America's Great Outdoors Initiative

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On April 16, 2010, President Obama launched the America’s Great Outdoors (AGO) Initiative and charged the Secretaries of the Departments of the Interior and Agriculture, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality to develop a 21st-century conservation and recreation agenda that addresses these challenges.

AGO takes as its premise that lasting conservation solutions should rise from the American people—that the protection of our natural heritage is a non-partisan objective shared by all Americans.

The Initiative calls for a grassroots approach to protecting our lands and waters and connecting all Americans to their natural and cultural heritage.

AGO seeks to empower all Americans—citizens, young people, and representatives of community groups; the private sector; nonprofit organizations; and local, state, and tribal governments—to share in the responsibility to conserve, restore, and provide better access to our lands and waters in order to leave a healthy, vibrant outdoor legacy for generations yet to come.

Discussion Questions:

1. What aspects of this story did you find most compelling? (ideas, feelings, perceptions)

2. What might be the lasting effects of this work?

3. What did you learn about multi-generational communities and their perception of public lands?

4. What does it mean to this case study that Jeremiah shares his personal story?

Initiative in Action

In 2012, Jeremiah Martinez, Supervisory Natural Resource Specialist, in Recreation, U.S. Forest Service located at the Conejos Peak Ranger District in Colorado, presented this case study to participants of the Partnership and Community Collaboration Academy. 

Jeremiah's power point presentation made such a powerful impression; he was selected to record his case study of the America's Great Outdoors Initiative at the BLM National Training Center so that it could be more broadly shared with his partners in the community and future Academy participants.  

Partnership and Community Collaboration

The partners that came together to give mean to the America's Great Outdoors Initiative included representatives of:

Southwest Conservation Corps, Costilla County, Conejos County, South Conejos School District, North Conejos School District, Centennial High School, Sanford High School, Sierra Grande High School, Trinidad Junior College, Adams State University, Ranchers of privately-held lands, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service and the area's youth.

Working together, they provide us with a stellar example of stewardship and a compelling story of the relationship between land and people.

Jeremiah Martinez

Jeremiah Martinez

Supervisory Natural Resource Specialist (Recreation)

Conejos Peak Ranger District, CO, USFS

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