Celebrating the 80th Anniversary of the Civilian Conservation Corps

Help us celebrate the 80th Anniversary of the legendary Civilian Conservation Corps! We plan to update this page with resources about the Civilian Conservation Corps in tribute to their impact and influence on the Corps of today.

80th Anniversary Reunions and Event Listings
(from our friends at CCC Legacy— the CCC Alumni Organization)

News Stories

Civilian Conservation Corps and Modern Youth Corps Honored by Congressional Resolution

CCC Alumni Receive President's Call to Service Award

Maine’s Depression-era conservation corps honored for work in state woods

A Celebration at the First CCC Camp

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon Visits Roaring River State Park to take part in the dedication ceremony for the new CCC Worker Statue

Videos and Multimedia

Chapter 113 (11 mins)
(Note: After clicking over, scroll down for the film)

At our 2013 National Conference in February we were lucky to be joined by members of CCC Legacy Chapter 113 for our plenary session on the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps. We were also lucky to be joined by filmmakers Lance and Brandon Kramer, founders of the DC-based Meridian Hill Pictures production company, who shared their short documentary about the efforts of the Chapter 113 boys to establish a Maryland CCC memorial.

Texas Conservation Corps Takes Bastrop Back to its Roots (11 mins)

A Texas Parks & Wildlife Department video profiles an American YouthWorks crew helping to restore disaster damaged Bastrop State Park— among the places where the CCC left a legacy behind.

Shenandoah National Park's CCC Movie and Curriculum (31 mins)

The CCC built much of Shenandoah National Park, including the famous Skyline Drive. The first CCC Camp was located just outside of the park's boundaries. President Roosevelt himself visited the park to promote the work of the CCC. The park has put together an excellent curriculum and video set about the CCC for students of all ages. The videos can also be watched in five parts on YouTube.

Histories and Articles

A Brief History of The Corps Movement

"SheSheShe" Camps: A Women's Alternative to the Civilian Conservation Corps

City Year Hosts Annual Summit

This week City Year is hosting its annual summit in Washington, D.C. Some of their distinguished guests, performers, and speaker have included U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Superintendent of Miami-Dade County Public Schools Alberto M. Carvalho, Mike Love of the Beach Boys, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service Wendy Spencer, and also Nicholas David Mrozinski, a musician who was a finalist on "The Voice." (See photos here.)

As part of the summit, City Year has unveiled an excellent new video about the program and its emphasis on helping students and schools succeed nationwide. Watch it below.


Southwest Conservation Corps Featured on White House Blog for "Let's Move" Campaign

Celebrating Two Years of Let’s Move! in Indian Country

By Jodi Gillette, White House Senior Policy Advisor for Native American Affairs

I recently had the honor of attending an event to mark the 2nd Anniversary of Let’s Move! in Indian Country at Chimney Rock National Monument in southwestern Colorado. I hiked and learned about this magnificent landscape on our way to the top with fifty youth from the Southern Ute Montessori Elementary, the Deputy Undersecretary of Agriculture Butch Blazer, and a handful of youth from the Pueblos who work with the Southwest Conservation Corps, an AmeriCorps partner organization that engages and trains a diverse group of young women and men and completes conservation projects for the public benefit.

I had lengthy conversations with Aaron Lowden, an Acoma Pueblo, regarding the strength and resiliency of the ancient people who built and lived in that space, and how their journey is connected to his own. Below I’d like to share some of his thoughts:

Continue reading at www.whitehouse.gov

California Conservation Corps Dispatches Over 100 Corpsmembers to Fires

Photo Credit: California Conservation Corps

*** May 3rd Update ***


As of May 3, the CCC has 165 corpsmembers (12 crews) assigned to fires throughout the state, working under the direction of Cal Fire.  Both initial-attack and logistical support crews have been dispatched. 

Four crews are assigned to the Springs Fire near Camarillo in Ventura County.  The crews are from Camarillo, Los  Angeles, Pomona and San Luis Obispo. On the Summit Fire near Banning in Riverside County, CCC crews from Camarillo, Pomona and San Bernardino are working. And in southeastern Tehama County, CCC crews from Chico, Redding and Ukiah are providing camp support.

The CCC is one of the state's premier emergency response agencies and has additional crews available to be dispatched where needed.

The Los Angeles Times has posted an article, photos, and video about the fire. The video shows Camarillo 21 cutting line with helicopter drops on the Springs Fire. If you look down in the article there is a link that says “Photos: Camarillo Brush Fire” picture # 30 and 32 are CM’s from Crew 21. 


More than 100 members of the California Conservation Corps have been dispatched to fires in both Northern and Southern California.

Two Camarillo fire crews and two camp support crews from Pomona and San Bernardino have responded to the Summit Fire in Riverside County. Another Camarillo fire crew has been sent to the Springs Fire in Ventura County. And CCC crews from Chico, Redding and Ukiah are providing logistical support on the Panther Fire in Butte County.

All of the crews are working under the direction of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

Senate Holds Hearing on Public Lands Service Corps Act of 2013

Yesterday, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Public Lands Subcommittee held a hearing on the Public Lands Service Corps of Act of 2013.  Subcommittee Chairman Manchin (WV) presided over the legislative hearing on 20 public lands bills.

Senators Reid and Baucus each testified in support of public land bills specific to Nevada and Montana. The administration provided two witnesses for the hearing; Jim Pena, Associate Deputy Chief, National Forrest System, USFS, and Jamie Connell, Acting Deputy Director, Bureau of Land Management, DOI. The administration’s testimony included strong support S. 360 which they explained “will help fulfill their commitment to build a 21st Century Conservation Service Corps (21CSC).” The Public Lands Service Coalition Director of Government Relations, Joe Gersen, submitted written testimony in support of the legislation. The legislation will next move to be marked up by the committee and the Public Lands Service Coalition expects that to happen in late May.  

