North Carolina

North Carolina

Kelley Van Druten Receives Statewide Outreach Award for Prescribed Fire Communications

January 2008

Chris Moorman (L), North Carolina Prescribed Fire Council Chairman presenting award to Kelley Van Druten in January.  Credit NCPFC

Chris Moorman (L), North Carolina Prescribed Fire Council Chairman
presenting award to Kelley Van Druten in January. Credit NCPFC

Wildland Urban Interface Specialist Kelley Van Druten of Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge was recently named "Prescribed Burner of the Year - 2007" by the North Carolina Prescribed Fire Council (NCPFC), a statewide coalition of agencies and organizations that promotes fire safety and management through the use of prescribed fire in the State of North Carolina.

Van Druten received the award for her work on the NCPFC’s Education and Outreach Subcommittee, which she has chaired since May 2006.

“Kelley always goes above and beyond the call of duty,” said District Fire Management Officer Tom Crews. “She's a first rate biologist, a first rate firefighter and, more importantly in this case, a first rate communicator."

Some of the accomplishments of Van Druten’s subcommittee include developing a Communications Plan and an informational brochure for the NCPFC. Working with the council chair, Van Druten helped develop and launch the NCPFC website, and assisted in the design of a tabletop display about the council.

Van Druten said an ongoing project of the subcommittee is to create a list of fire- dependent species in North Carolina. “We hope to have the list available soon which we will post on the web as an information and outreach tool,” she said.

She also said her subcommittee hopes to revamp the website and develop another brochure on prescribed burning targeted toward adults living near prescribed burn areas to inform them about what to expect.

“I was very surprised with the award since there have been so many people working together to get the Prescribed Fire Council going,” Van Druten said. “It was very gratifying to be recognized by such a great group of hard working people that are a part of the Council's Steering Committee. I hope I can continue to help out and make a difference for prescribed burning in all aspects of my job.”

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