Introducing Patrick Barker, LPOSC’s Executive Director

Introducing Patrick Barker, LPOSC’s Executive Director







Patrick joined La Plata Open Space Conservancy in June after practicing law and, previously, working with a grassroots non-profit organization, since 2005, all in Glenwood Springs, Colorado.  Patrick most recently practiced law with Karp Neu Hanlon, P.C., focusing on water, real estate, oil and gas, construction, local government, and special district matters.  In Patrick’s non-profit work, which was done with Western Colorado Congress in the face of the early-2000s oil and gas boom and the prospect of renewed oil shale production in northwestern Colorado, he focused on improving surface owner rights in split estate situations and energy development policy.  Prior to relocating to Glenwood Springs, Patrick worked as a National Park Service ranger at Sequoia National Park in California; served as an environmental education volunteer with the Peace Corps in Lesotho, southern Africa; and in between those experiences, traveled extensively by bicycle throughout Africa and South America.

Although Patrick was raised in a small West Virginia town located along the banks of the Ohio River, his early exposure to West Virginia skiing and whitewater, and his affinity for sunshine and semi-arid climates, naturally drew him to the Rocky Mountain region.  Patrick, however, first obtained both his undergraduate and law degrees from West Virginia University.  When not working, and depending on the season, Patrick entertains himself through resort and backcountry telemark skiing; whitewater boating; wilderness backpacking; riding bicycles and motorcycles; reading history; and occasionally watching a college football game.

Patrick views land trust work as perhaps the best and highest professional calling for his skillset, knowledge, values, and energy.  He desires to utilize the same to help grow LPOSC’s staff expertise, its portfolio of conserved lands in southwestern Colorado, and its influence in the land conservation community, both within and outside Colorado.

As Patrick noted, “Although LPOSC has established a distinguished record of serving the public in southwestern Colorado by permanently conserving more than 30,000 acres of land with significant open space, wildlife habitat, or recreational value since its organization in 1992, LPOSC and all land trusts face significant obstacles in the years ahead as a result of many evolving factors.  I view the opportunity to guide LPOSC through those obstacles as both a challenge and a reward, and I am grateful that LPOSC’s Board of Directors, on behalf of all supporters of land conservation in southwestern Colorado, has entrusted me with this great responsibility.  By spreading the word about these obstacles to friends of open space whose energy we have not been able to harness to date, I’m confident that LPOSC will overcome those obstacles and thrive well into the future.”