Heritage Tourism Alliance Presents the Pride of Baltimore II on its First Voyage to Prince George’s County

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Pride-of-BaltimoreIIAccokeek, MD— In July, the Pride of Baltimore II takes center stage for a weekend of activities on the Potomac River commemorating the bicentennial of the War of 1812. Presented by the Accokeek Foundation and the Potomac River Heritage Tourism Alliance, “Celebrating with Pride on the Potomac” begins at the National Colonial Farm in Piscataway Park on Saturday July 12 with a full day of activities that include deck tours of this reproduction Baltimore Clipper, the topsail privateers that played a critical role in the War of 1812. On Sunday July 13, the Pride will set sail on the Potomac, saluting with cannon fire, Fort Washington’s War of 1812 Encampment.

“2014 is the first year in many that Pride will remain in local waters—traveling to as many Maryland ports as possible, celebrating the 200th anniversary of our National Anthem, and sharing the story of Baltimore privateer’s role in the War of 1812,” states Rick Scott, the Pride’s Executive Director. “We are thrilled to be participating in Celebrating with Pride on the Potomac and are grateful to our sponsors for giving Pride the opportunity to make her first ever port stop in Prince George’s County,” he continues.

Besides deck tours of the Pride, the ten-dollar admission fee on July 12th will cover shoreside captain talks, hayride tours of the park, living history performances, and music by the east coast’s premier Celtic fusion band, Jennifer Cutting’s OCEAN. For an additional fee, adventurous visitors can embark on a War of 1812 kayak tour through the Atlantic Kayak Company or reserve a sail on the Pride. The event will feature offerings from local food vendors, but visitors are also welcome to bring a picnic.

When asked about the significance of this event, Lisa Hayes, President of the Accokeek Foundation and co-chair of the Potomac River Heritage Tourism Alliance, said, “This event providesan extraordinary opportunity for our alliance to showcase the amazing natural and cultural heritage of Southern Prince George’s County, and demonstrate what an important role heritage tourism can play in the economic development of the region.” The Accokeek Foundation stewards 200 acres of Piscataway Park, a national park created through a unique public/private partnership to preserve the view from George Washington’s Mount Vernon. In addition to the Accokeek Foundation, the Potomac River Heritage Tourism Alliance includes Prince George’s African American Heritage Preservation Group, the Broad Creek Conservancy, the Maryland Indian Tourism Association, the National Park Service, and many others.

Support for this event was graciously donated by Prince George’s County Economic Development Corporation; MGM National Harbor; Susan Gage Caterers; Prince George’s County Committee on the War of 1812; the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, Department of Parks and Recreation; Maryland Tourism; Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail, NPS; Richard Krueger; African American Heritage Preservation Group; Alice Ferguson Foundation.

 

Calendar Listing:

Saturday, July 12, 2014, 11 am – 5 pm. Celebrating with Pride on the Potomac, a family-oriented event featuring deck tours of the Pride of Baltimore II, living history performances, hayrides, exhibitors, food, kayak tours, and music by Jennifer Cutting’s OCEAN. National Colonial Farm at Piscataway Park, 3400 Bryan Point Road, Accokeek, MD 20607. General admission is $10 per person; 10 and under free. Tickets for the kayak tours are $25 per person and can be purchased at the Visitor Center during the event. Reservations for an evening sail aboard the Pride are $65 per person and can be made in advance at http://www.pride2.org/comeaboard/. Call the Accokeek Foundation at 301-283-2113 for more information about the event.

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For Immediate Release: Hundreds of Area Students Impacted by Federal Shutdown and Closure of National Parks

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During the federal government shutdown, environmental education programs on national park land has been cancelled.

During the federal government shutdown, environmental education programs on national park land has been cancelled.

