GOLD2023

Liberty Prairie Foundation

Imagine a future where people, plants, and animals thrive together.

Grayslake, IL   |  WWW.LIBERTYPRAIRIE.ORG

Mission

To build skills and pathways toward land, human, and local economy health.

Ruling year info

1994

Principal Officer

Karen A Wilkes

Main address

550 Harris Rd

Grayslake, IL 60030 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

36-3888439

NTEE code info

Private Grantmaking Foundations (T20)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990-PF.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Farming and conservation are often perceived as in conflict with each other. We believe that when the timeline is extended to decades and the focus is on improved soil health, these practices compliment each other. We manage 94 acres of organic agriculture, perennial crops, and wild spaces in Grayslake, IL with the longterm vision of people, plants, and animals thriving together. Our land management practices develop healthy soil which supports delicious vegetables (year round) that enhance Lake County's foodshed. We include high school students in our work offering field-trip and work-based learning experiences that bring life to learning and offer hands-on problem solving opportunities.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Community Garden

Gardeners rent organic in ground plots with access to water, compost, and expertise in a communal setting.

Population(s) Served

Participants in our CSA make an upfront financial commitment to our farm each year. This allows our farmers to purchase seeds, plant cover crop in our fields, care for infrastructure, and pay our farming crew. In exchange, we provide participants with our freshest vegetables, fresh fruit, eggs, a weekly newsletter and special farm experiences.

Population(s) Served

Students develop a sense of place, belonging, and community connection. Through our strategic educational partnerships, we support nature-based educational experiences on our conservation farm.

Working in strategic partnership with Grayslake High School District 127, we enable collaborations across subject areas and hands-on learning to provide students with relevant, engaging and authentic educational experiences.

On our farm learning campus, students see systems interacting and can add value and design for sustainability. Our work includes field trips, work-based learning, and internship opportunities.

Students discover, engage and get curious.

Population(s) Served

At the Prairie Crossing Conservation Farm, students are engaged in regenerative, sustainable agriculture and land management best practices. By demonstrating, documenting and measuring best practices within holistic farm management, we better learn and share our holistic land management principles, identify efficiencies in managing land bases collaboratively, and ideally, spark additional human creativity.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Our land management efforts demonstrate long term foodshed planning that supports people, plants, and animals twenty to thirty years from now and decades to come.

We measure soil health based on the biodiversity in the soil. We work to increase the organic matter in the soil to slow and spread water on our land and ultimately return to the water table. We cover crop to replenish and improve our soil health and keep and build upon our top soil, which is currently IL top export.

Our education program connects academic, workforce development, and 21st century skills using hands-on learning. Students develop creative critical thinking and problem solving skills as well as soft skills including teamwork, communication, and presentation practice.

Community Gardens provide land access, expertise, water, and materials for folks interested in growing their own organic produce.

The food we grow fortifies our community.

We believe healing the planet heals people and we demonstrate our values and priorities in our work. We engage students in hands-on learning that develops problem solving and critical thinking skills providing opportunities to practice these skills in a supportive environment.

By adding a retail space, Liberty Prairie Farm Store (11/11/23) farmers and producers from the Midwest have an additional marketplace. Right now an additional 30+ farms are featured in our store and products are from within 250 miles. We can receive WIC benefits and hope to expand into SNAP benefits in 2024 as we work to make high quality, local food available for all.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We share the feedback we received with the people we serve, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection, Staff find it hard to prioritize feedback collection and review due to lack of time

Financials

Liberty Prairie Foundation
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

Liberty Prairie Foundation

Board of directors
as of 12/19/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Vicky Ranney

Brooke Hecht

Centers for Humans and Nature

Jerry Adelmann

Openlands

George Ranney

Paul Geiselhart

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 12/5/2023

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

Disability

Equity strategies

Last updated: 12/05/2023

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.