New Members of RGGC Executive Committee

For Immediate Release:  January 27, 2012

Renew Growing Greener Coalition Adds Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Lancaster Farmland Trust to Executive Committee 

(HARRISBURG, PA) Andrew Heath, executive director of the Renew Growing Greener Coalition, today announced that the coalition has added LeeAnn Murray from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and Karen Martynick from the Lancaster Farmland Trust to its executive committee.

The Renew Growing Greener Coalition is the largest coalition of conservation, recreation and environmental organizations in the Commonwealth, consisting of nearly 350 organizations and government entities from across the state.

“LeeAnn and Karen, and their organizations, are strong environmental and conservation leaders in Pennsylvania,” said Larry Williamson, chairman of the Renew Growing Greener Coalition. “We look forward to their contributions to the executive committee as the Coalition continues to push for renewed funding to protect our drinking water, conserve our land and wildlife, enhance recreational opportunities and stimulate the economic recovery across the state.”

In addition to representatives from Chesapeake Bay Foundation and Lancaster Farmland Trust, the Renew Growing Greener Coalition executive committee comprises:

  • Cynthia Carrow – Western Pennsylvania Conservancy
  • John Walliser – Pennsylvania Environmental Council
  • Molly Morrison –Natural Lands Trust
  • R. John Dawes – Foundation for Pennsylvania Watersheds

Other founding organizations of the coalition are:

  • Phil Wallis – Audubon of Pennsylvania
  • Mary Felley – GreenSpace Alliance
  • Alan Chace – HeritagePA
  • Dulcie Flaharty – Montgomery County Lands Trust
  • Todd Baylson – Pennsylvania Horticultural Society
  • Andy Loza – Pennsylvania Land Trust Association
  • Marci Mowery – Pennsylvania Parks and Forests Foundation
  • Kim Woodward – Pennsylvania Recreation and Park Society
  • Mike DiBerardinis – Philadelphia Department of Recreation
  • Mindy Crawford – Preservation Pennsylvania
  • Todd McNew – The Conservation Fund
  • Ron Ramsey – The Nature Conservancy
  • Tom Gilbert  – Trust for Public Land

Growing Greener is a bipartisan program established in 1999 under Governor Tom Ridge and later expanded by Governors Schweiker and Rendell.  Since its establishment, Growing Greener has created a legacy of success, preserving more than 107,000 acres of Pennsylvania’s family farmland, conserving more than 42,300 acres of threatened open space, adding 26,000 acres to state parks and forests, capping more than 2,100 abandoned wells and restoring over 16,000 acres of abandoned mine lands.

Moreover, Growing Greener has contributed and leveraged billions of dollars to the Pennsylvania economy by helping to boost tourism, create jobs and generate revenue.

Yet despite the program’s accomplishments, funding for Growing Greener projects and grants fell from an average of approximately $150 million per year for the last six years to $27.3 million in the current state budget, more than an 80 percent reduction.

To date, more than 140 government entities, including 109 municipalities, representing more than seven million Pennsylvanians, have passed resolutions calling for a dedicated source of funding for the Growing Greener Environmental Stewardship Fund.

For more information about the Coalition, visit www.RenewGrowingGreener.org.

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