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Transformation in the outdoors
Panelists share the benefits and joys of the Forest Preserves outdoors

Friday, July 13, 2018
Special to suffredin.org
by Shelley Davis Forest Preserve Foundation

Forest Preserves General Superintendent Arnold Randall (left to right), Jalanni Matthews and Theresa Salus of REI.


"I like the work we do in the Forest Preserves. You get to see almost immediately how much you've accomplished. That was the motivation for me to keep coming back. Now I'm an assistant crew leaders and in my second year in a leadership position with SCA."
— Jalanni Mathews


Transformation in the outdoors
Panelists share the benefits and joys of the Forest Preserves experiences
 
     Nylah Ali and Jalanni Matthews became acquainted with the Preserves as interns with the Student Conservation Association (SCA), a grant recipient of the Forest Preserve Foundation.
     They were part of a panel discussion, “The Transformative Power of Outdoor Experiences,” hosted recently in downtown Chicago by the Foundation.Arnold Randall, General Superintendent of the Forest Preserves of Cook County, and Theresa Salus, outdoor program and outreach manager for REI, also took part in the discussion, moderated by landscape architect Ernie Wong, president of Site Design Group, Ltd. and a Foundation donor.
     The program drew people from across Chicago’s civic, business, nonprofit and faith communities. It was meant to showcase the Preserves’ impact and benefits to the region and raise awareness of the Foundation's mission and its role in helping young people develop leadership skills and inspire lifelong stewardship of the environment.
     Because of her experiences as an SCA/Conservation Corps intern doing trail work and removing invasive species in the Preserves, Nylah, a rising high school junior, has set her sights on becoming a plant biologist.
     Jalanni, who enters his junior year at the University of Illinois-Urbana-Champaign this fall, recently completed an SCA leadership training in Pittsburgh. This summer he is an assistant crew leader working in the Forest Preserves.
     Randall, superintendent since 2010, gave an overview of the Preserves' economic and ecological impact on the region. He said that the Preserves do a lot with the money received through county tax revenues. “We’re very efficient with it. We work very hard, but we’re going to need more resources. We have big long-range plans. There’s a lot in there that we think we can do to expand and grow the forest preserve system, through volunteerism and programming.” 

Read the full story

"The Forest Preserve system needs us and the leadership that this organization, the Forest Preserve Foundation, is doing to pave that path, to get more organizations to support the work that the Forest Preserves is doing is vital."

—Theresa Salus


This project received generous support from
Make a donation to support the Foundation's work
WHAT'S NEW IN THE FOREST PRESERVES
Dockless bikes now available throughout the Preserves

The Forest Preserves of Cook County is making it even easier to enjoy more than 300 miles of paths and trails by integrating new dockless technology into its bikeshare program. You’ll find 500 of these easy-to-ride dockless bikes throughout the Preserves' 70,000 acres of wild and wonderful. The first 30-minute ride is free. More information here. 
Save the Date

7th Annual Conservation Cup

Thursday, Sept. 13, 2018
George W. Dunne National Golf Course,
Oak Forest, IL

Click here for general information and for sponsorship levels.
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