Delaware North Co-CEO Lou Jacobs on Feb. 9 announced the company has gifted $100,000 a year for three years (2017-2019) to the Buffalo (N.Y.) Olmsted Parks Conservancy.
The gift will support Olmsted forestry efforts, which have gained in national attention and need, particularly with the invasion of the Emerald Ash Borer and its decimation of Buffalo’s urban forests, park canopy and streetscapes. The conservancy operates with three foresters, one being a certified arborist, to manage the 14,000 trees across 850 acres of Olmsted greenspace. With nearly 1,200 ash trees in the Olmsted parks alone, the feat to manage this pest, inoculate for tree survival, and to remove and replace for its damage, is becoming a fast priority amid the many ongoing forestry needs of the park system. 
“Olmsted's parks are integral to the unique character of Buffalo,” Jacobs said at the announcement, where he was joined by Kevin Kelly, president of Delaware North’s travel business and chairman of the Olmsted Park Conservancy’s board of directors. “Delaware North is thrilled to support the efforts of Mayor [Byron] Brown and the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy to preserve these green spaces for future generations.”
The gift will also support Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown’s Summer Youth Employment and Training Program, as it relates to placing young adults in the Olmsted Parks. This program is responsible for the training and employment of nearly 1,600 youth per year, who reside in the city of Buffalo.
“The generosity of Delaware North is wonderful news for the historic Olmsted Park system as the conservancy continues to manage one of Buffalo's greatest assets,” Brown said. “I'm also pleased that these funds will enable the conservancy to hire more of our young people through my Summer Youth Program to assist with forestry efforts, while learning valuable skills.”
Prior to job placement, youth are involved in self-assessment, career guidance and job readiness activities. Youth are placed in various occupations during the summer, including office, clerical, computer, health service, child care, senior care, community service, parks and recreation, and building maintenance. The program also includes an extensive Educational Component, which offers youth an opportunity to participate in academic enrichment activities, along with gaining valuable work experience.

PHOTO CAPTION: Delaware North Co-CEO Lou Jacobs (second from right) and Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown shake hands as Delaware North makes a $300,000 gift to support the Olmsted Parks Conservancy’s forestry efforts. Also pictured are Kevin Kelly (right), president of Delaware North’s travel business and chairman of the Olmsted Park Conservancy’s board of directors, and Stephanie Crockatt, the conservancy’s executive director.

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