Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters Announces New Staff

PRESS RELEASE

September 5, 2017

Andrew Bossie Named as First Executive Director

Elaine Tselikis Hired as Communications and Administrative Coordinator

Portland, Maine: Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters (FKWW), the nonprofit organization founded in January to raise private funds for Maine’s new national monument, has appointed Andrew Bossie, of Portland, as FKWW’s first executive director. He began the part-time position on September 1.

“We’re extremely happy to have Andy in this important job to help professionalize the organization and speak publicly on its behalf,” said Lucas St. Clair, board president. “He brings a wealth of fundraising and management skills as a seasoned nonprofit leader and knows how to build effective institutions.”

Bossie was executive director of Maine AIDS Alliance (2007-2011) and ran Maine Citizens for Clean Elections (MCCE) from 2011 to 2017. He grew up in Caribou, Maine, and took his bachelor’s degree in political science at the University of Southern Maine.

“The mountains, waters, and woods of Maine’s newest monument have been a place of wonder, relaxation, and recharging for much of my life. It’s an honor to be working with Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters, Maine communities, and people everywhere to ensure this special tract of land is protected, supported, and enjoyed for generations to come,” said Bossie.

Also named to a new post was Elaine Tselikis, of South Portland. “Elaine has an excellent background in cause-related organizations, as both a freelance consultant and a staff executive,” said Anita Mueller, vice president of Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters. “She’s been on the job just a short time and already is helping make us a smoother functioning nonprofit.”

Tselikis is principal at VisionTree Creative, in which capacity she has developed grants for numerous Maine organizations. She also has served as Assistant to the President of St. Joseph’s College of Maine, Director of Communications and Outreach at Literacy Volunteers of Maine, and Director of Communications and Development at Lift360. She holds both a bachelor’s in art education and master’s in adult education from the University of Southern Maine.

“As a wildlife advocate, I’m excited about the great potential for the Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters to work with Maine people to protect pristine habitats,” said Tselikis.  “Alongside the enjoyment of nature’s beauty, the monument offers a means to learn the new science for compassionate conservation, dialogue about respectful co-existence, and preserve and protect our essential natural world.”

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About Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters:

The mission of Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters is to preserve and protect the outstanding natural beauty, ecological vitality, and distinctive cultural resources of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument and surrounding communities for the inspiration and enjoyment of all generations.

A sixteen-member board of directors guides the nonprofit, which raises funds supporting the monument, defends it against threats, mobilizes volunteers for site projects and represents users in the betterment of monument operations.

Like Baxter State Park and Acadia National Park, Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument sprang full-blown from private philanthropy, a word that means “love of mankind generally.” This 87,563-acre gift to the nation and Maine from the Roxanne Quimby family challenges citizens to honor and steward the natural and cultural bounty of the northern wilds. By engaging people in protecting these civic assets, Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters works, in gratitude, to extend and magnify the tradition of selflessness and generosity that informed the monument’s creation.

To join and become involved in Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters, visit: www.friendsofkatahdinwoodsandwaters.org.

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National Monument Friends Update August 2017

Haskell Rock, East Branch Penobscot River, KWWNM  - By Mark Picard
Haskell Rock, East Branch Penobscot River, KWWNM  – By Mark Picard

It’s been a busy year since Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument was designated. Learn how you are helping us preserve and protect the outstanding ecological vitality, beauty, and all that is special about this irreplaceable Natural wonder. 

August 2017 Update

Dear Friend,

It has been almost a year since Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument was designated. What a busy year it has been! Our non-profit Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters group has been established and we have just completed our first project – an Interpretive Map for the Loop Road. Thank you for joining us as a founding member!

Loop Road Interpretive Map: Visitors to the Monument can now obtain a free Interpretive Map for the Loop Road. This map describes some of the historical, biological, and geological points of interest along the Monument’s 16 mile loop road and highlights recreation opportunities including hiking, biking and birding. The Interpretive Map is available free at the Monument’s Millinocket and Patten Visitor Contact Stations, at the Katahdin Area Chamber of Commerce, at many businesses in the region, and along the Loop Road. It can also be down-loaded here.

Come Celebrate! You and your friends are invited to a party on Friday, August 25, from 5 – 8 pm, at the New England Outdoor Center to celebrate the Monument’s first birthday! See more details and get your tickets here. Bring your friends and join us for an evening of fun, which will benefit the Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters.

You CAN get there from here! Governor LePage has refused to allow the National Park Service to put up signs directing visitors to the Monument. However, people across Maine have put up their own! And people are going. The National Park Service reports that as of early August, 3,500 cars had traveled on one of the Monument’s roads since the roads were re-opened in late May/early June.

National Monument Review: On April 26, President Trump signed an Executive Order directing Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke to “review” 27 National Monuments, including Katahdin Woods and Waters (KWW). A public comment period followed. Over 99.96% of those who filed comments supported the Monument. Secretary Zinke visited the monument in June and met with many local supporters, including many business owners. The Board of Friends of KWW filed strong comments in opposition to any changes to the Monument. We are anxiously awaiting the Secretary’s decision which is due by August 24.

