The Public Lands Alliance Recognizes Nonprofits, Companies and Land Management Agency Staff at the 2020 Partnership Awards

By Public Lands Alliance Staff posted 03-09-2020 11:18 AM



ARLINGTON, VA -- The Public Lands Alliance (PLA) has announced the recipients of its 2020 Partnership Awards that celebrate the best in public lands partnerships. These awards honor individuals, organizations, publications, products, programs and services that embody leading edge achievements in the preservation of public lands and the enrichment the visitor experience.

Nearly 300 people attended the awards ceremony during the Public Lands Alliance Convention and Trade Show in Arlington, VA. The awards program is sponsored by Impact Photographics.

A total of 16 awards were presented to individuals and organizations. In addition, there were 10 honorable mentions given along with a popular vote, Partners Choice Award.

Awards were given in six categories:

  • Public Lands Partner Award

  • Corporate Stewardship Award

  • Agency Leadership Award

  • Innovative Product Award

  • Outstanding Public Engagement Award

  • Publication of the Year

"America's public lands benefit from partnerships between land management agencies, nonprofit partners and environmentally conscious corporate partners in countless ways,” said Dan Puskar, President and CEO of PLA. “PLA is proud to celebrate the diverse contributions that public lands partners have made across our nation in the last year.”

Here is a complete list of the 2020 Partnership Award winners: (Photos available upon request)

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 2020 Public Lands Partner Award:

  • Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park & Cuyahoga Valley National Park

  • Discover Your Forest & Deschutes National Forest

  • Save the Redwoods League & California State Parks

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

  • Subaru of America, Inc., for their National Park Zero Landfill Initiative.

  • Teva®, a division of Deckers Brands, for their GC100 collection celebrating Grand Canyon National Park’s Centennial.

Agency Leadership Award

The Agency Leadership Award recognizes a land management agency employee for outstanding accomplishments in championing, cultivating and leading a partnership.

These individuals were presented with the Agency Leadership Award:

  • Janet Carrier Ady with the Bureau of Land Management (retired)

  • Christopher Davis with Cuyahoga Valley National Park, National Park Service

  • Ashley Nettles with Dillon Ranger District, White River National Forest, USDA Forest 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:

  • Grand Canyon Conservancy and Parks Project for “Grand Canyon Polaroid Camera”

  • Colorado Mountain Club for “Recreation Impact Monitoring System”

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.Outstanding_Public_Engagement.jpg

Product or Display Award Winners

  • Ding Darling Wildlife Society for “America's Best Restroom 2018”

  • Hawai’i Pacific Parks Association for “HPPA Annual Report”

Program or Service Award Winners:

  • East Bay Regional Park District and Regional Parks Foundation for “Celebration of East Bay Regional Park District’s 85th Anniversary and Regional Park Foundation’s 50th Anniversary”

  • Zion National Park Forever Project for “'We the Keepers’ - Zion National Park’s Centennial Celebration”

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.Publication_of_the_Year.jpg

Award Winner (organization with gross revenue below $1.5 million):

  • Isle Royale & Keweenaw Parks Association for I Spy ... Isle Royale

Award Winner (organization with gross revenue above $1.5 million):

  • Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy for Golden Gate Bridge: Believe it or Not

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, email marketing and through promoting to colleagues and friends.

  • Great Smoky Mountains Association for Millers Historical Demonstrations

Honorable Mentions

Honorable Mentions were also presented in some categories to the following recipients:

    • Great Smoky Mountains Association for “The Smokies Species-A-Day Perpetual Calendar” (Innovative Product)

    • Central Coast State Parks Association and California State Parks Association for “Central Coast State Parks Interpretive Chocolate Bars” (Innovative Product)

    • Western National Parks Association for “The National Park Experience Pavilion at the Tucson Festival of Books” (Outstanding Public Engagement: Program or Service)

    • Sequoia Parks Conservancy for “The Crystal Cave Tour for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Visitors Project” (Outstanding Public Engagement: Program or Service)

    • Eastern National for “Vietnam Women’s Memorial 25th Anniversary Commemoration” (Outstanding Public Engagement: Program or Service)

    • New Mexico Highlands University for “Rio Mora National Wildlife Refuge STEM Showdown” (Outstanding Public Engagement: Program or Service)

    • Chesapeake Conservation Partnership for Marking Milestones: Progress in Conserving Lands in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed (Publication of the Year – Gross Revenue Under $1.5 Million)

    • Black Hills Parks and Forests Association for The Jewel Cave Adventure: 50 Miles of Discovery Under South Dakota (Publication of the Year – Gross Revenue Under $1.5 Million)

    • Yosemite Conservancy for Wildheart: The Daring Adventures of John Muir (Publication of the Year – Gross Revenue Above $1.5 Million)

    • Canyonlands Natural History Association for Torry in the Lands of the Arches (Publication of the Year – Gross Revenue Above $1.5 Million)

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


About the Public Lands Alliance

The Public Lands Alliance is a network of more than 170 member organizations that serve more than 650 public lands and contribute over $250 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 nonprofit organizations and their land management agency partners.