Paul Kimpling, of the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison (GMUG) National Forests' Paonia Ranger District has been awarded a 2017 Forest Service Volunteers & Service Leadership Award. The agency-wide award program recognizes partners, volunteers and staff for their work in the areas of Citizen Stewardship & Partnerships, Cultural Diversity, Enduring Service, Leadership and Restoration.
Through Kimpling's leadership the GMUG has been able to engage with key partners and secure funding for programs that involve youth, such as Every Kid in a Park (EKIP) and the 21st Century Conservation Corps (21CSC). As the crew leader of the Paonia Ranger District's Youth Conservation Corps (YCC), Paul collaborated with 21CSC member organizations, Western Colorado Conservation Corps and Student Conservation Corps, on joint projects showing the collective power of youth leading youth. He also coordinated with Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management Resource Specialists to share their natural resource expertise with the YCC in a variety of disciplines as well as organizing a rafting trip to a unique archeological site.
"Paul's drive and natural leadership has led to implementation of new partnerships and programs aimed at educating our local youth, " said Scott Armentrout, GMUG Forest Supervisor. "We are extremely pleased to have him on our team"