Conservation is Collaboration

A message from SCA President Dale Penny

If there’s one thing I have learned over my career, and particularly here at SCA, it’s that partnerships are uniquely powerful enterprises. They can enrich and elevate on a scale without rival.
SCA has been built on partnerships with government entities, nonprofits, corporations, foundations, universities, alumni, staff and generous friends such as you. This spirit of collaboration and teamwork has been the foundation of Liz Putnam’s “simple idea.” In this same spirit, I want to share with you my decision to retire later this year after 16 years with SCA and more than 40 in the field of youth development. The SCA board has formed a search committee and I will continue in my current role until August or a successor is chosen and the transition is complete.
SCA has undergone historic change over the past 16 years – doubling the number of youth we engage in service to 4,200 per year, increasing the percentage of young people of color in our programs to more than a third of our membership, and linking our programs in a progressive continuum from early high school crews through graduate level internships and on into conservation careers.
The youth conservation movement is also at an historic pivot point with more individuals and corporations supporting such bold initiatives as the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps, recently announced by Secretary Jewell with the support of a $1M gift from American Eagle Outfitters. I am pleased that American Eagle points to their experience with SCA for sparking their “love affair” with corps. The outlook for all youth service programs on public lands has never been brighter.
I look forward to working with SCA in a different capacity after my retirement and hope you will continue to join us.  Conservation and collaboration, you see, go hand in hand.
Thank you.