WESSA recognises Conservation Stars

WESSA recognises Conservation Stars

WESSA recognises conservation stars at 90th celebrationswessa_90_lifetime_conservation_achiever_awards_-_september_2016_page_1_image_0002
WESSA (the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa) paid tribute to a wide range of outstanding environmental achievements with the presentation of the organisation’s Annual Awards. These Awards were presented at the organisation’s 90th AGM, which was hosted by the WESSA’s Lowveld membership branch at Skukuza in the Kruger National Park on Saturday 17 September.

 

The WESSA Awards, which have been presented since 1974, enable WESSA to recognise and honour those who have made a significant contribution to the environmental conservation or environmental education sector in South Africa over the past year in an exceptional and sustained manner.

In celebration of the organisation’s 90-year anniversary of Caring for the Earth, WESSA presented awards in a number of additional categories this year. The Special 90th Celebration Medal was awarded to Keith Cooper and the Chairman’s 90th Celebration Medal was presented to John Green. The 90 Lifetime Conservation Achiever Awards category, which was introduced for the occasion, provided a unique opportunity to acknowledge 90 living individuals who have dedicated their lives to conservation in South Africa. (the list is peppered with Midlands recipients so take a bow Warriors)

John Green with Keith Cooper and Dr Richard Lewis

John Green with Keith Cooper and Dr Richard Lewis

The WESSA Individual Award was presented posthumously to Chris Skinner, the WESSA Group Award recipient was the Magaliesberg Protection Association and the WESSA Award for Corporates went to the film “Blood Lions” and also to the Morning Sun Nature Reserve in Limpopo.

WESSA also played tribute to outgoing Chairman Dr Richard Lewis for his more than 13 years of service to WESSA as a Board member, including six years as Chairman. Dr Lewis was commended for his “enthusiasm and strategic planning skills” in re-positioning WESSA to meet today’s challenges and for “his unstinting support for the mission and vision of the organisation”.

Pippa Hankinson (centre) from Blood Lions, with Chris Galliers (WESSA's senior manager for wildlife and conservation iniatives) and Sarah Alcock (WESSA)

Pippa Hankinson (centre) from Blood Lions, with Chris Galliers (WESSA’s senior manager for wildlife and conservation iniatives) and Sarah Alcock (WESSA)

In addition to the awards ceremony, the programme at the celebratory event was aptly structured around the theme of “Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow” and guest speakers – all game-changers in the field of conservation – had the audience enthralled as they shared personal and professional insights into their work on a variety of important projects. Amongst many stimulating conversations,Trust Ndlovu, WESSA Eco-Schools Programme Manager for Mpumalanga, affirmed that WESSA’s future – and indeed the future of our planet – lies in our young people, saying “If each learner reaches at least one parent, we can reach entire communities.

Considering the special history that the organisation shares with SANParks, it is only fitting that members and supporters from around the country returned to WESSA’s roots in Kruger to mark the milestone occasion. The association between the two organisations dates back to 1926 when the then disbanded Transvaal Game Protection Association (TGPA) members formed the Wildlife Protection Society, the direct ancestor of today’s WESSA. Their first resolution was to urge the Minister of Lands to proceed with the proclamation of the National Parks Bill as quickly as possible, following on from 14 years of lobbying by the TGPA for the Sabie and Shingwedzi Reserves to be nationalised. The Society’s first environmental campaign was then successful in leading to the proclamation of the Kruger National Park.

Andrew Muir; Andrew Zaloumis; Andy Gubb; Ann van Dyk; Anne Bean; Bill Small; Bonani Madikizela; Carmel Mbizvo; Charles Botha; Charlie Griffiths; Chris Dickens; Chris Willis; Christine Ridge‐Schnaufer; Christo Marais; Clive Walker; Crania Alcock; Dave Still; David Newton;Di Dold; Div De Villiers; Dr Anthony Turton; Eugene Moll; Freya Brett; Geoff & Kate Davies; George Hughes; Graham Avery; Gus Mills; Guy Preston; Heila Lotz‐Sisitka; Ian McCallum; Jane Carruthers; Jean Senogles; Jenny Gon; Jeremy Anderson; John Hanks; John Ledger; Judy Mann; Julie Filmer; Keith Cooper; Kerri Wolter ; Kobie Brand; Lente Roode; Lindie Buirski; Liz & Dave Wheeler; Liz McDade; Liz Taylor; Lorna Watt; Malcolm Powell; Margaret Burger; Mariette Liefferink; Marion Mengell; Mark Anderson; Mark Graham; Mathew Norval; Mavuso Msimang; Melissa Fourie; Michael Kidd; Morne Du Plessis; Paddy Norman; Paul Bartels; Paul Dutton; Pete Hancock; Peter Milstein; Pieter Burger; Pixie Littlewort; Prof Wickus van Niekerk; Razeena Omar; Rejoice Mabudafhasi; Richard Cowling; Richard Lewis; Rob Little; Rob O’Donoghue; Rosanne Clark; Salomon Joubert; Samsin Phakathi; Sandy Barnes; Stanley Madden; Steve Raney; Suzanne du Plessis; Suzanne Erasmus; Tanya Abrahamse; Thomas Mathiba; Tim Neary; Tim Snow; Tony Carnie; Vincent Curruthers; Vukani Mtya; William Mngoma; Willem Hasiwindus; Yolan Friedman.

Andrew Muir; Andrew Zaloumis; Andy Gubb; Ann van Dyk; Anne Bean; Bill Small; Bonani Madikizela; Carmel Mbizvo; Charles Botha; Charlie Griffiths; Chris Dickens; Chris Willis; Christine Ridge‐Schnaufer; Christo Marais; Clive Walker; Crania Alcock; Dave Still; David Newton;Di Dold; Div De Villiers; Dr Anthony Turton; Eugene Moll; Freya Brett; Geoff & Kate Davies; George Hughes; Graham Avery; Gus Mills; Guy Preston; Heila Lotz‐Sisitka; Ian McCallum; Jane Carruthers; Jean Senogles; Jenny Gon; Jeremy Anderson; John Hanks; John Ledger; Judy Mann; Julie Filmer; Keith Cooper; Kerri Wolter ; Kobie Brand; Lente Roode; Lindie Buirski; Liz & Dave Wheeler; Liz McDade; Liz Taylor; Lorna Watt; Malcolm Powell; Margaret Burger; Mariette Liefferink; Marion Mengell; Mark Anderson; Mark Graham; Mathew Norval; Mavuso Msimang; Melissa Fourie; Michael Kidd; Morne Du Plessis; Paddy Norman; Paul Bartels; Paul Dutton; Pete Hancock; Peter Milstein; Pieter Burger; Pixie Littlewort; Prof Wickus van Niekerk; Razeena Omar; Rejoice Mabudafhasi; Richard Cowling; Richard Lewis; Rob Little; Rob O’Donoghue; Rosanne Clark; Salomon Joubert; Samsin Phakathi; Sandy Barnes; Stanley Madden; Steve Raney; Suzanne du Plessis; Suzanne Erasmus; Tanya Abrahamse; Thomas Mathiba; Tim Neary; Tim Snow; Tony Carnie; Vincent Curruthers; Vukani Mtya; William Mngoma; Willem Hasiwindus; Yolan Friedman.