 

Accokeek, MD—The federal government shutdown and park closures have resulted in the cancellation or alteration of several local environmental education programs, impacting hundreds of students who normally visit Piscataway Park that spans 5,000 acres across southern Prince George’s and Charles County. Through cooperative agreements with the National Park Service, two local non-profit organizations use the park’s land to further their missions of providing outdoor educational experiences to students and the public about history, agriculture, and the environment. The Accokeek Foundation’s entire campus, used for history education and agricultural training, is located within the boundaries of Piscataway Park, while the Alice Ferguson Foundation depends on access to the Potomac River through the park for its Hard Bargain Farm Education Center environmental education programs as well as access to other area national parks for its Bridging the Watershed program.

tricia interpreter in kitchen (small)The Accokeek Foundation leads hands-on school tours at the National Colonial Farm and Piscataway Park, reaching over 3,000 youth annually. October is the beginning of the fall tour season, and many of the scheduled tours have been cancelled due to the shutdown, disappointing teachers and students who look forward to these outdoor experiences each year. Jeannette Wheeler, a Prince George’s County 6th grade educator whose tour is scheduled for October 17, is hoping that “the shutdown ends soon so [she] can take students on their field trip.” Another teacher whose tour was cancelled due to the shutdown’s closure of national parks commented, “We will readily reschedule if we cannot come next week, as we always love our trips to Accokeek and look forward to [the park’s] reopening.” The education program has already been impacted by funding cuts to county public schools, limiting availability of funds for transportation. “The Accokeek Foundation has been seeking creative ways to help schools continue to bring students for farm tours,” said Brittany Barnes, Development Manager for the Accokeek Foundation who has worked with the National Park Foundation to provide transportation grants last year to Prince George’s County schools. “The government shutdown greatly hinders our ability to be able to deliver grant commitments for education without access to the parks,” Barnes stated.

The Alice Ferguson Foundation’s Hard Bargain Farm Environmental Center uses experiential learning techniques to teach environmental studies to nearly 5,000 elementary school students annually on their 330-acre working farm on the banks of the Potomac River. More than a third of the students served by the program are at-risk youth from the region’s underserved communities in Maryland, Washington, D.C., and Virginia. “For most of our students this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience a working farm and to have such a personal experience with nature,” said Lori Arguelles, Executive Director of the Alice Ferguson Foundation. The Foundation donated the land to Piscataway Park when the park was created in the 1960s and a large portion of students’ field studies are spent in the park along the Potomac River shoreline. However, due to the closure of the National Parks, the 91 students who visited this past week and the 142 students expected next week are missing out on one of the pinnacle experiences of their time at HBF. “Though we have made every effort to preserve the educational value of these programs, the inability to utilize these lands inhibits our ability to provide the outdoor field study experience teachers and students have planned for,” explained Arguelles.

In addition to Hard Bargain Farm, Bridging the Watershed (BTW) is an experience-based, science-driven environmental education program of the Alice Ferguson Foundation conducted in partnership with the National Park Service and regional school systems to promote student academic achievement, personal connections with the natural world, lifelong civic engagement, and environmental stewardship. BTW is now greatly affected by the inability to foster student science in national parks.

Thus far nearly 365 high school and middle school students in area school systems will be unable to conduct educational science investigations in national parks. Teachers have spent many hours in instructional preparation and, in some circumstances, securing significant funds, usually around $600 for student transportation to a national park. “We hope this congressional situation is resolved quickly, so students can learn and experience in what historian Wallace Stegner called ‘America’s Best Idea’,” said Keith Roumfort, Bridging the Watershed Program Manager.

Produce from the Accokeek Foundation's Ecosystem Farm is being distributed at an off-site location during the shutdown of national park land.

Produce from the Accokeek Foundation’s Ecosystem Farm is being distributed at an off-site location during the shutdown of national park land.

The Accokeek Foundation also operates a certified organic farm that was created as a model to teach sustainable agriculture to aspiring farmers. The Ecosystem Farm at Piscataway Park has been the center of a beginning farmer training program for over 20 years. “Because the land we use for education is federal property, we are unable to carry out any of those public services that we typically provide for the community such as the On Farm Market and tours of the Ecosystem Farm,” stated Lisa Hayes, President and CEO of the Accokeek Foundation. While public access to the visitor facilities for recreation and programming has been closed, essential personnel are able to report to the site and take care of the park’s resources including the livestock, farm crops, and site and building security. “Essential personnel like our farmers continue to work daily on site to ensure that the animals and crops are cared for,” Hayes continued, “and we have made arrangements so our Community Supported Agriculture program customers can continue to receive their produce at an off-site venue in the community. We are grateful to the community for its support during this challenging time, but eager to get back to business as usual once the parks reopen.”

