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Bureau of Land Management
California

Elaine Downing and her son Nick DeRieux
Elaine Downing with her Eagle Scout son Nick DeRieux
Elaine Downing

Information and Outreach Coordinator
Needles


"I'm very proud of my son's work since only one percent of Boy Scouts earn the rank of Eagle Scout."

Elaine, a native of Rohnert Park, CA, left Sonoma County area to join the Navy and trained as an Ocean Systems Technician. After the Navy, she moved to Alabama and worked for the Social Security Administration as a Contact Representative. Elaine and her family moved to Mohave County, Arizona and was hired as an administration specialist for BLM at the Needles office in 1990. She became the Support Services Supervisor in 1993. In 1999 Elaine was promoted to an Information and Outreach Coordinator. She is also the webmaster, volunteer coordinator, and the instructor and data steward for the Bureau's National Mail List System (NMLS), an automated system created to enhance efforts to communicate with constituents nation wide.

Elaine has been instrumental working with the programmer in re-designing the NMLS. She recently worked with contractors to design an on-line training course that is now available through the National Training Center. This project has taken Elaine from Alaska to Washington, DC to provide training and guidance. Her trip to Alaska was one of her most memorable. As an active duty member in the Navy, it was always a place she was hoping to see. It took her 25 years, but she finally made it to Anchorage, Alaska in January 2003. Thank goodness for her, there wasn't much snow. She is quite acclimated to the desert environment after living in Arizona for the past 13 years.

Elaine and Ken Downing, a BLM geologist, live in Lake Havasu City. Elaine says her greatest accomplishments are her two children, Jeanette and Nick. Both have joined Elaine and Ken on many volunteer events, and developed an appreciation for the outdoors. Jeanette is attending college in Alabama as a business major and Nick is senior at Lake Havasu High School and has just been promoted to the rank of Eagle Scout.

Nick centered his Eagle Scout project in April 2003 on enhancing a riparian area near Parker Dam. Under the direction of BLM Lake Havasu Wildlife Biologist Christine Bates, Nick organized the project, gathered a work crew and spent two days rehabilitating the area. The 20 volunteers collected trash, removed arrowweed, pruned approximately 200 mesquite trees, planted new trees, improved water wells, and installed signs alerting visitors to the area's special status. Nick's Eagle Scout Court of Honor will be held October 30 in Lake Havasu City.


For more information concerning this feature story, contact Elaine Downing by telephone 760-326-7003 or by e-mail Elaine_Downing@ca.blm.gov
 
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