Monday, June 15, 2009

Attendee Letter: State of EJ in America Conference 2009

Dear Melinda [Downing],

It was a pleasure to meet you at the conference and toparticipate in the Mayors Briefing on the ARRA of 2009. I am writing to congratulate you and everyone on your Planning Committee for a successful conference which truly reflects the fact that Environmental Justice is in its second generation of mature dialogue, involvement of abroad spectrum of stakeholders, and tangible progress. As an EPA manager who has been actively involved in integrating EJ issues in EPAprograms under my supervision (and who was tutored and inspired by Tim Fields' leadership when he was at EPA).

I am very impressed by the diversity of issues which have been embraced by the EJ community nd the variety of stakeholders who are now at the table. Clearly, persistence and leadership are creating results. I truly enjoyed the conference and learned a great deal from each of the sessions I attended; I assure you that it is knowledge that will be used. You and your colleagues deserve the kudos and mementos of appreciation you received at the closing plenary session but I know that is not what keeps you motivated!

Finally, as someone who has attended perhaps a couple hundredconferences over the course of my professional life, I do want to note that you created a very friendly atmosphere which, in turn, was very conducive to networking. Please keep me on your mailing list for developments which may be of interest for those of us at EPA.

All best wishes and congratulations,

Maria Vickers


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