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State of Protected Heritage Areas Report, April 1, 2007 to March 31, 2009

Chief Executive Officer's Message

Alan Latourelle, Chief Executive Officer
Alan Latourelle
© Parks Canada

On behalf of the Parks Canada Agency, I am proud to submit this 2009 State of Protected Heritage Areas Report to the people of Canada.

The report is a wonderful reminder of the task that Parks Canada has been carrying out successfully and with great pride through Canada's nation-wide network of special places.

Across Canada's vast land, 42 national parks, 167 national historic sites and three national marine conservation areas inspire us and move us as Canadians, emotionally, intellectually and spiritually. These incredible landscapes and waterscapes embody the very essence of Canada. Our national historic sites chronicle the human determination and ingenuity that have shaped our nation. They celebrate the legacy of inspired and visionary Canadians whose dedication, passion, sacrifice and knowledge have inspired the character and values of our country. Each special and protected heritage place symbolizes our nation's promise to its future.

This report is very timely, particularly as we prepare to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Parks Canada as the world's first parks service, created in 1911. Canada is also getting ready to mark the 125th anniversary of Canada's first national park, Banff, which was established when our country was not yet 20 years old. These national festivities will be an opportunity to recognize the great Canadians who had the foresight to provide a great gift to future generations and embark our nation on the national dream of having Canada's nature protected and enjoyed.

We have much more to celebrate together-the best national park system in the world, a system of historic sites that recognize great Canadians who have shaped our nation, the most respectful working relationship with Aboriginal peoples, and countless opportunities for Canadians to connect with Canada's nature and history at its best.

Original signed by
Alan Latourelle
Chief Executive Officer
Parks Canada Agency