U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIORBUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
|California Coastal National Monument|
CALIFORNIA COASTAL NATIONAL MONUMENT
December 20, 2010
Torch Spill South Central Coast Seabird Protection Network Project Team Holds Initial Coordination Meeting & Tour. A tour of a portion of the project area and a face-to-face meeting was used to get the entire team for the South Central Coast Seabird Protection Network Project together in one place for the first time. On the afternoon of Wednesday, December 15, 2010, the group gathered at Piedras Blancas and toured the northern San Luis Obispo County coastal section of the project area from the BLM’s Piedras Blancas Outstanding Natural Area (a unit of the National Landscape Conservation System) to Point Buchon (located in the northern portion the Pacific Gas and Electric Company’s Diablo Nuclear Power Plant property). This CCNM project, a $1.2 million, five-year seabird enhancement initiative that is part of the implementation of the Torch/Platform Irene Restoration Plan, is being managed by the BLM Hollister Field Office (See CCNM Update 04/20/10, p.2&3).
In his remarks at the opening of the coordination meeting the next day, Thursday, December 16, 2010, at the Cambria Pines Lodge in Cambria, California, CCNM manager Rick Hanks pointed out that, “The South Central Coast Seabird Protection Network Project provided the opportunity to facilitate a resource protection project with California Coastal National Monument partners leading two of the three components, work with a number of other monument partners, and create stewardship opportunities of local communities as well.”
The meeting’s primary goal was to coordinate the expansion of the Seabird Protection Network (SPN) into the Torch/Platform Irene Oil Spill restoration project area, an area that extends south from Point Sur to Point Mugu and includes the Northern Channel Islands. The meeting also enabled the South Central Coast SPN Team to meet the members of the Torch Trustee Council and the Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary’s (GFNMS’) Seabird Protection Network staff and review their successful program and wide variety of outreach products they have produced, receive input from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service regarding their current seabird monitoring program with the GFNMS’ SPN project, and explore ways the GFNMS and BLM can work in collaboration to expand the Seabird Protection Network. The meeting enabled all of the key participants to meet in one location and go over the entire project, identifying the tasks to be accomplished over the next 12 months.
Project leadership among the two dozen participants included Kathy Hardy, BLM Central California district manager; CCNM manager Rick Hanks; Eric Morgan, BLM’s Fort Ord manager and project manager for this inter-agency initiative; Mike Westphal, BLM Hollister Field Office ecologist providing oversight for the biological component; Cara O’Brien, California State Parks (a CCNM Core-Managing Partner) Interpreter II from the San Luis Obispo Coast District, the project’s outreach coordinator; Dan Robinette, a seabird biologist working out of Vandenberg Air Force Base for PRBO Conservation Science (a CCNM Collaborative Partner), the project’s biological coordinator; and Brian Martin, BLM Bakersfield Field Office chief law enforcement ranger, and Kelly Cole, BLM Hollister Field Office chief law enforcement ranger, the co-coordinators for the project’s law enforcement component.
All four of the Torch/Platform Irene Trustee Council members participated in the coordination meeting. These trustee council members are co-chairs Denise Steurer, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS)(a CCNM Collaborative Partner), Ventura Office environmental contaminants/ NRDAR coordinator, and Melissa Boggs, California Department of Fish and Game (a CCNM Core-Managing Partner), Office of Spill Prevention and Response staff environmental scientist in San Luis Obispo, and trustee council members Luanne Lum, Vandenberg Air Force Base (a CCNM Steward) botanist, and Sarah Mongano, California State Lands Commission, Division of Environmental Planning and Management staff environmental scientist in Sacramento.
The representatives from the NOAA Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary’s Central Coast (Point Reyes to Point Sur) Seabird Protection Network were Karen Reyna, resource protection specialist and SPN project manager; Sage Tezak, conservation science specialist and SPN coordinator; and Mai Maheigan, SPN outreach specialist.
