Support Osborne

Foundation / Donations

Private donations make it possible for the Clayton County Conservation Board to operate, expand and provide the exceptional facilities and programming. Donations can be made in a variety of ways:

  • Family memorabilia can be given for the Pioneer Village, Motor Mill or for display in the Osborne Nature Center
  • Donations can be made to specific programs such as the hunter education program, environmental education programs, land management programs, adopt an animal and to the parks in the form of memorial trees, picnic tables, fire rings, benches and to the flower gardens.
  • Undesignated cash donations can be made as well to support projects that are currently in most need.
  • Some donations are attached to specific projects and programs while other donors choose to make a general donation to the Clayton County Conservation Board.

All donations are important to the overall operation of the Board.  Monetary donations play an important role in helping raise needed cash match for grants and for specific projects.


Capital Fund Campaigns–  On occasion a larger Capital Fund Campaign is necessary to fund larger projects.  Some examples are: the construction of the Osborne Nature/Welcome Center, the completion of  Native Wildlife Exhibit, the upgrade of the Pony Hollow Trail, and work done at the Motor Mill.


 Osborne Partners for Education Endowment-  The Partners for Education Endowment was started by Susi Nehls Blair and Roy Blair of Guttenberg Iowa in March of 2011.  The endowment is managed by the Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque and offers a continuous income for the award winning environmental education programs offered at the Osborne Conservation and Education Center. The Osborne Partners for Education Endowment helps to support environmental educations programs for 27,000 participants annually. The Clayton County Conservation Board was presented with the 2010 Outstanding Environmental Education Program Award: For Excellence in Environmental Education Programming by a County Conservation Board

Susi Nehls Blair and Roy Blair wanted to establish the Osborne Partners for Education Endowment in honor of Susi’s late father, Joe Hickey.  Dr. Joe Hickey was head of the Wildlife Department at the University of Wisconsin and worked under Aldo Leopold for a time.  His passion for environmental education, along with Susi and Roy’s continued passion for outdoor education, has led to the creation of the endowment. Click here to meet Joe Hickey.

Please consider a gift today. All gifts of $50 or more are eligible for Endow Iowa, a 25% state tax credit as well as the federal deduction for charity. The link for giving online to the fund through the CFGD secure site is and then choose Osborne Partners from the drop-down menu.

Volunteers-  The donation and gift of time is very important to the Osborne Center.  Volunteers are essential to the operation of the Clayton County Conservation Board.  To help run the many events, programs and projects that happen under the board, the staff relies very heavily on volunteers.  Annually, there are over 3,000 recorded volunteer hours worked by over 150 different volunteers.

Volunteers are used in several main areas which include the Iowa Room/Office, Gardens, Field Trips, Heritage Days, Public Programs, Off Road Run, Fishing Clinic, Holiday Walk, Youth Mentor Turkey Hunt, Hunter Education, Motor Mill Foundation and Conservation Board Members.

The generosity of  these 150 plus volunteers greatly reduces the cost of operations by saving staff time and increases the productivity and scope of programs which the Conservation Board is able to provide to the public.  For a volunteer application, click here.


For more information about any of these areas, please call or stop in.