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He started his career in the family real estate and hotel business in Florida from which his concern for the environment steered him in public life. He has served six Florida governors and two presidents in many positions, including terms as chairman of the Florida Department of Air and Water Pollution Control, and Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior for Fish, Wildlife and Parks. Beyond his government service, he helped found 1000 Friends of Florida and has served as both president and chairman of the board of the organization. He currently or has served on the boards of the Atlantic Salmon Federation, Natural Resources Defense Council, National Geographic Society, Yellowstone National Park, Everglades Foundation and Hope Rural School.

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Nathaniel P. Reed’s Memorial Service

Nathaniel P. Reed’s Memorial Service 
Saturday, December 8th, 4PM
Hobe Sound Bible College 
11298 SE Gomez Avenue, Hobe Sound

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

TROUBLE IN PARADISE


Florida's environment is the foundation of our quality of life and our economy. It's a treasured asset for longtime residents and a magnet for new Floridians and tourists, both arriving in huge numbers.

But Florida's environment faces serious risks. It's critical that all of our state's elected leaders are aware of these risks and ready to face them with decisive action. Time is of the essence. Moving decisively on these issues now is essential to avoid disaster.

Today, August 15, a coalition of environmental and public interest organizations in Florida are releasing a report entitled "Trouble in Paradise," available at http://troubleinparadiseflorida.org/.  This report outlines six major statewide issues threatening our state's environment and our residents' quality of life. The report also identifies four of Florida's many natural resource areas that are at risk and deserve special attention from state leaders.  It was spearheaded by the late Nathaniel Pryor Reed, who founded 1000 Friends of Florida and continued to serve as its Chairman Emeritus until his passing.
 
"Trouble in Paradise" doesn't just spotlight environmental problems. It also lays out a path to solutions by naming six essential policy goals. To achieve them, the next governor will need to appoint committed, capable leaders to key state and regional agencies. Legislators will need to provide the necessary legislation and funding, and local leaders will need to tackle these issues in their communities and regions.

We hope all candidates for office will seriously consider its diagnoses of our state's environmental problems and follow its prescription for positive change.  We also hope all voters will support candidates who will play a leadership role in addressing Florida's growing environmental crises.

While the challenges facing Florida are many, now is the time to chart a better, more sustainable course for our beloved state's future.  

Please take some time to read Trouble in Paradise, ask your candidates for office about their positions on these critical environmental issues, and vote accordingly.  Florida's future depends on it.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Obituary of Nathaniel P. Reed

Nathaniel Pryor Reed died July 11, 2018, eleven days short of his 85th birthday. He leaves his wife of 54 years, Alita, two sons, Adrian and Nathaniel Jr., a daughter, Lia, and five grandchildren.

In his 2017 book Travels on the Green Highway -- An Environmentalist’s Journey, Reed quoted his mother as proclaiming that he came into the world “casting a fishing rod.”

 
He exited the same way.

Reed had just landed and released a bright, 16-pound Atlantic salmon from his beloved Grand Cascapedia River in Quebec when he fell and struck his head on rocks. He never regained consciousness.

Shortly before that trip he had said to a friend, “If I die, I hope it’s there. ”Reed -- a lifelong Republican who proudly upheld the traditional values of his party (such as conserving) -- was arguably the most eloquent and effective advocate for fish, wildlife and nature of the 20th and 21st centuries.
 
When the odds seemed hopelessly stacked against him he stood tall, literally and figuratively. And more often than not he won. He worked for six Florida governors and two U.S. presidents, leading the charge on most every major environmental battle that came up.

He founded 1000 Friends of Florida (and served both as president and board chair). He also served on the boards of the Everglades Foundation (which he helped found), The Nature Conservancy, the Atlantic Salmon Federation, the Natural Resources Defense Council, the National Audubon Society, Yellowstone National Park, the National Geographic Society and the South Florida Water Management District.
 

Polluters and developers weren’t wrong when they called him a “zealot.” But what made Reed unique among zealots were his world-class people skills. He was adept at building alliances even with former adversaries. He understood when to take charge and when to delegate, when to speak and when to listen, when to demand action and when to be patient. He wrote long, eloquent letters and emails to most everyone he worked with or even against.
 

