Note: The window to cast your vote for this year’s Out Standing in the Field Award honoree closed Feb. 13th. A big thanks to the more than 350-plus individuals who submitted recommendations.
North Olympic Land Trust nominated three candidates for this year’s Outstanding in the Field Award. Nominees include John Gussman of Doubelclick Production, Streamkeepers of Clallam County, and the North Olympic Salmon Coalition.
For the past five years, the Land Trust has presented this award to highlight the work done within an individual or organization’s field of expertise that has positively impacted the North Olympic Peninsula and its communities. To select this year’s award recipient, Land Trust officials are seeking public input. Community members have until February 13 to recommend the candidate of their choice on the Land Trust website (CLICK HERE) or via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“This award allows the organization and greater community an opportunity to show our appreciation to those who help to improve the quality of life on the North Olympic Peninsula,” said Tom Sanford, North Olympic Land Trust executive director.
Past honorees include: Ron Allen and the Natural Resources staff at Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe, Jefferson Land Trust, Dick Goin, the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe and their Natural Resources Department, and the Clallam Conservation District.
The Land Trust Board of Directors, staff and committees selected the 2019 candidates for varying reasons, but each share a dedication toward maintaining and enhancing social and environmental health and resiliency of this area, explained Land Trust Community Engagement Specialist Alana Linderoth.
Gussman is a talented photographer and cinematographer. He has not only helped to tell the story of the Olympic Peninsula through his work on the award-winning film Return of the River, but often works with local nonprofits, businesses and community groups to bring their projects to life, explained Linderoth.
“John’s work connects people to place and helps inspire a sense of stewardship and respect of the Peninsula’s natural beauty,” said Linderoth.
The North Olympic Salmon Coalition – a nonprofit dedicated to promoting robust wild salmon stocks for families, fishers, and local economies by furthering habitat restoration and education on the North Olympic Peninsula – has done an array of projects to improve the region’s fish-bearing streams and rivers. Additionally, the organization provides educational programming and hands-on habitat restoration volunteer experiences.
One of the Salmon Coalition’s most notable and recently completed projects was the restoration of estuarine and wetland habitat at 3 Crabs in Dungeness.
“The successful leadership of the Salmon Coalition and the partnerships they brought together resulted in the restoration of more than 40 acres of coastal wetlands and half-mile of stream channel,” said Linderoth. “This project reflects the type of impactful work the Salmon Coalition makes possible.”
Streamkeepers of Clallam County is also among the candidates for this year’s award. The citizen-based watershed monitoring program of Clallam County’s Public Works Roads Department provides volunteer opportunities and project assistance critical to protecting and restoring local watersheds. Beyond ongoing data collection and analysis of the biological, physical and chemical health of area streams, the organization teaches about watershed stewardship, fosters citizen science, and assists other organizations.
“Whether monitoring stream flows, collecting stormwater samples or tracking salmon spawning activity, data essential for informing and guiding restoration and conservation efforts on the North Olympic Peninsula are available thanks to the longtime dedication of Streamkeepers,” said Linderoth.
The Land Trust will present the Out Standing in the Field Award at its annual Conservation Breakfast. This year marks the 11th Conservation Breakfast, set for Friday, March 22. This year’s keynote speaker is Seattle Times Environment Reporter Lynda Mapes. Based on her in-depth coverage, Mapes will discuss the ebb and flow of orca recovery in Puget Sound and its connection to conservation on the North Olympic Peninsula.
Conservation Breakfast is free and open to the public with an RSVP. Please RSVP online (CLICK HERE) or call (360) 417-1815 by March 13.