2021 Conservation Summit Summary

The Conservation Summit is a unique annual gathering hosted by Texan by Nature that focuses on bringing conservation and business leaders together for rich, impact-focused dialogue and networking.

Following our rescheduled 2020 Summit in April of 2021 that was primarily virtual, the Texan by Nature team and our partners were thrilled to gather for the 2021 Summit both in-person and virtually in November 2021. 190 leaders in business and conservation attended this year’s Summit in person, and an additional 403 leaders joined the conversation virtually. Survey results from attendees showed that 100% of respondents reported learning something new at the Summit and for 93%, the Summit exceeded their expectations. Read the full 2021 Conservation Summit Results Report.

The overarching theme of the day was “In It Together – The Future of Conservation.” The future of conservation, just like Texas’s beautiful landscape and leadership role in industry, is ever-evolving. The Summit explored new models, return on conservation metrics, and best-in-class collaborations with the goal of inspiring new partnerships and driving conservation innovation and impact. 

Texan by Nature CEO, Joni Carswell, opened the Summit with remarks expressing gratitude for the persistence that has been required over the last 18 months to continue making progress on conservation goals, and a reminder of the social and economic value of conservation for today and tomorrow. You can watch the full-length recording of the Summit below, which includes our video series on the Conservation Wranglers program and 2020 Conservation Wranglers Respect Big Bend and the Paso del Norte Trail.

Individual recordings of the Summit panels are available below. Click the speaker name to be taken directly to their presentation.

Panel 1: Collaborative Conservation

Collaboration produces better results — more innovative solutions, deeply engaged team members, and higher loyalty and morale. Research shows that teams working collaboratively stick to the task 64 percent longer than those in solitary endeavors; report higher engagement levels; cite lower fatigue levels, and have a higher success rate. Collaborative conservation initiatives that span business, landowners, communities, and conservation organizations yield similar positive results and accelerate the pace of conservation action.

In this panel, you’ll hear from:

Panel 2: Business of Conservation

Texas has the world’s 10th largest GDP, 29 million citizens, 10 diverse ecoregions, and incredibly diverse resources. Combining our conservation knowledge with our business acumen and leadership provides an opportunity to increase profitability while advancing sustainable usage of our natural resources. Aligning goals, metrics, and reporting across industry and conservation enables us to better understand and report the total Return on Conservation. From financial recognition to new methods of impact measurement, the business of conservation is progressing.

In this panel, you’ll hear from:

Panel 3: Emerging Models in Conservation 

As a perennial top state for business start-ups, Texas is no stranger to new models and innovation. This independent, entrepreneurial mindset is on display in conservation as well. New methods and models are driving collaborative, systemic approaches that benefit not only our natural resources but economic development and our health as well. From market-based models to facilitated collectives, emerging models are already impacting the future of conservation.

In this panel, you’ll hear from:


Joni Carswell, TxN CEO & President ended the Summit portion of the day with her closing remarks where she reflected on what panelists had to share and inspired the audience to take action after the Summit.

The future is collaboration. The future is metrics focused – there’s a business case here. The future will be new models and methodologies. The future is intentional. We have an opportunity to realize progress that we haven’t yet imagined. Make today an inflection point. Make sure that every Texan is engaged in conservation impact.

– Joni Carswell, Texan by Nature CEO & President

If you’re interested in sponsoring our 2022 Summit – learn more here!

Contact info@texanbynature.org for questions.