Nevada County Native Caleb Dardick Chosen As New SYRCL Executive Director

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For Immediate Release: August 8, 2011

Contact: John Regan, SYRCL Board Vice President, 530.265.5255

Kim Milligan, SYRCL Interim Executive Director, 530.265.5961 ext. 207

Caleb Dardick, SYRCL's New Executive Director (photo by G. Aronow Photography)

Nevada City, CA – Nevada County native Caleb Dardick has been chosen as the next Executive Director of the South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL) following a nationwide search, SYRCL Board President Elizabeth Soderstrom announced today.

“We are thrilled to welcome Caleb back home to the Yuba Watershed. His expertise in community outreach, advocacy and strategic campaigns in the non-profit, government and business sectors make
Caleb the ideal person to lead SYRCL’s efforts to protect and restore the Yuba and bring wild salmon back to their ancestral waters,” Soderstrom said.

Dardick grew up on the San Juan Ridge and is the son of former two-term Nevada County Supervisor and disability rights activist Sam Dardick, who passed away in May, and Geeta Dardick, a marriage and family therapist. Caleb managed his father’s first campaign for Supervisor and remains deeply connected to the county. A graduate of Nevada Union High School, Caleb earned a B.A. in History with honors at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

“Dad taught me that an engaged community is the best defender of our rural quality of life,” said Caleb. “He always focused on what unites people, which in Nevada County is a shared love for the place. I am excited to be joining SYRCL’s many stewards and advocates for this magnificent Yuba River watershed, and to have this opportunity to give back to the community where I grew up.”

For nearly a decade, Caleb provided public relations and public affairs consulting to a broad range of clients in business, government, the nonprofit sector and politics. Dardick helped guide an array of community-serving projects to completion, including the Ed Roberts Campus, a community center for people with disabilities, and the David Brower Center, a center for environmental nonprofits.

For the past two years, Caleb has served as Director of Local Government and Community Relations for UC Berkeley’s Office of the Chancellor, where he facilitated positive community engagement in what has frequently been a challenging town-gown environment.

Soderstrom said Dardick will continue SYRCL’s legacy of strong Executive Directors who combine a passion for protecting the South Yuba River, experience in advocacy and coalition-building, and a dedication to SYRCL’s roots in the community. Soderstrom noted that the next few years will mark significant milestones for the organization, which has 3,500 annual members and volunteers and enjoys widespread support in the business community.

“2011 is the 10th anniversary of Wild and Scenic River designation, 2012 marks the 10th anniversary of the Wild and Scenic Environmental Film Festival, which has grown to become the largest environmental film festival in the country, and in 2013 SYRCL will celebrate the 30th anniversary of its founding in 1983,” Soderstrom said. “And we’re celebrating each of these milestones with a native son of the Yuba at our helm!”

Soderstrom also noted that federal operating licenses on dams throughout the Yuba Watershed are up for renewal in the next few years, providing an historic opportunity to improve conditions for endangered Chinook salmon that spawn in the lower Yuba River. SYRCL is also hailing a recent ruling by federal Judge Lawrence K. Karlton directing the Army Corps of Engineers to improve salmon passage at Daguerre Point Dam and requiring the Army Corps to develop a plan to protect wild native spring-run salmon from stray hatchery salmon – a key victory in SYRCL’s long battle to restore the Yuba River’s fishery, which is home to the largest self-sustaining run of wild Chinook salmon in the entire Central Valley.

SYRCL is the leading voice for the protection and restoration of the Yuba River and greater Yuba Watershed. Come help clean up the Yuba River and meet SYRCL’s new Executive Director, Caleb Dardick, by signing up for SYRCL’s 14th annual Greater Yuba Clean-Up and Restoration Day on Saturday, September 17th. Registration for your favorite site begins August 20 online at Caleb will begin as Executive Director of SYRCL on September 12, 2011.

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