Our Mission

The Jo Daviess Conservation Foundation (JDCF), a land trust in Jo Daviess County, IL, was founded in 1993 by a small group of local individuals who wanted to somehow maintain the open space of a piece of property near Galena that had recently been put up for sale.  The group’s purpose was to permanently protect what many deemed ‘the Gateway to Galena’ from development, ensuring that the pristine view of the City from Hwy 20 along Horseshoe Mound would be preserved for future generations to enjoy.  That goal recently became a reality when JDCF finally purchased the 100 acres known as Galena Gateway Park in 2010.  During the almost 18 year struggle to reach this goal, the Foundation grew from a group of volunteers meeting in one another’s basements to an organization with an office and full-time staff that is dedicated to land conservation in all of Jo Daviess County.

Today, JDCF works to preserve land for the lasting well-being of people and wildlife.

We accomplish this mission by:

  • Educating people about land stewardship and resource conservation.
  • Permanently protecting land from inappropriate development.
  • Working with willing landowners through conservation registries, easements, and land donations.
  • Supporting recreation that promotes appreciation of our natural resources.
  • Partnering with other like-minded organizations.

Upcoming Events

JDCF’s Biggest Tree Contest

April 1 @ 8:00 am - October 1 @ 5:00 pm

You may hear people speak of them reverently. You might catch word of a “big tree,” an important tree, a “Champion Tree.” But what does this mean? JDCF is sponsoring a Biggest Tree Contest to recognize the largest tree within each of the designated native tree species that grow in Carroll, Jo Daviess, and Stephenson […] Read More

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Camp Casper Nature Camp

June 17 @ 8:30 am - June 21 @ 11:30 am

JDCF, in partnership with the Galena ARC,  will once again host Camp Casper, an outdoor day camp for children ages 8 to 12, at JDCF’s Casper Bluff Land & Water Reserve.  Our theme for 2019 will center around the importance of trees in our natural world.  Reservations are required by calling the Galena ARC at […] Read More

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Bobolinks: A JDCF Safari

June 22 @ 8:00 am - 1:00 pm

Join JDCF volunteer and international birding expert Bobbi Asher for a half-day birding adventure at the Valley of Eden Bird Bird Sanctuary. In decline because of habitat loss, this striking bird with a unique black underbelly and beautiful song, travels thousands of miles each year to nest in the restored grasslands of JDCF’s new bird […] Read More

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Bobolinks: A JDCF Safari

June 29 @ 8:00 am - 1:00 pm

Join JDCF volunteer and international birding expert Bobbi Asher for a half-day birding adventure at the Valley of Eden Bird Bird Sanctuary. In decline because of habitat loss, this striking bird with a unique black underbelly and beautiful song, travels thousands of miles each year to nest in the restored grasslands of JDCF’s new bird […] Read More

Find out more »