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The Corps Network Honors U.S. Representative Nick Rahall for his support of Youth Service and Conservation Corps in the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act


Diana Luensmann (center), Communications Director for Rep. Nick Rahall, accepts the 2013 Congressional Champion Award on Congressman Rahall’s behalf. Pictured with Mary Ellen Ardouny (far left), President and CEO of The Corps Network; Joel Holtrop, Chair of The Corps Network Board of Directors; and staff of Citizens Conservation Corps of West Virginia.

For Immediate Release                                                                                            

WASHINGTON, D.C. —  In recognition of his support for the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21), Congressman Nick Rahall of West Virginia’s 3rd District was awarded one of The Corps Network’s highest honors, the Congressional Champion Award, at a ceremony in the Cannon House Office Building on Wednesday, February 13, 2013.

Every year, The Corps Network presents the Congressional Champion Award to elected officials whose work promotes and encourages the growth and sustainability of America’s youth service and conservation corps. Because of Representative Rahall’s leadership and support, the recently passed MAP-21 Act includes language that encourages state and regional transportation planning agencies to utilize qualified youth service and conservation corps to complete projects under the National Scenic Byways Program, the Recreational Trails Program, the Transportation Alternatives Program, and other initiatives. This language allows Corps to work on more and different kinds of fee-for-service projects. In turn, Corps are able to engage more young people and provide them with a greater variety of job skills.

“We wish to thank Representative Rahall for his support of new ‘Youth Corps-friendly’ provisions in MAP 21.  They will help many young people gain valuable work experience and develop job skills while improving trails, bike paths, and other alternative transportation routes in their states and communities. These provisions will lead to a combination of positive outcomes that we can all appreciate,” said Mary Ellen Ardouny, President and CEO of The Corps Network.

First elected in 1976, U.S. Representative Nick J. Rahall is a West Virginia native. He is currently the Ranking Member on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, which has broad jurisdiction over our Nation’s highways, railways, airports, seaports, bus lines, and pipelines, as well as the Economic Development Administration (EDA), Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), Coast Guard, Army Corps of Engineers, and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).  Prior to holding this position, Congressman Rahall was the Chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee.

In addition to the recipients of the Congressional Champion Award, the February 13th ceremony also recognized The Corps Network’s 2013 Corpsmembers of the Year and 2013 Projects of the Year. The six Corpsmembers of the Year are young men and women who have stood out as leaders and role models in the corps movement, while the three Project of the Year recipients represented some of the most innovative programs at Corps throughout the country.

Service and conservation corps are comprehensive youth development programs that provide their participants with job training, academic programming, leadership skills, and additional support through a strategy of service that improves communities and the environment. Today’s corps are a direct descendant of the Depression-era Civilian Conservation Corps, through which three million young men dramatically improved the nation’s public lands while receiving food, shelter, education, and a precious $30-a-month stipend.

About The Corps Network

The Corps Network is the voice of the nation’s 143 Service and Conservation Corps. Currently operating in 44 states and the District of Columbia, Corps annually enroll more than 29,000 young men and women in service every year. Corps mobilize approximately 226,000 community volunteers who in conjunction with Corpsmembers generate 21.3 million hours of service every year. For more information, visit corpsnetwork.org or contact Levi Novey at [email protected] or 202.737.6272.

Media Contact:

Levi Novey
The Corps Network
1100 G Street, NW, Suite 1000
Washington, DC 20005
Phone: 202.737.6272
Fax: 202.737.6277
Email: [email protected]