NRCM was pleased to recognize three exceptional individuals and a coalition of young climate activists at this year’s Conservation Leadership Awards ceremony held Wednesday, October 16, at the Jewish Community Alliance, 1342 Congress Street in Portland.
The evening included music, wine, light refreshments, and, of course, the inspirational stories of this year’s recipients.
• Jon Lund of Hallowell will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award for his decades of service to Maine’s environment. When Jon Lund was elected to the Maine Legislature in 1965, he helped to usher in a new era for Maine’s environment. Jon was one of several young legislators who worked across party lines to craft a framework for regulating the impacts that industry and development were having on Maine’s wildlife and waters. Jon went on to become Maine’s Attorney General, the publisher of the Maine Sportsman monthly news, and a lifetime advocate for clean water and the restoration of Maine’s rivers and native fisheries. He served on the NRCM Board of Directors and was a champion for removal of the Edwards Dam on the Kennebec River.
• Liz Caruso of Caratunk Liz has been a tireless activist against the proposed CMP transmission corridor, providing consistent and powerful advocacy for her community and the state. Liz has engaged in every possible arena to fight the project: intervening at the Public Utilities Commission, Department of Environmental Protection, and the Land Use Planning Commission; testifying in front of the Legislature; briefing legislators on the issues; participating in town meetings throughout the state; debating CMP’s spokespeople; writing letters to local papers; and single-handedly making Caratunk the first and only town to pass a moratorium against the corridor.
• SolaRISE Student Activists of Portland SolaRISE Portland is a coalition of students and staff from Casco Bay, Deering, and Portland high schools who have been strong, successful advocates for providing solar energy to Portland schools. The group organized a rally attended by more than 300 people and has raised more than $20,000 toward the project. On August 20th, the Portland School Board voted unanimously in support of a resolution for an offsite solar project that will reduce energy costs and cut carbon emissions. Siri Pierce from Casco Bay High School, and several other student leaders, will accept the award on behalf of the SolaRISE student coalition.
• This year’s People’s Choice Award was presented to Sandi Howard for her dedication to administering the Say NO to NECEC Facebook group and organizing one of the groups of intervenors in the CMP proceedings at the Department of Environmental Protection and the Land Use Planning Commission.