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Coastal Documentary Selected for Governor’s Conservation Award

February 23, 2012 12:00 AM

Louisiana Public Broadcasting’s documentary Turning the Tide has been chosen to receive the Governor's Award – Conservationist of the Year for 2011. The award, a handsome statuette of a bald eagle, will be presented the evening of Saturday, March 10, at a festive banquet held in conjunction with the Louisiana Wildlife Federation's 73rd convention March 9-11 at the Clarion Inn & Suites Conference Center in Covington, Louisiana. The banquet master of ceremonies will be Kevin Davis, recently appointed Director of the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, and former President of St. Tammany Parish.

The Governor’s Award is presented annually to the person or organization deemed to have made the most outstanding contribution toward the protection and wise use of the state's natural resources - air, soil and minerals, forests, waters, fish and wildlife from among nominees submitted by the public. The selection for this and seven other awards was made by a panel of independent judges with expertise in a wide range of conservation fields.

Turning the Tide presents an in-depth and up-to-date examination of Louisiana’s ongoing coastal land loss and the solutions proposed. Released in 2011, the documentary features more than fifty scientists, policymakers, and citizen leaders providing a comprehensive view of the problem and strategies and includes recent research from the Mississippi River flood of 2011.

Four individuals, two organizations and one business will also be recognized by the Louisiana Wildlife Federation for their outstanding conservation achievements last year. They are:

Thomas J. Hess, Jr. of Grand Chenier in Cameron Parish, biologist program manager with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries at Rockefeller Refuge, for leading a team of agency partners to successfully reintroduce the whooping crane in Louisiana;

Dr. George L. Dugal of Lafayette, for his volunteer leadership in Louisiana Operation Game Thief for more than three decades;

Amite River Preservation Association, a youth organization formed by high school students in 2011 to clean up the Amite River near Central and Denham Springs and educate other youth about preserving the river system;

ConocoPhillips, for its partnership support of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ program to reintroduce the whooping crane to Louisiana after an absence of more than 60 years;

Cindy Kilpatrick, recently retired teacher from Oil City Environmental Magnet School in Caddo Parish, for her work as the school’s environmental coordinator and current leadership through Louisiana Project Learning Tree;

Charlotte A. Randolph, Lafourche Parish President, for her leadership during the BP Oil Spill and the Mississippi River flood and as a leader for Parishes Against Coastal Erosion and other initiatives addressing coastal land loss in Louisiana; and

The Friends of Red River National Wildlife Refuge near Bossier City, a volunteer organization supporting the refuge by providing educational programming and renovating buildings and facilities to encourage greater access and use of the refuge.

If you would like to join the Louisiana Wildlife Federation in honoring this year’s award recipients at the 48th Governor’s Conservation Achievement Recognition Banquet, please contact the LWF office at (225) 344-6707, or download the convention registration form and return it to the LWF office by March 2. There will be a cocktail reception beginning at 6 PM with the banquet immediately following at 7 PM. Tickets are $40 each and includes the cocktail reception.

Room reservations can be made by contacting the Clarion Inn & Suites Conference Center at (985) 893-3580. More details can be found on LWF’s convention room reservation flyer.

The Louisiana Wildlife Federation is a statewide conservation education and advocacy organization with more than 10,000 members and 28 affiliate groups.  Established in 1940, it is affiliated with the National Wildlife Federation and represents a broad constituency of conservationists including hunters, fishers, campers, birders, boaters, and other outdoor enthusiasts.

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