A Purposeful Life - Ted Turner — Ted Turner Reserves
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A Purposeful Life – Ted Turner


Ted Turner’s passion for promoting the health

of the planet has benefited the people and places,

flora and fauna in his ambit for most of his life

Ted Turner directed his career trajectory straight at the stars when he shifted the family business focus from billboards to broadcasting. Born Robert Edward Turner III in Cincinnati, Ohio, the sporty American entrepreneur may be best known for launching CNN—the world’s first live, 24-hour global news network in 1980—but he is also a renowned philanthropist and environmentalist. His achievements have earned him a string of honorary degrees, industry awards and civic honors.

Since inception in 1990, the Turner Foundation has contributed more than USD 400 million dollars towards efforts to improve air and water quality, develop a sustainable energy future to protect our climate, safeguard environmental health, protect wildlife habitat and develop practices and policies to curb population growth rates.

Children and youth worldwide are encouraged to solve environmental challenges in their neighborhoods and communities via the hands-on projects made possible by Turner’s Captain Planet Foundation. His United Nations Foundation again focuses on the environment as well as women and population, children’s health and peace and security in line with some of the United Nations’ goals and objectives. So too does his Nuclear Threat Initiative in “working to close the growing and increasingly dangerous gap between the threat from nuclear, chemical and biological weapons and the global response.”

Turner Renewable Energy invests in just that and is responsible for the utilization of clean energy sources whenever possible at Turner’s Ted’s Montana Grill restaurants and on Turner Ranches.

The Turner Endangered Species Fund exists to restore and conserve the biodiversity of endangered or imperiled species on Turner properties. Since the launch of Ted Turner Reserves in 2015, the public has been able to visit and enjoy four Turner-owned locales, stretching across more than one million acres of awe-inspiring landscapes. This way, Turner hopes to inspire their “keen appreciation for and understanding of nature and, in turn, to consciously take steps, small or large, toward improving our environment.” The wide-open spaces across hundreds of acres just waiting to be explored are conducive to social distancing. What’s more, Ted Turner Reserves enables the development of personalized itineraries for guests, depending on how adventurous or sedentary they wish to be.

Vermejo is described as the jewel of northern New Mexico. The property is home to a wide variety of wildlife. Elk, bison, black bears and mountain lions roam the 558,000 acres of landscape featuring alpine tundra, 19 fishable lakes and 30 miles of unspoiled streams. Some of the popular outdoor activities include horseback riding and fly fishing for Rio Grande cutthroat trout, while indoors, the holistic spa treatments are a must.

If the latter appeals more in terms of experience, a visit to Sierra Grande in the southwestern part of New Mexico may be in order. Here, guests can relax and recharge with the help of holistic wellness services and a daily soak in the private indoor and outdoor mineral-enriched geothermal hot springs—a healing tradition first introduced by the region’s Native Americans.

To explore the other Turner properties, guests can stay at Ladder Ranch House, with day tours available to discover Armendaris, just a short 45-minute drive away. Ladder is a 156,000-acre natural oasis, rich in biodiversity, marked by four Rio Grande tributaries while Armendaris encapsulates the essence of southern New Mexico with its 360,000-acre desert landscape. Armendaris is home to one of the largest populations of Mexican free-tailed bats in the U.S. Visitors harbor hopes of encountering bison, pronghorn and desert bighorn sheep, too. Private guided tours on utility terrain vehicles are available at both properties.

WORDS Debbie Hathway, IMAGES in order: © Sean Fitzgerald Photography,  © Ted Turner Reserves, © Amanda Howell