepting applications for the Executive Director position.


Company:       Lord Berkeley Conservation Trust
Executive Director     
May 13, 2019
Type:               Full-time
Reporting:     Board of Directors

Location:         Moncks Corner, SC 

Contact:          Adair Roark, Finance and Marketing Director


The Lord Berkeley Conservation Trust (LBCT), an accredited organization through the Land Trust Alliance, seeks an engaged, results-driven and passionate Executive Director to lead its mission to protect natural, historic resources and special places in the watersheds of the Ashley, Cooper, and Santee Rivers and Four Holes Swamp.  LBCT is rapidly gaining statewide recognition for its growing portfolio of conserved properties that includes critical watersheds and ecosystems, rural and urban open space, and historic properties.

The Executive Director works closely with the Board of Directors and Finance & Marketing Director to set the organization’s strategic direction.  Duties include leading the development of the organization’s annual plan of work, managing and growing a robust portfolio of protected properties, drafting and documenting conservation easements, actively participating in the development and management of the annual budget, fostering relationships with donors and foundations.  The Executive Director will be an advocate for conservation values in the community, serving as a visible leader and partner at the local and state level.


  • Work with board and staff to grow and guide the organization

  • Prepare and implement acquisition and protection strategies, negotiate donations and purchases of conservation easements, draft conservation easements, and oversee the management of all projects to completion

  • Identify, cultivate, and solicit major gift prospects

  • Create budgets and organizational thinking related to overall organizational goals and programs

  • Ensure compliance with national standards and practices for all aspects of the organization

  • Oversee the land trust accreditation renewal process




  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution of higher education

  • Ten (10) years’ experience in the conservation, forestry, or nonprofit sector, with at least three (3) years of organizational leadership

  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills, ability to cultivate relationships

  • Proficiency in organizing and prioritizing tasks in a fast-paced environment; manages towards clarity and finds solutions




Lord Berkeley Conservation Trust Donates Property for Demonstration Forest

Every day we work with landowners who desire to protect the vision for their property, forever. Those interactions are inspiring and their spirit defines the essence of our work.  Other days, we have the opportunity to leverage our broad base of community contacts to orchestrate an arrangement that benefits even more people.  Yesterday's Post and Courier featured one of those projects. 

Click here to read the full news release.