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Chattahoochee National Park Conservancy Receives 
Half Million Dollar Donation To Support Trails Improvements

Cathy D. Perry Trust Celebrates Atlanta-Based National Park with Donation of $526,000

Atlanta (August 16, 2023)Chattahoochee National Park Conservancy (CNPC), the official Friends Group and Primary Philanthropic Partner of the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area (CRNRA), is proud to announce it has received a private donation of over $526,000, the largest single donation in the organization's 10-year history. The Cathy D. Perry Trust allocated the funds for greenspace, and her trustee, Atlanta native Scott Olsen, selected CNPC as the beneficiary. CNPC will apply funds to much-needed trail improvements at CRNRA to repair, rebuild and, in some cases, reroute the over-loved trail systems. It is CNPC’s goal to grow these funds through matching programs and grants.

The CRNRA includes a 48-mile stretch of the iconic Chattahoochee River that flows through metro Atlanta and a series of 15 park land units with over 66 miles of trails, running through 7,000 land and water acres in four counties and nine cities. At 3.5 million visitors in 2022, the CRNRA ranked 22nd out of all 420+ National Parks in visitations.  To put that in perspective, Yosemite National Park ranked just one level higher at the 21st most visited national park. 

The park needs the Conservancy’s help with trail maintenance and other projects. We are grateful to The Cathy D. Perry Trust and Scott for selecting us to be the beneficiaries of this very generous donation,” says Graham Dorian, CNPC Board President. “Atlantans are awakening that the gem in their backyard is a National Park, and the value it brings to their physical and mental health.”

As the trustee of The Cathy D. Perry Estate, Scott Olsen chose CNPC as the beneficiary after several years of vetting the organization and the CRNRA.  “I wanted to make sure I was doing right by Cathy’s wishes to support a treasured greenspace,” says Olsen. “I am a significant user of the park’s trails and am regularly there with my golden retriever Charlotte. It thrills me to use these funds to help this amazing park that is so important to our community.”

With its recent announcement of the appointment of Brittany Jones as its first Executive Director, CNPC is gearing up for an exciting phase of development and expansion under her leadership, encompassing critical areas such as fundraising. With her new role, Jones will spearhead CNPC's efforts in engaging the philanthropic community–both corporate entities and private individuals–to set the wheels in motion for the Comprehensive Trails Management Plan. This strategic move marks a significant milestone in CNPC's history and promises to positively impact the community and the organization’s growth.

“Our National Park is honored that Scott has selected our Official Friends Group to receive these substantial funds. We are grateful there are people in the community, like Cathy D. Perry and Scott Olsen, who see the value in the national park,” said CRNRA Superintendent Ann Honious. “We are fortunate to have a robust Friends group in the CNPC. This donation, timed with Brittany’s appointment, positions us to thrive with their partnership.” 

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Chattahoochee National Park Conservancy, Inc. is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. We are proud to support our Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area, a unit of the national park system managed by the National Park Service.



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