Other attendees were Jim Weigand, BLM State Office ecologist and BLM SPN coordinator (and primary author of the Torch Spill SPN scope of work); Marcia deChadenedes, BLM-CCNM outreach and partnership coordinator; Gerry McChesney, USFWS, Common Murre Restoration Project manager and Central Coast SPN monitoring coordinator (and advisor to the Trustee Council); Laird Henkel, California Department of Fish and Game, Office of Spill Prevention and Response staff environmental scientist and seabird biologist in Monterey (and advisor to the Trustee Council); Jenny Marek, USFWS , Ventura Office environmental contaminants outreach specialist and back-up for USFWS trustee council member; Annie Little, USFWS, Carlsbad Office environmental contaminants specialist and seabird biologist for Montrose Restoration Project (a project that may be able to initiate seabird monitoring for the Northern Channel Islands, an action that the Torch Project does not have funding to cover); Samantha Kaisersatt, Vandenberg Air Force Base wildlife biologist; and Phil Capitolo, seabird biologist, Institute of Marine Science, University of California, Santa Cruz.
CCNM 10th Anniversary Celebrated Throughout 2010. The year-long celebration of the California Coastal National Monument’s 10th anniversary is coming to a close, but not without having had fun up and down the coast. After kicking off the celebration with the “Rockin’ Birthday Party” day-long festivities in Point Arena (See CCNM Update 01/15/10, p.1), the CCNM 10th Anniversary was celebrated in a dozen other events throughout 2010. These events were: (1) March 6: “Whale of a Day” at Point Vicente Interpretive Center, Rancho Palos Verdes (See CCNM Update 04/20/10, p.5); (2) March 11: Redwood Coast Geotourism MapGuide Website Roll-Out Event, Scotia (See CCNM Update 04/20/10, p.1); (3) April 17: Earth Day Celebration at Cabrillo Marine Aquarium, San Pedro (See CCNM Update 04/20/10, p.6); (4) April 21-23: California Trails and Greenways Conference, Cambria; (5) May 7-9: California Redwoods Bird & Nature Festival, Crescent City (See CCNM Update 08/20/10, p.4); (6) June 19: CCNM Trinidad Gateway Celebration of CCNM & NLCS 10th Anniversary, Trinidad (See CCNM Update 08/20/10, p.1); (7) June 20: “Trinidad Fishing Festival,” Trinidad (See CCNM Update 08/20/10, p.1&2); (8) June 26: Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History’s “Science Saturday,” Pacific Grove (See CCNM Update 08/20/10, p.2&3); (9) July 17: Coastal Discovery Fair, San Simeon (See CCNM Update 08/20/10, p.3); (10) July 24: 2nd Annual San Diego Parks & Open Spaces Day, Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego (See CCNM Update 08/20/10, p.3); (11) October 21: King Range National Conservation Area 40th Anniversary, Shelter Cove; (12) November 1: “Stop & View the Rocks" Contest, Ford House, Mendocino Headlands State Park, Mendocino, CA (See p.3 of this CCNM Update). A “rockin’ good thanks” to all of you who helped make the year-long CCNM 10th anniversary a success!
National Landscape Conservation System Summit Taps Local Resources for National Direction. As a conclusion to the year-long celebration of the tenth anniversary of the creation of the National Landscape Conservation System, the BLM held a week-long NLCS Summit in Las Vegas, Nevada, from November 15-17, 2010. CCNM manager Rick Hanks and CCNM outreach and partnership coordinator Marcia deChadenedes were among the 15 BLM California representatives at the National Landscape Conservation System Summit. Hosted by the BLM, 100 partners and 200 employees came together to “Celebrate a Decade of Discovery and Management” and work together “Setting the Stage for the Next 10 Years and Beyond.” Among the partners were Diane Hichwa, chairperson of The Sea Ranch Association CCNM Stewardship Task Force, as well as the smiling faces of Dave and Libby Anderson of the Piedras Blancas Light Station Association. BLM Director Bob Abbey attended most of the four-day NLCS Summit, with BLM Deputy Director Mike Pool covering for him on the last day. BLM California acting State Director Jim Abbott also participated in the entire summit.
The Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar made a brief but important appearance on the first day of the summit. He stopped by to sign a secretarial order that set the Departmental policy for the National Landscape Conservation System and ordered the establishment of a new directorate within BLM called the “National Landscape Conservation System and Community Partnerships.” In reference to the NLCS, Salazar told the summit attendees, "I think that when history looks back at our time in conservation, it will look back at that realization and will say it was one of the great steps of conservation at the beginning of the 21st century."
For two days participants were engaged with panel presentations and focus group discussions with these themes: Striving for Sustainability: Seeking Solutions for Resource Protection and Compatible Uses; Integration of Science and Management; Building and Sustaining Partnerships; Raising Public Awareness of the NLCS; Engaging the Public through Education and Interpretation; Connecting with Local Communities; and Engaging Youth. Following an evening of recognition of NLCS accomplishments through public stewardship, the third day challenged BLM employees to focus on one of those themes to consolidate contributed analysis and discussion and offer guidance to the national leads on approaches and methods toward their accomplishment. In the weeks since the workshop, CCNM staff has been recruited to work with the national office developing strategic plans for implementation of recommendations made at the Summit for the Partnerships and the Local Communities strands.
Revised CCNM-Wide Brochure Now Available. The California Coastal National Monument-wide brochure has been revised and refreshed and now available to the public. “This is the third version of the monument’s brochure and it keeps getting better,” said CCNM Manager Rick Hanks. “The added photos and updated fonts make it a much livelier publication.” CCNM outreach and partnership coordinator Marcia deChandenedes, working with editor Tammi Adams and graphics specialist Janine Koselak from the Publishing Services Section of the BLM’s National Operations Center in Denver, edited and reformatted the text, and added over a dozen wildlife photos illustrating the variety of birds and marine mammals for which the CCNM provides important habitat. “The new layout of the brochure really helps with the understanding of what the monument was created to protect,” Hanks added.
Ten thousand copies of the revised brochure have been sent to each of the five BLM California coastal field offices (i.e., Arcata, Ukiah, Hollister, Bakersfield and Palm Springs/South Coast). The five BLM field offices will be responsible for distributing the brochures to the various CCNM partners and CCNM Gateway visitor contact stations, and other venues, as appropriate. Additional copies are stored with the BLM California State Office. If you are interested in receiving a copy of the brochure, you can contact one of the five BLM California coastal field offices or the CCNM office in Monterey (See CCNM contact information on last page).
“Stop & View the Rocks" Contest, Rock Cookies & Rock Candy Part of CCNM 10th Anniversary Festivities with Mendocino Study Club. Festivities at the historic Ford House in Mendocino, California, on November 1, 2010, honored the 10th anniversary of the California Coastal National Monument. This was part of a string of events held up and down the California coast during 2010 to celebrate the monument’s establishment a decade ago. Members of the Mendocino Study Club, Mendocino Area Parks Association, Mendocino Coast Audubon Society, and California State Parks along with other “rock fans” gathered in the Ford House to hear Mendocino Study Club member and festivities organizer Ruth Sparks read excerpts from the Presidential Proclamation that created the California Coastal National Monument and the monument’s manager Rick Hanks discuss the important role that partnerships play in the success of this unique national monument.
The highlight of the festivities was the drawing of the winners of the “Stop and View the Rocks” contest. Local residents had submitted their favor location along the Mendocino coast to view the California Coastal National Monument. The nominations were submitted on cards that where all placed in a tumbler from which the Mendocino Study Club President Margaret Ward drew the winners. More than a half a dozen prizes were given out, including a two-night stay at a Fort Bragg beach-front motel, a kayak tour of the local offshore rocks, and a whale and rock watching day-trip on a tour boat out of Fort Bragg. Also during the festivities, Margaret Ward signed a memorandum of understanding bringing in the Mendocino Study Club as the newest California Coastal National Monument Collaborative Partner. The attendees of the festivities ate rock cookies and rock candy and viewed a special “rocks” video presentation created by local photographer Lisa Walker.
