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July 19, 2007
Contacts: Heather Roebke (202) 208-3975
Ron Tull (202) 208-5089

City of Clifton, New Jersey Wins 2007 Take Pride in America® National Award

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Deputy Secretary of the Interior Lynn Scarlett today recognized the 2007 Take Pride in America National Award recipients at an awards ceremony Thursday, July 19 in Washington, D.C. The individuals and groups from across the country were recognized for their outstanding contributions to local, state and federal public lands. This year, there were 18 National Award winners representing 12 states and the District of Columbia.

Winning in the Best Local Government Volunteer Program, the City of Clifton Clean Communities Program has changed the way residents view and treat their public lands. Last year, Clifton teamed with Take Pride in America to encourage local organizations to participate in volunteer projects to improve public lands. Over 45 groups responded to the call, as well as 3,000 volunteers. The movement inspired several businesses to adopt neglected parkland, flower gardens, and state and county lands. During this time, 33 tons of litter were collected, (5 tons of which was recyclable). Two hundred and twenty miles of public lands were cleaned, and the large force of volunteers amassed over 15,000 hours of service. As a result of the tremendous outpouring of support, Clifton citizens have dramatically increased their local, state, and national stewardship efforts. The Clifton Clean Communities Program has dedicated itself to work closely with Take Pride in America to promote monthly projects for their community. Thanks to the CCP, residents of Clifton and the State of New Jersey have a strong organization to focus the direction of thousands of willing and philanthropic citizens and businesses.

“These are extraordinary individuals and organizations who have tapped into the power of volunteerism to enhance our public lands and improve the experiences of visitors to those lands,” Deputy Secretary Scarlett said.

Take Pride in America®, an initiative of the U.S. Department of the Interior, is a nationwide partnership program which inspires Americans to volunteer in caring for their public lands. Their goal is to instill an active sense of ownership and responsibility in every citizen for natural, cultural and historic resources, and to support and recognize the efforts of those who volunteer for public lands. Through a web-based search engine, Take Pride offers a database of short-term and long-term volunteer projects on public lands, as well as assistance for project planning. Additionally, Take Pride rewards exceptional volunteer service by individuals and groups with awards and appreciation certificates. It’s Your Land, Lend a Hand! For more information, visit www.TakePride.gov.

2007 Take Pride in America National Award Winners by Category.


  • Carolle and Glenn Aldinger; Chincoteague, VA
  • Marlene M. Lugg; Winnetka, CA
  • James C. Thompson; Ardmore, OK

Non-Profit Organization

  • The Friends of Hunting Island State Park, Inc. Loggerhead Sea Turtle Conservation Project; Saint Helena Island, SC

Public/Private Partnership

  • California Golden Trout Restoration Program; Golden Trout Wilderness, CA

Federal Event/Program

  • Antietam National Battlefield Volunteers; Sharpsburg, MD

School Program

  • Wetlands Education Team; West Geauga Middle School, Chesterland, OH


  • The Power Washers of North America; Quakertown, PA

State Event / Program

  • Lake Wales Ridge Rangers; Lake Placid, FL

Local Government Event

  • City of Clifton Clean Communities Program; Clifton, NJ

Youth / Youth Group

  • Riley’s Lockhouse Docents; Hagerstown, MD

Faith-Based Group

  • Arapahoe and Aurora Colorado Stakes of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints

Federal Land Manager

  • Kevin D. Brandt, Superintendent, Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park, National Park Service; Hagerstown, MD
  • Tara Whitsel, Park Ranger, Raystown Lake, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; Hesston, PA
  • Steve Brimm, Project Leader, D.C. Booth Historic National Fish Hatchery, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Spearfish, SD
  • Thomas M. Pogacnik, Wild Horse and Burro Program Manager, California State Office, Bureau of Land Management; Sacramento, CA
  • Jack Simes, External Coordination Manager, Lower Colorado Region, Yuma Area Office, Bureau of Reclamation: Yuma, AZ

Outstanding Take Pride Supporter

  • Student Conservation Association
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