The Chesapeake Conservation Partnership grew from a one-day workshop held in 2009. A group of state and federal agencies and non‐governmental organizations assembled at the Annapolis Maritime Museum to discuss options for enhancing land conservation and public access in the Chesapeake Watershed. The recommendations formed the basis of the report Land Conservation and Public Access in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed (2009). The group met several times in early 2010 to advise on the recommended actions and draft goals of protecting an additional two million acres and adding 300 public access sites by 2025. The Strategy for Protecting and Restoring the Chesapeake Bay Watershed (2010) included these defined goals and was issued in response to EO 13508.
Since then, the Chesapeake Conservation Partnership has met annually to advance collaborative efforts, recommend policy options, and share best practices. This has led to an increasingly robust partnership, adding working groups, setting out priorities, establishing an organizational framework and more.
In June 2014, the Partnership’s land conservation and public access goals were adopted into a new Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement—signed by the governors of six states, the federal government, District of Columbia and the Chesapeake Bay Commission—setting an agenda for 2025.