Conservation Recreation Community

aka STPAL   |   Avondale Estates, GA   |


Southeastern Trust for Parks and Land makes use of natural land to foster natural land conservation, environmental stewardship, public education and scientific research, and public recreation for the benefit of individuals, and communities. The Southeastern Trust for Parks and Land's main program starts with the acquiring and conserving of natural land. We then work with local community groups to create free and publicly accessible passive recreation parks (walking/biking trails) with the objective of creating a minimal disturbance of the natural land. STPAL assists in the conservation and park building process with labor and financial resources every step of the way.

Ruling year info


executive director

Bill Jones

Main address

122 North Avondale Road Suite 230

Avondale Estates, GA 30002 USA

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NTEE code info

Environmental Quality, Protection, and Beautification N.E.C. (C99)

Other Recreation, Sports, or Leisure Activities N.E.C. (N99)

Citizen Participation (W24)

IRS filing requirement

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

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

 Indicator 3: Identify Resources with ability to impact specific properties Metric: 1. Working file with resource information and noted skill sets Activities & Tactics:  Identify potential partners; i.e.  Community partner for park development  Friends of…,  Elected Officials, government  Leverage board member, partner and corporate connections  Explore opportunities to create “community stories”  Create local media/marking partnerships to tell stories  Engage existing donors with regular communications and opportunities for impact

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?

Talking Rock Nature Preserve

Talking Rock Nature Preserve is a 210 acre perpetually conserved natural land property acquired by STPAL in 2012. It now has 10+ miles of natural surface hiking/biking trail system, nature education signage program, and land restoration programs available for no cost public use. It's 2020 goals include a pavilion, increased public areas to better facilitate social distancing, adventure course, and a disc golf course.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

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.

- Protect and improve the conservation values of natural land. Improvement efforts include forest restoration with a focus on long leaf pines; individual species support projects mirroring related government agencies', educational institutions', and other NGOs' priorities; and creating public engagement and appreciation for natural land.
- Provide passive recreational opportunities for individuals and communities centered around the quiet enjoyment of nature. These typically include hiking, mountain biking, bird watching, orienteering, and geo-caching.
- Promote science education through stewarding diverse plant and animal species, signage installations, and workshops.
- Improve quality of life for communities by providing parkland for gathering as individuals and groups, economic development by drawing visitors, improved public health by providing no cost public recreation, and value increase of nearby properties.

- Develop a diverse board by identifying characteristics and talents that will strengthen STPAL’s ability to achieve its mission.
- Annual evaluation of staff, board, goals, processes, and organizational best practices that measure organizational success and effectiveness.
- Broaden financial capacity and resources to execute operations and strategic goals.
- Develop / Leverage diverse revenue streams. Grants, Corp. Stewardship, Annual Giving, Events, Partnerships.
- Ensure internal systems for management efficiencies.
- Create comprehensive land portfolio and strategic plan for portfolio management focusing on profiles, category delineation and long term goals for each one.
- Identify and Acquire resources to improve and maintain cornerstone properties/projects.
- Focus on high quality property donations that serve larger populations.
- Expand community engagement by engaging key influencers and friends in the work of specific public nature area “Friends” Groups.
- Implement activities as access points for engagement, i.e. partnerships.
- Utilize properties to introduce individuals to STPAL & provide a healthy outdoor experience.
- Provide education and research opportunities.

STPAL has sound financial strength for long term viability by maintaining 3+ years operating expenses in a stewardship account, very low operational overhead, and diligent expense management.
STPAL's land assets provide income opportunities via usage agreements, conservation minded forestry, and strategic land sales.
STPAL's projects are attractive to funders because 100% of donations can be allocated to specific projects. Already owning the land required for projects is powerful.
STPAL's mission and its impacts appeal to a wide range of constituents as potential funders and volunteers.
STPAL fosters partnerships with government agencies, local service clubs, and other NGOs.
STPAL has a proven track record of cost effectively and pragmatically completing high quality projects.

2020 Top Mission Priorities and Updates
• Bald Mountain Creek Nature Preserve (Western NC): Approved for a grant of $10,295.84 from the USDA Equip program for a 16-acre habitat enhancement project for the threatened Golden Wing Warbler. The site has past observations of nesting pairs of GWW. Project is in partnership with the Audubon Society. Also preparing for an upcoming major rehab project of the site’s 6+ mile hiking trail system.
• Burke County (GA) Nature Preserve plant 50 acres long leaf pine (completed as of March 2020), add STPAL sign at entrance, pollinator gardens refresh, moving forward with summer prep work to plant an additional 50+ acres of long leaf pine in spring 2021.
• Campbellton Creek Nature Preserve (South Fulton, GA): Applying to rezone to AG per City’s requirement. Applying for grant funding for habitat and forest restoration projects. Finishing new trail system flagging and delineating parking and community areas.
• Cannongate Nature Preserve (Coweta County GA): Established local leadership for launch of friends group. Applying for small grants to fund parking area, trails, priority habitat projects, and nature education elements.
• Jan Hill Lane Nature Preserve (DeKalb County GA): Public use is strong. Evasive weeds are also strong. Main goal is non-native plant control leading to planting native species this fall.
• Pumpkinvine Creek Nature Preserve (Paulding County, GA) park planning and initial due diligence beginning.
• Sassafras Nature Preserve (Gilmer County, GA): Moving quickly to create GOSP grant application for massive project including 40+ miles of hiking and biking trails. Full report to follow in early August.
• Turnipseed Nature Preserve (Douglas County, GA) Trash trap installed on Annewakee Creek where it enters our property. Project is in partnership with Chattahoochee Riverkeeper with funding from Google.

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 demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
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 take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We act on the feedback we receive

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback



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


Connect with nonprofit leaders


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Connect with nonprofit leaders


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

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Board of directors
as of 06/27/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Tim Zierden

Tim Zierden

Brett Peanasky

Rebecca Godwin

Chris Durkee

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 5/22/2024

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


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

No data


No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 05/22/2024

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.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.