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RI Department of Environmental Management
FOR AP DATEBOOK:
For Release: June 25, 1999
Contact: Frederick Vincent 222-6677
Stephanie Powell 222-4700 ext. 4418
DEM TO HONOR JOHN T. CAMPANINI, JR. WITH ALFRED L. HAWKES ENVIRONMENTAL AWARD
PROVIDENCE - John T. Campanini, Jr., Providence city forester and chairman and founding director of the Rhode Island Tree Council, will receive the Department of Environmental Management's Alfred L. Hawkes Environmental Award at a luncheon held in his honor Monday, June 28, beginning at noon, at the Providence Marriott on Orms Street.
The Alfred L. Hawkes Award for Conservation and Environmental Accomplishment acknowledges those who have "with uncommon effort, immeasurably advanced the preservation, protection, and enhancement of the natural resources of our state." Campanini is the seventh recipient of the annual award.
DEM Director Jan Reitsma in announcing the award, said, "John Campanini has provided outstanding leadership in promoting our urban forestry program and has served as a catalyst for establishing many local community tree programs. John has worked to foster a greener, sustainable urban environment in Providence and has made Rhode Island a better place to live by dedicating himself to improving our environment."
Among the Tree Council's many accomplishments under Campanini's direction has been its assistance to DEM in awarding federal urban forestry grants to communities. Since 1992 a total of $1,015,161 has been awarded to 25 communities and 14 separate organizations to plant trees, develop public awareness programs, conduct educational programs, maintain urban tree resources, and plan for urban trees. The grants have been matched with funding by communities and groups totaling $1,400,734, bringing the total effort to $2.4 million in just eight years.
The Tree Council, under Campanini's direction, and DEM have formed an extensive partnership to communicate not only why urban trees benefit society but also to improve the environment as a whole. Under Campanini's leadership, the Tree Council has trained 104 "Tree Stewards" in a comprehensive volunteer program with community officials that fosters urban tree planting programs.
Campanini has also worked aggressively for the City of Providence securing private donations to assist in the city's urban forestry program. Campanini received an award of merit in 1997 from the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council for outstanding public service toward the betterment of society. He also was a founding member and is still active in the RI Greenways Council.
At Monday's luncheon, which will be attended by Providence Mayor Vincent Cianci, DEM staff, members of the RI Tree Council, and David King of the Champlin Foundations, Reitsma will present Campanini with an engraved plaque. His name will also be added to another plaque featured prominently at DEM headquarters bearing the distinguished list of past recipients including Al Hawkes, former Executive Director of the Audubon Society of Rhode Island; The Champlin Foundations; Senator John Chafee; Louise Durfee, former DEM Director; the late John Lawrence, former Chief of DEM's Division of Agriculture and Resource Marketing; and Jan Sherman, Director of the Woonasquatucket River Greenway Project.