Inland Northwest Land Conservancy was founded in 1991 to connect people to nature by conserving the lands and waters essential to life


As a local land trust that is non-political, non-adversarial, and non-governmental, Inland Northwest Land Conservancy is well positioned to work with a broad range of land owners, businesses, and government agencies.


Our board and staff are engaged members in the communities we serve, actively working to preserve our region’s precious resources for generations to come. The Conservancy’s work extends across eastern Washington and northern Idaho.


To date, INLC has helped landowners preserve over 21,000 acres of our Inland Northwest, including 40 miles of shoreline. Preservation through conservation easements keeps water resources clean and flowing, agricultural lands working, forests healthy, and supports the health of our wildlife and wild places for future generations.


Our Vision

Inland Northwest Land Conservancy, as the premier land conservation organization in the region, envisions a future:


~  In which the scenic beauty of the Inland Northwest endures and enriches the lives of all. 

~  Where native plants flourish in a natural landscape. 

~  Where wildlife have enough natural open spaces to roam and thrive. 

~  Where working farms and forests remain strong and valued contributors to our economy and way of life. 

~  Where water is clean and pure. 


With all of this close by, eastern Washington and northern Idaho remain wonderful places to live, work, and play for both urban and rural dwellers for generations to come.

Our History

In 1991, local conservation-minded citizens of the Spokane area recognized that the natural landscape and working farms and forests of our community were changing dramatically as residential and commercial growth soared. They sought a practical way to protect the natural and working resources of our area. Thus, the Inland Northwest Land Trust was born. 

When Betsy Jewett, the first Treasurer of INLT, moved to Spokane in 1989, she was surprised to find that there were no land trusts in the area. The Inland Northwest is known for its beautiful scenery and the area was in need of a land trust in order to protect these special places from inappropriate development. 

February 4, 1991 marked the beginning of INLT. The 11 original members each donated $20 as starting funds for INLT. 

Chris DeForest was hired in April 1997 as the Executive Director of INLT -- the first professional staff member. Since then, INLT has grown substantially and now has four full-time staff members, a part-time contract accountant, one student intern, and several dedicated in-office volunteers. 

Thousands of hours of work contributed to this astonishing effort that has created a strong and lasting organization. INLT has become a leader in land conservation as it continues to grow in membership and has made significant progress protecting the living landscapes of our region. 


Now called Inland Northwest Land Conservancy, we have helped protect over 19,000 acres through 550 conservation easements, 2 owned preserves, and 35 partner projects.