L.L. Bean Awarded "Partner in the Journey" by ATC
FREEPORT, ME, August 22, 2006 - The Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC), in partnership with the National Park Service and the USDA Forest Service, announced today that L.L.Bean is the recipient of the first "Partner in the Journey" award, recognizing sustained and exemplary support of the maintenance and preservation of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail.
According to David N. Startzell, executive director of the ATC, L.L.Bean was among the first corporations to provide support to the ATC when the program was initiated in 1982. In the early 1990s, the L.L. Bean Grants-to-Clubs program was introduced, providing approximately $20,000 annually to support the work of ATC's Trail-maintaining clubs.
"L.L.Bean's contributions have been multiplied many times, and have supported numerous Trail- and facility-maintenance and construction projects," Startzell said. "Altogether, since 1982, L.L.Bean has contributed $358,801 to the ATC, and L.L.Bean employees have maintained a 17-mile segment of the Appalachian Trail in western Maine for the past 22 years.
"For all of these contributions we are deeply grateful. L.L.Bean clearly is far and away the most significant corporate supporter of the ATC and the Appalachian Trail project."
Present at a ceremony August 4 on L.L.Bean's Outdoor Discovery Schools' campus were executives including Leon Gorman, Chairman of L.L.Bean, and Fran Philip, Senior Vice President and Chief Merchandising Officer, who accepted the "Partner in the Journey" plaque. The plaque reads: "In grateful recognition of your exemplary and ongoing support of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy," and bears the logos of the National Park Service, USDA Forest Service and the ATC.
"We have been especially pleased with the outcomes of the L.L.Bean Grants to ATC programs, and have really enjoyed the personal and heartfelt letters that we've received from those grassroots trail groups," says Chris McCormick, President and CEO of L.L.Bean, Inc. "I know how dedicated our own Maine club is, and it's obvious that dedication runs the entire length of the Trail."
The Appalachian Trail Conservancy is a volunteer-based nonprofit organization dedicated to the conservation of the 2,175-mile Appalachian National Scenic Trail, a 270,000-acre greenway extending from Maine to Georgia.
Membership and corporate support ensure that future generations enjoy the clean air and water, scenic vistas, wildlife and opportunities for recreation and renewal along the entire Trail corridor. To become a member, visit www.appalachiantrail.org, where you will also find volunteer opportunities and general hiking information.