My name is Kenneth Kindler. For 26 years, I have been advocating for Suffolk County’s nature trails on television and radio as well as through newspapers, magazines, and the Internet. In that time, I have led hundreds of hikes, built more than 50 miles of trails, and directed and participated in the blazing, cutting, and repairing of hundreds of miles of trails. I edited the book Short Nature Walks on Long Island and for many years wrote a weekly column about Suffolk County trails for Dan’s Papers. In 1997, I established Hiking Long Island, the first website for the Long Island trails groups, and maintained it until the hiking groups were able to create their own websites. In 2002 and 2003 I facilitated and chaired the Long Island Safe Trails Coalition with the objective of protecting our trails and making them safe. I facilitated the Paumanok Path Summit at Suffolk Community College in 2004, that was instrumental in closing the remaining gaps in this this magnificent path. From 2005 – 2009, I created and chaired the Long Island Trail Lovers Coalition and its attendant website, with the objective of developing more resources for stewarding our trails. While working for the Suffolk County Parks Department from 2009 – 2013, I built new trails and made existing ones more inviting to gentle users. I am largely responsible for the multi-modality trails network in Manorville Hills County Park. Currently, I am working for Southampton Trails Preservation Society, http://www.southamptontrails.org/ as the Trail Steward for Southampton Town’s 54-mile section of the Paumanok Path. I have participated in many trail building workshops, and now teach trail building skills to participants in Quality Parks workshops http://www.qualityparks.org/.
Additionally, I am an active member of three L.I. trails groups and sit on the Board of Directors for two of them. For many years I have been attending regular meetings of the L.I. Pine Barrens Commission’s Protected Lands Council and Enforcement Council, as well as Town Board meetings of Southampton, Brookhaven, and Riverhead Townships to advocate for the health and well-being of Long Island’s trail systems. I have also written and solicited several winning grants for various trails initiatives. In response to a grant I wrote for the Long Island Greenbelt Trail Conference (2000), Vincent Cannucio, Southampton Town Supervisor to initiate the town’s GIS department to begin mapping its trails.