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Environmental Defense Fund Archive
Collection 232

Record Group 1: Founders' Papers
Sub-group III: Robert E. Smolker Papers

Collection Description:
Research files, correspondence, financial documents, newsletters, clippings and memos, 1967-1985.
4.07 linear feet.
Processed by Meredith Bouchard, 2003. Updated in August 2009.

Biographical Note
Scope and Content Note
Series Descriptions
Box and Container Listing

Biographical Note

Robert E. Smolker was a professor at Stony Brook University, an ornithologist, an environmentalist involved in local government, and one of the founders of Environmental Defense Fund.

Described by author Marion Lane Rogers in Acorn Days as "the guiding light of EDF" who "carried off his professional duties with deceptive grace" (p. 170), Smolker was a member of the Board of Trustees, serving as its secretary, and a chairman of several committees. In addition to his involvement in EDF activities, he was also active in environmental affairs of Brookhaven Town. His appointments included chairmanship of the Board of Waterways and Natural Resources, and memberships in several conservation councils such as the Regional Marine Resources Council.

Robert Smolker was also an early supporter of the creation of the Environmental Defense Archive in the Special Collections Department at Stony Brook.

Scope and Content Note

The Robert Smolker collection consists of memos, newsletters, correspondence, and monographs related to his work with the Environmental Defense Fund and the environmental issues of Brookhaven Town.

The EDF files span 1972-84 with the focus on 1977-81. Most of the files are copies of minutes and correspondence from trustee nomination and Executive committees. There are also bulletins describing activities in the regional offices during the late 1970s. The subject files are brief collections, usually 1-3 folders containing memoranda, clippings or manuscripts on a topic of interest.

Series Descriptions

Series 1: Environmental Defense Fund Documents: 1967-1985 [1.41 linear ft]
Arrangement: Sub-divided into correspondence, minutes, and communications.

This series is a collection memoranda, correspondence, office bulletins, minutes and publications reflecting the programs and committees of EDF. The focus is the minutes and memos of the Board of Trustees of which Dr. Smolker was secretary and later made an Honorary Trustee.

Series 2: Subject Files: 1967-1985 [1.41 linear ft]
Arrangement: Alphabetical

This series is a record of the variety of cases and issues of interest to Dr. Smolker. The bulk of the material relates to hydroelectric dams in Connecticut, Long Island water issues, and marine wildlife.

Series 3: Long Island Environment: 1970-1984 [1.25 linear ft]
Arrangement: Sub-divided into subject files of Brookhaven; Long Island Regional Planning Board; and Birding.

This series is a collection of Robert Smolker’s activities outside of the Environmental Defense Fund. It provides evidence of Dr. Smolker’s activities as a local environmentalist. Included are: minutes of conservation councils, dredging proposals, open space reports and local policy drafts, and papers related to bird counting projects.

Box and Container Listing

SERIES 1: Environmental Defense Fund Documents

Box 1


To the Board of Trustees, 1972-1981

Box 2

To the Litigation Review Committee, 1973

General, 1974-78
Energy, 1977-79
Fundraising, 1975-77
Toxics, 1974-77
Water, 1971-72
Wildlife, nd
Personnel policies and organization, 1974-1977

Meeting minutes and agendas:
Board of Trustees, April 1981

Executive Committee of the Board, minutes and agendas, 1972-1979

Box 3

Executive Committee Meetings:
February 1981
February 1982
January 1983
September 1984

EDF Communications:
EDF Bylaws, 1968-1976
EDF Bulletin, 1968-1970

Office Bulletins:
Berkeley office, 1978-1981
Colorado office, 1977-1981
New York office, 1977-1980
Washington office, 1974-1975
VA Project office, 1980

ORV Monitor, 1974-75

Box 4 [Confidential]

Memoranda—Personnel, 1973
Memoranda—Executive Director Search Committee, 1974-1978
Memoranda—Board Nominating Committee, 1972-1976, 1980
Correspondence—Victor Yannacone, Jr., 1969-1975

SERIES 2: Subject Files

Box 5

Air pollution (sulfur dioxide regulation)—Colorado, 1974-1978
Asbestos [memos], 1977
Barrier Islands [memos], 1976-77
Blackbird Control (Dept. of the Army), 1974-75
Connecticut River Basin fish passage facilities design-(Bureau of Sport Fisheries & Wildlife, Boston)
Corcovado National Park (Costa Rica), 1975
Electric Power [articles], ca. 1975
Endangered Species, 1975
Environmental Defense Fund Gala Dinner program, 1977
Federal Water Pollution Control Act [memoranda], nd
Fungicides (Amerigo Mosca correspondence), 1975

Box 6

Hydroelectric dams (Connecticut), 1972-81
Mercury—ms, clippings, 1968, 1971
Monsanto Company, correspondence, symposium papers, 1973, 1978
National Environmental Policy Act, reprints, memoranda, 1971, 1973
Off-road vehicles, draft environmental impact statement, 1973

Box 6a

Long Island—wastewater, 1974-76
Long Island—water supply, 1975
Marine Mammal Protection Act, 1976

Box 7

Parathion, ms & correspondence, 1972
Pesticides, clippings & correspondence, 1974, 1978, 1980
Resource Conservation & Recovery [memoranda], 1977-78
Saccharine ban statement, 1977
Tocks Island Reservoir--Flood control documents, 1972
Toxic chemical [memoranda], 1976, 1978
Trans Alaska Pipeline,correspondence, 1971
TRIS [articles], 1977
Wetlands (Southeast US), memoranda, 1978
Wind energy conversion (Batelle & Brookhaven Labs), 1977

SERIES 3: Long Island Environment

Box 8

Brookhaven Town:
Blue Ribbon Task Force, 1980
Board of Waterways and Natural Resources [correspondence], 1971
Board of Waterways and Natural Resources [forest inventory], 1971
Conservation Advisory Council [correspondence, & minutes], 1968, 1984
Environmental concerns [memo to Planning Board], 1974
Survey of Town residents [Dept. of Environmental Conservation], 1983-84
Fire Island erosion control project, 1969
Mount Sinai Harbor dredging proposal [correspondence], 1974-75

Box 9

Brookhaven Town:
Open Space Action Committee [reports and proceedings], 1965, 1967
Pollution [correspondence with William Rodgers], 1970-72
Port Jefferson Harbor--proposed dredging [correspondence], 1972-73
Seatuck Cove--dredging, 1966-68
Stony Brook Harbor--dredging [correspondence & impact], 1973
Waterfront revitalization program [policies], 1984

Box 10

Long Island Regional Planning Board:
Urban runoff program, 1983
Environmental plan for New York State, nd
Oil spill response (Fire Island), 1979

Regional Marine Resources Council minutes, 1979-84

Breeding Bird Atlas newsletter, 1980-84
Breeding Bird survey [planning papers], 1980-84
Index to bird sanctuaries on Long Island (author unknown), 1970
Kestrel [ms], nd
Philippine Eagle [photo], nd
Smithtown Christmas bird count, 1967-71, 1974-81


Title: Map Showing Proposed Dredging in Stony Brook Harbor
Creator: unknown
Date: 1973

Title: Economic Viability of Farm Areas
Date: May 1969

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