In Search of Conservation Heroes, Future Conservationists
Nominate a Conservation Hero, Apply for a Conservation Scholarship
North Carolina Wildlife Federation seeks conservation heroes and future conservationists for our annual conservation achievement awards and college scholarship program.
The 58th annual Governor’s Conservation Achievement Awards is the state’s highest honor for conservation leaders who actively protect our state’s natural resources. Since 1958, the prestigious awards have honored individuals, associations, businesses and governmental bodies that have exhibited an unwavering commitment to conservation in North Carolina.
Recipients from 2021 included a renowned sea turtle biologist, educator and policy expert; an advocate for waterfowl hunters and wetlands conservation; an attorney fighting for water quality and environmental justice and a business centered on increasing diversity in the outdoor industry and on the trail by making the outdoor recreation more accessible to under-represented communities.
Conservation achievement award nominations will be accepted online through July 5, 2022; award recipients will be honored at a banquet on Sept. 10. Download the nomination form at ncwf.org.
Governor’s Conservation Achievement Award categories:
- Conservationist of the Year: Overall outstanding effort and achievement in any field of natural resources conservation.
- Wildlife Conservationist of the Year: Accomplishments in managing, studying or restoring wildlife, fisheries or habitat.
- Sportsman or Sportswoman of the Year: Exemplary efforts by an individual to encourage good sportsmanship and outdoor ethics.
- Land Conservationist of the Year: Outstanding effort by an individual, organization, or agency in land conservation, such as private or public land acquisitions, management or conservation.
- Water Conservationist of the Year: Outstanding effort by individual, organization, or agency in water conservation, such as water pollution control, stream/river protections, wetlands and estuarine protections, or aquatic wildlife conservation.
- Forest Conservationist of the Year: Outstanding effort by an individual, organization, or agency in forest conservation or forest wildlife conservation.
- Marine Resources Conservationist of the Year: Outstanding effort by an individual, organization or agency to conserve marine resources.
- Environmental Educator of the Year: Outstanding effort by individual or organization to advance environmental education in the classroom or the public sphere.
- Young Conservationist of the Year: Outstanding conservation effort by a person under 25.
- Conservation Organization of the Year: Outstanding accomplishment by an organization in affecting a particular issue during the year or raising awareness about conservation or wildlife habitat.
- Legislator of the Year: Outstanding effort by a member of the North Carolina legislature in support of conservation.
- Business Conservationist of the Year: Outstanding effort by any firm, business, or industry that has displayed an unwavering commitment to conservation or the public’s ability to enjoy natural resources.
- Natural Resources Agency or Scientist of the Year: Outstanding effort by any local, state or national agency responsible for managing natural resources, OR by an individual working for governmental agencies, educational institutions or related enterprises.
- Wildlife Volunteer of the Year: Outstanding effort by a citizen volunteer in the service of North Carolina’s wildlife and wild places.
- Public Lands Conservationist of the Year: Outstanding effort by a citizen volunteer or nonprofit organization to service or protect North Carolina’s public lands.
- NCWF Chapter of the Year: Outstanding effort by an NCWF Community Wildlife Chapter in one or more of the following areas: wildlife habitat, environmental education, youth participation or community involvement in conservation issues.
- Affiliate of the Year: Outstanding support effort by NCWF Affiliate.
College scholarship application period open
Since the 1970s, NCWF has awarded scholarships to more than 300 college students to help them follow their dreams of studying and working in the wildlife and conservation fields. Many award recipients have gone on to achieve significant success in the field, making a difference for wildlife and habitat. Meet the six future conservationists who received 2021 scholarships.
Qualifying students committed to environmental and natural resource conservation or management are encouraged to apply. NCWF’s scholarships are highly sought after, and always competitive. We appreciate the opportunity to identify and recognize deserving students and provide scholarship aid.
To qualify, students must be enrolled full-time at an accredited North Carolina college or university with a major related to wildlife, fisheries, forestry, conservation or environmental studies. Socio-economic elements, extra-curricular involvement and academic performance all impact final decisions.
NCWF will provide up to seven grants, which may include one $2,500 Conservation Leadership grant for a student of outstanding merit. Students must submit scholarship applications and supporting documents online by June 27, 2022. For questions or to inquire about applying by postal mail, contact Sarah Hollis at [email protected].