On his return to Florida from military service in 1960 Reed was appalled and outraged at the environmental destruction that confronted him. He promptly joined The Nature Conservancy, which had protected the Mianus River Gorge near the Reed family home in Greenwich, Connecticut. (In due course he would become vice chair of the Conservancy’s board and one of its most generous supporters.) And he joined every “Friends” group of every river, beach, lake and unique landscape.
 

In 1965 he met Florida gubernatorial candidate Claude Kirk Jr., a powerful ally who would provide him the political muscle to stop, or at least slow, much of the destruction of Florida’s fish and wildlife habitat.
 

For Kirk’s stance against what was widely viewed as “progress” the candidate was dismissed by pundits as a “fool” and maverick.
 

But, as Kirk’s most energetic and effective campaigner, Reed propelled him to a decisive win. In return Kirk hired him as his environmental advisor at the same yearly salary Reed would demand from all employers for the rest of his life -- $1 (because, as he accurately noted, no one he knew was less in need of money).
 
Kirk gave Reed broad responsibilities to acquire, restore and protect habitat, clean up industrial and municipal pollution, prevent wetlands drainage and take a stance against what Reed called Florida’s credo of “growth-at-any-cost” and “rape-and-run, avarice and greed.”
 
Among Reed’s more impressive Florida victories was stopping the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from completing its 182-mile-long Cross-Florida Barge Canal, one of the most destructive boondoggles ever perpetrated on U.S. taxpayers. The project would have destroyed the entire length of the fish-and-wildlife-rich Ocklawaha River that collects water from a 2,800-square-mile sanctuary for vanishing plants and animals, many found nowhere else.
 
There would have been vast impoundments connected by excavated channels and accessed by five locks. The giant gutter would have run from Jacksonville south and upstream on the St. Johns River (to be dredged), overland to the Ocklawaha (to be dredged and impounded), to a point near Silver Springs (thereby destroying most of the Silver River), then overland again to the Withlacoochee River (to be channelized, dredged, and impounded), and on to Yankeetown and the Gulf of Mexico.
 

Kirk had endorsed the project until Reed sternly set him straight.
 
“What’s this canal that people are complaining about,” President Nixon inquired of Kirk in October 1970. “Are you building it?”
 

“No, you are,” Kirk replied.

Reed and his allies (including the National Audubon Society, which ran a piece in its magazine exposing the environmental costs of the Cross-Florida Barge Canal) ultimately convinced Nixon to kill the project, nearly a third of which had been completed. Some of the destruction persists in the festering, weed-choked deadwater impounded by Rodman Dam, the only dam in the nation without even an alleged function. But there is mounting pressure to remove it.
 

Reed played the key role in preventing the Dade County Port Authority from constructing a jetport with six-mile-long runways on 39-square miles of Everglades it had acquired just north of the National Park. The plan also included a 1,000-foot-wide transportation corridor from coast to coast, a high-speed mass-transit system, and a “recreational waterway” for airboats.

He enlisted The Nature Conservancy and other partners to purchase Lignumvitae Key and place it under state ownership, thereby saving this vital wildlife habitat and Florida’s finest bonefish flat. The previous owners had planned a causeway from U.S. 1 that would have unleashed an orgy of slap-dash development and required the dredging of Florida Bay.
 

Reed was instrumental in the creation of Big Cypress National Reserve, east of Naples.

Had it not been for Reed and the allies he stood with and inspired, Biscayne Bay would now look like Pompano Beach or worse. Instead it’s a national park, teeming with aquatic and terrestrial life including one of the world’s largest coral reefs and the East Coast’s longest stretch of mangrove forest.

Nixon liked Reed’s style and, especially, his stellar reputation in the Democrat-riddled environmental community. So he hired him as his Assistant Secretary for Fish, Wildlife and National Parks.

“I don’t give a damn about the environment,” Reed quoted Nixon as telling him. “I have other priorities. I want a brilliant record, better than Kennedy’s and I don’t want to be bothered by you or anybody else.”

“What’s this stuff I’ve been hearing about called DDT and what should we do about it?” Nixon continued.

