TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - The Florida Department of Environmental Protection named Eric Draper as the new director of the Florida State Parks System effective November 28, 2017. He will remain Audubon Florida's executive director through November 27, 2017. Audubon Florida congratulates Draper on his new role leading Florida's award-winning state parks. David Yarnold, National Audubon Society president and CEO, released the following statement in support of Draper's new role:
"Eric leaves Audubon with a legacy of real accomplishments. From partnering on the restoration of the Everglades, to working with the State on designating or expanding 18 Florida Critical Wildlife Areas, Eric has been a model state director for Audubon. Eric's achievements also include being able to see the big picture, including protections for larger Gulf Coast conservation efforts as well as being a lynchpin for birds in the Atlantic Flyway. The State of Florida is fortunate to have his commitment to conservation and his consummate political skills."
Julie Wraithmell, Audubon Florida's deputy director, will serve as interim executive director while Audubon undertakes a search for Draper's successor.