Longtime Adirondack Council advocate Diane Fish plans to retire this winter, Council Executive Director Willie Janeway announced.
“All who know Diane are familiar with her infectious energy and famous dedication to the Adirondacks, the Council and its mission of preserving the ecological integrity and wild character of the Park,” Janeway said in an email to board members and friends.
Fish came to the Council in 2001 after working as a teacher and as dean of students at the Purnell School in New Jersey. Over two decades she helped four executive directors with “infectious energy and famous dedication to the Adirondacks” in a period that saw the state place new protections on hundreds of thousands of acres, Janeway noted. During that time, he said, the Council doubled in size and funding.
Fish’s titles through the years included development director, acting executive director and deputy director. Last year she passed the deputy director’s position to Rocci Aguirre, but continued as senior adviser. Spokesman John Sheehan called her “kind-hearted and warm, but also tough-minded and indominable.” When government officials tried to intimidate her into backing down on important conservation goals when she was acting director, he said, “all failed miserably.”
Fish’s retirement begins in February. She said in a statement shared by Janeway that she appreciates the Council’s work and all who have helped build the organization.
“I have been inspired by the meaningful work I have been fortunate to do and all the interesting, committed, intelligent and generous people that I have been blessed to work with,” she said, “all with a clear-eyed purpose of preserving this beautiful and special place.”