Brower Youth Awards Honor Environmental Leaders
BERKELEY, California, October 15, 2001 (ENS) — The winners of the 2nd annual Brower Youth Awards, the nation’s most prestigious prize for young environmental activists, were honored on Saturday at a ceremony in Berkeley.
David Brower (Photo © S. Lewis)
The awards recognize innovative leadership by young people ages 13 to 22. They are named in honor of environmentalist David Brower, who died in November 2000 at the age of 88 following a long and distinguished career protecting wild lands around the world.
The six winners were chosen from among hundreds of nominees for their work on projects that included producing a documentary film about an otherwise ignored oil spill, convincing a university and national chain of home supply stores to switch to sustainable wood and recycled paper products, and helping to convince Congress to ban unsustainable fishing practices.
The winners are:
- Deland Chan, 16 — prime mover of the Roots and Shoots project at the 92nd Street YMCA in New York City, which undertook the restoration of the Native Species Garden in Inwood Hill Park, the last nine acres of natural forest in Manhattan.
- Angela Coryell, 19 — producer and director of the award winning film, "An Oily Sky" which documents the history and hazards of century old railroad fuel spills that have contaminated soil and groundwater the state of Washington.
- Jared Duval, 18 - founder and coordinator of Students for a Sustainable Future, a group that saved a wetland from development in New Hampshire and campaigned to prevent global warming and promote composting, recycling, and industrial hemp.
- Rob Fish, 22 - created an ad hoc student group that convinced Maine's College of the Atlantic to adopt a comprehensive wood and paper procurement policy that requires it to purchase only sustainably harvested wood and 100 percent post-consumer waster recycled — the only such policy of its kind in the country.
- Heide Iravani, 18 - founded and led a school based chapter of the environmental group Free the Planet! in North Carolina and served as a local organizer in a market based campaign to protect forests in the southeast United States from destruction by the home development and paper products industries.
- Grayson Schleppegrell, 13 - is leader of his South Carolina school’s participation in a national campaign to rescue endangered swordfish populations off the eastern United States, which were threatened with commercial extinction by improperly managed mass fishing methods.
Winners with Julia Butterfly Hill (L-R:) Chan, Coryell, Duval, Hill, Fish, Iravani. Schleppegrell not shown.
(Photo courtesy Earth Island Institute)
The winners each received a $3,000 cash prize, and were presented with their awards by author and tree-sitter Julia Butterfly Hill at the ceremony in Berkeley, Brower’s birthplace and home near San Francisco. They will go on a three day wilderness outing together in Yosemite National Park as part of the prize.
The Brower Youth Awards were established by the Earth Island Institute to recognize a new generation of young leaders who are following in David Brower’s footsteps by practicing what he called CPR — conservation, preservation, and restoration — for the Earth.
Brower was the first executive director of the Sierra Club from 1952 to 1969, and founded the Earth Island Institute, Friends of the Earth, the League of Conservation Voters, and several other internationally renowned environmental non-profit groups. He was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize three times.