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For Release: Tuesday, April 8, 2014

DEC's Diane Carlton Honored as Professional Conservationist of the Year

by New York State Conservation Council

The New York State Conservation Council (NYSCC) has named state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Citizen Participation Specialist Diane Carlton the 2013 "Professional Conservationist of the Year." The NYSCC is the oldest conservation organization in New York State, comprised of volunteers who are concerned with sound management of the state's and the nation's land, water, fish and wildlife.

"Serving as a community and media liaison for DEC's Central New York Regional office, Diane Carlton has been a valued DEC employee for more than 15 years," said Regional Director Ken Lynch. "Diane has proven her commitment to wildlife management efforts and the preservation of our natural resources in her work creating key materials for DEC's ongoing public outreach efforts, participating in planning meetings and major sportsmen events. I congratulate Diane for this well-deserved statewide recognition."

The NYSCC recognizes one professional, in any field, each year for outstanding conservation achievements. Carlton was specifically honored for being a leader in reaching out to the outdoor sporting community to strengthen communication and build partnerships.

Carlton was raised in Westchester County, NY and received a B.A. from SUNY Geneseo and an M.P.A. from the University of Delaware. Carlton is a Certified Planner through the American Planning Association and sits on the Board of Directors for the association's Upstate New York Chapter. Carlton began her career with DEC in 2005 after 15 years as the Otsego County Planning Director.

As a Citizen Participation Specialist (CPS) in the Division of Public Affairs for DEC Region 7, Carlton works throughout the Central New York area communicating, collaborating and informing the public about all aspects of natural resources and the environment. This award specifically recognizes Carlton's outreach and education efforts on DEC's natural resource programs including fish, wildlife, recreation, state forests, wildlife management areas and unique areas.

NYSCC President A. Charles Parker said, "Diane Carlton is more than a communicator, she is an advocate for the environment and a partner and friend to the conservation community. She strives to make sure we know what is going on, and helps create an opportunity for awareness and informed involvement. Diane, with her role in public affairs and education, is one of the leaders in her field that serve the public and the environment to the highest and most effective level."

A new spreadsheet created by Carlton shows recreational activities available at each DEC site in the region ( It is a great resource to help the public discover where they can undertake their favorite recreational activities at nearby forests, unique areas, multiple use areas and wildlife management areas.

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