The City of Lincoln will receive the 2002 Conservationists of the Year Award from the Nebraska Wildlife Federation Board of Directors at 3 p.m. tomorrow, October 5 at the group's annual meeting. City Council Chair Jonathan Cook will accept the award on behalf of the City at the Papio-Omaha Natural Resources District (NRD) headquarters at Chalco Hills (see directions at end of release).
"We are extremely proud and honored to be recognized as one of Nebraska's leaders in protecting our environment," said Mayor Wesely. "Our community places a high priority on environmental issues and we recognize and accept the responsibility we have to future generations." Kent Morgan, an Aide to Mayor Wesely, will receive the Conservation Professional Award.
The Nebraska Wildlife Federation presents the award annually to individuals and organizations for contributions to the conservation of fish, wildlife and other natural resources in Nebraska. The City of Lincoln was nominated by the Board of Directors for its leadership and vision in identifying key environmental resources in Lincoln and Lancaster County; for putting in place a new Comprehensive Plan that will help protect natural resources; and for pursuing funding and other measures for the long-term protection of wetlands, native prairies and streams.
"This is the first time the award has been presented to a city," said Duane Hovorka, Nebraska Wildlife Federation Executive Director. "The City of Lincoln has taken the lead in efforts to protect its natural resources and has provided an example for other Nebraska communities in preserving the wildlife and wild places so important to all of us. In particular, the 'Greenprint Challenge Report' commissioned by Mayor Wesely sets the stage by identifying the 'signature' landscapes in the area."
The Nebraska Wildlife Federation, chartered in 1970, is a statewide organization dedicated to environmental education, fish and wildlife conservation and common sense public policy. Federation volunteers help others develop backyard and schoolyard habitat areas, monitor annual bird migrations, conserve Nebraska streams and restore wildlife habitat.