PROTECT the Adirondacks! has hired Peter Bauer as its new Executive Director.
Starting full-time after Labor Day, Bauer will coordinate PROTECT’s citizen
advocacy activities and provide leadership to monitor public agencies, conduct
research, and manage the organization’s programs for the Adirondack Park.
For more information:
Chuck Clusen, co-chair, 202-289-2412
Lorraine Duvall, co-chair, 518-576-9109
Robert Harrison, co-chair, 518-494-7349
Peter Bauer 518-796-0112
Adirondack Park—PROTECT the Adirondacks! is pleased to announce that its Board of
Directors has hired accomplished activist Peter Bauer as its new Executive Director. Bauer
brings to PROTECT more than 20 years of experience in Adirondack Park policy, grassroots
organizing, environmental advocacy, and not-for-profit management.
Before he begins full-time work for PROTECT after Labor Day, Bauer will continue to serve
until the end of July in his current position as Executive Director for the FUND for Lake
George, a position he has held since 2007. Bauer had previously served for thirteen years as
Executive Director of the Residents’ Committee to Protect the Adirondacks (RCPA), one of
the two groups that merged in 2010 to form PROTECT. “I could not be more pleased with
the results of our search for an Executive Director, says Board Co-chair Bob Harrison. “I
have known and worked closely with Peter for over 10 years. He has the respect of all
stakeholders in the Park, friend and foe alike. I am very excited with the promise that his
leadership of PROTECT holds for the future of the Adirondack Park.”
Peter Bauer brings to PROTECT a wealth of experience in environmental policy and
advocacy for the Adirondack Park. He has successfully advocated for the protection of new
wildlands; helped to pass state laws on jet skis and acid rain; advanced state policy on
motorized uses of the Forest Preserve; and conducted research that has educated the public
and influenced management policies and practices for the Forest Preserve and the
Adirondack Park. Among Bauer’s recent projects for the FUND for Lake George are his
work to develop and publish the award-winning Do-It-Yourself Water Quality: A
Landowner’s Guide to Property Management that Protects Lake George; a new report on
trends from thirty years of collaborative water quality monitoring; new programs for aquatic
invasive species control, and creation of a new park and stormwater treatment system in
collaboration with local communities.
Perhaps most important for PROTECT’s larger mission is Bauer’s proven ability to
effectively organize the voices of Adirondack residents and people throughout New York
who want stronger protections for the largest and most important state park in the nation.
Peter Bauer stated “I am grateful for this unique opportunity. I am very impressed with
PROTECT’s citizen advocacy approach, with the outstanding grassroots board they have
built, and with their leadership on many of the critical issues facing the Adirondack Park.”
PROTECT Board Co-chair Lorraine Duvall said “What a combination of resources
PROTECT has now assembled for defending the principles upon which the Adirondack Park
was founded–a dynamic proven leader as our new Executive Director, a solid base of
grassroots members and supporters, and a diverse Board of Directors representing 500 years
of environmental activism. The time is now and we are ready.”
When he takes up PROTECT’s reins in the fall, Peter Bauer will be astride ongoing
initiatives to defend against several recent, major threats to the integrity of the Park’s private
and public lands. With Sierra Club support, PROTECT has taken legal action against the
Adirondack Park Agency’s (APA) January decision to permit the Adirondack Club and
Resort project, the largest development in the history of the Park. Chief among its threats
PROTECT opposes the precedent for permitting habitat-fragmenting, recreational housing
sprawl across many thousands of acres of similarly protected private lands throughout the
Park. In another recent decision, one that excluded public oversight, the APA approved the
DEC’s plans to increase motorized access to 1.5 million acres of “forever wild” public lands
with the construction of new, high-speed snowmobile “trails”. Bauer will oversee
PROTECT’s initiatives not only to field-monitor DEC and permitted town construction of
these new roads, but also to strengthen the statutes that are now interpreted as allowing the
DEC to re-negotiate with owners of easement lands, changing provisions originally intended
to provide public benefits.
“I am totally exhilarated by Peter Bauer agreeing to become PROTECT’s executive director.
No one is more knowledgeable of the Adirondacks, or as seasoned by years of organizing
and motivating grassroots folks to pursue strong environmental action for the protection of
the Adirondacks. He exhibits mastery and skill at getting the word out, building public
support and persuading decision makers to make sound environmental protection decisions”
said Chuck Clusen, PROTECT co-chair.
In addition to coordinating PROTECT’s independent public oversight of New York State’s
management of the Adirondack Park, Bauer will oversee both PROTECT’s water quality
monitoring and forest stewardship programs.
“The Adirondack Park landscape is vibrant and lively. The communities, people, politics and
public issues are vibrant and lively too. I’ve been fortunate to work with some terrific groups
and with many terrific people to try and earn a place in the conservation tradition of the
Adirondack Park that heralds from early calls to create ‘a central park for the world’ to later
calls about the Adirondack Park as a ‘landscape of hope’ or a ‘great experiment in
conservation’. I’m very pleased to join with PROTECT at this point in my life and dedicate
my energies in trying to defend this amazing place” said Peter Bauer.
Those interested in following the changes that will result from Peter Bauer’s new role as
Executive Director; in learning more about PROTECT’s initiatives and programs; or in
becoming a member are invited to visit the organization’s website at protectadks.org.