Public Lands Alliance Announces 2017 Partnership Award Winners

By Public Lands Alliance Staff posted 02-21-2017 06:21 PM



SILVER SPRING, Md.--The Public Lands Alliance (PLA) has announced the recipients of its 2017 Partnership Awards that celebrate the best in public lands partnerships. The awards honor individuals, organizations, publications, products, programs and services that embody leading edge achievements in the preservation of public lands and the enrichment of visitors.

More than 300 people attended the awards ceremony last week during the Public Lands Alliance Convention and Trade Show in Arlington, Virginia. Impact Photographics sponsored the awards program and ceremony.

A total of 18 awards were presented to individuals and organizations. In addition, there were 11 honorable mentions given along with the Partners Choice Award.

Awards were given in six categories:

  • Corporate Stewardship Award

  • Public Lands Partner Award

  • Agency Leadership Award

  • Innovative Product Award

  • Outstanding Public Engagement Award

  • Publication of the Year

"The quality of this year's nominees was truly outstanding and demonstrates how partnerships and a passion for public lands can make incredible things happen," said Dan Puskar, Executive Director. "Our panel of judges and Board of Directors did not have an easy task in determining who would receive recognition this year."

Here is a complete list of the 2017 Partnership Award winners: (Photos available upon request)

Corporate Stewardship Award

The Corporate Stewardship Award recognizes a company that has demonstrated exceptional achievement to enhance the quality of the visitor experience in America's public lands. The award is presented to a company that has made an impact through activities like product development, cause marketing and philanthropic support.

The following companies received the 2017 Corporate Stewardship Award on behalf of their philanthropic and partnership efforts with public lands nonprofits:

  • American Express: For its support of major restoration projects to the historic Kolb Studio and Desert View Watchtower in Grand Canyon National Park.

  • REI: For providing more than $50,000 in trail restoration and for ongoing volunteer efforts in Glacier National Park.

  • The Coleman Company: For its Capital Campout series which hosted over 2,500 underserved youth and families in parks at 17 events in 2016.

  • Chimani: For its partnership with Friends of Acadia to create the mobile gaming app, "Acadia Quest" in 2016 which was used to develop stewardship and to encourage fun outdoor exploration.

Public Lands Partner Award

The Public Lands Partner Award recognizes an exemplary partnership for its stunning achievements to protect and preserve public lands and enhance the experiences of visitors. The award is presented to both the nonprofit organization and its agency partner for their shared achievements.

The following organizations and their agency partners received the 2017 Public Lands Partner Award:

Agency Leadership Award

The Agency Leadership Award recognizes a land management agency employee for outstanding accomplishments in championing, cultivating and leading a partnership. The award is presented to an individual employed by a federal or state public land management agency.

These individuals were presented with the Agency Leadership Award:

  • Heather Burke (Portland, OR) U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

  • Rich Fedorchak (Estes Park, CO) National Park Service

Innovative Product Award

The innovative product award recognizes an interpretive product of any medium created in partnership by a nonprofit organization and land management agency that embodies a path-breaking approach to achieve a public lands mission.

Award Winners:

Honorable Mentions:

Outstanding Public Engagement Award: Product or Display and Program or Service

The Outstanding Public Engagement Award recognizes exemplary products, displays, programs or services created in partnership by a nonprofit organization and public lands that advance meaningful and sustainable connections between individuals and America's public lands.

Product or Display

Award Winners:

Honorable Mentions:

Program or Service

Award Winners:

  • Yellowstone: Color It Wild and Pop-Up Art Studio by Yellowstone Forever, Montana State University, Institute on Ecosystems and the National Park Service.

  • San Francisco Public Library Partnership Programs for the NPS Centennial by Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy with the San Francisco Public Library and the National Park Service.

Honorable Mentions:

Publication of the Year

The Publication of the Year Award recognizes a book or other publication created in partnership by a nonprofit organization and a public land that embodies innovation in educating and interpreting public lands to its readers, and impacts a substantial audience. Each year an award is granted to both an organization with annual gross revenues above and below $1.5 million.

Award Winners:

Honorable Mentions:

Partners Choice Award

This is the most inspiring submission as voted on by the public. Organizations promoted this voting to their members through social media and during the 2017 Convention and Trade Show.

For additional details on the individual award recipients, contact the Public Lands Alliance.


About the Public Lands Alliance

The nonprofit Public Lands Alliance is a network of more than 120 member organizations that serve more than 500 public lands and contribute over $150 million dollars annually to the preservation and visitor enhancement of those lands. PLA members are found in all states and territories and provide operational and interpretive support to every major federal management agency.