U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

Sacramento Fish & Wildlife OfficeServing the people, conserving the fish, wildlife, and plants of California

A Unit Of The Pacific Southwest Region

News Release

Interior Secretary Honors Two Conservation Partnerships in California and Southern Oregon with Major Award

January 21, 2014

Media Contact:  Pam Bierce, (916) 414-6542

Center DOI Partnership Award

Photo (left to right): Mary Kimball, Exec. Director, Center for Land-Based Learning, Karleen Vollherbst, Schoolyard Habitat Program Coordinator, USFWS, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Pam Pacelli, Board Member, Center for Land-Based Learning

Sally Jewell, Secretary of the Interior, recently recognized Sacramento's Center for Land Based Learning (CLBL) for their exemplary conservation and partnership service. CLBL partners with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, Audubon California, the California Association of Resource Conservation Districts, Agrium Inc. and other partners to conserve and enhance habitat for wildlife by promoting a healthy interplay between agriculture and nature. The CLBL was nominated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Sacramento Field Office.

"I take pride in knowing that the partnership with CLBL not only helps to accomplish the Service’s mission but that we are also helping to train the next generation of conservation professionals," explained Karleen Vollherbst, USFWS School Yard Habitat Coordinator.

Sacramento - Two conservation partnerships involving tribal youth in northern California and southern Oregon and high school students in California were among four U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service partnerships recognized by Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell during a Partners in Conservation awards ceremony today in Washington, D.C.

The Secretary honored 20 partnership projects nominated by Department of the Interior bureaus that have demonstrated exemplary natural resource conservation efforts through public-private cooperation. The California and southern Oregon partnerships focused on engaging youth in conservation and were among four U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service partnerships to receive awards. Partnerships in Texas and Kansas also received awards.

"Youth and partnerships are and will be extremely valuable to conservation of fish, wildlife and habitats across the nation," said Ren Lohoefener, Regional Director of the Pacific Southwest Region. "We are honored to recognize these organizations for their deep commitment to young people, our future conservation leaders."

A description of Service partnerships receiving the 2013 Partners in Conservation award are:

The partnership "Klamath Tribal Leadership Development for Integrative Science and Traditional Ecological Knowledge Program," northern California and southern Oregon, combined tribal ancestral cultural knowledge about local ecology and resources with high tech capabilities of NASA and other federal natural resources agencies.

In the summer of 2013, a pilot group of tribal students worked with agencies and tribes to link physical river conditions, native salmon populations and cultural values using traditional ecological knowledge to advance resource management.

Students gathered traditional knowledge from discussions with tribal elders and applied it to programs that advance the restoration and management of native fish populations in the Klamath Basin. In 2014, students will expand the information base for decision-making to explore the use of remotely gathered data and models to evaluate river conditions.

Partners include the Service, Bureau of Indian Affairs, U.S. Geological Survey, NASA, U.S. Forest Service, local tribes and other partners. The tribes associated with this program include Quartz Valley Indian Reservation, Resighini Rancheria, Klamath tribes, Karuk Tribe, Yurok Tribe and Hoopla Valley Tribe.

The "Center for Land-Based Learning Partnership," Sacramento, California, includes the Service and the Center for Land-Based Learning’s Student and Landowner Education and Watershed Stewardship program. The program gives high-school students the opportunity to take part in a yearlong habitat restoration experience combining hands-on conservation with classroom learning. Students participate in restoration projects such as planting native trees, shrubs and grasses, installing irrigation and wildlife habitat structures, and monitoring plant and wildlife populations. Teambuilding, leadership and science activities are also built into each field day. Students improved more than 250 acres of habitat in nearby national wildlife refuges and private lands and the partnership has reached more than 2,500 students. Teachers also receive training through this partnership and, in turn, enhance learning experiences for students.

A total of 14 partnerships were submitted nationwide by Service staff for consideration as part of this year’s awards. Additional information on the selected programs and full listings of entities involved are available here: http://www.fws.gov/home/feature/2014/2013-pic-awards.html.

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…She added, "This award recognizes the Center for Land-Based Learning and all of our partners: U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Audubon California, ...

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals, and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit http://www.fws.gov/cno. Connect with our Facebook page, follow our tweets, watch our YouTube Channel, and download photos from our Flickr page.

Last updated: December 1, 2017