I am very fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with a variety of stakeholders and interest groups who are committed to providing safe and responsible OHV recreation on public lands in California, whether in the SVRAs, other state park units that offer OHV opportunities, through the grants program, or the SNO-PARKs program.
Since my appointment as Deputy Director 7 ½ years ago, the program has made a number of advancements towards ensuring a sustainable program, which include:
Perhaps most significantly, in 2009, after intensive interaction and involvement from all communities of interest, we submitted our Strategic Plan to the Governor and the Legislature. This plan, which outlines a clear direction for the future, is based on the principles of sustainability, transparent decision-making, a commitment to working with volunteers and considering the needs and concerns of all our stakeholders, and sound data management to support informed decision-making. Many of you contributed to developing the Strategic Plan, and while there is still much to be done, it is something about we all can be proud. I leave knowing that the collective commitment to achieving the goals and objectives of the Strategic Plan will result in continuous improvements to the OHV program.
These accomplishments – and so many more – could not have been done without the involvement and support of all of you. Working for the Division is not just about having a job, but about a commitment to making a difference and the desire to contribute in a meaningful way. These are challenging and uncertain times, and only through the continued vigilance and active support of the community can the OHV program continue to meet its objective of providing for high-quality and sustainable OHV recreation in California.
Next year the Division will celebrate its 40th anniversary. In 1972, and now, the citizens of California recognize the importance of a well-managed program that provides OHV opportunities while protecting the environment. The work we do to provide responsible and sustainable OHV recreation is vital to maintaining California’s outstanding natural beauty. I can think of few goals that are so important.
As I make the transition back to the private sector, I do so with a much deeper appreciation for what it means to work in the public sector, serving the people of this state. It has been my honor to work with you in a program about which I care deeply.
California State Parks
Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Division