Contact: Remar Sutton
Governor, Trustees of the British Virgin Islands National Parks, USA
Walter Cronkite, Anne Hearst, Peter Jennings,
Jean-Michel Cousteau, and Lt. Governor Rockefeller Highlight Unique
Nature of British Virgin Islands (BVI) National Parks
Road Town, Tortola, British Virgin
Islands, Monday, February 11, 2002…
importance of preserving the British Virgin Islands’ unique and
fragile national parks system, which comprises some of the world’s
most ecologically diverse environments, is receiving greater global
attention with help of a group of highly influential and environmentally
The conservation effort is being undertaken
by the Trustees of the BVI National Parks Trust, USA, a philanthropic
trust. The Trustees seek to raise important issues impacting the BVI’s
national parks that comprise eleven percent of the land and marine area
of the BVI.
ABC News Anchor Peter Jennings, former
CBS Anchor Walter Cronkite, Jean-Michel Cousteau, Lt. Governor Winthrop
Rockefeller of Arkansas, actor Cliff Robertson and editor George Plimpton
are some of the well-known Americans serving as Governors on the Board
They, along with David Fanning, founder
and executive producer of PBS Frontline, Remar Sutton, columnist for
The Washington Post, and Lester Hyman, Washington, D.C.-based presidential
advisor, are lending support for the parks and for the efforts to strengthen,
expand and preserve them.
Other prominent Americans serving as
Governors are Anne Randolph Hearst, granddaughter of William Randolph
Hearst and contributing editor to Town and Country magazine; Lt. Governor
Winthrop Rockefeller of Arkansas, grandson of John D. Rockefeller, Jr.
and scion of a name synonymous with preserving the extraordinary nature
of the British and American Virgin Islands; Emmy-Award-winning explorer
Dan Buettner, a veteran of expeditions in over 100 countries; and Dr.
Henry Jarecki, President of The Falconwood Corporation and owner of
Guana Island, an exclusive 850-acre private nature preserve off the
North Shore of Tortola.
Walter Cronkite, a Governor, avid yachtsman
and frequent visitor to the territory for over thirty years, complimented
the Government and Parks for their efforts to safeguard the BVI environment.
“As one travels the rest of the world,” Cronkite said, “the
appreciation is always greater for the efforts of the British Virgin
Islands to maintain the difficult balance between necessary economic
development and the great natural beauty bestowed on this territory.”
Peter Jennings commented, “It’s
an honor to be included with those who love the BVI and wish to see
it thrive. The wonderful people of the BVI understand they live in a
unique environment worth protecting. We all know that the national parks
need constant attention. They are being managed for the next generation
and the next.”
Governor Rockefeller, whose uncle, Laurance Rockefeller founded Little
Dix Bay on Virgin Gorda, recently visited the BVI along with other Governors
of the Trust and met with the Honorable Ralph T. O’Neal, the BVI’s
Chief Minister and Minister of Tourism, and His Excellency, Governor
Frank Savage, appointed by the Chief Executive Officer of the Territory,
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
Lt. Governor Rockefeller made an official
address to key members of government at Long Bay Beach Resort on Tortola.
“We do not inherit the earth from our parents, but borrow it from
our children,” Rockefeller said, using a favorite American Indian
quote. “Our Governors are here because we have been touched, even
changed by these islands.” Mr. Rockefeller continued, “We
are here because we love these islands and their citizens, because we
have made friendships here that are worth having for life.”
In March Governors Jean-Michel Cousteau,
George Plimpton and Cliff Robertson will visit the BVI. “One goal
of our group,” says J.C. Pierce, President of the Trustees of
the BVI National Parks Trust, “is to develop materials highlighting
the unique nature and problems of the BVI Parks. We are also planning
to develop a short documentary on the Parks using the great talent of
our Governors.” Pierce, the great-grandson of Count Ferdinand
DeLessups, has had a home in the British Virgin Islands for eighteen
of his thirty-five years.
The BVI National Parks Trust, based in
Road Town, Tortola, has a preservation program consisting of five key
project areas in biodiversity assessment and management, management
of terrestrial parks, marine conservation program, historical preservation
and public awareness, and environmental education.
For further information on the
Trustees of the BVI National Parks, USA, Inc., please contact Remar
Sutton at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The BVI National Parks Trust, found on the Internet at www.bvinationalparkstrust.org,
can be reached at 284-494-3904 or via e-mail at email@example.com.
Information on traveling to the BVI is available from the British Virgin
Islands Tourist Board by calling 1-800-835-8530 or by visiting