Property Rights Foundation of America®

44. National Parks and Conservation Association/
New York Parks and Conservation Association, Inc.

(Latest update 2001)

National Parks and Conservation headquarters
1015 31st Street. NW
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 223-6722

New York Parks and Conservation Association, Inc.
(Separate corporation from the national organization)
29 Elk Street, 3rd Floor
Albany, NY 12207
(800) 345-5437
(518) 434-1583
Web site:

Key Personnel

N.Y. Parks & Conservation Assn.
Richard White-Smith, Exec. Dir.


National Parks & Conservation Assn.
260,000 (1992)


National Parks and Conservation Association (1992)
Revenue: $9.1 million
IRS status 50l(c)(3)

New York Parks & Conservation, Inc. (1998)
Assets: $108,830
Income: $342,554
(files an IRS 990)

Coalition Involvements

Adirondack Council (NPCA was a member of founding coalition, present relationship unknown)
National Park Service

Organizational Description and Goals

"New York Parks and Conservation Association is a statewide is a statewide non-profit organization defending and promoting New York's parks, open space and historic treasures while also helping communities create new parks and greenways." - IRS report

"Current major programs" are:
"Greenways New York"
"Canalway Trail Partnership Project" -Web site

Board of Directors

New York Parks and Conservation Association (1999)

Richard White-Smith, Exec. Dir.
Jeannette G. Bamford
Kent L. Barwick
Robert Budliger
Charles E. Dorkey, III
Richard S. Hawks
Robert J. Kafin
Judith M. Labelle
James L. LaRocca
Douglas R. McCuen
Arthur V. Savage (Former APA commissioner)
Alice Kryzan
Rowland Stebbins, III
Stephanie H. Wacholder
Robin Dropkin
David P. Adler
Robert Kafin
Michael V. Barrett
Paul M. Bray (Attorney, Assembly environmental bill writer, active for over 30 years on environmental issues in New York, including APA legislation)
Martin Carovano
Kathleen Ellsworth
Rowland Stebbins
Alice J. Kryzan
M. Peter Lanahan, Jr.
J. Scott Lewendon
Peter L. Rhulen
Arthur Savage (Former APA commissioner)
David F. Shaffer
Samara F. Swanston
Phillip Weinberg
Jane Pelson Miller
Bernadine Welsch


National Parks Association magazine


(1) Background

The National Parks and Conservation Association was founded in 1919 by Stephen Mather, the first head of the National Park Service. The organization and the Park Service have a classical revolving door arrangement..

Devoted to expanding the National Parks and the many other units owned by the National Park Service, the National Parks and Conservation Association is the alter-ego of the Park Service. They do the advocacy studies, announce the revelations, do the professional lobbying, and stimulate and coordinate citizen activism, with the twin goals of expanding the National Park system and eliminating visitor access to the National Parks.

(2) The "Adirondack National Park" issue

The concept of making the Adirondacks into a National Park crops up periodically. This is widely dismissed as a far-fetched concept, but two close calls occurred during this generation.

The first was when Nelson Rockefeller was governor. His brother Laurence pushed the proposal for the Adirondack Mountains National Park, and it got through the published study stage. Environmentalists opposed the plan, mainly because the area contemplated, the High Peaks, was too small to suit them. This was short-sighted from the point of view of their goals to expand government ownership of land for preservation, because they should have realized that, just as the Blue Line was expanded outward from the High Peaks over the past 100 years, the National Park Boundaries could be enlarged. The other opposition came from the Adirondack people. Perhaps as a result of the close call with the National Park proposal, the second proposal, to pass the very restrictive Adirondack Park Agency law, had easier sailing in the Legislature than otherwise, coming on the heels of a more radical proposal.

The second close call was during the late 80's when the National Parks and Conservation Association completed the most voluminous study ever of the prospects for new National Parks. Volume Eight of New Parks-New Promise (1988) analyzed the pros and cons of an Adirondack National Park. The "New Area Brief" concluded:

"Recommendation: Continue existing management; NPS monitoring of resource conditions; NPS technical assistance where appropriate; inclusion of portions within the national park system if opportunity arises." (p. V-2)

More than the High Peaks, the so-called "Bob Marshall Wilderness" now planned for completion as the rest of the major acreages of Whitney lands are negotiated, would no doubt be a perfect area from the point of view of environmentalists to add to the hundreds of units administrated by the National Park Service

(3) Greenlining

Since the Adirondack Park is one of the world's preeminent greenline parks, it is worth noting that the National Parks and Conservation Association is the nation's preeminent activist greenlining organization. With the goal of controlling lands inside of a greenline which are privately owned at no expense to the government, it is no surprise that National Parks and Conservation Association has a subsidiary or affiliated ("independent") office in Albany, convenient to lobby on Adirondack issues.

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