APA honors former chairman

RAY BROOK - The Adirondack Park Agency recently honored former chairman James C. Frenette, Tupper Lake, for his years of service to the Adirondack Park and wished him a happy 80th birthday.

During the agency's Feb. 12 meeting, the board passed a resolution recognizing the former chairman's extraordinary leadership, dedication, unselfish service and wise counsel to the Adirondack Park Agency.

Chairman Curtis F. Stiles said, "This resolution really honors Jim Frenette on his 80th birthday but talks to a lot of things that are very important to the agency, to community and to the Adirondack Park in general."

Stiles referred to Frenette as the "quintessential Adirondacker," who held many positions in his 80 years, including elementary school teacher, town of Altamont councilman and justice of the peace, Franklin County legislator, skier, historian, volunteer, outdoorsman, husband and father.

The resolution reads, in part, "Throughout his life he has exhibited uncommon wisdom, balance, expertise and good humor in discharging his duties as a citizen and public servant. Serving as APA commissioner from 1992 to 2002 and as chairman from 2002 to 2003, Jim was the eloquent and probing voice representing local Adirondack concerns as well as the rich history and promise for the future represented by the Forest Preserve in the Adirondack Park."

Frenette received a copy of the resolution attached to a plaque, plus a special pin that reads, "State of New York Department of Adirondack Conservation."

"The pin looks like a trail marker, but it really says 'trail maker,' and I think that's the appropriate context here," Stiles said.

Before the meeting, Frenette recalled all the names of commissioners and designees he served with during his 11 years on the board.

"Every one of those people had a common thread. They all had a love of the Adirondacks and the will and the expertise to come and sit here," Frenette said.

It is that continual turnover of qualified board members, each with their own set of skills and experiences from all corners of the Adirondack Park, that gives the agency strength to complete its mission, he said, noting the nameplates change, not the board's commitment to the Adirondack Park.

Frenette quoted a saying and applied it to his experiences at the APA saying, "Keep the ship in the channel and the wind in the sails ... The staff keeps the ship in the channel, and the board puts the wind in the sails."

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