The Mendocino Study Club, the sponsor of festivities, was founded in 1908 and is the oldest service club on California’s North Coast. From the beginning, the Study Club has been concerned about the well-being of their remote Mendocino coast community. Today, the Study Club is expanding its participation in heritage-related activities, including its work with the annual Heritage Days of Mendocino County and helping to promote the California Coastal National Monument. The Ford House, where the festivities were held, is the visitor center for the Mendocino Headlands State Park.
North Coast MLPA Initiative Includes Special Closure Proposals Around Select CCNM Rocks. As part of the recommendations from the North Coast Marine Life Protection Area (MLPA) Stakeholders Committee, and passed on by the MLPA Blue Ribbon Task Force to the California Fish and Game Commission for their review and approval, seven Special Closures were included. Although outside of the formal MLPA process, the Special Closures are an additional action that the Commission can take to help protect areas such as seabird nesting colonies and sea lion rookeries that are in and around MLPAs. For the North Coast, all of the Special Closures consist of either a year-round or seasonal 300’ closure to human entire, including boats and kayaks, around round offshore rocks or islets. Most of these Special Closures include rocks or islets involve parts of the California Coastal National Monument. These Special Closures are as follows from south to north: (1) Vizcaino Rock (CCNM), seasonal closure (March 1-August 31); (2) Rockport Rocks (two islets owned by the Mendocino Lumber Company plus a number of smaller CCNM rocks), seasonal closure (March 1-August 31); (3) Steamboat Rock (CCNM), seasonal closure (March 1-August 31); (4) Sugarloaf Island (U.S. Coast Guard withdrawal until revoked for CCNM), year-round closure; (5) False Klamath Rock (within boundary of National Park Service-Redwood National & State Parks, but may be part of CCNM), year-round closure; (6) Castle Rock (U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service-Castle Rock National Wildlife Refuge, with small CCNM rocks within closure area), year-round closure; and (7) Southwest Seal Rock (part of U.S. Coast Guard withdrawal of Saint George Reef area until revoked for CCNM), year-round closure.
Alternative to North Coast MLPA Special Closures Developed for CCNM’s Green Rock & Flatiron Rock. As an alternative to the proposal for a 300’ Special Closure around the CCNM’s Green Rock and Flatiron Rock, two of the most important CCNM rocks for nesting seabirds, the North Coast MLPA Special Closure Work Group proposed a three-pronged community/partnership based approach. Work Group members from the Trinidad Rancheria, the Yurok Tribe, Audubon California, and the CCNM developed an alternative program that consists of an outreach, monitoring, and enforcement component. The main rationale for this alternative is that Trinidad has an active and involved community that has a strong affinity to its harbor area and coastal setting, including Green Rock and Flatiron Rock. Placing 300’ closures around Green Rock and Flatiron Rock is viewed as an affront to the local community and an interference with traditional and customary uses on the water.
Trinidad Rancheria and the BLM have offered to help develop and implement the proposed three-pronged community/partnership based approach. This is intended to link with the Trinidad Rancheria’s comprehensive planning effort to address the long-term management direction of the Trinidad Pier and the Trinidad Harbor area. Trinidad Rancheria is willing to use this planning process as the vehicle for developing an on-going, long-term outreach, monitoring, and enforcement initiative designed to address all principal disturbances, such as commercial and recreational boating, kayaking, diving for abalone and sea urchins, aircraft, lights, and fireworks. This would link neatly with the CCNM Trinidad Gateway initiative that includes an active stewardship committee and involves a variety of key partners (i.e., BLM, Trinidad Rancheria, Yurok Tribe, City of Trinidad, Trinidad Museum Society, Tsurai Ancestral Society, Humboldt State University Marine Laboratory, Coastwalk California, Redwood Region Audubon Society, Humboldt North Coast Land Trust, California Department of Fish and Game, and California State Parks).
