The Methow Conservancy announced the 2022 winners of its annual Conservation Awards at an event on Tuesday (Dec. 6).
• Jay Morrison is the 2022 recipient of the Susie Stephens Award for providing outstanding volunteer service to the Methow Conservancy’s efforts. “The Conservancy considers Morrison to be one of the volunteer heroes of Homestream Park and the Meadowlark Natural Area, for his onsite work to improve those sites and for sharing his enthusiasm for the land in more than just words,” according to a press release.
• The late Mike Real was awarded the 2022 You Inspire Us Award, posthumously, for inspiring others to care for the land. Real passed away in 2021 at age 72. According to the Conservancy release, Real, “like iconic Methow Valley activists before him, left lasting legacies through the support of 15 local nonprofit organizations named in his will. … A consummate volunteer, Real was often the first to arrive and the last to leave a work party, whether it involved pulling weeds, fixing appliances at repair sessions, supporting arts events, and helping others in need. His energy was legendary.”
• The 2022 Ken White Award, the Conservancy’s longest-standing distinction, goes to Susan Prichard, a nationally-recognized research scientist and forest ecologist who studies the effects of fire and other disturbances on forest dynamics. “In addition to contributing to understanding of climate change impacts on forest ecosystems and fuel treatment options to mitigate wildfire effects, Prichard is a popular public speaker and generously donates much of her time to speak to community groups, high school and college students, and other groups interested in learning more about fire ecology,” the press release said.
The award annual goes to a person with “a long-standing history of inspiring conservation efforts in the Methow Valley,” according to the release. “Its namesake, Ken White, was often called ‘the Methow Valley’s most enthusiastic naturalist.’ White was a self-taught conservationist with a passion for sharing his knowledge and love of the Methow Valley.”