ELIZABETHTOWN — The Adirondack Council Board of Directors has chosen William “Willie” Janeway as its next executive director.
Since 2007, Janeway has been regional director for the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Hudson Valley/Catskill Region.
The Adirondack Council is a non-partisan, nonprofit environmental research, education and advocacy organization whose mission is to ensure the ecological integrity and wild character of the Adirondack Park.
The council also focuses on conservation-minded, sustainable community planning and development.
Janeway will begin work in May, taking the reins from Acting Executive Director Diane W. Fish. She was appointed to the interim post in October, following the resignation of Brian Houseal, who had led the organization since 2002. Fish will return to her job as deputy director.
Adirondack Council Chairwoman Ann Carmel called Janeway “an accomplished conservationist with extensive experience in the Adirondack Park.
“The Adirondack Council is advancing strategies to combat acid rain, climate change, water pollution, the spread of invasive species and sprawling, poorly planned development,” Carmel said.
“We must inspire communities and nature to thrive together, improve management of public lands, increase incentives for stewardship of private lands and better support the Adirondack Park’s ecological integrity, wild character and resource-based economy. Willie’s talents and expertise are well suited to those challenges.”
Janeway graduated from St. Lawrence University in 1985 with a bachelor’s degree in economics and environmental studies.
He has experience with the Adirondack Mountain Club, Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission, Hudson River Greenway and the Nature Conservancy.
He co-founded and co-chaired the Friends of New York’s Environment, a coalition of more than 200 environmental, conservation, parks, environmental justice, farming and other community organizations that led the effort that expanded the Environmental Protection Fund from $125 million per year to more than $250 million.
“The challenges we face guarantee that our work, and the efforts of our partners and park stakeholders, will be critically important, as decisions are made that will impact the Adirondacks for generations to come,” Janeway said in a statement.
“I am confident that working with others we will make opportunities out of these challenges and ensure that the future of the Adirondack Park is bright.”
Janeway is an Adirondack 46er, having climbed the 46 major High Peaks. He won Adirondack Life’s Adirondacker Award for his early work building partnerships and protecting the Adirondacks.