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About the Accokeek Foundation: The Accokeek Foundation is a non-profit, educational organization whose mission is to connect people to history, agriculture, and nature through innovative educational programs and engaging visitor experiences. Using Piscataway Park as its outdoor “campus” the Foundation’s operations include the National Colonial Farm (living heritage exhibit), the Ecosystem Farm (demonstrations in sustainable agriculture), and preservation of heritage livestock and heirloom seeds. Visit www.accokeekfoundation.org to learn more.

About the Alice Ferguson Foundation: The Alice Ferguson Foundation connects people to the natural world, sustainable agricultural practices and the cultural heritage of their local watershed through education, stewardship and advocacy. Learn more at www.fergusonfoundation.org.

MEDIA CONTACT:

Accokeek Foundation: Anjela Barnes
abarnes@accokeek.org 301-283-2113 ext 34

Alice Ferguson Foundation: Alena Rosen    
arosen@fergusonfoundation.org 202-580-9045

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Ribbon Cutting and Grand Opening Ceremony Officially Opens Reconstructed Public Boat Dock and Kayak Launch at the National Colonial Farm in Piscataway Park

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For Immediate Release

Accokeek, MD—The Accokeek Foundation, an educational non-profit that stewards 200 acres of Piscataway Park, is proud to announce a ribbon cutting and grand opening ceremony for the newly reconstructed public boat dock and kayak launch on Saturday, June 22, at 11:30 am. Among the guests attending the ribbon cutting will be Maryland State Senate President, Thomas V. “Mike” Miller, Prince George’s County Councilman Obie Patterson, and the Director of National Park Service-National Capital Region, Steve Whitesell.

The event schedule includes performances by local musicians, Little Paul and Company, Angie Head, Kingstreet Bluegrass and Bedlam; guided river walks featuring the Potomac River story of the War of 1812; kayak tours presented by Atlantic Kayak Company; river boat cruises by Capital Yacht Charters; a panel discussion on the “Piscataway Connections to the Land” oral history project, and 18th century games and foodways demonstrations.

The boat dock, which was destroyed by Hurricane Isabel in 2003, has been rebuilt to allow visitors to access the park facilities by water. Through this project, the Accokeek Foundation will significantly increase and improve public access to the Potomac River at Piscataway Park for views, kayaking, and other recreational uses. “I am thrilled that we are now able to offer visitors a way to get out on the Potomac River,” shares Lisa Hayes, President and CEO of the Accokeek Foundation. “From the vantage point of the river, they can enjoy a view much admired by George Washington and a landscape that has been such an important part of the history and culture of Maryland’s Piscataway Indians.”

Kayak docks for launching and landing have been placed adjacent to both the fishing pier and the boat dock. “The Foundation is delighted about the possibilities that the improved facilities will present for the community,” states Site Manager, Brandon Burton, who also notes that “public interest has been strong, especially for the new access points for kayakers and other river enthusiasts.” Additional improvements include retrofitting the current fishing pier to accommodate larger tour boats that serve passengers on the Potomac River, installation of a floating dock and gangplank, and a fixed ramp designed to accommodate visitors with mobility issues.

Funding for the project was received through a federal grant from the National Park Service (NPS) Chesapeake Bay Office and a bond bill from the State of Maryland. Corporate and organizational support for the event has come from various partners, including Maryland Milestones and Anacostia Trails Heritage Area, Capital Yacht Charters, SMECO, Charlie’s Family Restaurant, Associated Insurance Management, Inc., Alice Ferguson Foundation, Chesapeake Conservancy, and Maryland National Capital Parks and Planning. in addition to individual donors. Sponsorships for the June 22nd event are available by contacting the development office at development@accokeek.org.

