Ask the Swan Specialist

Recipient of the 2013 John Muir Conservation Award (Nonprofit Conservation Award)
By:The Regal Swan Foundation
Date: 2 March 2014

March 1, 2014




Martinez, CA—The John Muir Association has announced the recipients of its 36th annual John Muir Conservation Awards, and—like John Muir’s—their work has both a local and global outreach. In addition, two special recognition awards will be given for extraordinary accomplishments.

The John Muir Conservation Awards will be presented at the John Muir Birthday–Earth Day Celebration at the John Muir National Historic Site on Saturday, April 26th. The event is free to the public and features Keynote Speaker Bruce Hamilton, exhibitors, activities and live music. This year marks 100 years of John Muir’s legacy since his death and is the 50th Anniversary of the John Muir National Historic Site.

The 2013 John Muir Conservation Awards honorees are:

The Regal Swan® Foundation, Nonprofit Conservation Award

The Regal Swan® Foundation, Inc., based in Florida, is recognized as a world leader in swan research, veterinary care and conservation. The goal is to provide humane treatment and veterinary care of swans through research, education and swan product development. An all-volunteer team of veterinarians, scientists, college professors and other professionals have made strides in medical research and care of swans, developed handbooks and educational curricula, and unique veterinary swan products, such as slings and temporary, fold-up pens for the care of sick or injured swans, and created a 24-hour website for swan consultation.

Tom Rusert and Darren Peterie, Conservationists of the Year

Tom and Darren co-founded Sonoma Birding based in Sonoma Valley, California in 2004 as a volunteer “citizen science”-based conservation organization. Sonoma Birding established sustainable bird and nature-related activities and programs for all ages through a variety of partnerships in the United States and Canada. Tom and Darren hosted the California Western Burrowing Owl Consortium in 2010 and have created numerous science-based, bird-related programs for children, including Pt. Reyes Bird Festival Birdathon for Kids. In 2012 and 2013, they presented the Wine County Optics and Nature Festival, attracting more than 1,000 people each year.

Malcolm Sproul, Conservation Legacy Award (Special Award)

Malcolm Sproul is a lifelong conservationist and naturalist who has been active in Golden Gate Audubon, Preserve Lamorinda Open Space, Save San Francisco Bay, and in 1993 joined the Board of Save Mount Diablo. Malcolm was elected president in 1998 and for 12 years presided over the organization as it became a leader in land conservation in Contra Costa County. He also served as an advisor for the East Contra Costa County Habitat Conservation Plan and is a leading expert on predatory birds. Malcolm works for LSA Associates, where he focuses on endangered species and wetlands issues.

South Brunswick High School Aquaculture Program, Environmental Education Conservation Award

The South Brunswick High School Aquaculture Program in Brunswick County, North Carolina is a saltwater and freshwater hatchery program that provides students with hands-on experience with fisheries management science, environmental awareness and community support. Under Byron “Barry” Bey’s leadership, the students rose to the challenge to “go green” by using solar energy to power the aerators for fish production ponds. Students plan to use pond waste water to fertilize an eco-friendly putting green, pitching and driving range on the fish farm. The program prepares students to succeed in post-secondary education in aquaculture and related fields.

Simran Vedvyas, Youth Environmental Conservation Award (Special Award)

Simran, who lives in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, established the youth group SynergY to provide opportunities for young people to participate in environmental events, such as clean up drives and tree-planting initiatives. In 2011, she was a speaker at the Eye on Earth Summit in Abu Dhabi has since promoted the Eye on Environmental Education. In 2013, she was the youngest panelist at the United Nations headquarters to celebrate International Youth Day 2013. Simran was also selected to be trained by former Vice-President Al Gore at the Climate Reality Corps in Chicago in August, 2013.

Since 1978, the John Muir Association has honored those who work has made significant contributions to environmental preservation, action and advocacy in the spirit of John Muir’s legacy.

The John Muir Association works to celebrate the life, share the vision, and preserve the legacy of John Muir through education, preservation, advocacy and stewardship, in partnership with the National Park Service at the John Muir National Historic Site in Martinez, California. The John Muir Association is a nonprofit organization established in 1956.

Visit for more information about the Awards or the John Muir Birthday–Earth Day Celebration. Admission and parking are free to the Celebration and hours at from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. For information about the Celebration, call the National Park Service at 925-228-8860, ext. 0. Come rain or shine!

# # #

Messages In This Thread

Recipient of the 2013 John Muir Conservation Award (Nonprofit Conservation Award) -- The Regal Swan Foundation -- 2 March 2014
Re: Recipient of the 2013 John Muir Conservation Award (Nonprofit Conservation Award) -- Lynne -- 4 March 2014