Lussi, Berggren to be honored at awards gala

NEWCOMB — Local businesswoman and philanthropist Caroline Draper Lussi will be awarded the 2021 Frank M. Hutchins Environmental Education Leadership Award at the Adirondack Park Institute’s annual awards gala this month.

Lussi, a graduate of Paul Smith’s College, has a lifelong history in the Adirondacks. Together with her husband Serge, Caroline owns and operates Lake Placid Vacation Corporation, which owns the Crowne Plaza Resort in Lake Placid. Additionally, she has served on the boards of the Adirondack Chapter of the Nature Conservancy and the Paul Smith’s College Board of Trustees. She has funded numerous science-based scholarships at Paul Smith’s College and raised $1 million for the Draper Lussi Endowed Chair in Lake Ecology and Paleoecology at Paul Smith’s, currently held by Dr. Curt Stager. Caroline and Serge also support many other charitable causes in the Adirondacks.

The API awards gala is scheduled for Sept. 17 at 5 p.m. Due to a surge in COVID-19 cases in the region, the event will be held virtually. The event is being sponsored by Paul Smith’s College.

Musician and educator Dan Berggren will be the recipient of the third annual Community Award. Berggren’s contribution to the Adirondack community, through his songwriting and musical performances will be recognized, as well as his dedication to preserving the folklore and beauty of the mountains he calls home. Berggren will perform an original song dedicated to his longtime friend, the late great Peter Hornbeck, to whom the event is being dedicated.

The program will include remarks by state Sen. Dan Stec and gala co-Chairs Scott Dalrymple, the president of Paul Smith’s College, and Joanie Mahoney, president of SUNY ESF. Stager is the guest speaker and will present his latest work.

The Adirondack Park Institute is a not-for-profit organization that raises money to help support free environmental education programs at the Paul Smith’s VIC and the Adirondack Interpretive Center in Newcomb. Some of the programs made possible by API funding are the Breck Chapin Native Species Butterfly House at the Paul Smith’s College VIC and the artist-in-residence program at the AIC.

This award ceremony is API’s major fundraising event. Those interested in supporting these programs and receiving a Zoom link to the gala, there is a $50 donation fee. For more information, visit adkinstitute.org or call 518-582-3376.


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