Calendar Listing:

Saturday, June 22, 2013, 11 am – 4 pm. Join the Accokeek Foundation in Celebrating the Potomac, a family-oriented event featuring river and culturally themed festivities, musical performances, catered picnic lunch, guided kayak tours, and river boat cruises at the National Colonial Farm at Piscataway Park, 3400 Bryan Point Road, Accokeek, MD 20607. General admission is free. Tickets for food and water activities should be purchased in advance at www.accokeek.org/leadershipsalute. Call 301-283-2113 for more information.

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Denison Landscaping Selects Accokeek Foundation as a “40 Green Initiatives” Project Site

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To commemorate their 40th Anniversary, Denison Landscaping is giving back to the communities it serves by conducting 40 in-kind landscaping projects to be completed throughout the year.

As a part of this “40 Green Initiatives” project, the Accokeek Foundation was selected to identify a landscaping project on site that would improve its daily operations. After discussing the various needs of the site with members of the Denison staff, installing an irrigation system in the Accokeek Foundation’s Museum Garden was identified as the project. Maintained with the help of volunteers, the Museum Garden is an educational space filled with modern and heirloom herbs, flowers, and vegetables. This quiet spot on Cedar Lane is used as a venue for educational programs, workshops, and performances, and is designed to teach visitors about agriculture and the environment on a small scale.

David Bise, Denison Landscaping’s irrigation specialist, brought his team to the garden last Thursday to work on the project. Through initial survey of the garden they discovered waterlines that had been installed many years ago but had not been used in at least 20 years. Luckily, through the expertise of Bise and his team, they were able to get the previous system working with minimal disruption to the garden and by utilizing the resources already in place. They updated the original system by replacing a couple of pipes and installing two additional quick couplers to ensure accurate irrigation throughout the garden.

The project was completed in less than a day and with great accuracy and persistence. The everyday tending to the Museum Garden is now a much simpler and less time consuming task. The Accokeek Foundation is proud to have been a part of this commemoration of 40 years of business for Denison Landscaping.

Denison Landscaping and Nursery, Inc. was formed in 1973 and has grown from a three-man operation into one of the most successful landscaping companies in the Mid-Atlantic region. Denison Landscaping is a family owned business and they strive to maintain a people-oriented philosophy that will ensure the delivery of the quality landscaping product their customers expect and deserve.

Presently, they own and operate growing nurseries totaling over 700 acres. They also own a 9 acre wholesale facility in Southern Maryland and a 40 acre Garden Center/Nursery in Fort Washington, Maryland.

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Press Announcement: Accokeek Foundation to Increase and Improve Public Access to the Potomac River at Piscataway Park with NPS Chesapeake Bay Office Investments

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Accokeek, MD—The Accokeek Foundation was named as one of the 21 partner recipients of the National Park Service (NPS) Chesapeake Bay Office’s Fiscal Year 2012 Investments. Last Fall, the NPS Chesapeake Bay Office provided financial assistance for projects that address education, youth employment and stewardship programs, and public access and trail development in the Chesapeake Bay Gateways and Watertrail Network; such as the Piscataway Park Public Water Access Development project. Through this project, the Accokeek Foundation will significantly increase and improve public access to the Potomac River at Piscataway Park for views, boating, and other recreational uses. This federal funding will be leveraged with funding from the State of Maryland to complete this significant project.

The National Colonial Farm Boat Dock, which was destroyed by Hurricane Isabel in 2003, is currently being rebuilt to allow visitors to arrive by water. The current Saylor Grove Fishing Pier will be retrofitted to accommodate larger tour boats that serve passengers on the Potomac River. The fishing pier is a popular recreational feature of Piscataway Park and offers spectacular views of Mount Vernon across the Potomac. Additional improvements to the fishing pier include installation of a floating pier and gangplank, and a fixed ramp designed to accommodate visitors with mobility issues. The project includes the addition of a canoe and kayak dock adjacent to the pier.

The Potomac River is a key contributing segment of the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail, the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail, and the Star Spangled Banner National Historic Trail. The new public access facilities will both enhance visitor experience at Piscataway Park and also advance the development of these national trails.

The first stage of the project, demolition of the current boat dock and the new steps and landing, is completed; the entire project is on track for completion by this summer. A public opening celebration is planned as part of the Foundation’s annual fundraising Leadership Salute event on June 22, 2013.

