News Details

County's Land Preservation Director Named Chair of Garden State Preservation Trust

(Woodbury, NJ) - Gloucester County Freeholder Director Robert M. Damminger and Freeholder Frank J. DiMarco announced today that Kenneth P. Atkinson was elected as Chairman to the Garden State Preservation Trust (GSPT). Ken Atkinson has been serving as Gloucester County's Director of Land Preservation since 2003.

"Gloucester County is proud that Ken will be leading the efforts of the Preservation Trust. Over the years the GSPT has provided more than $25 million to Gloucester County for farmland and open space preservation activities," said Freeholder Director Damminger.

"Ken's knowledge and experience as both the Director of our Office of Land Preservation and as a member of the GSPT will help continue to lead this important statewide program," said Director Damminger.

The Garden State Preservation Trust (GSPT) is the financing authority that provides the voter-approved funds for the preservation efforts of the State's Green Acres Program, Farmland Preservation Program, and Historic Preservation Program; in addition to the preservation efforts of the counties, municipalities, and non-profits throughout New Jersey.

Atkinson has overseen the preservation of more than 8,800 acres of farmland and open space since becoming Director of the Land Preservation program in 2003 helping to bring Gloucester County's total amount of permanently preserved land to more than 17,000 acres.

"We are fortunate to have someone of Ken's caliber leading our land preservation program. He has a strong relationship with our farmers and the farming community and helps guide them with many aspects of the program. He also works wonderfully with our municipalities to help them acquire open space. We look forward to a busy year in Land Preservation again in 2011," said Freeholder Frank J. DiMarco, the Freeholder Liaison to the Office of Land Preservation.

Freeholder DiMarco said that the Gloucester County Office of Land Preservation plans to close on an additional 24 farms in 2011, which will add approximately 1,400 acres to the County's overall total of preserved farmland and open space. In 2008 Mr. Atkinson was appointed as a member of the Garden State Preservation Trust by then New Jersey Assembly Speaker Joe Roberts. Mr. Atkinson also serves as the Administrator/Secretary of the Gloucester County Agriculture Development Board, which is the agency that hears and decides County Right-to-Farm disputes.