In order to put into action the three-pronged community/partnership based approach for the Green and Flatiron Rocks area, the BLM and Trinidad Rancheria will have an initial meeting to discuss the steps needed to begin implementation. The Trinidad Rancheria will determine how best to integrate the proposed alternative into their current planning process to provide the long-term management direction for the Trinidad Pier and Trinidad Harbor area. The BLM and Trinidad Rancheria will present the proposal at a future CCNM Trinidad Gateway stewardship committee meeting to solicit the committee’s support on working collaboratively on further defining the proposed initiative and using the gateway committee to serve as the vehicle to ensuring the implementation of a local long-term outreach and education effort. In addition, the BLM and Audubon California will pursue expanding the Seabird Protection Network into the Trinidad area and take the lead on initiating an on-going program, involving a number of agencies and/or organizations, for the systematic monitoring of seabird and pinniped species for the Trinidad area (including Green Rock and Flatiron Rock).
BLM Participates in Coastal Marine Spatial Planning Workshop: Exploring DOI Science Needs in the West. About 75 U.S. Department of the Interior managers and specialists, along with at least a dozen partners from academia, non-profit organizations, and other governmental agencies, met for two days on the north side of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge to discuss the implementation of Coastal Marine Spatial Planning (CMSP) in the western United States. Meeting at the Cavallo Point Inn on the grounds of the old Fort Baker within the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, on December 1-2, 2010, the workshop was opened with an on-the-screen live welcome from Suzette Kimball, Associate Director the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and an on-site welcome from Deanna Archuleta, U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) Deputy Assistant Secretary for Water and Science. Additional introductory comments were provided by Terry Holman, DOI Ocean and Coastal Activities Coordinator, and Alan Thornhill, the Science Advisory to the Director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE).
Representing BLM at the workshop were Rick Hanks, CCNM manager, Jim Weigand, BLM California State Office ecologist, and Julia Dougan, BLM Alaska Acting State Director.
Lyman Thorsteinson. Center Director of USGS' Western Fisheries Research Center, stated that, “The DOI has a vital role to play in the management of coastal and ocean resources” He add that, ’In many cases and for a variety of reasons the Department's roles and responsibilities extend to adjacent land margins and thus Coastal Marine Spatial Planning tools and technologies offers the promise of new methods for data integration, information synthesis, and decision making across the multitude of administrative and jurisdictional boundaries that have previously limited coastal marine management.”
After a morning of national perspectives for both inside DOI and outside DOI, including views from the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), non-governmental organizations, and academic partners, the afternoon included a DOI bureaus panel discussion and case studies. CCNM manager Hanks represented the BLM on the DOI panel focusing on the “western perspectives on CMSP” from DOI resource managers.
As part of his presentation, Hanks said that, “Coastal Marine Spatial Planning provides great opportunity for a real collaborative effort within the Department.” He added that, “The Department’s place-based bureaus, especially the National Park Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, and BLM, as well as NOAA’s National Marine Sanctuaries program, could work closely with the USGS, BOEMRE, and academia on developing and disseminating the important messages that are coming out of the scientific research on such issues as climate change and ocean acidification.” Hanks concluded that, “This is an opportunity that the Department of the Interior can’t afford to miss.”
In addition to Hanks, the panel included Ray Sauvajot, National Park Service (NPS) Pacific West Region Chief of National Resources; Mendel Stewart, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge Complex Manager; Ellen Aronson, BOEMRE Pacific Outer Continental Shelf Regional Director; and Bryan Rice, Bureau of Indian Affairs Assistant Director, Resource Protection, Division of Forestry.
On the second day, Jim Weigand represented BLM on the panel dealing with “overarching science and operational considerations.” The panel included representatives from the USFWS, NPS, USGS, BOEMRE, and BIA. Weigand mentioned how the BLM is growing as an agency to be more effective and he mentioned the role of “citizen science” in helping the BLM fill some of our knowledge gaps along the California coast. Using the CCNM (i.e., offshore rock and islets) as his focus for science, he stated that three things are needed. These are: (1) remote sensing technologies to help identify, assess and categorize terrestrial and marine animal and plant habitat (including the presence and absence of soil), enhance seabird conservation, and model climate change; (2) social science research focused on such things as human disturbance issues, communities and their role in coast and ocean protection, and the economic role of tourism; and (3) oil spill contingency planning and restoration where science can play an important role in both preparedness and avoidance. On the same panel, Sam Johnson from USGS, in pointing out the importance of the California Seafloor Mapping Project and data collection, he stated that, ”You can’t map, model and manage if you don’t know what ‘it’ is.”
