Local News

March 16, 2008

Fort Ti elects new president

Paine Jr. at helm for 2 years

TICONDEROGA -- The new president of the Fort Ticonderoga Board of Trustees will be banker and environmentalist Peter Paine Jr.

Paine, a Willsboro resident, is the eighth president of the fort, and succeeds Deborah Clarke Mars, for whom the new Deborah Clarke Mars Education Center has been named.

That project, creating a conference center with classroom space and an auditorium around the fort's original 1755 plan, will be dedicated in July during the French and Indian War 250th Anniversary Commemoration celebration.

Mars and her husband, Forrest Mars Jr., have said they will not participate in the building's dedication. She did not run for re-election to the board.

In a statement, Paine said he was looking forward to having fun as the fort's new president.

"I am happy to be here working with the fort's respected director, Nicholas Westbrook, his dedicated staff, my colleagues on the board and the Pell family. I look forward to maximizing the return on the transforming investment in the fort made by Forrest and Deborah Mars over the past several years. The eyes of the world will be focused on the astonishing events coming to the fort this summer."

Conserved by the Pell family since 1820, Fort Ticonderoga reopens May 10 for its 100th season as a museum. A centennial celebration is planned for 2009 along with the quadricentennial of explorer Samuel de Champlain's arrival.

Paine majored in history at Princeton University where he was the class valedictorian and selected as a Rhodes Scholar. He holds law degrees from Oxford University and Harvard Law School and is a member of the New York and English bars.

Paine is a retired partner of the international law firm Cleary, Gottleib, Steen & Hamilton.

For 35 years, Paine was involved in environmental issues in the Adirondacks, notably as a controversial commissioner on the Adirondack Park Agency Board. He was a principal author of the Adirondack Park Agency Act and an agency commissioner for 25 years.

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