Donor Spotlight
Opening the Gate to Giving Back: Robin Flournoy’s Story

By Brent Duka | April 24, 2024

“As long as you could get on and off your horse and open a gate, you were working!”

Robin Flournoy cherishes memories of growing up in beautiful Portola Valley, where she became rooted in the traditions of ranching and its Western heritage. “I knew I wanted to be involved with this for the rest of my life.”

Photo of Robin Flournoy performing a sliding stop on her horse.
Robin Flournoy and her horse, Mr Hickory Hollytime, competing at the 2022 National Stock Horse Association Derby.
Photo courtesy of Stacy Judd

Robin’s profound love for the land was inherited from her father, Harry. Like his daughter, Harry was fascinated by the rolling hills and grazing cows as a child. During Sunday drives up and down the San Francisco Peninsula with his parents, Harry would find himself staring out the window and telling his mom and dad how he dreamed of having cows of his own one day.

After marrying and starting a family, Harry leased land in Menlo Park and set up the family ranch. For over 30 years, buying and selling cattle became his passion. But it was training horses that caught the attention of his youngest daughter, Robin.

Robin was fortunate to be exposed to many different hobbies as a child, notably through her mother’s preferred avenues of dance classes and piano lessons. However, being out on the ranch, running cattle, and training horses with her father had lit the fire inside of this little gate-getter. By ten years old, Robin was already training and showing horses.

Later, with a degree in agricultural business from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and her Masters from Santa Clara University, Robin landed her first job as a lender for Bank of America, specializing in agri-business. From there, she was able to make a difference in what she held dear since she was an adolescent. She loved being involved in agriculture from a business perspective.

“I was helping people in ag grow their businesses!”

After closing the book on a fulfilling career in banking, Robin continues her support for California ranchers. No stranger to social media, she actively campaigns to educate her audience about rangeland and agriculture. Recently, one of her followers reached out: “Robin, I have learned so much from you about agriculture. I appreciate all that you share on Facebook. I would have never known!”

This fuels Robin on her mission of paying it forward. Her parents encouraged her to always “give back.” When she was introduced to California Rangeland Trust, she instantly became a supporter. Fifteen years later, Robin joined our Visionaries’ Circle when she named the organization as a beneficiary of her retirement account.

Robin has a deep appreciation for the ranching community, and she remains enthusiastic about efforts to spread conservation awareness. Thank you for all your support, Robin!

Robin Flournoy in Memoriam

After interviewing her and writing the above story, our hearts were shattered as we learned that our dear friend, Robin Flournoy, sadly passed away on March 16, 2024. We will all remember Robin for her bright spirit, infectious smile, giving heart, deep love of the land, and unwavering passion for protecting the Western way of life. She will be deeply missed by all. Happy trails to you in heaven, Robin Flournoy.

Originally published in the Rangeland Trust Spring 2024 Newsletter