I would like to congratulate all the winners of the 2003 Excellence in Right of Way Awards Program as well as those who received Honorable Mentions and all nominees. It is evident from the many innovative ideas and thoughtful entries that the right of way profession is indeed vibrant and continually implementing new ways to improve the real property acquisition process while ensuring that property owners and tenants' rights are protected.
This year's nominees and honorees improved existing processes, created new processes, forged new partnerships within their respective agencies to improve the project development and delivery process, assumed leading roles in project right of way activities, delivered cost savings, and improved production time. They have done this while continuing to ensure that the public is treated fairly and receives their constitutionally guaranteed right to receive just compensation.
A number of this year's entries focused on ways to serve the public in addition to ensuring that just compensation was provided to property owners. Through the Award winners' continuing efforts to improve and innovate these processes and programs, the public has new tools for accessing needed information and additional opportunity to interact at outreach sessions.
These awards recognize right of way professionals efforts to forge new partnerships, and develop innovations. I look forward to continuing the Excellence in Right of Way Awards program.
I am proud of not only the recognized five winners and eight honorees, but also all the entries that excelled in demonstrating outstanding innovations that help the right of way professionals meet the challenges in acquiring real property for a federal-aid project. Congratulations to all!
Cynthia J. Burbank
Associate Administrator for
Planning, Environment and Realty