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California Rangeland Trust Charged with Permanent Protection of 12,500-Acre Deer Valley Ranch

March 25, 2010 | San Miguel, CA

March 25, 2010
Name: Benjamin L. Higgins
Phone: (916) 444-2096


San Miguel, CA- A 12,500-acre ranch in southern Monterey County amassed by California
inventor Stanton (Stan) Avery has been donated to the California Rangeland Trust, a non-profit,
rancher-governed group dedicated to protecting California’s open spaces and ranching heritage.

Deer Valley Ranch is a critical part of a wildlife corridor that connects conservation lands from
the Salinas Valley to the San Joaquin. For the past century, it has been a cattle ranching
operation, most recently a cow-calf and stocker ranch, with some barley farming in the interior
valleys. As a well-managed ranch in the heart of Monterey’s oak savannah landscape, it supports
habitat for wildlife such as Tule elk, blacktail deer, bobcat, mountain lion, San Joaquin kit fox,
migratory songbirds, California quail, a wide variety of hawks and golden eagles.

“We are enormously grateful for the generosity and foresight that allows us to protect this
extraordinary California landscape,” said Nita Vail, Chief Executive Officer. “Our intention is to
use this tremendous gift as a springboard to leverage additional funding and protect many, many
more ranches throughout California.” The ranch is the largest gift received by the Trust in the
organization’s 12-year history.

Stan Avery was a well-known inventor and businessman. In 1935, Avery was working in Los
Angeles in the depths of the Depression. He came from a long line of farmers in New England
and liked tinkering with machinery. After hours, he put together a machine to make
commercially viable self-adhesive labels, using spare parts from a washing machine, sewing
machine and a saber saw. He and his future wife, Dorothy Durfee, used her savings from
teaching to start the small label company that became the Avery Dennison Corporation – a maker
of labels for consumer and office use and a major supplier of the U.S. Postal Service’s selfadhesive

Avery was part of a distinguished group of Californians, including David Packard, who shaped
conservation in California through high-level involvement with a number of initiatives. Deer
Valley Ranch became a gathering place for leaders of the day during the 1970s and 80s.

The Rangeland Trust will place a conservation easement on the property so that it will remain a
ranch, and is seeking a buyer who will continue the vision of Stan Avery, managing the land as
both a working cattle ranch and an extraordinary natural area.

“Our goal is to continue the outstanding stewardship of this land by maintaining this ranch in
private ownership, and assuring that it will be forever managed as a productive, sustainable
landscape,” said founding Board Member Steve Sinton, of Shandon, CA. “This is a wonderful
opportunity for our organization, and we are extremely appreciative of the confidence placed in
the Rangeland Trust to continue a ranching legacy that provides for the environment, ranching
families, and rural communities.”


The California Rangeland Trust, a 501(c)(3) public benefit corporation, was founded in 1998 to conserve
the open space, natural habitat and stewardship provided by California's ranches. To date, the organization
has protected over 200,000 acres of productive grazing lands throughout California. For more
information, please visit

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