For more information about the boat dock project contact the site manager, Brandon Burton, at bburton@accokeek.org or call 301-283-2113 ext. 33.

For details about Leadership Salute contact the development office at development@accokeek.org.

MEDIA CONTACT:

Anjela Barnes, abarnes@accokeek.org
301-283-2113 ext 34

boat dock progress

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Accokeek Foundation Receives Ticket to Ride Grant for School Tours

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MEDIA CONTACT:

ACCOKEEK FOUNDATION AT PISCATAWAY PARK

ANJELA BARNES, COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER

OUTREACH@ACCOKEEK.ORG | 301-283-2113

                                                                                               

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

ACCOKEEK FOUNDATION AT PISCATAWAY PARK AWARDED NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION ‘TICKET TO RIDE’ GRANT TO BRING LOCAL STUDENTS INTO PARK

 $230,000 Grant Connects 30,000 Students with National Parks Across the Country

Washington, D.C. (August 28, 2012)  -  Responding to an overwhelming need for transportation and educational programming funding from parks and schools nationwide, the National Park Foundation, the official charity of America’s national parks, created the Ticket To Ride program.  With support from Disney, Ticket to Ride provides financial resources for transportation, in-park educational programming, and meals that make national park field trips possible for schools across the country.  This year, Accokeek Foundation at Piscataway Park was selected to receive a Ticket to Ride grant in order to bring 1,500 students to Piscataway Park.  Nationwide, over $230,000 in Ticket to Ride grants will make it possible for more than 30,000 students to experience their local national park this fall.

The Accokeek Foundation at Piscataway Park offers unique educational programs about Maryland’s history, modern sustainable agriculture, and natural resource stewardship. Entertaining tours and performances, customized experience based activities, and service learning opportunities help people connect to the land and to one another.

This land also serves as an outdoor classroom for educational programs, research, agricultural, and conservation projects. Each year, thousands of students and educators participate in programs developed to supplement social studies and environmental education in the classroom. With the Accokeek Foundation’s involvement in the Ticket to Ride program we will include pre-site and post-site component for students to complete prior to coming to the site and after they get back to school. These components will consist of an interactive learning guide with videos, trivia and vocabulary words that are in line with the theme tour chosen by the teacher.

“Providing the means for America’s youth to experience all that our national park system has to offer is imperative,” said Neil Mulholland, President and CEO of the National Park Foundation. “The Ticket to Ride program makes it possible for us to engage the younger generation through the parks’ unique natural, cultural and historical classrooms, ultimately fostering an early love and appreciation for these important places.”

In addition to the Accokeek Foundation at Piscataway Park, the Fall 2012 Ticket to Ride grantees include:

Assateague Island National Seashore

Biscayne National Park

Boston National Historical Park

Bryce Canyon National Park

Buck Island Reef National Monument

Catoctin Mountain Park

Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area

Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park

Congaree National Park

Crater Lake National Park

Craters of the Moon National Monument and National Preserve

Devils Postpile National Monument

Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor

Everglades National Park and Biscayne National Park

Fort Sumter National Monument

Homestead National Monument of America

Lava Beds National Monument

Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial

Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park

Mississippi National River and Recreation Area

Moores Creek National Battlefield

National Mall and Memorial Parks

New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park

North Cascades National Park

Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail

Point Reyes National Seashore

River Raisin National Battlefield Park

San Juan Island National Historical Park

Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area

Stones River National Battlefield

Virgin Islands National Park

Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts

World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument

Yosemite National Park

For many students, the Ticket to Ride field trip will be their first visit to a national park.  Recognizing that once in the parks, a world of experiential learning opens up, the National Park Foundation and the National Park Service are dedicated to providing this critical access to the parks. Through these field trips, young people discover their natural, cultural and historical heritage, participate in volunteer and service-learning activities, enjoy recreational opportunities and most importantly, begin a lifelong relationship with their national parks.

