Trustee and traveler Leslie Cohen leaves a legacy at Crow Canyon

Posted June 25, 2023

A Massachusetts native, Leslie Cohen first came to Crow Canyon on a 1996 Backcountry Exploration trip led by Bill Lipe. Over the next 16 years, she participated in more than 25 research and exploration programs at Crow Canyon.

With years of deep connection as a program participant, volunteer, trustee, and donor, after her passing on Dec. 5, 2022, Leslie secured her legacy at Crow Canyon by leaving a significant bequest.

Leslie always exhibited a thirst for knowledge. With an M.Ed. in special education and experience with special needs students in New England, Leslie chose a new path by completing a second master’s degree in 2002, this time in anthropology and archaeology. She was also elected to the Crow Canyon Board of Trustees. She moved to Santa Fe and worked in archaeology as a professional and a volunteer. She authored a series of publications independently and in collaboration with friends from Crow Canyon. Leslie had a focus on ceramic analysis but her subjects weren’t always technical: two of her published pieces highlighted the accomplishments of Bertha Dutton, one of the first female archaeologists to work with the National Park Service.

Following a medical setback in 2014, Leslie moved into an assisted living facility, where she was cared for until her passing. Leslie’s foresight in making a planned gift has made possible the purchase of three new-to-Crow Canyon vehicles. It is a fitting use of Leslie’s generosity, after her decades of tooling around the Four Corners backcountry in Crow Canyon vans of varying condition. Thank you, Leslie Cohen!

For information about making a planned gift to support Crow Canyon’s future, contact Sarah Grace Pretzer at or 970-560-7545.

Read the full Summer 2023 newsletter here.