DOINews: NPS: Persistence Pays Off For Chesapeake Bay Watershed Team

Last edited 09/05/2019

Group photo of Chesapeake Bay Watershed Team
Superintendent Charles Hunt (center front) with the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement Team. Amy Handen is not pictured. Photo by NPS.

On Nov. 4, the Environmental Protection Agency awarded its highest honor during its employee-recognition ceremony in Center City, Philadelphia. The EPA presented the bronze medal to the Chesapeake Bay watershed agreement team for “negotiating an inclusive, collaborative, and action-oriented” agreement that improved governmental transparency and accountability.

Charles Hunt, superintendent of the Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network; Amy Handen, stewardship team coordinator; Jonathan Doherty, assistant superintendent; Suzanne Copping, chief of resource management; and Julie Walker, stewardship team assistant, formed the core of the interdisciplinary Chesapeake Bay team.

They worked together with a dozen other people from the U.S. Geological Survey, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service , and many other government organizations. The team collaborated with policymakers, scientists, and citizens at the state, federal, and local levels to draft and finalize a legal agreement that would implement the goals of the president's Chesapeake Bay executive order.

Hunt said he felt “honored” that the EPA recognized them for their efforts to develop the new agreement. It “is exciting to be part of this major federal-state environmental partnership,” he added.

The Chesapeake Bay watershed agreement team worked persistently for three years to negotiate the new agreement, which was signed this summer by six governors, the mayor of the District of Columbia, the chair of the Chesapeake Bay Commission, and the EPA regional administrator.

According to the citation, the agreement “is the most comprehensive, measurable, multi-partner ecosystem restoration plan in the nation.” It “sets a new bar for ecosystem restoration” through practical application of the latest scientific knowledge.

The bronze medal is the highest honor that an EPA regional administrator can bestow.

Submitted by Colin Betts, NPS

Dec. 4, 2014

Related Link:
NPS-The Morning Report

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