For more information about the Ticket to Ride program, our corporate partners and ways to support this and the other exceptional National Park Foundation programs, go to www.nationalparks.org.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION

You are the owner of 84 million acres of the world’s most treasured memorials, landscapes, ecosystems, and historic sites — all protected in America’s nearly 400 national parks.  Chartered by Congress, the National Park Foundation is the official charity of America’s national parks.  We work hand in hand with the National Park Service to connect you and all Americans to the parks, and to make sure that they are preserved for the generations who will follow.  Join us in supporting your national parks — this is your land. www.nationalparks.org.

Join us – This is Your Land. www.nationalparks.org
FACEBOOK http://www.facebook.com/nationalpark
TWITTER http://twitter.com/goparks

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Children’s Day Event Teaches Southern Maryland History and Culture Through an Interactive Outdoor-Learning Experience

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For Immediate Release

Playing colonial games at Childrens DayAccokeek, MD–According to the Maryland Children’s Outdoor Bill of Rights proclaimed by Governor Martin O’Malley, all Maryland children “shall have the opportunity to… discover and connect with their natural world… play and learn outdoors… celebrate their culture and heritage.”

For more than 50 years, the Accokeek Foundation at Piscataway Park has been providing just this kind of outdoor-learning experience for children and people of all ages. The park serves the community as a natural landscape offering plenty of recreational activities managed by the Accokeek Foundation, with a variety of  public events that invite the community for a unique educational experience which combines history, nature, and place.

On Saturday, May 12, the popular annual Children’s Day event at Piscataway Park returns with family-oriented activities that connect people to nature, while highlighting the significance of the culture and heritage of Southern Maryland. Children of all ages will take on the role of young explorers, using a discovery map to guide them while they seek out discovery stations with clues about the history of the region, and participate in interactive games and demonstrations on the National Colonial Farm for a view of a child’s life on an ordinary 18th century Southern Maryland tobacco farm.

The event will include an open house style tour of the barnyard to meet the farm animals, interactive performances by the National Children’s Museum, storytelling by the Culture Kingdom Kids, and food vendors. Complete all of the activities to earn keepsake tokens and a prize!

General Event Details:

Saturday, May 12, 2012
Children’s Day in Piscataway Park
10 am – 4 pm
Admission is $10 for non-members; $5 for members; children 2 and under are free
One free adult admission per paying child

Contact: Anjela Barnes, Communications Manager

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Accokeek Foundation President Named 2012-2013 Noyce Leadership Fellow

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For Immediate Release: March 5, 2012

Science Center and Museum Executives Chosen for Intensive Leadership Program

WASHINGTON, D.C.—The Noyce Foundation, in collaboration with the Association of Science-Technology Centers (ASTC) and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), announced last week the participants for its fifth round of yearlong sponsored fellowships. Accokeek Foundation President and CEO, Lisa Hayes, is among the 18 senior-level executives from science centers, children’s museums, natural history museums, and field-based institutions chosen to participate in the Noyce Leadership Institute (NLI) Fellowship. The Noyce Leadership Institute brings together leaders in informal science education from around the world to act as change agents at the crossroads of societal trends, global issues, and the cutting edge of science. The focus of the strategic initiative by Lisa Hayes is to create a national model in Piscataway Park for connecting people to the environment through interpretation of the indigenous cultural landscape of the Piscataway people.

“The NLI Fellowship will help to prepare the next generation of leaders to extend the impact of science centers and museums deeper into their local communities and to increase understanding and excitement about science,” said Dr. Geno Schnell, NLI program director.

NLI envisions an essential and transformative role for science centers and other institutions in the engagement of citizens of every age in understanding crucial science-related issues. Leaders of such innovative hubs are supported and challenged by the Noyce Leadership Institute to make the individual, organizational, and community changes required to realize this vision. From 2008 to 2011, 70 Fellows have participated in NLI. These individuals represent 59 institutions from 21 nations.

The 2012–2013 Noyce Leadership Fellows were selected through a competitive process by a committee composed of professionals representing the fields of informal science education and executive leadership. The Fellowship program provides an action-learning framework via a mix of face-to-face sessions, executive coaching, peer learning, audio conferencing, and other learning strategies over a year, followed by ongoing Fellow alumni activities.

Click here for a list of the 18 Noyce Fellows and their Strategic Initiative Sponsors.

