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Redbud Environmental Education Center Grand Opening
Southwest Region, January 23, 2007
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Supporters and friends of Tishomingo National Wildlife Refuge turned out in droves December 15th to celebrate the grand opening of the refuge's new Redbud Environmental Education Center.
Supporters and friends of Tishomingo National Wildlife Refuge turned out in droves December 15th to celebrate the grand opening of the refuge's new Redbud Environmental Education Center. - Photo Credit: n/a
"This center is symbolic of just what can be accomplished when people work together and form partnerships for the betterment and benefit of the entire community." - Earl Brewer, President, Tishomingo Refuge Ecology and Education Society (TREES). - Photo Credit: n/a
Refuge Manager Patton dedicating Redbud Center to former Refuge Manager Ernest Jemison.
Refuge Manager Patton dedicating Redbud Center to former Refuge Manager Ernest Jemison. - Photo Credit: n/a
Like a phoenix rising picturesquely from the ashes of many years of neglect, this former Washita Farm structure and one time refuge manager's residence is now home to the Redbud Environmental Educattion Center.
Like a phoenix rising picturesquely from the ashes of many years of neglect, this former Washita Farm structure and one time refuge manager's residence is now home to the Redbud Environmental Educattion Center. - Photo Credit: n/a

           The refuge held an open house for Redbud Environmental Education Center on December 15th.  The Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony and Oklahoma dignitaries including Representative Paul Roan, Murray State College President Dr. Bill Pennington, and Chickasaw Nation representative Kennedy Brown assisted Refuge Manager Patton with cutting the ribbon. The refuge presented numerous volunteer awards at the opening including the dedication of the center to former Refuge Manager Ernest Jemison.

Former Refuge Manager Ernest Jemison eloquently talked about his life experiences working on Tishomingo NWR and how much those experiences meant to his children growing up on a refuge. The hand prints of his two oldest children are still visible in the concrete slab which now makes up Redbud Patio.

Richard Craven, son of Earl Craven the first Refuge Manager at Tishomingo, spoke about his fathers vision for the refuge and how proud he would be that Tishomingo NWR was returning to that vision. 

Manager Patton presented volunteer plaques to the seven member board of the refuge friends group Tishomingo Refuge Ecology and Education Society.  The TREES board has worked tirelessly to form partnerships to not only build a better refuge but a better community. The spirit of partnership is growing everyday in Tishomingo. 

Redbud Center is already becoming a focal point for the refuge with a waterfowl workshop, in November, drawing a full crowd of enthusiastic participants. The Oklahoma Lake Patrol also used the facility in early December to kickoff a region wide boater education course.


Contact Info: Martin Valdez, 505-248-6599, martin_valdez@fws.gov



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