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The Massachusetts Forest and Park Friends Network
6th Annual Conference
Focus on Friends

Highlights from the Friends Network Sixth Annual Conference
Focus on Friends

December 7, 2013

Mass. Forest and Park Friends Network Conference 2013

The Focus on Friends Conference was well attended with 55 Friends volunteers, DCR representatives and a Civilian Conservation Corps Alumnus.

The Friends Network thanks our 2013 guest speakers:

DCr Commissioner Jack Murray

Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) Commissioner Jack Murray (left), Topic: Strengthening cooperation between DCR and Friends groups. (View PDF of the Commissioner's PowerPoint presentation)

DCR Bureau Chief Joe Orfant

DCR Bureau of Planning and Resource Protection Chief Joseph R. Orfant, Resource Management Planning. Topic: How Friends groups can help develop an RMP; Friends groups' roles in protecting natural and cultural resources.

Bob Leverett, Native Tree Society

The Eastern Hemlock: Prospects for Survival and Eventual Recovery, speaker Bob Leverett, Native Tree Society, Friends of Mohawk Trails State Forest.

Sharl Heller, Friends Network Facilitator

Progress in Parks? Comparing the of the 2013 Conference survey to the 2007 Partners in Parks Conference "Solutions", Sharl Heller, Friends Network Facilitator, Southeastern Massachusetts Pine Barrens Alliance.

Chief Ranger Chris Williams

DCR Bureau of Ranger Services Acting Chief Ranger Chris Williams, DCR Rangers' Duties and Jurisdiction.

Bill Taylor, Friends of Upton State Forest

Places of the Heart: Successful Cultural Resources Partnerships, Bill Taylor, Friends of Upton State Forest.

Mike Toomey holding the OHV Handbook at the 2013 Friends Network Conference

The Friends groups representative to the Massachusetts Off–Highway Vehicle Advisory Committee, Mike Toomey, Friends Network Facilitator, Friends of Douglas State Forest & Howe Park at Spencer State Forest.

DCR Commissioner Jack Murray's Presentation to the Friends Network

Friends Groups Introduction Presentation (See Friends groups in action)

Bill Taylor, Upton State Forest, Places in the Heart: Successful Cultural Resource Partnerships

Notes from the Friends Network 2013 Conference

Marcella's Friends Network 2013 Conference Photo Album

Friends Network 2013 Conference News Release

Read about the Friends Network 2013 Conference in the Milford Daily News: Forest 'Friends' to meet in Upton on Dec. 7


The Friends Network 2013 DCR Friend of the Year Recipients

Each year, the Friends Network recognizes the DCR employees who exhibit exemplary efforts on behalf of forests, parks, beaches, trails and Friends or other volunteer groups. Nominees are selected based on excellence in work performance, judgment, initiative, integrity, support for Friends groups and community relations. All DCR employees are eligible for this award.

The Friends Network is pleased to present a 2013 DCR Friend of the Year Award to:

The Members of the DCR Office of Cultural Resource

Bureau of Ranger Services Ray McKinnon

Bureau of Ranger Services Lt. Tom Bender


The Friends Network Announces the 2013 Volunteer of the Year Award Recipients

Each year the Friends Network recognizes volunteers who as benefited State parklands in Massachusetts in an extraordinary way. Award winners were recognized at the Friends Network Annual Conference on December 7, 2013.

The Friends Network is pleased to present a 2013 Volunteer of the Year Award to:

Virginia Scharfenberg, Waquoit Bay Reserve Foundation

Caleb Blankenship, Friends of the Blue Hills Reservation

William Finn, Mt. Tom State Reservation Advocacy Group

Melissa Guimont, Friends of Myles Standish State Forest

Mike Penko, Friends of Upton State Forest

Elise and Rick Smith, Scusset Beach State Reservation