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About the Noyce Leadership Institute

The NLI bears the name of Robert Noyce, co-founder of Intel and inventor of the integrated circuit. His work in leading science, engineering, and technology to a whole new level of innovation — as well as the creation of new industries — is legendary. Known for his integrity, authenticity, character, inclusiveness, and continuous innovation, Noyce’s legacy continues to serve as a standard for leaders today.

About the Association of Science-Technology Centers

ASTC is a global nonprofit organization of science centers and museums committed to raising public understanding of science’s role in solving critical societal issues and its value in igniting and nurturing the innovative spirit that people of all ages need for success in today’s world.

Through strategic alliances and global partnerships, ASTC strives to increase awareness of the valuable contributions its science center members make to their communities and the field of informal science learning. Founded in 1973, ASTC now numbers nearly 600 members in 45 countries, and its members include not only science centers and museums, but also nature centers, aquariums, planetariums, zoos, botanical gardens, and natural history and children’s museums, as well as companies, consultants, and other organizations that share an interest in informal science education.

About the Institute of Museum and Library Services

The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute’s mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. The Institute works at the national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to sustain heritage, culture, and knowledge; enhance learning and innovation; and support professional development. Primary funding for the Noyce Leadership Institute comes from the Noyce Foundation, with additional support to date from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, and the David & Lucile Packard Foundation.

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Accokeek Foundation Receives Honorable Mention, 2011 Board Leadership Award

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The Accokeek Foundation was recognized last week by the Center for Nonprofit Advancement as a 2011 honorable mention recipient of the Board Leadership Award. The Accokeek Foundation will receive communication exposure and training and development opportunities for the board and CEO from the Center’s Learning & Leadership Institute.

Wilton Corkern, who recently retired after more than 20 years’ service as the Accokeek Foundation’s President, nominated the Accokeek Foundation’s Board of Trustees for the Center for Nonprofit Advancement’s 2011 Board Leadership Award. Corkern cited the board’s steady leadership, fiscal responsibility, support for the hard-working staff, and its commitment to maintaining and expanding service to the public during the challenging economic times of the past five years.

Since its creation more than a half-century ago, the Accokeek Foundation has enjoyed a stellar volunteer Board of Trustees. Founders Robert Ware Straus, Henry Ferguson, and Charles Wagner, and the Foundation’s first president and benefactor, Congresswoman Frances Payne Bolton, were visionary thinkers who instilled in the trustees a sense of aiming for and achieving the highest goals.

Accokeek Foundation President Lisa Hayes notes, “Our institution today – the oldest land trust in the Tidewater Potomac region, with a unique public/private partnership with the National Park Service and an array of innovative educational programs, as well as a first-rate professional staff  – is testimony to the early vision of the founders and to the tradition of excellence being continued by our current trustees.”

“The Board Leadership Award acknowledges boards that have exerted their leadership in an exemplary way and motivates those that have not with clear and tangible best practices each organization can adopt,” said Center CEO Glen O’Gilvie. “We are pleased to acknowledge the Accokeek Foundation as a stellar example that other organizations should follow, and share the best practices from each of our 2011 honorees with the community.”

The Center for Nonprofit Advancement, in partnership with Reznick Group and BoardSource, launched the Board Leadership Award in 2011 to recognize and spotlight outstanding leadership from Boards of Directors of Washington-area nonprofit organizations. The award recognizes the role that boards play in building and sustaining successful organizations—assuring that they are well led, well supported, and responsive to the people and communities they serve.

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Wilton Corkern Receives Accokeek Foundation’s National Conservation Leadership Award

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Jim Rees presents Wilton with a gift from Mount Vernon Ladies Association

Accokeek, MD–On October 9, 2011, the Accokeek Foundation honored Dr. Wilton C. Corkern, Jr., with its National Conservation Leadership Award, in recognition of more than two decades of service to advance stewardship and conservation, especially land preservation and sustainable agriculture. The award was presented at the Foundation’s annual Leadership Salute, a lovely outdoor event in Piscataway Park which raised nearly $55,000 for the Accokeek Foundation’s programs, including a $20,000 grant awarded by the Wallace Genetic Foundation in honor of Corkern.

