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2010 Citizen Excellence in Community Involvement Award

Woolfolk Alliance Group accepts the 2010 Citizen Excellence in Community Involvement Award.

Woolfolk Alliance Group accepts the 2010 Citizen Excellence in Community Involvement Award.

The 2010 Citizen Excellence in Community Involvement Award winner is the Woolfolk Alliance Group. This award is presented annually to an individual or a community group working with a Superfund team for outstanding achievements in the field of environmental protection. The Woolfolk Alliance Group is being recognized for its commitment and dedication to the Ft. Valley, Georgia communities affected by the Woolfolk Chemical Works, Inc. site. The dedication of the Woolfolk Alliance Group is unparalleled, and is evidenced by the majority of the founding members remaining active in the group for over ten years.

The Woolfolk Chemical Works Superfund site, located in Fort Valley, Georgia, occupies approximately 31 acres, including the former Woolfolk Chemical Works plant property and surrounding commercial areas. Since the 1920s, the Woolfolk facility had been used for the production, packaging, and storage of organic and inorganic insecticides, including arsenic, DDT, lindane, toxaphene, and other chlorinated compounds.

The Woolfolk Alliance Group has expressed the environmental concerns of the community to EPA, the State, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), and public health officials for more than ten years. The Woolfolk Alliance Group facilitates information exchange among the stakeholders while maintaining the local community’s desire to have a safer, cleaner environment and a “life after Superfund”. For the community, “life after Superfund” is measured by the City’s demonstrated ability to reuse the formerly contaminated and stigmatized land in a productive way.

Early on, the community was anxious about the initial redevelopment projects on and adjacent to the site. Construction of the new Thomas Public Library on the formerly contaminated property provided frequent opportunities to show how remediation and redevelopment can be combined to protect human health and the environment and improve the local quality of life. The new library and the renovation of the Troutman House, now a tourist information center and office space for local government agencies, have acted as catalysts to encourage homeowners to revitalize the surrounding neighborhoods. EPA commends the Woolfolk Alliance Group for its dedication to the cleanup and redevelopment of the Woolfolk Chemical Works site.

 

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