Last Monday Cynthia Henderson, a friend for over 20 years, past secretary of Florida Department of Business Regulation and now a lobbyist, arranged appointments for me with the following people in Tallahassee:
- Samantha Browne, DEP, Bureau Chief, Division of Recreation and Parks, Office of Greenways and Trails, and Doug Alderson, Assistant Bureau Chief.
- Noah Valenstein, Environmental Policy Advisor to the Governor.
- Jim Wood, Carmen Monroy and Michael Wickersheim with DEP.
We told these folk that we are on a mission to answer the question: How do we complete the Florida National Scenic Trail? The U.S. Forest Service in Tallahassee is the facilitating agency of government in fulfilling its mandate as set out by Congress in the National Trails System Act, as amended. The Florida Trail Association is the non-profit organization whose mission has been to build and maintain the Florida Trail. Now we want the State of Florida to contribute.
Our trips to Tallahassee are geared toward raising the awareness of all the appropriate agencies about the need to complete the trail and to encourage participation where appropriate. The Friends of the Florida Trail intends to be a squeaky wheel in the years ahead.