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National Awards and Recognition

June, 2008: National Recreation Trail Designation
The Black Canyon Trail was designated as a National Recreation Trail in June, 2008.  This is a very prestigious honor, as only the best trails in the country are eligible for this classification.  Achieving NRT designation was made possible by our dedicated volunteers and the outstanding support of the Bureau of Land Management staff at the Phoenix District Office, all of whom we thank sincerely.
May, 2008: Making A Difference National Award

Above photo: Babs Sanders, BCTC; Helen Hankins, Arizona State Deputy Director for the Bureau of Land Management; Linda Slay, Bob Cothern and Sonia Overholser of the BCTC; Henri Bisson, National Deputy Director of the Bureau of Land Management.

Volunteer Winners

Black Canyon Trail Coalition, Arizona

Since 1969, BLM-Phoenix has been developing the Black Canyon Trail as a hiking, mountain biking, and equestrian trail system in the Bradshaw Mountain foothills of central Arizona. In 2004, volunteers organized the Black Canyon Trail Coalition (BCTC), a non-profit alliance of equestrian, mountain bicycling, hiking, and off-highway vehicle (OHV) organizations, to take up the cause of creating a world-class trail experience in a natural desert mountain setting. Over the course of the 2007 trail-building season alone, BCTC volunteers constructed 2.5 miles of new single-track trail, using hand tools, in only fifteen workdays. This new construction, which connected to the main alignment of the trail in December, represents completion of fifty percent of the non-motorized trails in the system. Among many other contributions, Coalition volunteers also surveyed, staked, designed, and constructed the Black Canyon City Trailhead, and coordinated with several administrative entities to link with other non-motorized trails. In its short tenure as an organization, the Coalition has been awarded a 2006 “Take Pride in America” award, as well as a local award from the Black Canyon Fire Department, which noted that the Coalition’s “energy and spirit of selfless volunteerism closely parallel those of the volunteer firefighters of the department.”

September, 2006: Take Pride in America National Award

Above photo left to right: Michelle Cangelosi, Director of Take Pride in America Program; Dirk Kempthorne, U.S. Secretary of the Interior; Bob Cothern, Linda Slay, Babs Sanders and Shareen Goodroad of the Black Canyon Trail Coalition; Rich Hanson of the Bureau of Land Management; Desiree Sayle, Director of the USA Freedom Corps.

BLACK CANYON TRAIL COALITION NAMED AS RECIPIENT OF 2006 TAKE PRIDE IN AMERICA® NATIONAL AWARD (Black Canyon City, AZ) Take Pride in America Program Executive Director Michelle Cangelosi named the Black Canyon Trail Coalition as a recipient of the 2006 Take Pride in America National Award in the Non-Profit Organization category. Twenty-eight individuals and groups were honored for their outstanding volunteer efforts on Federal, state and local public lands at an awards ceremony held September 14 at the Department of the Interior in Washington, DC.

“It is indeed an honor and a privilege to be selected for this award from such a large number of deserving nominees across the country,” said Black Canyon Trail Coalition Secretary and spokesman Bob Cothern. “So many individuals and groups donate hundreds of hours annually to preserve, protect and improve public lands for the benefit of all, it must have been a very difficult task to select only twenty-eight for this special recognition.” The Take Pride in America National Awards are given annually and this year’s winners were selected from nominations representing individuals, groups and projects in 32 different states. The judges, representatives of government agencies within the Department of the Interior, scored the applications based upon the scope of their work, the measurable impact of their results, their collaborative partnership and their demonstration of the mission of Take Pride.

“These Take Pride award winners embody the mission of Take Pride by accepting responsibility and taking action to enhance our public lands,” Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne said. “It is through their stewardship that they are creating a lasting legacy within their community.” “The nominations were outstanding, as we learned more about the hard work and generous donation of time by volunteers across our country. This is an exciting time of year because we can celebrate and thank volunteers for their service to our public lands,” Cangelosi said. “It is an honor to invite the Black Canyon Trail Coalition to Washington, DC to be recognized for their continued commitment to our parks, refuges and recreation areas.”

The Black Canyon Trail Coalition is a non-profit organization of volunteers from hiking, equestrian, mountain bicycling, off-highway vehicle and community organizations working in cooperation with government agencies such as the Bureau of Land Management, the National Park Service and the National Forest Service to create and maintain a world-class trail system in a natural desert mountain setting in central Arizona north of Phoenix. For more information, visit their website at http://www.bctaz.com. Take Pride in America, an initiative of the U.S. Department of the Interior, is a nationwide partnership program which inspires Americans to volunteer in caring for their public lands. Their goal is to instill an active sense of ownership and responsibility in every citizen for natural, cultural and historic resources, and to support and recognize the efforts of those who volunteer for public lands.

Through a web-based search engine, Take Pride offers a database for short-term and long-term volunteer projects on public lands, as well as assistance for project planning. Additionally, Take Pride rewards exceptional volunteer service by individuals and groups with awards and appreciation certificates. For more information, visit www.TakePride.gov.