Among the concluding remarks, Charlie Wahle, acting Senior Scientist for NOAA’s Coast Marine Spatial Planning Program, stated that CMSP “requires a different way of looking at the problem than we are use to.” He said, “We need to start with the ‘box’ before we can think outside of it.” Wahle bluntly added, “We need to use the lens of the place and determine what we want protected and what are we willing to trash?”
Maritime Museum of San Diego, NPS & CCNM Working on National Recognition & Themes for California’s Historic Sailing Routes. More than a year ago, National Park Service’s (NPS) Cabrillo National Monument superintendent Tom Workman, and Maritime Museum of San Diego president and CEO Raymond Ashley, approached CCNM manager Rick Hanks about the potential for pursuing some type of national recognition for the historic sailing routes along the California coast. After Hanks discussed the concept with NPS and BLM trails and heritage area program coordinators and had a September meeting with the Maritime Museum CEO, Dr. Ashley determined that pursuing a National Historic Trail designation would be the most reasonable option. Precedence exists for water-based trails with the Captain John Smith Chesapeake Maritime National Historic Trail and portions of the Washington Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail on the East Coast. In October, Dr. Ashley drafted three possible theme options for consideration. He stated that he would like to have the benefit of some advice as to which of the following thematic approaches might best fulfill the spirit of the a National Historic Trail or if there might be others more appropriate themes:
Dr. Ashley noted that all of the above themes “envision experiential access to the trail itself via the present fleet of tall ships situated in and operating from most of the California seaports.” These seaports, including San Diego, Dana Point, Los Angeles, Channel Islands Harbor, and San Francisco, figure prominently in the historical narrative. He also stated that, “Some of the tall ships are the specific replicas of the vessels which form the centerpiece of the narratives themselves.” Ashley said, “The trail would also encompass natural areas, such as the Channel Islands, which remain relatively undeveloped and present the same natural setting as in the historic narratives and are now protected under the stewardship of the National Park Service, National Marine Sanctuaries, Bureau of Land Management, Department of Defense, and several private conservancies.” Hanks pointed out that, “This initiative is in its very early stage of development,” “It has some really interesting potential to link with a wide variety of existing programs, agencies, organizations, and communities up and down the California coast.” Hanks added that, he will continue to help facilitate, as appropriate, an informed discussion of this interesting effort. According to Dr. Ashley, the next steps are to gather together a focus group of experts to review the narratives, perhaps suggest additional ones, and evaluate which one would be the most effective theme or combination of themes to best support the effort to create a National Historic Trail for California’s historic sailing routes.
CCNM Trinidad Gateway Committee Finishing Mission-Vision-Goals. After completing two facilitated strategic planning meetings, the CCNM Trinidad Gateway Committee is close to developing a mission and a vision statement, as well as a set of operational goals, for their CCNM Gateway initiative. Specific goals have been drafted in four categories - - interpretive, ecological/restoration, recreation, and organizational. The CCNM Trinidad Gateway Committee is scheduled to meet again in January 2011 in order to complete their strategic planning process. This strategic planning initiative was assisted by a grant from the Conservation Lands Foundation that enabled the CCNM Trinidad Gateway Committee, through the Trinidad Museum Society, to contract with Alison Sterling Nichols to facilitate the strategic planning effort (See CCNM Updates 08/20/10, p.5).