“Mr. President,” Reed replied, “it’s a nasty biocide that’s killing our wildlife and maybe us. We need to ban it; and if you disagree, I’m not interested in the job.” Nixon told him to make it happen, and he did.
 
Nearly as insidious as DDT was a biocide called Compound 1080, used by ranchers to kill coyotes, bobcats and cougars but which also killed bald eagles, golden eagles, foxes, badgers, pet dogs and every feathered and furred creature that scavenged poisoned predators or even the poisoned scavengers.

It had been Compound 1080 that extirpated wolverines from the contiguous states. Reed got it banned; and wolverines began their recovery, ongoing to this day.

Reed helped permanently protect 80 million acres of Alaska.

Had it not been for Reed, America would be without the Marine Mammals Protection Act, the intact and expanded Redwoods National Park, the Endangered Species Act and the Clean Water Act.
 

In 1972, when word came down that powerful polluters had prevailed on Nixon to veto the Clean Water Act, Reed announced his resignation. But the president’s Chief Domestic Advisor, John Ehrlichman, told him that Congress would probably override the veto. Congress did; and Reed stayed on, continuing his environmental leadership under Presidents Nixon and Ford.

At our first and best loved national park, Yellowstone, Reed was dismayed to see grizzly bears feasting on garbage. The park had even erected grandstands at dumps for the public to view these obese, semi-domesticated caricatures of a magnificent, wild species.
\Two biologists, John and Frank Craighead, had been studying Yellowstone grizzlies. Passionately and abusively they opposed Reed’s and park officials’ plan to wean the bears of garbage. Without garbage, they proclaimed, the bears would starve and, as they starved, they’d attack visitors. When Reed and the park presented scientific evidence to the contrary, the Craigheads took their fight to the sympathetic media.
 
The Craigheads’ constant and increasingly venomous criticisms had not been peer reviewed and were therefore in violation of federal rules. So Reed and his people eventually saw fit to revoke the Craigheads’ research permits and evict them from the park. Reed was savaged by the media.

Yet when the park closed the dumps and placed bear-proof lids on garbage cans there was no evidence of increased bear mortality or attacks. If any garbage-dependent bears quietly succumbed, they were swiftly replaced by wild bears from Yellowstone and the five surrounding national forests -- prime grizzly habitat that totaled about 12 million acres.

What’s more, the park had documented loss of numerous bear cubs to male grizzlies when mothers were distracted by the dump smorgasbords.
 
Today Yellowstone is without garbage-eating circus bears. All grizzlies now function in a complex and complete ecosystem. And their recovery has been one of the great success stories of the Endangered Species Act.
 
No one ever heard the words “I told you so” from Nathaniel Reed. Despite the abuse heaped on him by the Craigheads, his response was to publicly salute them for “their innovative work that has led to incredible advances in radio telemetry and LANDSAT satellite imagery.” And in 1979, while serving on the board of the National Geographic Society, he recalled having “the pleasure of voting for the brothers to receive the Society’s coveted John Oliver La Gorce medals.
 
After Reed’s federal service he returned to Florida, continuing his effective environmental activism, fighting tirelessly for fish, wildlife, the Everglades, clean air and clean water. Despite mounting health issues, he never slacked off.
 

In his preface to Travels on the Green Highway -- An Environmentalist’s Journey, Reed announced that he was “closing out” his life. His friends, allies and acolytes didn’t believe it. But he knew more than they did.
 

His legacy lives in the beautiful wild creatures and places that will brighten this planet and the lives of Americans and visitors to America living and yet unborn.
 

Here is what the environmental community is saying about the Nathaniel Pryor Reed and the gifts he has bestowed to the nation and world:

Mary Barley, former chair and current board member of the Everglades Foundation, chair of the Everglades Trust and vice chair of the National Parks Conservation Association: “We have lost a great American. Affectionately known as NPR, he was a man who embodied the best values of America. He fought as hard for critters as he did for people. He was my friend, my fishing partner on [Norway’s] Alta River, best story teller ever and an American original. I always wondered ‘why did all his travel diaries begin with Nat contracting and overcoming some diabolical illness.’ Ooooh I shall miss him sooo very much.”

