About Us

The Ancient Islands Group is one of sixteen local groups that comprise the Florida Chapter of the Sierra Club. Our group represents over 1,100 members in the counties of Polk, Highlands, Hardee, Desoto and Sumter. Founded by legendary conservationist John Muir in 1892, the Sierra Club is the nation's largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization -- with more than two million members and supporters.

The Ancient Islands Group shares the mission of the Sierra Club to explore, enjoy and protect the planet. We explore and enjoy the planet by engaging in a range of outdoor activities including organized outings. We protect the planet by promoting best conservation practices and legislation and working against detrimental activities and policies. The group is governed by an Executive Committee of seven volunteers who serve for two-year terms. Committees work on specific tasks, including Outings and Conservation.

We welcome you to join us in the name of local conservation.

Why the name Ancient Islands?

Our group’s name refers to the narrow ridge of high ground that runs like a spine down the center of the Florida peninsula. (The principal ridge is the Lake Wales Ridge.) During the Pleistocene epoch only the highest points along this sandy ridge remained above sea level. Due to the great age and isolation of these islands, a high concentration of endemic (and endangered) plants and animals evolved on the resulting scrublands.

Executive Committee
Chair - Bruce Kistler
Vice Chair - Marian Ryan
Treasurer - Frances Howell-Coleman
Secretary - Dan Clark
Members at Large - Andy Quinn, Gail Bailey, Paul Anderson

Committees
Outings - Andy Quinn, Dan Clark, Gail Bagley
Conservation - Marian Ryan
Newsletter - Frances Howell-Coleman
Email Tree Coordinator - Jenny Jacobs

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