Woodland: Trudeau ready to move forward in SL

Local and regional officials received some welcome news this week, as Trudeau Institute announced it will continue operations in Saranac Lake.

The decision by Trudeau's Board of Trustees to remain in Saranac Lake ends months of speculation that the biomedical research facility may move from the area.

Dr. David Woodland is president and director of Trudeau Institute. He said Tuesday that Trudeau is dedicated to Saranac Lake as it continues to develop its long-term plan.

According to Woodland, the strategic planning process at the institute caused a great deal of concern and anxiety for Trudeau's staff. He says the board's decision has brought a tremendous sense of relief.

But Woodland says a good organization needs to take stock from time-to-time and evaluate its goals for the future.

"Trudeau is a good organization and it does that," he said. "But it is a disruptive process and it does cause anxiety. In this case, we went through the process. A lot of factors were taken into consideration, not least of which was our deep roots in the Adirondacks. Finally, the decision was made that we would stay in the Adirondacks. I'm excited about that."

Lawmakers, like Congressman Bill Owens and Senator Charles Schumer, strongly supported Trudeau's decision to stay in Saranac Lake.

Schumer has pledged to direct federal funds to Trudeau for future projects. Woodland says he's grateful for that support.

"We're continuing our long-term planning for the growth of the institute," he said. "We're going to need help from our legislators, our community, friends, and all of the staff to make Trudeau Institute succeed and thrive in the Adirondacks in the future."

Woodland says the strategic report put together by the New England Consulting Group is a confidential document. He adds that he's not at liberty to say whether the board's decision to stay in Saranac Lake was swayed by that report.

Woodland notes that Trudeau will look to optimize its opportunities in the future, which may include exploring partnerships with other research facilities. But he stressed that the institute is fully committed to the Adirondacks as its past, present and future home.

On Tuesday, Chairman Benjamin Brewster and Vice Chairman Maury Pag s issued a statement expressing their - quote - "unequivocal and continued" support for Woodland.

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