HOW WE GOT HERE
We came together as access interested folks invited to a citizen sponsored public meeting on Forest Service communications, led by Don Amador of BlueRibbon Coalition. It was a two-day event. The first day was for the local stakeholders (persons/groups with access interest). The second day was a meeting and field trip with Forest Service staff.
A little bit about Don Amador: Don is owner of Quiet Warrior Racing – a recreation, land-use, and political consulting company. Don, at that time, was a consultant to the BlueRibbon Coalition and served as their western representative. Don now has over 29 years’ experience in the field of recreation and land-use advocacy. He has served on many recreation stakeholder groups and advisory committees. Don currently serves on the USDA Region 5 Recreation Resource Advisory Committee. Don has a BA from St Mary’s College of California.
At that time, there weren’t any recreation advocacy groups in Grays Harbor. Don brought us hope and inspiration that day. Along with his deep experience he shared education modules with us such as: FS Travel Management, NEPA, the collaborative process, and building long term relationships with Agency. At the end of Day One many of us were ready to commit to this way of communicating with landholders. OPAC was born.
WHAT WE'VE DONE
OPAC has worked earnestly on building productive and respectful relationships with many landholders, recreation groups, elected leaders, individuals, and access interests. We have made a network of entities to reach out to for the challenges we all face with recreation. We focus on solutions. We strive to be an effective and respected voice for access. As Don says, “there’s no shortcuts in the relationship building process”. There are three main building blocks:
TRUST – CREDIBILITY – COMMITMENT
These blocks of character are what drives OPAC.