Introducing Adrian Benepe: 2020 Georgia Trail Summit Keynote Speaker

adrian_benepe_headshotAdrian Benepe, is a Senior Vice President and Director of National Programs for The Trust for Public Land, Adrian Benepe is one of the nation’s experts on the nexus of the public, private, and non-profit sectors in public space development and management. Born and raised in New York, Benepe worked for twenty-seven years in the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation, serving as Park Commissioner for eleven years under Mayor Michael Bloomberg, prior to joining The Trust for Public Land. During that time he oversaw a major expansion of the city’s parks system, including restoring historic parks such as Central Park and Battery Park, adding 730 acres of new parkland including Hudson River Park, Brooklyn Bridge Park, and the High Line, and laying the groundwork for an additional 2,000 acres of parks.

In his career, Benepe has worked in leadership roles on park and public space conservation, design, construction, and operation, and in the areas of city planning, arts and culture, historic preservation, and landscape and urban design. He also helped to create or empower several New York civic organizations, from Business Improvement Districts to park conservancies, including the Madison Square Conservancy, Jamaica Bay Conservancy, Historic House Trust of NYC, and Fort Tryon Park Trust.

Previously, Benepe served at NYC Parks as Director of Art and & Antiquities, Director of Natural Resources and & Horticulture, Operations Coordinator, Director of Public Information, and Urban Park Ranger. Benepe also served as Vice President for Issues and & Public Affairs at the Municipal Art Society and Director of the Annual Fund & Major Gifts for the New York Botanical Garden.

In addition to a bachelor’s degree in English Literature from Middlebury College, Benepe holds a Master’s degree in Journalism from Columbia University, where he was awarded a Pulitzer Fellowship. In 1987, he participated in the Mayor’s Top 40 Program, and in 1992, he was selected to participate in Leadership New York, a program of the Coro Foundation.

At the 2020 Georgia Trail Summit, he will discuss how cities and counties use trails to drive economic development and quality of life.

Introducing Chuck Flink: 2019 Georgia Trail Summit Keynote Speaker

chuck Flink 3

Nation’s Leading Greenway Development Planner to Keynote at 2019 Green Trail Summit: How will Chuck Flink’s expert perspective inspire your thinking on the future of Georgia’s trails?

Charles A. “Chuck” Flink literally wrote the book on greenway development; he co-authored “Greenways: A Guide to Planning, Design and Development,” which received a 1994 Merit Award in Communications from the American Society of Landscape Architects and is cited by the American Planning Association as “the best single reference” on greenway development.”

The Georgia Trail Summit Committee is excited to welcome Flink to our gathering in May. Widely regarded as one of America’s leading greenway planners, Flink is President of Greenways Incorporated, an international consulting firm based in North Carolina. His successes include plans for more than 250 communities including:

  • Susquehanna River Greenway,
  • Miami River Greenway (FL),
  • Charleston County (SC) Greenbelt Plan,
  • American Tobacco Trail (NC),
  • River of Grass Greenway (FL),
  • Las Vegas Open Space and Trails Plan, and the
  • North Carolina Bike/Walk Transportation Plan.

In 1995, Flink received an Environmental Excellence Award from the US Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration for the Swift Creek Recycled Greenway, the nation’s first greenway built from recycled trash. In 2001, he received a Merit Award from the American Society of Landscape Architects for his work on the Grand Canyon Greenway project.

Flink holds a bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Landscape Architecture from North Carolina State University’s College of Design, where he currently serves as Executive in Residence. He served as Chairman of the Board for American Trails, Washington, D.C. and Chair of the Board of Trustees for the East Coast Greenway Alliance, a 3,000-mile urban trail that extends from Calis, Maine to Key West, Florida. Additionally, Flink is a Fellow in the American Society of Landscape Architects Council of Fellows, the 2006 Distinguished Alumnus of the College of Design at North Carolina State University and co-author of “Trails for the Twenty-First Century.”

Flink will bring broad and diverse perspective to our dialogue and surely inspire us to define a collaborative and bold plan for the future of Georgia’s trails.

Call for Proposals Open

The Summit aims to inspire future projects and celebrate success connecting the public to trails and waterways around Georgia. With this goal in mind, our 2019 theme is From Ideas to Action. Proposals should focus on compelling ideas and the implementation or tactical action that followed them up.

We particularly encourage proposals that inform the following tracks:

  • Planning
  • Building Partnerships
  • Implementation

Submission Deadline: Monday, November 19, 2018

Check out the Call for Proposals page for more information, proposal guidelines, and submission forms.