Carolinian Canada Conservation Awards 1999

The Award Winners

Individual

Paul Prevett

Organization

Canadian Chestnut Council

photos provided by recipients

Individual

Paul Prevett Paul Prevett has been recognized by his peers and Carolinian Canada for his outstanding contribution to the securement and management of natural habitat in the Carolinian zone.

Paul chaired the protection sub-committee for the first Carolinian Canada program and has very effectively led and coordinated teams in resources planning, research, and program development and implementation. He has been very successful in bringing the stakeholders to the discussion table and keeping them there until strategies, solutions and plans are developed and agreed upon.

In addition to long days spent with on the Carolinian Canada program Paul has been extensively involved in the preparation of the Backus Woods management plan, guidelines for Forest Management in Areas of Natural and Scientific Interest, and the recovery plan for Red Mulberry, an endangered species.

Some of us remember the earlier days of the Carolinian Canada program and the typical Protection Subcommittee meeting. At a round table Paul would sit with mini cigar in mouth and chair a meeting which was typically attended by Steven Price – World Wildlife Fund Canada, Tom Beechey – MNR, Bill Sargent – Nature Conservancy of Canada representative, Yvette Wells – MNR, John Riley-MNR, Bryan Howard and Rebecca Goodwin – Ontario Heritage Foundation, Stewart Hilts and Tom Moull – OHF Stewardship Award Program, University of Guelph and Wayne MacMillan – Association of Conservation Authorities of Ontario. It took effective leadership and coordination to achieve the objectives of this new innovative program and Paul held a key role.

Presented by Wayne MacMillan, Grand River Conservation Authority and Carolinian Canada

Organization

Canadian Chestnut Council Few of us that work in the natural environment settings in the Carolinian zone of Ontario do not know the tragic effect of the importation of the foreign Chestnut Blight on our native chestnut. From being a major forest component and one of the most useful and versatile trees of our forest, the native north American chestnut disappeared from the map in a matter of 30 years. By 1924 Professor Sherwood Fox of the University of Western Ontario reported only 1 seed bearing tree left in Norfolk County.

A few landowners have made attempts to save or revive the chestnut but the blight was unforgiving and allowed only a very few isolated trees to grow to a size that could bear fruit. To some that was a challenge waiting to be conquered

The creator of the Canadian Chestnut Council was without doubt Dr. Colin McKeen, a retired plant pathologist who lived in Ottawa but grew up in the Strathroy area where he had seen the demise of chestnut. The charter members of the council in 1989 included John Fingland, the regional forester for the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, John Ambrose of the Guelph Arboretum, Doug Campbell a long time nut promoter from Niagara on the Lake, John Gartshore a well known conservationist from Ancaster and Dolf Wynia, Nursery Superintendent at the St. Williams Forest Station. Many conservationists have since taken a tour of service with the council.

Through the last ten years, members of the council have been involved in activities such as the collection of seed and growing seedlings, testing disease control methods, using "hypo virulent" strains, outplanting hundreds of seedlings for observation and preservation of the gene pools, sponsoring scientific research, maintaining accurate records of healthy and diseased trees and most of all keeping interested citizens informed through newsletters and public meetings about this magnificent tree that used to be such an important part of our Carolinian forests and the lives of our rural citizens. Every year new trees are being found even though many are still dying from the disease. The Canadian Chestnut Council is making a difference by giving us hope for at least a partial recovery of a major natural component of our forest

The Canadian Carolinian Coalition as an umbrella organization of conservation organizations wishes to congratulate the Canadian Chestnut Council for the contributions already made and the promise of commitment to this important Carolinian natural treasure by awarding it the first Annual Carolinian Canada Conservation Award.

Presented by Dolf Wynia, Ontario Forestry Association and Carolinian Canada

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