About Us

Mission Statement:

Whitefish Legacy Partners is a non-profit organization whose community-minded vision ensures conservation, recreation and education on the lands around Whitefish for future generations.

2015 Annual Community Report

2016 Annual Community Report

2017 Annual Community Report

2018 Annual Community Report


Conservation: Places Worth Protecting

Public lands are at the heart of the Flathead Valley. Whitefish Legacy Partners recognizes that clean water, recreation, thriving forests, uncluttered views and wildlife are a huge part of our way of life. The Places Worth Protecting campaign contributes to this legacy by placing local lands into permanent protection, ensuring public access to public lands, and continuing sustainable forest management. To date, our conservation efforts have protected 6,100 acres of vulnerable lands and provided Montana schools and universities with over $10 million dollars in much-needed revenue – without a single dollar of taxpayer money. The program is a win-win for all: our local protected lands are the backbone of the local and state tourism economies.

For more information about our conservation work and Places Worth Protecting, please click here.

Recreation: The Whitefish Trail

The Whitefish Trail is the anchor project of Whitefish Legacy Partners and is the result of community collaboration to preserve clean water, public access, recreation, thriving forests, uncluttered views and wildlife. To date, Whitefish Legacy Partners and the City of Whitefish have built 42 miles of trail and 12 trailheads readily accessed from town. The trail is comprised of stacked loops, scenic overlooks, beautiful single-track trail and gated logging roads.

With Whitefish Trail construction slated to continue over the next five to ten years, the Whitefish Trail provides a high-quality recreational experience that links the paved trails in the City of Whitefish and the mountain biking trails at Whitefish Mountain Resort with the Department of Natural Resources and Conservation (DNRC) State Trust Lands, Flathead National Forest, MT Fish Wildlife and Parks (fishing and boating sites), Flathead Land Trust easement property, and multiple private owners.

For more information about the Whitefish Trail, please click here.

Education: Community Connections

The Whitefish Trail offers a unique educational opportunity: a community asset that provides an important link between our town and our natural lands. Whitefish Legacy Partners facilitates outings on the Whitefish Trail with the goal of educating locals and visitors alike about the wonders of our Montana backyard and what must be done to protect and conserve it. These programs give children and adults opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors and to learn about the interwoven elements of a thriving forest: wildlife habitat, plant life, water sources and aquatic life forms, and healthy forest management.

Click here to learn more about our education program.

Board of Directors

Mike Jopek
Board Chair
Farmer (Purple Frog Gardens), writer and former State Representative HD4

Reid Sabin
Board Vice Chair
Co-owner Stillwater Mountain Lodge, landscape and excavation contractor

Fred Jones
Retired ski industry executive and outdoor adventurer

Julie Baldridge
Small business owner, community volunteer, Montana outdoors buff

Diane Conradi, Ex Officio 
Co-Founder and Legal Consultant
Personalized legal services in real estate, environmental, conservation and water law

  • Leslie Hunt
    Friends of Spencer liaison, former co-chair of the Violence Free Crisis Line

  • Ed Lieser
    Retired forestry consultant and Forest Service employee, State Representative HD4

    Henry Ricklefs
    Retired Plum Creek Timber Co Executive, frequents the Whitefish Trail (with dog Milo)

  • Becky Smith-Powell
    Retired Forest Recreation, Trails, Wilderness and Special Use Permit Manager, USFS

Legacy Partners Staff :

Heidi Van Everen
Executive Director
Long history of developing (and running) trails and advocating for conservation

Alan Myers-Davis
Director of Development
Lover of single-track and wild places

Margosia Jadkowski
Program Director
Advocate for outdoor education and volunteerism