The Gulf Coastal Plain Ecosystem Partnership (GCPEP) is a unique collaboration among Eglin AFB, The Nature Conservancy (TNC), Champion International Corporation, Blackwater River State Forest, Northwest Florida Water Management District, and National Forests in Alabama and Florida, who cooperate under the auspices of a 1996 multi-party memorandum of understanding. The partners manage more than 840,000 acres in one of the most important conservation landscapes in the Southeast. Of the 115 species of plants and animals and 297 natural communities identified by TNC as being targets for conservation action in the 42 million acre East Gulf Coastal Plain ecoregion, 37% of species and 38% of natural communities occur on GCPEP lands, despite GCPEP being only 2% of the ecoregional land area. The GCPEP has undertaken a joint planning process, including identifying site conservation targets and assessing the stresses and sources of stress. Eight total conservation targets were identified, ranging from single species (e.g., red-cockaded woodpeckers) to large, matrix-forming ecosystem types (e.g., longleaf pine matrix). Major threats to targets include residential development, incompatible fire, forestry and agricultural practices, unstable management funding, and roads/utility corridors. Cooperative conservation strategies will be developed in the project's second phase.