Corkern, who recently retired from the Accokeek Foundation, became President and CEO in 1990. He established the Foundation’s modern organic Ecosystem Farm with its innovative new farmer training program. He also helped to organize and launch the Friends of the Potomac and to secure designation of the Potomac as one of the first “American Heritage Rivers.” Under his leadership, the Foundation reinvigorated its land conservation program, constructed a “green” Education Center, developed stewardship demonstration areas, and launched the Foundation’s Piscataway Cultural Landscape Initiative, an effort to transform the concept of “indigenous cultural landscape” into a concrete interpretive experience of Piscataway culture and history.

Corkern was recognized for his accomplishments and receivedcongratulatory proclamations from many, including:

  • Assistant Secretary of the Interior Robert G. Stanton brought greetings from Steny Hoyer, Minority Whip of the U. S. House of Representatives; Ken Salazar, U. S. Secretary of the Interior; and Jon Jarvis, Director of the National Park Service
  • Delegate James Proctor presented the Governor’s Citation from Martin O’Malley, Governor of Maryland
  • Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller, Jr., presented a resolution from the Senate of Maryland
  • Delegate Joseph Vallario presented a resolution from the Maryland House of Delegates
  • Senator Miller and Delegates Proctor and Vallario presented a Maryland State Flag that flew over the State House in Annapolis
  • Accokeek Foundation Trustee Eugene Roberts presented a Certificate of Recognition from Rushern Baker, Prince George’s County Executive
  • Elizabeth Hewlett, Chairman of the Prince George’s Planning Board, presented a Certificate of Appreciation from the Prince George’s Planning Board
  • Alexcy Romero, Superintendent of National Capital Parks–East, presented three “Centennial Challenge” medallions from the National Park Service: The Frederick Douglass Medallion for Excellence in Leadership; the Carter G. Woodson Medallion for Making a Difference; the Willow Oak Medallion for Excellence in Resource Management
  • James Rees, President of Mount Vernon, brought greetings from the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association

Corkern previously worked at the Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area, the George Washington University, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. He has served on numerous boards and commissions, and currently serves as chair of the steering committee of the Washington AIDS Partnership, as a board member of  the Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers, and as a trustee of the Corina Higginson Trust, a Washington, DC, philanthropy. He was recently appointed by the Secretary of the Interior to the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail Advisory Council. He is a member of the Cosmos Club. Corkern received his PhD in American Civilization from the George Washington University.

The event was sponsored by generous donors, including Susan Gage Caterers, B.K. Miller Company, Alexander and Cleaver, Chesapeake Bay Funders Network, the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association, Prince Charitable Trusts, SMECO, Cultural Resources Management Group, Delegate Joseph F. Vallario, Jr., and Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller, Jr. Leadership Salute contributions help to ensure high-quality, affordable educational and recreational opportunities for the local community.

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About the Accokeek Foundation and the National Conservation Leadership Award

 

The Accokeek Foundation, which was established in 1957 to protect the Mount Vernon viewshed, stewards 200 acres of Piscataway Park along the Potomac River in Prince George’s and Charles Counties, Maryland. Its programs include the National Colonial Farm, a living history museum that preserves heirloom plants, heritage breeds of livestock, and historic buildings of the Chesapeake Tidewater; the Ecosystem Farm, a demonstration of sustainable agriculture; and training programs in organic farming, museum theatre, and other related fields.

The Accokeek Foundation established the National Conservation Leadership Award in 2001 to recognize contributions in the conservation of natural, cultural, and historic resources. Former recipients of award include Robert G. Stanton, former Director of the National Park Service; John M. Derrick, former chairman and CEO of Pepco Holdings; Steny H. Hoyer, Democratic Whip, U.S. House of Representatives; Gilbert Gude, former Member of Congress; the Mount Vernon Ladies Association of the Union; Willem Polak, President of the Potomac Riverboat Company; Glenn Eugster, retired Assistant Regional Director for Partnerships, National Park Service National Capital Region; and Thomas V. “Mike” Miller, President of the Senate of Maryland. Peter Gilsey, Chair and CEO of Ariba Asset Management, Inc., was selected as the 2010 recipient and was honored posthumously in December 2010.

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