CCNM at First World Seabird Conference in Victoria, B.C. The first World Seabird Conference was held in Victoria, BC, Canada, from September 7-11, 2010. The conference, led by the Pacific Seabird Group and an international steering committee of 26 other professional seabird and research organizations from around the world, was created to help put seabird management and conservation into a worldwide perspective. Over 950 participants from over 40 countries gathered together to comprehensively address the global issues and data needs for this diverse group of birds, most of which inhabit multiple countries and waters within their own ranges. The BLM was among the many sponsors of this highly success conference. Dr. Jim Weigand, BLM California State Office ecologist and the CCNM’s Seabird Protection Network coordinator, represented BLM. A table top display, specifically developed for the conference, was set up in the exhibit hall. The display panel consisted of a large photo, taken by BLM-NLCS photographer Bob Wick, of the Common Murre seabird colony on Flatiron Rock near Trinidad, California, and included the BLM, CCNM, and Seabird Protection Network logos and the words “Fostering Seabird Protection with Local Communities.” CCNM and Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary’s Seabird Protection Network brochures and materials were available as hand-outs.
Rachel Sowards-Thompson Recipient of BLM National Gold Award for Excellence in Environmental Education. Rachel Sowards-Thompson, Interpretive Outdoor Recreation Specialist with the King Range National Conservation Area (NCA), is the 2010 Gold Award recipient of the BLM “Excellence in Interpretation and Education” Awards, These annual awards recognize outstanding BLM interpreters and educators for their work on employee-conducted programs that enhanced public appreciation and understanding of the natural and cultural riches on our public lands, as well as management issues in the context of the BLM’s multiple-use mission. For the fifteenth consecutive year, the BLM presented these awards at the Excellence in Interpretation ceremony at the annual National Association for Interpretation (NAI) Workshop. Held this year in Las Vegas, Nevada, on November 18, 2010, BLM Deputy Director Mike Pool presented the awards and stated, “The BLM depends on its interpreters and educators to help the public understand what keeps our resources healthy, appreciate how the wealth of our nation’s public lands can enrich their lives, and guard the legacy we will leave for future generations.” Rachel received her Gold Award for the diverse family and youth education programs she conducts (Rachel also serves as the CCNM coordinator on the King Range NCA and for the CCNM Lost Coast Gateway initiative). Rachel was the only Gold Award recipient, but Silver Awards were presented to Joya Szalwinksi, interpretive park ranger with the BLM El Centro Field Office, and Matt Christenson, Oregon/Washington State Office writer/editor for Northwest Passage magazine.
CCNM Staffer Participated in Pilot & First “Managing by Network” Distance Learning Course. In government today, we are relying less on public employees in traditional roles and more on a web of partnerships. Simply speaking, this partnership approach is “managing by network.” In order help develop some of the tools that the BLM will need to make effective use of this new model of governance and meet the management challenges of governing by network, the BLM National Training Center, working with BLM consultant Liz Madison and staff from the National Landscape Conservation System, developed and piloted a “Managing by Network” distance learning course. Using applied learning, the course focuses on strengthening partnership and community collaboration skills of federal managers and specialists. Members of the CCNM staff were among the initial participants in the course and, as a result, helped with the course’s development and provided some of the course’s initial case studies. CCNM manager Rick Hanks participated in the Federal Fiscal Year 2009 (FY09) pilot and interpretive and outreach specialists Tracy Albrecht, Rachel Sowards, and Marcia deChadenedes helped to shape the intra-agency course offered in FY10 and completed the 160-hour course. To learn more about the work of CCNM in partnerships and community collaboration, you can view the case studies by visiting the following website:
The next “Managing by Network” course will begin on January 12 and 13, 2011. BLM staff interested in participating in the next course should contact NTC training coordinator Diane Nelson at (602) 906-5548 or via e-mail at Diane_Nelson@blm.gov. For questions related to the course, contact Liz Madison at (703) 450-7870 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. BLM spaces are limited since the course is now opened to the Park Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, and Forest Service, as well the BLM, so if you’re interested, apply soon.
CCNM Related Meetings, Conference Calls & Events. In addition to the various meetings, activities, and actions discussed above, the CCNM Manager, other CCNM staff, and the managers and staff of the BLM California State Office and coastal field offices (FOs) also participated in a variety of meetings, conference calls, events and activities, including the following:
Any questions, comments, or requests for additional information? Contact Rick Hanks, CCNM Manager, at 299 Foam Street, Monterey, CA 93940, or telephone (831) 372-6105 or 372-6115, or e-mail at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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