Mark Tercek, CEO of The Nature Conservancy: “Nat Reed was a conservation giant, a patriot, and a true gentleman. Nat fought hard for what he believed in and never backed down from a tough fight, especially when the future of our environment was at stake. He lived a very full life, and he did so with grace and courage. He was a talented civic leader, and he graciously extended this leadership to The Nature Conservancy as an active member of the Board of Directors, Vice Chair, and generous supporter. Nat will be missed by all who knew him and all at TNC. I feel so fortunate to have known him. May you rest in peace, Nat.”

Julie Wraithmell, Audubon Florida’s Executive Director: “Reed was a giant of a conservationist, with his fingerprints on many of the most significant national conservation accomplishments of the last 60 years. Florida and our Everglades were fortunate to have his heart and his talents.”

Paul Jones, one of America’s most generous environmental philanthropists and a leading supporter of the Everglades Foundation: “Every moment with Nat was a teaching moment. He was hands down the wisest man I ever met.”

Dan Lufkin, Reed’s friend, ally and prominent environmentalist: “Nat Reed had the commitment, intelligence, and courage to lead in often times unpopular environmental positions. He did it from his governmental roles as Assistant Secretary of the US Department of the Interior for Fish, Wildlife and Parks, and in the South Florida Water Management District. And he did it every day for six decades as a private citizen. He was a man of extraordinary integrity and friendship.” (In 2017 the National Audubon Society awarded Reed its Dan Lufkin Prize for Environmental Leadership “for his lifelong commitment to conservation and role in protecting America’s Everglades.”)

Amos Eno, Executive Director of the Land Conservation Assistance Network, Reed’s close friend, longtime speech writer and his special assistant at Interior from 1973 to 1976: “A distillation of NPR and his legacy is that he was the epitome and personification of Republican leadership on environmental issues and he carried that torch forward from the Nixon/Ford administrations through succeeding Republican administrations and dragged it into the 21st century.”

Bill Taylor, president of the Atlantic Salmon Federation: “Nat was a giant in conservation, and not just Atlantic salmon conservation, he was a leader in the preservation of our natural world. He was a deep thinker, strategist and fighter. He left a lasting legacy at the Atlantic Salmon Federation and his fingerprints are all over many of our most important salmon conservation victories.”
 

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL), from the Senate floor, hailing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ support for the $1.6 billion reservoir project to treat polluted water before it enters the Everglades: “It saddens me so much to announce … the death of one of the nation’s true environmental champions. Nat and I have been so focused on advancing this new reservoir project south of Lake Okeechobee... It would be a fitting tribute to name that project in Nat Reed’s honor.”

Doug Wheeler, Reed’s deputy at Interior from 1972 to 1977: “Nat Reed was an incorrigible conservationist, who, through sheer force of conviction and eloquence, helped lay the groundwork in the 1970s for the federal framework of conservation and environmental protection. President Nixon’s emphatic environmental messages of 1972 and 1973 bear Nat’s fingerprints, along with other Republican stalwarts like Russ Train, Bill Ruckelshaus and Bill Reilly. Reed-protected landscapes -- from Alaska and California to New York, Florida and North Carolina -- are the permanent legacy of this great American.”
 

Joe Negron, president of the Florida Senate: “Nat Reed was a resolute force of nature who devoted his life to protecting the environment of Florida and the United States. I will personally never forget his unwavering support for the Senate Bill 10 EAA Southern Reservoir and his lifelong commitment to Everglades restoration. Mr. Reed loved Jupiter Island, Hobe Sound and Martin County. His prominent standing in the modern history of Florida is secure and irreplaceable.”
 

U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist (D-FL) and former Florida governor: “Floridians for generations to come are indebted to Nathaniel Reed for protecting our beautiful environment and our Florida Everglades. We will honor his memory by recommitting ourselves to being good stewards of our environment.”
 

Novelist, humorist, environmentalist and Miami Herald columnist Carl Hiaasen: “The Everglades has lost a great friend and champion. Nat Reed was literally a force of nature.”
 