Getting Organized: The Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters is off to a strong start. Since January, we have: become incorporated, recruited a highly qualified board of 16, received our tax-exempt status determination from the Internal Revenue Service, attracted over 250 founding members, completed our first project for the Monument, and, most recently, contracted with Elaine Tselikis to provide part-time communications and administrative coordination for the organization. Feel free to contact Elaine if you have questions or comments.

Volunteer Registry: Many of you have notified us through our website or by email about ways you would like to help. As a result, we have created a database of volunteer supporters. If you are interested in sharing your skills and expertise, please register here. We can then match up interests with action on future projects.

As summer winds down and our thoughts turn to autumn, we encourage you to visit the Monument. It is beautiful in every season!

Again, thank you very much for being a founding member of Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters. While there will undoubtedly be challenges ahead, we are optimistic and look forward to contributing together to the success of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument.

See you on the trails!

Lucas St. Clair
President
Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters

Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters Publishes Loop Road Interpretive Map

August 4, 2017

Millinocket, Maine – Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters, the nonprofit organization founded in January to raise private funds for Maine’s new national monument, has completed its first charitable project, an interpretive map and guide to the scenic Loop Road.

“Though not yet a year old, the organization is already making donations to supplement—not replace—federal funding for Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument,” said Lucas St. Clair, board president of Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters. “This $5,000 project was made possible entirely through member donations. We heartily thank our charter-year donors, whose monetary contributions we are converting into tangible improvements in, and services to, the monument.”

Designed by cartographer Bill Duffy of Northern Geomantics, the 18-by-24-inch folded, full-color production has on its front side a precision topographic map showing trails, roads, rivers and other loop area features. An interpretive text and photos keyed to scenic and historic stops occupy the reverse.

Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters board member Anita Mueller, who directed the map project, said, “With stops along the 16-mile Loop Road, the interpretive map provides context to the historical, biological, and geological significance of the Monument’s southern landscape and highlights recreation opportunities including birding, biking and hiking, all adding value to the visitor experience.”

Monument Superintendent Tim Hudson said, “The availability of the detailed description and available sights and activities on the Katahdin Loop Road will be of great assistance to the monument’s visitors and significantly increases the National Park Service’s ability to serve the public. I thank the newly formed Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters for such a generous contribution made so early in their history.”

Don Hudson, board treasurer, said, “Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters will make additional grants in 2017 and enlarge its giving program in 2018 and beyond.”

The Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument Loop Road Interpretive Map is available free at the Monument’s Millinocket and Patten Visitor Contact Stations, also at Katahdin Area Chamber of Commerce and along the Loop Road. An electronic version can be viewed at www.friendsofkatahdinwoodsandwaters.org/visitkww and on the free-for-download Discover Katahdin visitor’s app.

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About Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters:

The mission of Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters is to preserve and protect the outstanding natural beauty, ecological vitality, and distinctive cultural resources of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument and surrounding communities for the inspiration and enjoyment of all generations.

A sixteen-member board of directors guides the nonprofit, which raises funds supporting the monument, defends it against threats, mobilizes volunteers for site projects and represents users in the betterment of monument operations.

Like Baxter State Park and Acadia National Park, Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument sprang full-blown from private philanthropy, a word that means “love of mankind generally.” This 87,563-acre gift to the nation and Maine from the Roxanne Quimby family challenges citizens to honor and steward the natural and cultural bounty of the northern wilds. By engaging people in protecting these civic assets, Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters works, in gratitude, to extend and magnify the tradition of selflessness and generosity that informed the monument’s creation.

To join and become involved in Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters, visit: www.friendsofkatahdinwoodsandwaters.org.

 

 

 

Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument Celebration – August 25th

Join Maine Beer Company, Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters, The Wilderness Society, Patagonia, and the Natural Resources Council of Maine to celebrate the one year anniversary of the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument.

The evening will include dinner, catered by the New England Outdoor Center and Moe’s BBQ, beer from Maine Beer Company, live music from Jerks of Grass, and a silent auction.

Date and Time
Fri, August 25, 2017
5:00 PM – 8:00 PM EDT

Location
New England Outdoor Center
30 Twin Pines Road
Millinocket, ME 04462
View Map

$100 per person

Purchase your ticket now!

Please contact info@mainebeercompany.com with questions about the event.

Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters Send Letter to Department of Interior Secretary Zinke

On April 26, 2017, the President issued an Executive Order directing the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) to review 27 National Monuments, including Katahdin Woods and Waters. During public comment period, over 99.96% of people who filed comments supported the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument.  Following a visit to the region by DOI Secretary Ryan Zinke, the Board of Directors of the Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters sent him the following detailed letter, strongly opposing the review of the Monument, or any attempt to alter its designation.

Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters DOI Review Comments

Friends Group Voices Support For National Monument

PRESS RELEASE
March 24, 2017

PATTEN – In light of recent calls to rescind the designation of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument, the board of directors of Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters, a nonprofit charitable corporation formed to provide grants and other assistance to the monument, has affirmed its strong support of the monument’s permanent establishment under law and urges all of Maine’s local, state and federal officials to champion the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument.

The Friends group believes that the monument:

  • Protects and preserves the beauty and ecological and natural features of the area, including the forests, waters, wildlife, and scenic views;
  • Protects the historical and cultural legacy of the area;
  • Provides a wide variety of outdoor recreation opportunities including hiking, camping, wildlife watching, fishing, hunting, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, and scenic drives; and
  • Helps to reinvigorate the economic vitality of surrounding communities.

The mission of Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters is to preserve and protect the outstanding natural beauty, ecological vitality and distinctive cultural resources of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument and surrounding communities for the inspiration and enjoyment of all generations. The organization is member supported. To join or for more information, go to www.friendsofkatahdinwoodsandwaters.org

Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters Group Forms

PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Feb. 28, 2017

Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters Group Forms

PATTEN – Six months after President Obama created a new national monument in Maine, a new nonprofit organization has formed to support Maine’s new national monument. Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters will work to preserve and protect the outstanding natural beauty, ecological vitality and distinctive cultural resources of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument and surrounding communities for the inspiration and enjoyment of all generations.

The private group is not part of the National Park Service but intends to enter into an agreement to work collaboratively with and support the mission of the National Park Service that manages the monument.

“Initially, the friends group will focus on building volunteer opportunities, developing education programs and advocating for the monument,” said Lucas St. Clair, president of the Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters. “Eventually, the nonprofit organization will provide financial support for specific projects in the monument and surrounding communities, raise private funds to supplement—not replace—federal appropriations, protect the integrity of the monument and its resources, and speak for users in the betterment of monument operations.”

“Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument can become a first-class destination for visitors to northern Maine,” said Anita Mueller, vice president of Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters. “I look forward to working with the National Park Service to develop services, facilities and programs that will make the experience of visiting the national monument a wonderful, lifetime memory.”

“All of us at Friends of Acadia are excited by this announcement and want to welcome the Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters into the community of friends groups that help serve national parks and national monuments throughout the country,” said David MacDonald, president of Friends of Acadia in Bar Harbor Maine. “Friends of Acadia has received incredible support from volunteers, businesses, and surrounding communities who want to give back to Acadia, and public-private partnerships like this will only become more important in the future. We look forward to being a resource and partner with our friends to the north.” Friends of Acadia has granted more than $25 million to the park and surrounding communities since its founding in 1986 in support of dozens of projects, including youth programs, restoration of Acadia’s trails and carriage roads, and establishment of the fare-free Island Explorer bus system. (See www.friendsofacadia.org for more information).

“Already we have seen opportunities to partner with the National Park Service,” said Terry Hill from Mt. Chase. “This winter, our local snowmobile club partnered with the National Park Service to put new decking on two snowmobile bridges within the national monument. I look forward to working with the Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters to find additional opportunities to improve the visitors’ experience at the national monument. We want to increase the number of people who are involved in making the monument better.”

“We know that the national monument has many valuable historical artifacts from the days when Native people traveled up the Penobscot for hunting and fishing to the storied times of log drives and paper making,” said Don Hudson, treasurer of Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters. “Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters could help the national monument protect those artifacts and tell those stories to thousands of visitors.”

“The national monument currently has some excellent hiking, paddling, biking and cross country skiing,” said Cathy Johnson, secretary of Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters. “But there could be much more. We look forward to helping the National Park Service identify and develop additional opportunities for active, outdoor recreation.”

“Congratulations to those who have established the Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters,” said Tim Hudson, Superintendent of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument. “I look forward to working in partnership with the group and its volunteers to make the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument a first class destination for visitors.”

The Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters is launching with a thirteen-member board of directors with an immediate goal of attracting additional members. The public can join the group by going to http://www.friendsofkatahdinwoodsandwaters.org.

“There has been an outpouring of support for the national monument since it was created,” said Molly Ross, from Arlington, VA. “Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters will provide a place for supporters from Maine to Mississippi to Montana and beyond to go to find out what is going on in the national monument and how they can help support it. People can go to www.katahdinwoodsandwaters.org right now to join.”

Current board members include: Terry Hill, Mt. Chase, ME; Don Hudson, Arrowsic, ME (treasurer); Cathy Johnson, Alna, ME (secretary); Dan Kleban, Freeport, ME; Peter Knight, New York, NY; Clint Linscott, East Millinocket, ME; Anita Mueller, Millinocket, ME (vice president); Ken Olson, Bass Harbor, ME; Matt Polstein, Millinocket, ME; Simon Roosevelt, New York, NY; Molly Ross, Arlington, VA; Lucas St. Clair, Portland, ME (president), and Howard Whitcomb, Brunswick, ME.