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Open Space Conservancy Trust

The Mercer Island Open Space Conservancy Trust is a board of volunteer citizens appointed by the City Council to oversee open space properties placed in the trust as passive, low-impact recreational open space (park).  The Trust manages these properties to protect, maintain and preserve them as natural, scenic and recreational resources, maintaining all their ecological, scenic, aesthetic, scientific, and educational attributes for the current and future residents of Mercer Island in perpetuity.

The Trust was established by ordinance on February 10, 1992 (amended May 6, 1996). Open space is defined by the ordinance as a property of potential natural or scenic resources that has been reserved by the Mercer Island City Council for passive and low impact forms of use, such as walking, jogging, and picnicking.  Currently the Trust owns and oversees the management of Pioneer Park and Engstrom Open Space.

The seven members meet as needed (usually every other month starting in January). Click here to download the Trust's bylaws.  The Trust is staffed by the Parks and Recreation Department.

The Open Space Conservancy Trust plays an instrumental role in partnership with the Parks and Recreation Department to create, coordinate and implement letterboxing. Click here to learn more about letterboxing.

Additional Information

Staff Contact: Alaine Sommargren, Natural Resources Manager at 206-275-7879 or

Length of Term
3rd Thursday of Jan, Mar, May, Jul, Sep, & Nov at 6:00 pm in the Council Chambers at City Hall
Four years running, June 1 - May 31

Email Address
Term Begin
Term End
Marie Bender   Trustee   11/07/2016   05/31/2021  
Carol Lynn Berseth   Trustee   06/05/2018   05/31/2022  
Thomas Hildebrandt   Secretary   06/06/2016   05/31/2020  
Craig Olson   Trustee   06/06/2016   05/31/2020  
Geraldine Poor   Trustee   01/17/2012   05/31/2021  
David Wisenteiner   Trustee(Council)   02/23/2017   12/31/2020  

Calendar Events

Open Space Conservancy Trust Board Meeting
Thursday, November 21, 2019
Open Space Conservancy Trust Board regular meetings are held on the third Thursday of alternating months (Jan, Mar, May, Jul, Sep, & Nov) at 6:00 pm at the City Hall Council Chambers (9611 SE 36th Street, Mercer Island, WA) unless otherwise posted.

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