There is still time for you to reach out to your Senators and Representative and ask them to support the Public Lands Service Corps Act of 2013. The Sierra Club, a key ally and member of the Public Lands Service Coalition, has setup a fast way to send your Members of Congress an email showing support for the Public Lands Service Corps Act. This tool is a great way for your board members, alums, and friends of your organization to express their support of the Public Lands Service Corps Act.  It only take a few minutes to send a message in three easy steps, click "take action" below to get started. Please share with your networks.  Please take action today!

Sierra Club Currents: News and Action Center

Take Action: Employ Youth to Protect Our Natural HeritageTake Action: Employ Youth to Protect Our Natural Heritage

Our public lands are facing a backlog of $25 billion worth of essential maintenance projects. At the same time, the youth unemployment rate hovers at 13 percent. The Public Lands Service Corps Act would authorize the Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, and Interior to administer conservation corps activities on our public lands.

Take Action
Tell Congress to put young Americans to work protecting and restoring our public lands. Pass the Public Lands Service Corps Act of 2013.


Robert F. Kennedy Jr. Hosts 20th Anniversary Benefit for Civic Works, Discusses Green Economy

On Wednesday evening this week, several members of The Corps Network staff were proud to attend Civic Works' 20th Anniversary Benefit.

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. hosted the event and praised Civic Works for their long and successful history of getting young people engaged in addressing critical environmental needs, the green economy, and giving back to their Baltimore communities while helping raise political awareness of a range of issues from environmental stewardship to climate change.

Kennedy's sister, and Civic Works co-founder Kathleen Kennedy Townsend also spoke (shown above), and thanked the Baltimore community for their many years of support. In an interview with WYPR (Baltimore's NPR affiliate), Townsend discusses how Civic Works' director Dana Stein came to her with the idea to create the Corps. You can also listen to segments where 1) Dana talks about how geothermal energy will cool and heat Civic Works' headquarters at the historic Clifton Mansion in the future and 2) the restoration of the Mansion. 

WBAL 11 also did a segment about the event and Civic Works' 20 year impact that can be watched here.

Since 1993, Civic Works has:

  • Converted 190 vacant lots into community gardens and green spaces
  • Rehabilitated 55 houses, repaired 253 houses, and weatherized 275 houses for low and moderate income families
  • Made energy efficiency improvements in more than 4,000 households resulting in projected savings of more than $3 million in utility costs
  • Tutored and mentored 33,809 students
  • Provided service opportunities for 2,650 AmeriCorps members
  • Recruited 32,544 volunteers
  • Assisted 157 participants in earning a GED
  • Placed 510 participants in healthcare and green jobs
  • Grown more than 15,000 pounds of fresh, organic produce for sale to local communities
  • Planted 25,477 trees

[Video] Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell Highlights The Corps Network and Student Conservation Association for Volunteer Opportunities in Earth Day Chat

On Monday of this week, our new Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell participated in a special Earth Day webchat.

When asked a question about the Department of Interior partnering with nonprofits and corporations to boost volunteerism on public lands, here's what Secretary Jewell had to say:

The Climate Change Work of Seattle's EarthCorps

EarthCorps recently hosted a U.S. Department of State staff member. They work with the State Department to secure visas for EarthCorps' international participants. Secretary of State John Kerry has a strong interest in climate change, so EarthCorps was asked to provide some information about their work in the context of climate change. 

They've put together a nifty handout which highlights the work of three international alumni as well as two EarthCorps initiatives that all focus on climate change.

Download it here. 

American YouthWorks' Parc Smith Profiled by Austin News Site

American YouthWorks’ Parc Smith builds on a family legacy of fairness

By Michael Barnes
American-Statesman Staff

In rural Erath County, white townsmen in hoods once threatened Parc Smith’s grandfather.

“They demanded: ‘Why are you employing a black man when there’s white men out of work,’” Smith, 41, recounts. “He called them out by name: ‘Billy, Johnny, Bob, I’m going to count to three and start shooting.’ At two, he started shooting. They left and never messed with him again.”

Smith, CEO of a rejuvenated American YouthWorks, which blends education, service and jobs training, learned about social decency from an early age. His father, who joined civil rights protests at the University of Texas during the 1960s, taught at historically black colleges. His mother came from a long line of Texas workers who helped their neighbors in any way that they could.

“I was always taught to be good to all people,” he says. “Race and color, economic status don’t matter.”

Once a prospective forest ranger who served on conservation crews, Smith’s personal search for a way to help others took him outdoors. It’s easy to imagine the relaxed and wholesome-looking Smith, 41, as a happy-go-lucky kid. He camped with the YMCA, which employed his mother in Waco, before heading to the Dublin and Stephenville area.

“My parents were very supportive,” he says. “And pretty hands-off. I was free to do what I wanted.”

Playing football in a small Texas town also gave him something of a free pass from serious trouble. Popular, he was asked by his classmates to speak out against the school district’s dress code. Generally a respectful student, he wore a T-shirt to school that read: “Only a fascist would tell a kid how to wear his hair.”

Continue Reading at Statesman.com 

Cool Map Shows Where AmeriCorps NCCC Crews are Working Nationwide

Each week, AmeriCorps NCCC (National Civilian Community Corps) updates a map that shows where their crews are deployed nationwide. While there are 5 major training campuses for NCCC, it's clear from the map that the impact of this residential Corps program stretches far and wide beyond those areas!

Learn more about AmeriCorps NCCC