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Northern Forest Center named Q3 2010 Champion in Action in area of environmental impact in New Hampshire

Citizens Bank and WMUR-TV to provide $25,000 grant, PR and volunteer support

Manchester, N.H.   (July 20, 2010) - Citizens Bank and WMUR-TV have named the Northern Forest Center as their 2010 third quarter Champion in Action® in the area of environmental impact. As part of the award, the Northern Forest Center will receive a $25,000 grant, media coverage, and extensive promotional and volunteer support for its dedication and commitment to improving the environment.

“Citizens Bank is pleased to join WMUR-TV in naming Northern Forest Center as its newest Champion in Action,” said Cathleen A. Schmidt, President, Citizens Bank, New Hampshire. “By providing financial, marketing, and volunteer support, we can assist these Champions in taking a big step forward in advancing their programs and services. The Northern Forest Center has helped its communities benefit from forest-based economic and conservation efforts. We are proud to recognize its efforts in the community and help the organization grow.”

The Champions in Action program is designed to recognize and support nonprofit organizations for their contributions to New Hampshire communities. A new Champion in Action is selected each quarter among a range of social service areas.

“Sharing in this initiative with Citizens Bank continues to be a source of great pride," said Jeff Bartlett, General Manager of WMUR-TV. “We are very pleased to help out organizations across the state that demonstrate such a strong commitment to making a difference in the lives of so many New Hampshire residents. They truly are champions.”

The Northern Forest Center advocates for the Northern Forest region and helps its communities benefit from forest-based economic and conservation efforts. The Northern Forest – spanning roughly 30 million acres of northern New Hampshire, Maine, Vermont and New York – is the largest forested region in the eastern United States and home to nearly 2 million people and hundreds of species of wildlife. The Northern Forest Center collaborates across the region to advance projects – ranging from renewable energy to sustainable forestry – that benefit the region’s natural areas, economy and communities.

“The Northern Forest Center works closely with partners to conserve the forest and reinvigorate the economy by developing incentives for long-term forest stewardship,” said Rob Riley, President of Northern Forest Center. The Center believes that a robust economy is central to the long-term health of the Northern Forest’s communities and to the forest.”

Over the past decade, the Center has helped to conserve or introduce sustainable practices on hundreds of thousands of acres of forest, delivered educational programming to 130,000 people through the Ways of the Woods traveling exhibition, led development of the first sustainable economic strategy for the region, and secured national designation for the region as one of three Forest Investment Zones, leveraging private funds to revitalize forested places.

As a Champion in Action, Northern Forest Center will receive:
• A $25,000 contribution in unrestricted funds from the Citizens Bank Foundation.
• Media coverage from WMUR-TV, including public service announcements and television profiles.
• Volunteer support from Citizens and WMUR-TV employees.
• Extensive public relations support.
• Promotional support, highlighting the current “Champion in Action” in all Citizens Bank branches and on its ATMs.
• Exposure on both Citizens Bank and WMUR-TV Web sites.

“The Northern Forest Center is honored to be recognized by Citizens Bank and WMUR-TV as a Champion in Action,” said Riley. “We’re linking sustainable economic development to conservation of the forest in ways that will benefit Northern Forest communities. With the support of WMUR and Citizens Bank, we will put a new generation of conservation tools to work for the region.”

To learn more about the Northern Forest Center, visit www.northernforest.org or call
(603) 229-0679. The Northern Forest Center’s mailing address is P.O. Box 210, Concord, NH 03302-0210. Donations to the Northern Forest Center are tax deductible as allowed by law.

About Citizens Bank

Citizens Bank is a division of RBS Citizens, N.A., operating its seven-state branch network in Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont.  It has 83 branches and 150 ATMs in New Hampshire.

RBS Citizens, N.A. is a subsidiary of Citizens Financial Group, Inc., a $144 billion commercial bank holding company headquartered in Providence, R.I. CFG’s two bank subsidiaries are RBS Citizens, N.A. and Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania. They operate a 12-state branch network under the Citizens Bank brand in Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont, and the Charter One brand in Illinois, Michigan and Ohio. CFG has non-branch retail and commercial offices in about 40 states. CFG is owned by RBS (The Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc). 


WMUR-TV (Ch. 9) is an ABC-TV affiliate headquartered in Manchester, N.H., and is owned and managed by Hearst-Argyle Television, Inc., one of the nation's largest television station groups. WMUR-TV is New Hampshire's largest commercial TV station, reaching more than a million people. Founded in 1954, the station's news, feature and sports coverage has won numerous awards for professional and journalistic excellence. WMUR-TV is considered the broadcast news source of record for New Hampshire's first-in-the-nation presidential primary election. WMUR-TV provides online news and information at www.WMUR.com