Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Adirondack Wild Meeting Set, Speakers, Awards Planned

adirondack wildAdirondack Wild: Friends of the Forest Preserve is set to hold its 2019 Annual Meeting of Members and Friends on Saturday, October 12 at the Keene Valley Congregational Church in Keene Valley. The meeting begins with program news, elections and announcements at 11 am.

The Chair of the NYS Assembly’s Environmental Conservation Committee Steve Englebright will be the meeting’s featured speaker at 1 pm. Englebright, who represents the 4th Assembly District, is the sponsor of legislation to preserve ecological integrity, wildlife and open space in the Adirondack Park. He will direct his remarks to this legislation.

The measure (Assembly Bill 8123-a Englebright et. al.) /Senate Bill 6484 Kaminsky et. al.), would amend the Adirondack Park Agency (APA) Act by incorporating conservation development principles and practices to curtail negative effects of widely scattered exurban development, commonly known as rural sprawl. A working group of diverse Park stakeholders convened by the Common Ground Alliance, including local government representatives, took a year to study the measure. The work resulted in an amended bill last June.

Following Chairman Englebright’s remarks, an afternoon panel comprised of conservation scientists and park stakeholders will react and respond to him and the legislation. Questions, comments and general discussion will follow.

Following the forum, Adirondack Wild will present its 2019 Wild Stewardship Award to Kelley Tucker and the Ausable River Association. Kelley Tucker is the organization’s executive director. Kelley Tucker and the Ausable River Association are being recognized for their outstanding stewardship of the Ausable River, its tributaries, its floodplains and adjoining natural and human infrastructure in towns bordering the rivers.

Concluding the meeting is presentation of Adirondack Wild’s highest honor, the Paul Schaefer Wilderness Award, to Daniel R. Plumley of Keene. Dan Plumley is being recognized for his more than 30 years of effective advocacy for the Park’s wild woods and waters including the Adirondack Forest Preserve as a full-time resident in the High Peaks region, as former conservation director at the Adirondack Council and the Association for the Protection of the Adirondacks, and as founding partner with Adirondack Wild: Friends of the Forest Preserve. Plumley is the founding director of TOTEM Adirondack Consulting Group.

The award is named for one of Plumley’s mentors, Paul Schaefer (1908-1996) a foremost 20th century Adirondack wilderness advocate. Paul Schaefer founded Friends of the Forest Preserve in 1945.

Assemblyman Steve Englebright, Chair of the NYS Assembly’s Environmental Conservation Committee, is also a geologist who helped lead the effort to preserve the Long Island Pine Barrens and is credited with articulating the connection between the preservation of the Pine Barrens ecosystem and protection of the sole source aquifer which it overlays to safeguard the drinking water of 1.5 million people. His interest in the interface between science and society in the policy area of public health led him to public elected office where he has served in the Suffolk County Legislature and the New York State Assembly. Steve Englebright is the only natural scientist in the State Legislature.

The meeting is free and open to the public. Registration starts at 10 am, advance registration is requested. The meeting concludes at 3:15 pm. More information and registration can be found online, or by emailing Ken Rimany at krimany@adirondackwild.org.

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