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By Ashley Merscher
Special to The SUN
On Oct. 16, Palmer Land Trust will host the Southern Colorado Conservation Awards, honoring significant achievements of individuals and organizations that, through their conservation efforts, advance the future wellbeing of southern Colorado’s communities, people, ecologies and economies. The awards focus on conservation achievements in the broadest sense — knowing that successful conservation involves more than just resource protection; it involves a wide variety of champions across political, educational, business, research and land management spectrums.
Colorado faces some of the greatest conservation challenges in the nation. And it responds with some of the greatest conservation successes — championed by people for whom protecting important places, leading by example, teaching our children about the natural world and setting new benchmarks for a sustainable future are a part of their daily lives.
Awards are presented in each of the following four categories:
• The Stuart P. Dodge Award: honoring an individual or organization for a lifetime record of conservation achievement.
• The Friends of Open Space Award: honoring an individual or organization for recent efforts contributing to the protection of a significant property or important landscape in southern Colorado.
• The Stewardship Award: honoring an organization or individual who, through grassroots efforts, exceptional land management practices, educational programs, or by way of example, has positively impacted the land and the way members of our communities understand and respect their relationship to the land.
• The Innovation in Conservation Award: honoring an individual, group, project or program that has advanced the cause of conservation by developing new conservation models, creating new conservation funding mechanisms or implementing unique conservation partnerships that protect our natural heritage.
Award nominations are being accepted through June 6 at Palmer Land Trust, 102 South Tejon St., Suite 360, Colorado Springs, CO 80903, fax (719) 434-3666 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The nomination form and award criteria are available at palmerlandtrust.org.