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Jonathan Howes Reappointed to N.C. Parks and Recreation Authority

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Michael F. Easley, Governor
William G. Ross, Jr., Secretary

Release Note: 
Charlie Peek
Release Date: 
Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Jonathan Howes Reappointed to N.C. Parks and Recreation Authority

RALEIGH --Gov. Mike Easley has reappointed Jonathan B. Howes to a three-year term as chairman of the Parks and Recreation Authority. The 11-member authority is the governing body of the Parks and Recreation Trust Fund, which provides funding for the state parks system and for a program of grants to local governments for parks development.

Howes, Secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources from 1993-97, has been the authority's chairman since 1998 and was instrumental in establishing the scope and direction of its work.

"Jonathan was a central figure in the creation of the trust fund and his influence has been keenly felt. As a result, every state park has benefited in terms of land acquisition and opportunities for education and recreation, and almost every county in the state has benefited by new parks and green space," said Lewis Ledford, director of the Division of Parks and Recreation.

"His commitment to the trust fund's mission has infused the authority with a particular sense of purpose, and that has made it very effective."

In its 12-year history, the trust fund has set aside more than $52 million for land acquisition for state parks and state natural areas and provided more than $100 million for 159 capital projects in the parks. More than $70 million has been awarded in 418 grants to local governments for parks and recreation projects. And, more than $8.5 million has been earmarked for a public beach and coastal access program.

"I am very proud of what has been accomplished with assistance from the trust fund," Howes said. "And, I'm grateful to Governor Easley for giving me the opportunity to continue this important work. Our state is a better place because of the conservation trust funds, but much remains to be done."

Howes is a special assistant to the chancellor and adjunct professor of Regional Planning and Public Policy at UNC at Chapel Hill. He is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration, a former director of the Triangle Land Conservancy, board chair of North Carolina Audubon and chair of the community advisory board for WUNC Radio

Howes is a recipient of the Order of the Long Leaf Pine. He served as mayor of Chapel Hill from 1987-91.

A native of Knoxville, TN, Howes earned a bachelor's degree in history and political science at Wittenberg University, a master's degree in regional planning from the University of North Carolina and a master's degree in public administration from Harvard University. He and his wife Mary live in Chapel Hill. They have three children and eight grandchildren.