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AP Exclusive: California's coastal crusader announces retirement
LOS ANGELES (AP) ' They might not know his name but the millions of visitors annually lured to California's 1,100 miles of coastline are no doubt familiar with his work.
Peter Douglas, who has worked 41 years to keep one of the world's most breathtaking coastlines largely undeveloped, told The Associated Press he is announcing Wednesday his retirement as executive director of the California Coastal Commission.
In the 1970s Douglas co-authored the legislation that would become the country's most stringent coastal protections. He has headed the staff for the powerful agency that regulates coastal development for 26 years.
A crusader for public access, Douglas spent years sparring with developers and property owners over compliance with the Coastal Act.
Douglas has been battling lung cancer since last year and will go on sick leave before formally retiring in November.