Jock Conyngham, stream restorer, environmental activist and one of Reed’s many fishing buddies: “When Nat would come into camp and report that he had caught a salmon, which happened regularly, it wasn’t a ‘nice fish’ or a ‘terrific fish’ -- it was a ‘magical fish.’ He was the only angler I ever heard use that adjective. And he meant it. He invited me to go back with him decades later to look at some of the projects he had worked on at Interior, which I think speaks a great deal about his resource ethic and personal investment.”
 

------ 

Gifts in Nathaniel Reed’s memory may be made to:
 

Hope Rural School
15929 SW 150th St.
Indiantown, FL 34956
 
The Nathaniel P. Reed ForEverglades Stewardship Fund at the Everglades Foundation. This endowed fund will forever honor his commitment to conservation, stewardship and the protection of America’s Everglades. Gifts may be made online at www.evergladesfoundation.org or mailed to: The Everglades Foundation, 18001 Old Cutler Road #625, Palmetto Bay, Florida 33157
 

The Atlantic Salmon Federation has established a memorial fund in Reed’s honor that will be dedicated to salmon conservation and the suspension of Greenland’s commercial salmon fishery, something he saw as critically important.
 

Checks can be mailed to:

Atlantic Salmon Federation
PO Box 807
Calais, ME USA 04619-0807
 

The family requests all correspondence be sent to:

Office of Nathaniel Reed
P.O. Box 1213
Hobe Sound, FL 33475

Thursday, July 12, 2018

ASF has established a memorial fund in Nathaniel’s honor


FROM:           BILL TAYLOR

DATE:           JULY 12, 2018

RE:                 PASSING OF NATHANIEL P. REED
            It is with profound sadness that I inform you of the passing of our dear friend and Honorary Director of ASF (US) Nathaniel P. Reed. Nat had an accident the evening of July 3rd while fishing his beloved Grand Cascapedia River with long-time friends and Lorne Cottage guides Conrad and Bryce LeGouffe.  He had just released a 16 pound salmon at Mrs. Guests Pool with Conrad and Bryce and was walking along the shore when he fell and hit his head. The wonderful staff of Lorne Cottage were able to get him to a Quebec City hospital the next morning where he received excellent care but could not recover.  Nat passed away peacefully yesterday afternoon, July 11th, surrounded by his family.
Nat had been an Honorary Director of ASF (US) for 7 years following 15 years as a very active and involved Director.  Nat served on various ASF (US) committees and provided sage advice and counsel on some critical salmon conservation, research and advocacy activities. For his tireless efforts on behalf of wild Atlantic salmon and ASF he received the Lee Wulff Award in 2008 and was honored at the New York dinner in 2013.
            I received regular phone calls, emails and letters from Nat offering advice and inquiring about salmon runs, river conditions and fishing.  He was always steadfast in his support. He was passionate about wild Atlantic salmon, conserving them, fishing for them and most importantly the vital work of ASF.  I have many fond memories of fishing with Nat on the Cascapedia, Moisie, Restigouche and Miramichi. He was great company on and off the river.
            Nat began his career in the family real estate business in Jupiter Island, Florida. He had deep passion and concern for the natural world which steered him toward public life.  He served six Florida governors and two presidents in numerous senior positions including Assistant Secretary of the US Department of the Interior for Fish, Wildlife and Parks. Nat made many significant contributions to conservation and the environment while in public service including co-authoring the Endangered Species Act. He helped found 1000 Friends of Florida, serving both as president and chairman of the board. Along with ASF, Nat served on the boards of many environmental and conservation organizations, including Everglades Foundation, Natural Resources Defense Council, Yellowstone National Park and National Geographic Society.
            Nat is survived by his loving wife Alita, their sons Nat Jr. and Adrian, and their daughter Lia, and five grandchildren. ASF has established a memorial fund in Nathaniels honor that will be dedicated to helping fund something he believed was critical to salmon conservation, the suspension of Greenlands commercial salmon fishery. All gifts received in Nats honor will be dedicated to fulfilling ASFs financial obligation to this major conservation victory, one that Nat was so proud of and one that will help wild Atlantic salmon populations on his beloved Grande Cascapedia and other salmon rivers throughout eastern Canada and abroad.
Bill Taylor
President, Atlantic Salmon Federation

‘BASTION OF PRINCIPLE’ NAT REED, ENVIRONMENTAL ADVISOR TO FLORIDA GOVERNORS, DIES

News Service Florida

July 11, 2018

TALLAHASSEE --- Nathaniel “Nat” Reed, an environmental advisor for six Florida governors and assistant secretary of the interior to Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford who was considered one of the founders of the modern conservation movement, died Wednesday. He was 84.

The Jupiter Island resident who started his career in the family real estate and hotel business, the Hobe Sound Company, began his state work under Republican Gov. Claude R. Kirk Jr. in 1967. He later was appointed by Democratic Gov. Bob Graham to the South Florida Water Management District, where he served for 14 years.

Reed’s son, Adrian, told The Tampa Bay Times his father died a week after falling on a gravel riverbank while fishing in Canada.

The environmental icon received bipartisan accolades as news of his death spread Wednesday.

"Floridians for generations to come are indebted to Nathaniel Reed for protecting our beautiful environment and our Florida Everglades," U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, a Democrat who served as Florida governor as a Republican, said in a statement. "We will honor his memory by recommitting ourselves to being good stewards of our environment."

U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney, a Republican who at one time represented the Treasure Coast, tweeted that Reed was “a great man and mentor.”

Senate President Joe Negron, a Stuart Republican whose district includes Jupiter Island, called Reed “a resolute force of nature who devoted his life to protecting the environment of Florida and the United States.”

“I will personally never forget his unwavering support for the Senate Bill 10 EAA Southern Reservoir and his lifelong commitment to Everglades restoration,” Negron said in a statement. “Mr. Reed loved Jupiter Island, Hobe Sound and Martin County.  His prominent standing in the modern history of Florida is secure and irreplaceable.”

And U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, a Democrat, praised Reed on the Senate floor Wednesday, after hailing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' support for the $1.6 billion reservoir project.

Reed was “one of Florida’s greatest environmental advocates,” Nelson said, adding that the state should name the new reservoir in Reed's honor.

“It saddens me so much to announce this good news at the same time of announcing the death of one of the nation's true environmental champions,” Nelson said. “Nat and I have been so focused on advancing this new reservoir project south of Lake Okeechobee ... It would be a fitting tribute to name that project in Nat Reed's honor.”

In 2017, the National Audubon Society awarded Reed its Dan W. Lufkin Prize for Environmental Leadership “for his lifelong commitment to conservation and role in protecting America’s Everglades.”

“Nat was a giant in conservation --- that phrase is used a lot but in Nat’s case it’s true. His scientific knowledge and his passion for birds and wild places made him a hero for decades and Audubon will miss him dearly,” said David Yarnold, president and CEO of the National Audubon Society,.

Audubon Florida Executive Director Julie Wraithmell called Reed “a giant of a conservationist, with his fingerprints on many of the most significant national conservation accomplishments of the last 60 years.”

As assistant secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior for Fish, Wildlife and National Parks, a post he held until 1977, Reed is credited with the crafting and passage of the Endangered Species and Clean Water acts.

In Florida, he played a pivotal role in the late 1960s in the successful fight to block construction of a new jetport in the Big Cypress Swamp, successfully convincing Nixon to withdraw funding for the project.

Author and Miami Herald columnist Carl Hiaasen tweeted that “the Everglades has lost a great friend and champion. Nat Reed was literally a force of nature.”

Among his many achievements in the Sunshine State, Reed helped found both 1000 Friends of Florida and the Everglades Foundation.

“He was an avid fisherman and golfer with an unparalleled passion for restoring the Everglades,” Everglades Foundation CEO Eric Eikenberg said in a press release Wednesday. “Personally, I’ve been privileged to know and work with Nathaniel over the last 16 years, and I am proud to have called him my friend. He was a master of words, bastion of principle, and a constant provider of sound counsel.”

Reed also served on the boards of the Atlantic Salmon Federation, Natural Resources Defense Council, National Geographic Society and Yellowstone National Park.

The Bob Graham Center at the University of Florida noted on Twitter: “Mourning the loss of our friend, board member and inaugural Citizen of the Year Nathaniel Reed. Nat dedicated his life to public service and working to protect the environment.”